You certainly can’t accuse indie game studio Schism Worldwide of a lack of enthusiasm. For their debut title Red Barton & The Sky Pirates they’ve built up a rich backstory and constructed a detailed Kickstarter campaign. Yet despite all this I can’t help but feel a bit underwhelmed. It’s essentially just a simple arcade shooter for mobile devices, yet is seeking an extremely ambitious $50,000.
Things certainly aren’t looking good so far with just $3,500 raised after the first 11 days (and $3,000 of that suspiciously from a single backer). Plus further scrutiny of the pledge levels reveals a potentially disastrous bit of planning. Beyond the ‘early bird’ opportunities for the first 20 backers the lowest pledge level is a whopping $25.
It also doesn’t help that while Red Barton & The Sky Pirates is able to show off almost finished gameplay footage, it just doesn’t look too impressive. Even on the iOS and Android platforms I worry it would struggle to stand out from the crowds of similar (and in many cases better-looking) games. Admittedly Schism are also working on an enhanced version for PCs and Macs as well, but I genuinely couldn’t see that much of an improvement in the available footage.
The four generic worlds (desert, water, forest, cave) on offer also look a bit uninspired. This is especially jarring when you take into account the overly-elaborate backstory that mixes sci-fi, steampunk and World War I imagery. Unfortunately I can’t see much chance of Kickstarter success for Red Barton & The Sky Pirates, and wouldn’t be too surprised if the campaign was cancelled before its 1st October deadline.