So, if you have been following the Kickstarter, you can see that unless something completely magical beyond all reason occurs in the next 72 hours, this Kickstarter is not going to make it. While I won’t pretend we’re happy about that, but that’s how it goes sometimes.
We will be doing a full post-mortem of the Kickstarter in a few weeks, where we’ll discuss what we did wrong and how we could have done better – and you’ll all get a mail about that.
Short version: We started marketing too late, we didn’t explain the project well enough, and our video was too long and not exciting enough.
Let me tell you what DID happen that we’re pretty excited about:
We found a group of about a hundred people that really care about what we’re doing.
We learned *OODLES* about grassroots marketing
We got some great feedback about our game.
Now let me tell you what we’re gonna do from here:
We’re gonna make this game, just like we said we would. Because it’s awesome.
Everyone who pledged is gonna get FREE access to our EXCLUSIVE CLOSED BETA. Additionally, each of our backers will get FIVE free codes to pass to friends for the Exclusive Closed Beta – so you can play the multiplayer with your buds. We’ll be doing this in mid-August. Current target date is August 20th.
Following the Closed Beta, we will be improving the game based on your feedback, and putting together a second round Closed Beta that we will make available about 6 weeks later.
We will release the Closed Beta in conjunction with a new Kickstarter, which we will be building using what we learned from this one. We will offer *immediate* beta access to anyone who pledges $1 or more.
The new Kickstarter will have all of the same levels as before, and you are welcome to re-back us at the same level or a different one. In fact, we will *guarantee* that those who backed us in this campaign will have the same backing level available in the next campaign, regardless of other limitations.
So – that’s it. We’re refocusing our efforts on getting that great Exclusive Beta now, and will have more news for you soon. Thanks again for supporting this great project.
I know this isn’t exactly LoFS-related, but I will be doing an Ask-Me-Anything (AMA) on Reddit tomorrow, June 29 7PM EST. I’d be happy to answer your questions about our Kickstarter project, game dev in general, or anything else. So mark your calendars and join us in a fun live online interview.
Speaking of interviews, both Allan and I have been featured on separate gaming websites about this game.
A quick backstory on how Legends of Fire & Steel started – it was a completely different game! We had been deep in the development of a trading simulation game where you sail ships across oceans and unlock new ports to trade with, but we decided we wanted something different.
We’ve mentioned Civilization, Crusader Kings, and Heroes of Might and Magic several times, but our most important inspirations are actually Risk and Diplomacy. Meanwhile, the character art was the same style we had been using for years in our casual adventure games like Awakening.
Today we wanted to share some more art with you – this time some of the art for the Revenant heroes – the evil undead. We wanted to share not only the art, but a bit of the thought process behind why we went in the direction we did.
When you think of the undead, one of the most common things you think of is a skeleton. And obviously, we came up with an idea for a skeleton warrior as one of the heroes in the game. Usually, warriors come from some sort of tribal origin, with leather or animal hide as their armor, but we wanted a hero that is stronger and more regal. Someone that is of a higher rank, and can lead an army. Thus we changed the concept for Dalgar to a skeleton knight – upgraded his armor into steel, to match the overall heavy metal theme of the game, and donned him with a tattered cape, to complement his decaying body. As a finishing touch, we equipped him with weapons made of broken materials and bones.
Ulmar is an undead version of a wise, old wizard who succumbed to the dark arts – more specifically, raising the dead. We gave him a cloak, a magical staff, and a spellbook then decorated him with skulls and chains to complete the creepy necromancer look.
The concept for Hel was inspired by Norse mythology, from the underworld goddess of the same name, known for her hideous face. In Legends though, she practices necromancy as a student of Ulmar. As a younger hero, we did not include a full cloak. We also opted not to show too much of her distorted body, so we equipped her with armor and weaponry just like we did for Dalgar to create a different personality.