Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Ars Magica Kickstarter

I'm still addicted to Kickstarter, at least when it comes to computer games. My latest pledge went to this one, which plans to turn the Ars Magica board game into a computer RPG.

Now, I know absolutely nothing about Ars Magica, and this Kickstarter pitch leaves almost everything to the imagination. What kind of game are they planning to make? A single-player, turn-based role-playing game, sure, but that would describe a wide variety of games.

So why am I supporting it? Only because this is Black Chicken Studios, the same people who developed Academagia: The Making of Mages.

Ironically (check out that review), I didn't actually like Academagia. But it was still intriguing. It had a lot of promise, it really did. And it was different enough that I'm anxious to see what they'll do next.

I like to support independent game developers, because those are the people trying new things. Sometimes, they're not successful - or not entirely so. But that's the risk you take when you try something new.

So for me, this is well worth a small investment. (Unfortunately, that's what I usually think when it comes to Kickstarter projects, which is why I say I'm addicted to them.) But we'll see. So far, they're just a tenth of the way to their ambitious $290,000 goal, though it's only been a few days. I got in early on this one. :)

PS. Fans of Academagia tell me that there have been 15 (free) content patches added to the game, so I suppose it's changed in the year and a half since I reviewed it. I haven't played it since then, so I just don't know.

But that's another thing I like about independent game developers. They're usually very responsive to their fans. A small company might struggle to include everything in a game's initial release, but try very hard to respond to any complaints.

And note that these are free DLCs, not just a marketing decision to squeeze as much money as possible from gamers, as is often the case with mainstream developers these days.

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