Uber cancels its Human Resources Kickstarter: “We simply don’t have the human resources”

Human Resources cancelled

Uber Entertainment has been unable to replicate Planetary Annihilation’s Kickstarter success with the studio’s new RTS project, Human Resources. As of today, the Kickstarter has been cancelled.

Human Resources would have seen giant robots and elder gods fighting over Earth in a bid for domination. While the promise of two ridiculous, asymmetrical factions; destructible cities, where buildings can be ripped out of the ground and used as weapons; and battles featuring hundreds of units intrigued backers enough to net the campaign almost $400k in pledges, it looked like the project wasn’t going to come close to its $1.4 million goal. 

“The time has come to shut down the Kickstarter for Human Resources,” Wrote Uber’s John Comes in an update. “Every Kickstarter prediction model is showing that we will come up woefully short of our goal. Running a Kickstarter is a full time job for several people. As a small indie, we can’t continue spending time and money focusing on a project that won’t get funded. We simply don’t have the human resources.”

The game pitched in the Kickstarter is over, explained Comes, but the world itself might live on in another form.

Since the Planetary Annihilation campaign, Kickstarter has become a busier place, filled with ex-AAA devs, inventive indies and industry veterans all trying to bring to life one project or another, but that might not be the only reason Human Resources didn’t see the success of the studio’s last game.

Despite being full of good ideas, Planetary Annihilation was rather disappointing, and was launched before it felt finished, despite going through a long Early Access period. Indeed, Kickstarter projects have proven to be a mixed bag, generally, and it’s no surprise to see confidence, or at least eagerness to pledge, diminishing.

And, looking at the page for the now dead project, there are similarities to the promises made in regards to Planetary Annihilation. Most notably this line: “Blast from the past! The tone, character, and pacing of a Command & Conquer game mixed with the mammoth battles of an Annihilation game.”

Once again, Uber was selling nostalgia. This time leveraging Command & Conquer as well as well as Total Annihilation.

Regardless, it’s still unfortunate. Human Resources sounds like a genuinely interesting game, and there’s a serious dearth of compelling RTS games available these days. And it is unfortunate that the Kickstarter business model makes it necessary for small developers to keep churning out new campaigns, especially if they start off ambitious, making it less likely they are going to have enough funds once the game ships to build another game without assistance.