Police Quest spiritual successor cancels second round of crowdfunding

Detective-themed game ends its second campaign; team may try again in the future.

Three weeks after Police Quest spiritual successor Precinct announced it would be cancelling its Kickstarter campaign early to seek alternative funding, the developer has announced that it will be ending the drive on its own website, as reported by Blue's News.

Raising just 3 percent ($11,890) of its $400,000 goal, a statement on the studio's website says, "Each member of our team has done their very best to make Precinct a reality. We put every effort into making a crowdfunding campaign work, but we have decided to end the Precinct campaign, effective today. Your generous support not only made Precinct a possibility, it also gave us the fire to try and make this work when the going got hard. Thank you."

Later in the statement to supporters, the company spelled out some of the financial challenges of popular crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter and the use of Amazon's financial services.

"To solve many of the issues with our Kickstarter campaign, our new approach was a staged funding model, based on how traditional video game investment is done," the note says. "Rather than getting all of the money up front, our approach was to install safeguards to validate Precinct's quality and potential as the product development cycle progressed. This approach would allow us to create a playable prototype quickly, and also work closely with the backers at every stage of development. On Kickstarter, the overwhelming majority of backers simply pledged at the level to get a copy of the game. By moving the rewards into an online store for individual purchase, we were able to significantly lower our funding needs and allocate more money to actual game development. Using our own crowdfunding system, we could stretch backer dollars even further by not having to give 5 percent to Kickstarter and 5 percent to the Amazon payments platform."

While unsuccessful at funding the project twice, the team hasn't ruled out another attempt to bring the game to market. "Depending on the situation, we may decide to try again someday. The backing community are wonderfully supportive of Jim Walls making a new game. Likewise, our team remains passionate about Precinct, and are hopeful there is a way to make Precinct a reality in the future."

People who supported the second attempt to fund the project will not have their pledges debited.

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Discussion

39 comments
Virdentaucent4
Virdentaucent4

This could be a game I would adore buying and even backing up. I hope they try again.

The demo video was... alright, it showed some promise but it was very short, but I did love how it showed multiple choices from just reaching an area and having to decide on what to do. With careful writing and scripting those multiple choices won't feel redundant, that's the trick, if you put a lot of choices for a player but don't use them all effectively thorought the game, some feel redundant and you lose a sense of importance in your choices.

I imagine, as an example, that informing the precinct of your location might not be wise if there is an immediate problem such as gunmen seen running into a building, and though I don't know police procedure in the real world well enough to know if eschewing reporting your status upon arrival is aloud, it feels if the situation is violent and volatile enough, those seconds used for a report are better spent getting out of the vehicle and attending to the situation. 

This is just a guess and example I'm pulling off the top of my head for how critical it would be to make choices important key to the situation at hand.

If they do that, then I would happily give a donation to their game.

keyb0red
keyb0red

oh man is that the video they put up on kickstarter? 

the voice over sounds like my grandpa. "Right you are son, you just give me your money and you can go enjoy some ridin in yo squad car and some shootin and handcuffin in small town america"

Zzzzzzzzzz.


DESTROYRS_F8
DESTROYRS_F8

sigh, was hoping I could see this one.  Haven't played this in a long time since I was a sophomore in high school :/

SecularSage
SecularSage

This is a great example of not one, but TWO campaigns that were not well-managed and which put passion and appeals to nostalgia ahead of common sense. The concept was confusing and ever-changing; the rewards tiers were strange; the promises kept shifting about what would be ready when.

I was a backer the first time around; I didn't want to be the second time. I wanted a spiritual successor to Police Quest. They didn't persuade me they were going to deliver that.

Incidentally, I got my Leisure Suit Larry Reloaded Boxed Copy in the mail today. The reviews for the game didn't do it justice; it was a great experience for fans of the original. 

00J
00J

They need to really put the player in the officers shoes. Have tense street crime situations, car chases that eventually end in a final confrontation with each randomly generated NPC which may give up, or fight back, have to take them to the police station OR have them transported and booked automatically.

Respond to traffic accidents, holdups, bank robbers in various stages of the crime. 

Night and Day cycles. Get in and out of Car, First Person Perspective.

They couldn't just license the Unreal Engine and do this? lol

???

DarkReign2552
DarkReign2552

Forget this new game. Do a "modernized" remake of the original Police Quests. By modernized, I mean bundle them together, give them slightly upgraded graphics (I'm imagining about the quality of Starcraft 2 units, and leave the gameplay otherwise untouched.) It's one of my favorite typing games out there and I would love to play it again, but it's definitely a bit... dated.

Senor_Kami
Senor_Kami

The consumer has spoken.  They aren't interested in what you're selling at the price you're charging.  That's the glory and brutal reality of crowdfunding.  It used to be suits telling you to piss off and not funding your game because nobody would be interested.  Now you get to see for fact that indeed, the suits were right.

eriktkire
eriktkire

2 reasons why this failed.

1) making a tech demo/prototype was part of what they were waiting to spend their funding on.  Considering how there was next to no concept art, etc. to help sell this visually, it seemed very "we're not going to even start this until we're getting paid to do even the initial ground work"

2) the reward tiers were, quite simply, crap.

I too would have liked to see the return of Police Quest, bigger better and more advanced than ever before... but this was too big a leap of faith as far as kickstarter presentation goes.

CUDGEdave
CUDGEdave

Shame,I used to love the "Police Quest" games....If they turned it into yet another mindless shooter for the brain dead masses..It would sell millions.

Geertwillers
Geertwillers

I think it's because it's so poorly presented. Some nice artwork or renders would certainly do the trick, but let's be honest: what they showed here (this screenshot in the article f.e.) looks like total crap. Futurustic look doesn't fit this, people want to be a present day cop,  textures in the car look awful, and wtf is with that zombie arm?

OODALOOP
OODALOOP

I have been hoping for a Police Quest follow up for years. Disappointed by this news.

dzimm
dzimm

When it failed to meet its Kickstarter goals, I have no idea why they thought they would do any better trying to raise the money on their own.  

Pelezinho777
Pelezinho777

Everything that demands brains and a bit of soul from the players ends in abyss...figures...

MAGIC-KINECT
MAGIC-KINECT

 Oh my "god"????? I can't believe it was canceled!! Wait...what was canceled??? Police Quest? Cool. Judging by the lack of comments here and lack of funding a coulpe of times, it's obvious that under 100 people worldwide would have played it anyway.

Dictatroll
Dictatroll

Oh f*** this! i was anticipating this game!

wdma
wdma

I read "Police Quest spiritual successor" and i was like OMG OMG its happeining then i saw "cancels" WHY WHY :(

blueinheaven
blueinheaven

I can't help thinking they would have had a lot more success with a reboot of Kings Quest or Space Quest which were always a lot more popular than Police Quest.

I'd back either of those straight off.

avanzato1
avanzato1

I thought about backing this but didn't, not because of the pitch but I already have several backed projects that are late. In fact so far only one thing I have funded has come in on time.

Also Doublefine spending all the money and surprising backers (me) who weren't watching their backer vids with the news has made me more wary of game projects in general.

jeffrobin
jeffrobin

Dammit. I didn't even know this was on KickStarter. The Police Quest series from Sierra was awesome. Great childhood memories.

Saketume
Saketume

Shame cause it looked fun. But when they failed their first kickstarter run Nobody was particularly fond of the way they went ahead with their second attempt.

I do hope they find funds for this somehow.

GoldenEyeRa
GoldenEyeRa

Somehow I wasn't even aware this was happening... I would have pledged in a heartbeat!

so_hai
so_hai

The first sentence of this article is in need of editing.

crolin
crolin

couldnt raise the money for this game twice? sounds like no one wants to play your game!

sladakrobot
sladakrobot

Back in the days i played consolegames and the reviews of those games was mixed together with pc games(amiga,atari st,still some C64,cpc schneider and zx spectrum aswell) which i also read.
The scores of some pc games were good and i wished i could play some of those(the Quest-Saga,Ultima,Eye of the Beholder) and some became reality(Loom,Dungeon Master,Speedball).
Shame this game missed its chance but dunno...does it has something to do with going 3D and with "hi-speed car chases"?
I remember Police Quest was a "point'n click" adventure with story in mind and no action features...or am I wrong?

pip3dream
pip3dream

@DarkReign2552 Activision owns the rights to Police Quest - hence why they couldn't do anything with the properties.  Activision wouldn't give Jim Walsh's crew the time of day when they wanted to talk about using the rights.

SecularSage
SecularSage

@CUDGEdave They already did that, with SWAT 3: Close Quarters Battle. It was actually a pretty great game. 

It was followed by an excellent sequel called SWAT 4 which was developed by Irrational Games in the pre-Bioshock era.

(SWAT 1 was an FMV game and SWAT 2 was a top-down strategy game. Neither were half as great as their FPS sequels.)

00J
00J

@CUDGEdave Agree. I've got the formula. The one they have is too slow.

avanzato1
avanzato1

@blueinheaven The Space Quest guys have already done a successful one for a game called "SpaceVenture"

Kickable
Kickable

@jeffrobin i remember my first satanic cult homicide like it was yesterday

lee1823
lee1823

@sladakrobot Yeh... I feel the same. I would much rather 'Precinct' have been a 2d point and click in the vein of the original police quest series. Considering most backers or potential backers would have played the originals, I would imagine a lot of them would feel the same. 3D graphics are not a necessity when you are reaching out to the nostalgia crowd.

dkeppens
dkeppens

@sladakrobot You're not wrong no. I played 'em all except for the last one i believe. Awesome entertainment just like almost anything sierra made.

So yes, i wouldn't be surprised the new form has something to do with their failure. Me personally, i was also put off by the kickstarter trailer. I assume most people who played these games want them to come back, but in their true, earlier form. It's the same story as for 2d platformer fans, really.

hystavito
hystavito

@SecularSage @CUDGEdave SWAT4 was one of the best shooters ever for me.  That kind of tactics focused gameplay has been gone for a long time, but there is hope.  Takedown is coming out in September and is promising to be a return to the days of games like SWAT4. and moreso the original Rainbox Six games.