On the pulse of crowdfunded gaming

Kickstarter games are in a decline, report shows

Posted by Tyler Colp on October 3, 2014 | Jump to 0 comments

It’s been two years since Double Fine made a splash with its $3.3 million Kickstarter campaign and brought attention to the crowdfunding platform for other game developers.

Since then, we’ve seen projects that have raised even more than Double Fine did, and many more that haven’t. We’ve had Kickstarter games get released, and others cancelled.

When you compare the Kickstarter games from 2013 to 2014, it shows less success and less money, according to a report by consultancy firm ICO Partners.

icokickstarterreport1

Analyst Thomas Bidaux took statistics from 2013 and compared them to the first half of 2014 when doubled, because 2014 isn’t over yet.

Bidaux found that in 2013, there were 446 successful Kickstarter campaigns for games. And in the first half of 2014, there were 175, which when doubled is 350. That means there was a 20 percent decline in successful campaigns this year. Bidaux notes that “this is a decline certainly, but not a terrible collapse.”

Looking at the total amounts pledged, Bidaux found that in 2013, Kickstarter projects raised a total of $58 million. For 2014, they’ve raised $13.5 million. Double that to about $27 million and you get less than half of last year’s amount–a considerable decline.

icokickstarterreport2

Bidaux has a few suggestions for what the decline could be attributed to.

He said many big franchises have already jumped to the platform, like Torment: Tides of Numenara, Mighty No. 9, Elite: Dangerous, and Shroud of the Avatar. In other words, the big games that got the most money have already used the platform and are deep into development now, which could mean fewer people are coming to the Kickstarter website.

He added that it could be attributed to a drop in popularity of the platform since Double Fine’s 2012 campaign spiked it.

Or it could be caused by competition from platforms like Steam Early Access. Many developers launch Kickstarter campaigns with playable demos that could go directly to Steam, he said.

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