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Brian Fargo doesn’t believe in Kickstarter fatigue - but devs have to be “filling a niche”

Wasteland 2 was one of the early, explosive Kickstarter videogame successes.

Chaos Reborn Kickstarterer Julian Gollop echoed a common sentiment two weeks ago when he declared crowdfunding “much more difficult now than it was even a year ago”.

The theory is that Kickstarter users are a savvier bunch with slightly lighter wallets than those that funded Wasteland 2. But inXile head Brian Fargo doesn’t think the golden age is over.

“I don’t think it’s so much it’s a Kickstarter fatigue, but if there isn’t a strong demand then I think it’s very difficult. I think that’s where some people are hitting some problems.”

Some of the projects that have failed to meet their targets is “Kickstarter doing its job”, Fargo told Digital Spy.

“Which is saying, ‘We don’t really want that, or there’s already too much like it’,” he explained. “I think it worked very well for us, and it worked well for Schafer, because it’s quite honest to say this game wouldn’t have existed without it, period, because we’re a middle-ground developer, we’re not two guys.”

The projects that succeed most dramatically on Kickstarter, according to Fargo, are those that fill a “hole in the marketplace”. And most of those holes have now been filled.

“It’s getting harder to find things where people resonate and think, ‘I really want some of those things’,” he said – but pointed to Mega Man creator Keiji Inafune’s Mighty No. 9 as a recent exception.

“Kickstarters continue to do million dollar [fundings], there’s a lot of board games and other things that hit,” said Fargo. “They’re still working, but you truly got to be filling a niche. It feels like there’s always too many of them. It’s just hard to do well.”

How has your attitude to Kickstarter changed personally? Are you warier about splashing $20 on a distant prospect than you were two years ago?

Cheers, Develop.