It’s always sad to see a game succeed on Kickstarter, only to have it fail later. Such was the fate of Grin, the studio behind games such as Wanted: Weapons of Fate, and the lukewarm Bionic Commando reboot. After getting fed up with working for the AAA game industry they decided to independent and hit Kickstarter to help make it happen. In August 2014 the Kickstarter for Woolfe: The Red Hood diaries, a gritty action adventure telling of the classic Red Riding Hood tale, was launched.
When the Kickstarter for Woolfe ended the team at Grin had raised a sum of $72,139 for development. While that’s not much in the grand scheme of things, the developers expressed optimism that “a team of 6 to 10 people could make a game that looked and felt AAA.” Unfortunately this proved to be their downfall. Making an episodic game with the high expectations set during the Kickstarter with such a low budget was a huge gamble; a gamble that Grin lost unfortunately. Woolfe launched in early 2015, and what followed was several months of relative silence from the team. Finally, in August Grim founder Wim Wouters broke the ice with the story behind the silence. What followed was a tale detailing cancellation, break-ups, and bankruptcy. All of which left backers without some much-anticipated backer rewards.
That’s where the story typically ends in these situations, but in a surprising turn of events Rebellion, creator’s of the Sniper Elite Alien Vs. Predator games, surprised everyone with a Woolfe Kickstarter update. Turns out that they purchased the Woolfe intellectual property from Grin and have committed that backers of Woolfe will get all the backer awards they were promised by the end of the year.
Isn’t that awesome?
While it is unclear whether or not further development of Woolfe as we know it will continue, Rebellion did state “Woolfe is still alive, and now in the hands of a new owner, Rebellion– that’s us! We’re delighted to add Woolfe’s gorgeous, twisted universe to our burgeoning list of indie games and we hope you’ll join us for the ride.” Overall this seems to be an exciting development, and shows that Rebellion does care about consumers. After all, couldn’t they have simply purchased the rights to Woolfe and left Kickstarter backers where they were? Seems like a pretty good end to an otherwise sad tale if you ask me.