Normally Adventure Gamers doesn't report fundraising campaigns for new adventures. It's a matter of principle, as it's easy to cross the line from press to promotional vehicle for ambitious developers. In this case we feel obliged to make an exception, however, and there's three simple words to explain why:
Tim freaking Schafer.
The legendary designer behind such classics as Day of the Tentacle, Full Throttle, and Grim Fandango has been largely absent from the adventure scene since departing LucasArts, though the acclaimed Stacking was created last year by Schafer's Double Fine Productions. As it turns out, that was merely a stepping stone to the announcement of a "brand-new, downloadable 'Point-and-Click' graphic adventure game for the modern age."
As yet still untitled, the new project will be a classic adventure that utilizes "modern touch technology", developed over a 6-8 month period by a small team under Schafer's supervision. The catch is, the project will be entirely funded by the public through the studio's Kickstarter campaign, with a goal of raising $400,000 by March 13th. Pledges of $15 and over come with a variety of rewards, including a downloadable copy of the game on Steam when the final game releases (effectively making this a long-term preorder rather than donation).
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Along with that comes unprecedented access to the development process itself, as "2 Player Productions will be documenting the creative process and releasing monthly video updates exclusively to the Kickstarter backers. This documentary series will strive to make the viewer as much a part of the process as possible by showing a game grow from start to finish, with all the passion, humor, and heartbreak that happens along the way." There will also be a "private online community set up for the backers to discuss the project with the devs and submit their thoughts and feelings about the game's content and direction, sometimes even voting on decisions when the dev team can't decide. Backers will also have access to help test the game once a beta is available."
For full details about the various pledge rewards, which increase with higher contributions, and answers to additional questions about the upcoming Double Fine Adventure, head on over to the Kickstarter page now.
If both the fundraising and production goals go as planned, we could be seeing the new project released as early as this October.
Update: Less than 24 hours after launching the campaign, Double Fine has already met their target goal! Pledges are still being accepted, however. What will they do with the overflow? According to the Kickstarter FAQ: "The extra money will be put back into the game and documentary. This could result in anything from increased VO and music budgets to additional release platforms for the game."