Chasm took a big step toward becoming a real game after a successful Kickstarter campaign.
Even though this is the first time Discord Games went the Kickstarter route, Chasm far exceeded its funding goal pulling in $191, 897. The focus will be on putting out a quality game, but right now Discord Games developer James Petruzzi is happy that all the hard work paid off.
“I think the campaign went really well overall. It was very arduous, but I couldn’t have asked for things to go any better,” Petruzzi said. “It doesn’t seem like a lot of work when you see one, but it is”
Chasm is a long way from hitting the shelves with a May of 2014 release date, but it cleared a major hurdle by securing funding. Not every game is cut out for Kickstarter, but Chasm fit a specific niche with its pixel art style and “metroidvania” style gameplay. Petruzzi said that didn’t consider Kickstarter until he showed Chasm at GDC this year.
“I probably wouldn’t have done it in the first place if we didn’t get such a great response at GDC,” Petruzzi said. “It’s certainly a weight off my shoulders though, and prevents us from having to make a crappy deal with a publisher.”
Petruzzi wanted the freedom to make the game they wanted to, which is the main reason Discord Games went to Kickstarter. “It’s certainly better than the alternative of possibly losing control of our project to a publisher,” Petruzzi said. “You just have to be willing to give up at least 6-8 weeks of your time.”
Chasm isn’t the only game that has gone to fans for help in funding. There more games going to Kickstarter for funding, but it doesn’t seem like the trend will be going away. Petruzzi said that the flood of game Kickstarters is a great thing.
“It makes the most sense since publishers aren’t as interested in retro-style projects. At the same time, I’ve seen a lot of ‘games’ on there by individuals with no experience, and only concept art to show that still get backed,” Petruzzi said. “I almost kind of feel like Kickstarter should be weeding those out, but I guess it goes against the openness of it.”
Chasm provided ample reason to invest in this game. There was a playable demo available and plenty of game footage to show. This gave backers a clear idea of what they were investing in. In a perfect world though, the Kickstarter wouldn’t have been necessary.
“I’m really hoping sales of Chasm will cover our next project so I don’t have to go through another campaign,” Petruzzi said. “Pretty sure I lost a few years off my life running that!”
With funding concerns out of the way, Discord Games is back to the business of making Chasm. The Kickstarter did not reach several stretch goals including an arena and roguelike mode, but Petruzzi said that money from pre orders may help pay for those features
“I’d say the chances are good a couple more Goals will be achieved before we release,” Petruzzi said. ” If we have extra time and money we may tackle some others even if we don’t reach them.”