Developer inXile Entertainment has their fingers in a lot of crowdfunded pies right now. They just released Torment: Tides of Numenera, development on Wasteland 3 is in full swing, and Bard’s Tale IV is due out later this year. With so many plates already spinning (and occasionally slipping) they’ve recently announced work on another title, The Mage’s Tale for Oculus Touch.
Despite sharing the announcement to the Bard’s Tale IV Kickstarter updates for the sake of transparency, some backers are still getting annoyed. Although, not for the reason’s inXile probably expected.
The majority of backer complaints stem from the project’s Oculus exclusivity at release. With Oculus Studios publishing the title this is hardly surprising. Still, Vive supporters were quite vocal about their disappointment with the decision.
The developer addressed these concerns in the following Kickstarter comment.
“Just to clarify, this title is published by Oculus Studios and fully funded by them. The game would simply not exist without them, and they’ve been incredibly supportive and helpful to our efforts, which will feed back into BTIV as outlined in the update. As for it coming to other VR platforms, the game will show up there in the future!”
Outside funding of The Mage’s Tale allows inXile to develop the game without having to take a dime from The Bard’s Tale IV funds. In fact, there are actually some clear benefits to this arrangement. With the games taking place in the same universe, they are able to share some graphical assets. “That means we can make The Bard’s Tale IV look better, and frees us up to spend more resources to build on that art set, and this helps us get to the vision of what we wanted The Bard’s Tale IV to be,” the update said.
Of course, inXile also had to address the lack of Bard’s Tale 1-3 remastered editions as the comments wore on. Olde Skuul had expressed interest in remastering the classic Bard’s Tale games. Eventually, inXile agreed, on the condition that they would provide payment upon completion of the project. Since then the two studios have had somewhat of a communication breakdown. The situation was outlined on The Bard’s Tale forums, but at this time it remains unclear if Olde Skuul is still working on the remasters.
Hitting A Sour Note
It is a frustrating situation for all involved. One that is not likely to get cleared up anytime soon. Even so, it’s a shame to see inXile taking so much heat. They are clearly trying to communicate more with backers. It wasn’t very long ago that backers were complaining about the exact opposite problem. Time will tell if they can rebuild the community’s trust.