Hero-U update #63: Even Better the Second Time Around

News ID: 266
Date: 2015-05-06
Source: Sierra Chest

As one of the 6,093 backers pledging a combined $409,150 for the Hero-U Kickstarter by Lori and Corey Cole over 2 years ago, I received a most unusual project update in my email this morning, titled "Even Better the Second Time Around". As the update is for the eyes of backers only, I will not disclose the entire content, though we're fairly certain that the news has already spread widely on social media and in the gaming world in general.

Basically it comes down to this: the project ran over its budget and they will launch a SECOND Kickstarter, starting May 12, to raise another USD 100,000 in order to properly finalize the game.

As you can imagine, the reactions to this news by the backers were rather mixed with some radically declining to pledge more than they already had and others showing continued support. But most of all there are lots of questions which people demand answering. How has the initial budget been spent? How far is development? Will the additional funding suffice to complete the game? What if the additional funding goal is not achieved?

Corey Cole already answered several of those questions - here are a few quotes from him:

Why was the funding insufficient?
"This is not at all the same project we Kickstarted 2.5 years ago; it just has the same title and story line. That original project was a top-down Rogue-like with story built around the MacGuffin's Curse engine. What we are building now is a full-blown graphic adventure RPG. Was it a mistake to switch tracks? Maybe. Have we ridiculously squandered our funds? Certainly not. Our correct path, using the crystal ball of hindsight, would have been to give away half the project in return for a half million dollar angel investment to supplement the $350K in crowdfunding money. We lacked that crystal ball, made several false attempts at making the game, and eventually realized we needed to spend a great deal more to finish it.

Overview of the finances:
"I have a full breakdown of where we've spent money so far and where we plan to use the funds from the new Kickstarter. Since I will be doing many more updates on the new project and several here, I decided not to put everything in one Update. I absolutely will be sharing that soon."

Why USD 100,000?
"Now that we finally have a strong team in place (they started Jan. 1, 2015), our burn rate is $10K/month. Eight months of funding (after subtracting fees and rewards) will get us into Beta, and Lori and I can cover the rest."

When is the game expected to be released?
"It took us two years to find the right developers; we finally have them, and we can finally see light at the end of the tunnel as a result. But it's still going to take at least six months to finish the game, and at least three months to test it. I'm listing April 2016 as the new estimated delivery date, because of course something else will go wrong, or take longer than expected, before we're done."

Needless to say, more updates will be posted as this story develops.

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