In 2012, Double Fantastic Productions launched a Kickstarter marketing campaign to make an journey recreation.
On the time, the thought was that the journey style was useless – no less than within the eyes of main publishers. Nevertheless, as Double Fantastic founder Tim Schafer, who made his title engaged on point-and-click journey video games for LucasArts, appeared to suppose, there was nonetheless a large sufficient viewers on the market that somebody ought to make a brand new one. Why not Double Fantastic? And why not go on to the supply – the followers – for the sport’s funding?
In Double Fantastic’s pitch, it theorized the then-unnamed undertaking as a smaller recreation. The corporate requested for $400,000 from followers – particularly $300,000 to make the sport and $100,000 to permit documentary crew 2 Participant Productions to movie the event. On that final level, Double Fantastic would additionally publish a documentary permitting for transparency in how the corporate used fan cash.
On February 8, 2012, the Kickstarter was launched. Inside a number of hours, it handed its authentic purpose. Inside the first day, over $1 million. And by the point the marketing campaign closed a month later, it had raised, in whole, $3,336,371.
The profitable Kickstarter proved no less than two issues: One, the journey style nonetheless had some life. And extra importantly, crowdfunding was – to some extent – a totally viable possibility for recreation builders to make use of for undertaking funding, bypassing the usual strategy of pitching tasks to publishers and making an attempt to lift funds.
This all resulted within the recreation Damaged Age, a two-part coming-of-age journey recreation telling the twin tales of Vella and Shay. The as soon as modest undertaking ballooned into an enormous raise for Double Fantastic, taking quite a few years to see via and, controversially, extra money than initially requested for within the Kickstarter.
It additionally resulted in 2 Participant’s 20-part, 12-hour-long Double Fantastic Journey documentary, one of the full and clear seems we might ever had into how video games get made – no less than till it did it once more in early in 2023 with PsychOdyssey, exhibiting the making of Psychonauts 2.
It wasn’t at all times fairly. Sport growth by no means is. It is a lengthy, arduous street, and Double Fantastic Journey allowed folks at dwelling to see intimate particulars of the making of Damaged Age. It gave Kickstarter backers an inside take a look at how their cash was spent. It allowed them to have, generally hurtful, opinions over how the corporate dealt with enterprise. They have been usually very vocal about their ideas. It actually did not assist that Gamergate, a harassment marketing campaign focusing on ladies and minorities within the recreation business, occurred then. And whereas there may be a variety of pleasure, ardour, and wonder in Damaged Age and its documentary, there may be an plain quantity of battle and ache.
Greater than a decade later, revisiting Double Fantastic Journey seems like watching the origins of the Double Fantastic we now have right now. It revisited crowdfunding many occasions after, together with with Psychonauts 2, its largest undertaking, and nonetheless movies nearly all the things inside its partitions. However, as of 2019, Microsoft owns Double Fantastic, that means it does not should pitch followers or publishers anymore. 2 Participant has since been folded into the corporate, serving as an in-house documentary crew, and is arguably making tasks way more in-depth now than it was ten years in the past.
With a lot the identical and a lot completely different for the corporate, on a sunny day in San Francisco, Calif., the place Double Fantastic is predicated, we gathered a bunch of present and former Damaged Age leads and people from 2 Participant to replicate on the entire course of. Over many hours and drinks, they’d a frank, trustworthy, and private chat about what went proper, unsuitable, and all the things in between. In addition they discuss their emotions now a decade eliminated and the way your entire course of affected them as professionals and other people. And lastly, what the entire thing meant to Double Fantastic at massive.
Particular due to James Spafford.