All right. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. AJ Tilley is back on Kickstarter. I’ve stopped counting how many he’s ran and how many accounts he has, but most of them are at least for different titles. This is the third time that he’s gone to the well for the Cyberpunk visual novel Echo Tokyo. Sure, this one’s focus is on getting a figurine produced for the main protagonist Shizume but there’s more to it than that.
Normally I would have overlooked this one and never batted an eye, but this is the third time he’s gone out asking for money to continue funding Echo Tokyo. Even if the main focus is on the figure. After all, if you look at the rewards matrix there are spots to get the game and graphic novel tied to the setting. The weirdest part about this, though, would have to be the asking price. At $8.5k (converted from pound sterling) it’s a lot to be asking for the production run. Now, I don’t pretend to be an expert on what goes into making items like this but it does seem like a fair chunk of change.
It’s not so much that I got to see the announcement for another Echo Tokyo campaign that nearly set me off but rather that he’s ran so many campaigns in the past year or so with almost nothing to show for it that made me feel just a tad nauseous. As far as I’m aware only the original Sword of Asumi visual novel and the Edo graphic novel has seen the light of day with Beach Bounce just around the corner. And even the latter is being split into three parts which alone is a head scratcher.
Now before you accuse me of being too negative about the guy, I did really enjoy Asumi when I finally got around to playing it. And I do have high hopes for the rest of the games that I backed. But, there does come a point when even someone like myself who’s generally willing to overlook some shortcomings to stop for a moment and say “enough is enough”.
Update 8/7 – Not long after we published this piece AJ Tilly cancelled this particular Echo Tokyo Kickstarter campaign. You can find the relevant campaign update here, which includes a couple driving factors behind the cancellation.