It’s not always easy being a game developer raising funds through Kickstarter—especially a ton of funds, like how Darkseas Games managed to back in May 2013 for their motorcycle combat-racer Road Redemption. If you don’t deliver on your campaign promises or deliver a shabby product, there’s no doubt that you’re going to be held accountable for your actions.
The disaster that was Mighty No. 9 hasn’t done much to ease the uneasiness a lot of gamers are still feeling about big-budget gaming Kickstarters. Road Redemption doesn’t quite sit in the same financial bracket as the Mighty No. 9, raising only $170K to the latter’s nearly $4 mil, but they’ve both recently been dealing with a slew of complaints from their respective backers.
Firstly though, it should be mentioned the Early Access version of Road Redemption was released on Steam in 2014 to some pretty darn great reviews. PC gaming website Rock, Paper, and Shotgun put it this way—“Oh yeah. Oh. Yeah. This is the one. It feels great. It works beautifully,” while a Steam user by the name of “Bonnenuit” described the original release as “fun, but unrefined and (perhaps unintentionally) hilarious.”
Since then, the game has undergone all kinds of changes—from enemy AI to combat improvements—and “Bonnenuit” also attests to that, stating, “it is SO much more polished now, far more balanced. It’s a tight racer/beat-’em-up, and is once again one of my favorite time-wasters.”
That being said, some backers are still asking for refunds. Why? Well, in Darkseas Games’ latest Kickstarter update, they announced that they’ve “indefinitely postponed” the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions of Road Redemption. This seems not to have been the source of anger for many of the game’s backers, but what’s really irked them is that the Wii U version is now being “evaluated” in light of Nintendo’s announcement of the NX console. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that “indefinitely postponed” and “evaluated” are weak codespeak for “like, never” and “probably not,” at least in this context.
Backer Buddy Hall had no qualms calling out the team on its very, very late bad news, posting, “I backed your game for the Wii U. I expected it 2 years ago. Now it looks like you are testing the waters to see how many people complain if you decide to cancel the Wii U version. I’m disappointed.” Another backer, Jesse, posted this imgur pic, the “Wii U Tanooki Tier” at $17, which promised the computer versions of the game alongside a digital copy for the console in question. Oh, and to be delivered in August 2014. So much for that.
It looks as though Darkseas Games has pissed off a select portion of their backers with their latest news, but let’s not forget that the Steam Early Access version is still going strong, and the game is slated for release on Xbox One and PS4. Fingers crossed!