If the Kickstarter campaign for a new Amplitude game for PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 comes up short, the game will not be made, developer Harmonix says.
"There aren't publishing funds waiting in the wings or some third party who's eager to offset our costs--either we fund the game here, or the game goes back on the shelf," Harmonix director of publishing and PR John Drake said on the developer's website.
The new Amplitude Kickstarter campaign has raised $234,691 from over 6,000 backers so far. That's well short of the game's $775,000 target. The campaign ends in nine days on Friday, May 23. Of course, it's not uncommon for Kickstarter games to rally near their funding end-date and come out successful.
Asked what Harmonix would do if the crowdfunding effort came up short, creative lead for the new Amplitude game, Ryan Lesser, told GameSpot earlier this month that he didn't think that would happen.
"Our hope is, of course, that people dig it and want to have the game made," Lesser said at the time. "In the unlikely event that it fails, we will take that as a lesson learned and say 'OK, this is a game that people are either not ready for or don't want right now.'"
"Making games of any size is risky and takes tremendous time, resources, and creative efforts. It's also far more expensive than you might think" -- Harmonix's John Drake
Also in the new blog post, Drake addressed the thought that Harmonix is too big and resource-laden a developer to need to use Kickstarter to fund a new game.
"The one thing we think an acceptable 'game on Kickstarter' needs to share is that the project is, at its heart, a dream that can't become a reality without fan funding. And we think that Kickstarter has room for dreams of all sizes, including ours," Drake said.
"The short answer is: nope," Drake said. "Making games of any size is risky and takes tremendous time, resources, and creative efforts. It's also far more expensive than you might think," he added.
The $775,000 Harmonix is looking for to make the new Amplitude a reality is the minimum amount of funding the studio needs to be able to self-fund the rest of the project, Drake said. He pointed out that $775,000 is actually less than half of the entire budget for the game, meaning the true budget is somewhere north of $1.55 million.
"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," Drake said. "Harmonix had successes in the past that let us keep the studio going and make small games, but at this point our coffers as a company aren't full enough to fund the entirety of Amplitude by ourselves. There isn’t a secret vault of Rock Band money that we’ve forgotten about."
If Harmonix is able to secure enough funding to make the new Amplitude game, it is scheduled to be released sometime in March 2015 across PS3 and PS4.
|Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and you can follow him on Twitter @EddieMakuch|
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