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What a big Kickstarter success looked like - before Double Fine came along

What a big Kickstarter success looked like - before Double Fine came along Exclusive

February 5, 2014 | By Mike Rose

February 5, 2014 | By Mike Rose
More: Console/PC, Indie, Business/Marketing, Exclusive

When indie developer David Board brought in $17,236 via Kickstarter for his third-person action adventure game Lifeless Planet, he could barely believe it. It was twice as much as his funding goal, and he was completely overwhelmed by the response.

Five months later, and the Kickstarter landscape all of a sudden shifted drastically with the launch of the Double Fine Adventure campaign, which brought in a staggering $3.3 million. Suddenly, Board's grand funding total seemed miniscule compared to what devs could potentially achieve on Kickstarter.

"I thought 'Oh, for once in my life, I got ahead of the curve!'" he laughs. "Then things exploded and I was like 'Oh man, I started too early.'"

"I ran into Tim Schafer at PAX Prime last year, and the first thing he said to me was 'Don't run out of money!'" Board adds. "I was telling him that I was really excited about our success, and then they came along and made me look silly."

Having said that, the Lifeless Planet dev is still grateful for his Kickstarter timing. He notes that there are just so many Kickstarter campaigns running for games each month, that getting exposure for his campaign was far, far easier than Kickstarter devs are currently finding.

"I was able to get exposure on sites that were just discovering Kickstarter," he notes, "and through that I ended up getting a publisher, we're now accepted on Steam - so it's sort of 'the bird in the hand' analogy, in that I'm very happy with the success that the game got, and I'll likely be on Kickstarter again in the future. I have some other projects that I'd love to take there as well."

And having hundreds of backers to act as his own little army who go out and talk about his game in their own communities has been huge for Lifeless Planet's exposure. "It's helpful to have folks for beta testing too," he adds.

Lifeless Planet is due to launch on Steam Early Access in February, with a full release sometime before the summer.

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