John Drake, director of publishing and PR at Harmonix, took to the company’s blog to discuss the importance of the Kickstarter campaign funding its rhythm-action game, Amplitude.
The developer hopes to bring the game to the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 as a Cross-Buy title, but if the crowdfunding campaign fails then "the game goes back on the shelf," wrote Drake. The catalyst for this blog post may stem from questions that the developer was receiving from gamers who assumed Harmonix was in a financially sound place to fund Amplitude on its own.
"Sometimes, our ideas for projects are small enough that we can tackle them on our own and self-fund – we’re fortunate to be able to take those small risks without a third party," Drake continued. "But other times a project comes along that’s too ambitious in scale, scope, or cost for us to be able to responsibly make it completely out of pocket. In those cases, like any other group that wants to make an ambitious project, we have to find ways to pay for the development of the games we want to make."
While titles such as Dance Central, Rock Band, and the upcoming Xbox-exclusive, Fantansia: Music Evolved, all fit within the vision of its respective publishers, Drake mentioned that the idea of a new Amplitude game seemingly did not. "Sometimes the publishers we approach won’t fund a game that we’re excited about and that we think fans would be excited about – maybe they don’t think it fits with their portfolio strategy, maybe they don’t think it would be commercially viable and worth their investment."
The requested amount on the Kickstarter page of $775,000 is actually less than half of the total development costs. At the time of writing this, the total amount backed is approaching $240,000 with eight days remaining. "Even in the scenario where we raise the $800,000 or so on Kickstarter, we’ll be risking more of Harmonix’s money than we probably should – all because we want to make this game so badly," he wrote.
If you were a fan of the original 2003 title, check out the Kickstarter page to see what perks Harmonix is giving out; which include dinner with famed developer Tim Schafer and a visit to the Harmonix studio.
Do you agree with a developer of Harmonix’s caliber crowdfunding for a game? Will you be backing Amplitude? Let us know in the comments section below.