Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Kickstarter Video Games on Decline

Unsurprisingly, the boom of utilizing Kickstarter for video game projects has hit it's peak. It seems like every few months I was posting another story about the crowd funding website. Even with a rash of sham game sites, and uproars over unfinished projects, Kickstarter has done well for itself as the market leader for crowd funding. Eventually, the donations were going to hit a peak.

First the first half of 2017, over $9.4 million was pledged to successful video game campaigns. In 2015, it was $19.98 million. That's a big drop. Unless a large title is announced for this second half of the year, the amount of pledges will continue to steadily fall.

But it's not all gloomy for Kickstarter. Video games still remain one of the more popular topics for people to back. "Video Games are keeping the same rhythm as the previous year, with roughly 30 projects per month getting funded," said ICO's Thomas Bidaux. As long as the pattern continues throughout the year, it'll still be a successful run for Kickstarter. Just not as much as it has been. Understandably, 2015 was a big year. Shenmue 3 broke the record for highest funded video game; fans donated $1 million in just the first day. There was a lot of hype behind the Friday the 13th game, which is out now, as well as loads of indie titles include the critical hit That Dragon: Cancer. 2015 was a good year to fund games.

Why the decline? It could be that fewer games are hitting Kickstarter for funding. Or that people are still reeling from the long wait times for projects to be complete that they'd rather see results first before deciding to back a title. Unlike other products, the time-table for games can take years. Donating to a project that may end up unfinished can be a daunting proposition. Or it might be that games are being more reasonable about their budget expectations. Instead of funding the full development cycle, teams may only need enough to add finishing touches to the game. So they crowdfund that instead.


Kickstarter is expecting to see a rise in tabletop games. The sector has been growing for the past decade, and could surpass video games soon.

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