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Editor’s Note: Over the next few weeks, we’ll be highlighting some of the most successful, interesting, and innovative crowdfunding campaigns of 2012. This week's category is most funded campaigns. Thus far, we’ve featured the Pebble smart watch, the Ouya video game console, and Star Citizen. We continue our series with Project Eternity, another video game.
When it comes to running a flawless crowdfunding campaign, Obsidian Entertainment may just take the cake for its Project Eternity Kickstarter page.
Here's why game developer's crowdfunding effort worked so well: Obsidian, already a popular games developer among role playing game (RPG) fans, built up hype for the game in advance of launching the Kickstarter page. It interacted with fans on a daily basis via updates and comments. It acted quickly to create stretch goals after eager backers surpassed the initial $1.1 million goal within a day. It gave back to the community by participating in the Kicking it Forward initiative, earning some social capital. It also made a PayPal donation page for those who wanted to donate that way. And, of course, Obsidian came up with a promising game concept that managed to pique the interest of RPG fans.
The result? $4 million raised on Kickstarter (good enough to top the list of most-funded games on the platform) from nearly 75,000 backers, with an additional $300,000 coming in the form of PayPal donations. The $4.3 total made it the fourth most successful campaign of the year. Like Star Citizen’s developers, Obsidian is keeping PayPal donations open in return for a pre-order of the game, meaning the total will likely inch closer to (and surpass) $5 million by the time the game comes out in April 2014.
For more information on the upcoming game, check out the Kickstarter video below. Notable in its absence is gameplay footage – unlike most other successful campaigns, Obsidian went to Kickstarter very early on. Star Citizen's developers, for comparison, worked on their game for a year before turning to crowdfunding.
Check out previous write-ups on the Pebble watch, the Ouya games console, and the video game Star Citizen, and keep reading Crowdsourcing.org for more coverage of the year's best crowdfunding campaigns!