The prospective sci-fi game The Lost Pisces fell short of its Kickstarter goal over the holiday weekend…way short of its goal. The project raised only $18,012 of its projected $204,000 goal.

Dan Rutkowski, the lead developer on the project, addressed the problematic turn of events on the ambitious game’s Kickstarter page, which can be found here.

“There’s been many worried questions as to what we plan to do if not funded,” Rutkowski writes. “Well, we’d be lying if we said we weren’t a bit disheartened by the experience… it’s tough to put something out there and see it sort of fall through. But, like any artwork or design project, sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t.”

Rutkowski acknowledged that the team asked for a lot, but added that “games cost a lot to produce” and pointed out that $200,000 is actually fairly conservative in an industry that routinely asks for double that amount even on less ambitious projects than The Lost Pisces.

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But all is not lost for the over 400 backers of the game as Rutkowski said that he plans to continue production…though he admitted that he and his team will have to search for alternative venues of funding.

“The Lost Pisces will indeed continue to be worked on,” he wrote, “it will just take longer, and we’ll have to explore other funding options if/when they arise.

“The more funds the easier it is to produce, but we’re resilient and we enjoy working on it.”

He said that though the game’s campaign fell considerably short of the $204,000 goal, he still considered the support of the 400 backers to be “very special” to himself and his team, as well as all the feedback and constructive criticism the game has gotten during its month-long Kickstarter campaign. Rutkowski detailed several changes to the project gleaned from that feedback, including moving away from the Kinect exclusivity (which was boasted as being a large part of the game’s development) and thereby also making the game available on the PS4; an increased team thanks to the exposure of the Kickstarter campaign; and the release of a “very early test-build” of the game this fall to clarify some confusion about the gameplay.

The Lost Pisces is described by Rutkowski as a sci-fi “reimagining” of the Little Mermaid that boasts an “emphasis on a new emotional approach to AI.” It had originally planned to use the Kinect’s facial recognition as a way to bridge the player to the titular main character, Pisces. Pisces, then, would be a non-player AI partner to the player-controlled main character. The hope is that this would give added significance to the player’s AI partner and build more of a rapport between the two.

More information about the game and additional updates on the project’s funding will be provided in the near future on the game’s website or on the developers’ Twitter and Facebook feeds.

Brienne Gacke
Writer, journalist, teacher, pedant. Brienne's done just about anything and everything involving words and now she's hoping to use them for something she's passionate about: video games. She's been gaming since the onset of the NES era and has never looked back.

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