Double Fine on honesty in development

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Double Fine on honesty in development

Post by Grabthehoopka »

In this interview, Double Fine talks about Massive Chalice, their Game of Thrones-meets-XCOM strategy game that got kickstarted, and how they changed their game development strategy after Broken Age.

As everyone remembers, Broken Age kind of made a little more than their funding goal (just a few tiny millions of dollars more), and so Double Fine got more and more ambitious, and after several months, completely out of the blue, shamefully revealed to the public that they had run out of money and started a second crowdfunding thing to make up the difference. This came as a shock to a lot of people, since the updates they released never hinted that anything was going wrong up to the point.

Well, it seems they've learned their lesson and taken a lesson out of Matt's book regarding the trust of the backers, as well as generally keeping the game in the public eye, and then some, and decided to basically have the most open, transparent game development ever. They're constantly having livestreams on their channel giving updates on the game's development, they answer questions from the viewers, show off pre-alpha build stuff, talk about the engine, the way the game works, and pretty much nothing is off the table in terms of what they will or won't talk about or show.

Thoughts? Are we hoping this becomes a trend?
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Re: Double Fine on honesty in development

Post by matt »

I think you have to be that open if you want to make sure your backers are happy and would be interested in supporting your future projects. What I try to create (and I have a video I'm going to post soon-ish talking more about this) is extra value to backers in the form of open development and community involvement.

If (when?) we try to do another project on kickstarter, I want to make it so everyone who backed Neverending Nightmares will feel like they can't afford NOT to back the project because we are creating so much extra value for backers. I think we are succeeding on Neverending Nightmares, and I suspect we'd get a fair number of repeat backers if we were to do another project on kickstarter after this one.

Unfortunately our team isn't big enough to do livestreams since that would be time away from making the game, but if we did a bigger project with more backers and team members, we probably would. We did experiment with those, but it was hard to justify several man hours of time doing a stream for 14 viewers. They were a lot of fun though, and if we weren't so busy, I would probably do them just for kicks.
-Matt Gilgenbach
Lead Frightener at Infinitap Games
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