Masquerada's Kickstarter is Surprisingly Low-Risk
The Witching Hour Studios team decided that its upcoming Masquerada Songs and Shadows would be unsuitable for Early Access, instead going to Kickstarter for a final funding push.
I saw Masquerada Songs and Shadows on the floor at PAX Prime last year, and thankfully, something drew me to it. The game already seemed to be in great condition, so I was surprised when i saw an email about Masquerada's ongoing Kickstarter. There's been growing skepticism around crowdfunding, as it's the backers taking a risk by sponsoring a campaign with their money. It's refreshing to see Masquerada pleading not for money to finish the game, which is described as "feature complete," rather to make it a superior product.
Development was funded by Ysbryd Games already, and the game is, technically speaking, finished, but the Witching Hour team wasn't content with "technically" complete. The folks behind Masquerada want to be able to offer the best possible experience, so they took to Kickstarter, where the risk, they say, is lower than it would be on Early Access.
We could launch on Early Access, but we feel that isn't the right venue for singleplayer RPGs. The RPG audience deserves an experience that's been tweaked and fine-tuned to perfection; you don't deserve to be guinea pigs. That would be more of a risk than asking you to pledge money to us.
Whether you think the campaign is greedy or noble, I think we can all agree that backing a Kickstarter for a game that you can actually demo right now for free is as close to risk free as crowdfunding gets.
If nothing else, it's worth checking out the Kickstarter for the voice cast alone. It seems like there's someone on the roster to appeal to every single gamer that's ever played a game with VO.