2,800 crowdsourcing and crowdfunding sites
Editor’s Note: Over the next few weeks, we’ll be highlighting some of the most successful, interesting, and innovative crowdfunding campaigns of 2012. Thus far, we’ve featured the Pebble smart watch and the Ouya video game console. We continue our series with Star Citizen, a PC game by legendary developer Chris Robers.
In the video game industry, few people are as recognized and respected as Chris Roberts, maker of the genre-defining Wing Commander and Starlancer space flight simulators. So when Roberts announced that a new title was in the works, it’s no surprise people paid attention. That game (Roberts' first after a decade-long hiatus) turned out to be Star Citizen.
A month after announcing the title, Roberts launched a crowdfunding campaign on his company’s site using the white label plug-in IgnitionDeck. The campaign proved so popular that the site crashed, unable to handle the high number of visitors. At that point, Roberts turned to Kickstarter, launching a parallel campaign with a half-million goal to supplement the $2 million he was asking for on his own site.
The two campaigns eventually smashed their respective goals, garnering $6.2 million total -- the highest amount raised for a video game in 2012. And while the crowdfunding stage is now over, those who missed out can still preorder the game; including the latecomers, the game has gotten over $7 million from 100,000 backers.
After running a dual campaign offering numerous perks and award levels, Roberts said there is much work to be done to consolidate all the data into a single database -- a problem most crowdfunding initiatives don't have. Let's see if his fruitful experience, however, inspires other entrepreneurs to supplement a traditional campaign with their own crowdfunding effort in the new year.
Here’s the campaign video, featuring a look at the upcoming game: