After an underwhelming first week of crowdfunding, Vertebreaker‘s Kickstarter campaign has been suddenly canceled.

In what Headcannon’s Simon ‘Stealth’ Thomley is calling a “spectacular failure,” Vertebreaker was only able to raise a few dollars short of USD$14,000 before the Sonic Mania developer decided to call it quits. The campaign’s target was set at USD$275,000.

The cancelation was announced in a Kickstarter update titled ‘We Are Very Sorry,’ later followed by a more detailed post and video that explained the complexities of the situation.

The video is 19 minutes long, allowing Thomley to tell his side of why Vertebreaker‘s crowdfunding efforts went so poorly. “In one week, we’ve only managed to raise five percent of the funds we need, and momentum has dropped to practically zero,” Thomley said.

Thomley goes on to explain his financial troubles and how the slow start to the campaign sent a clear message that Vertebreaker was a fast-moving failure. “The short version is, I’m broke. I know this doesn’t apply to everybody, but there are a lot of people who don’t understand contract work,” he said.

“I’ve seen plenty of snide comments about how I should have, and this is a quote, ‘millions of dollars’ after working on Sonic Mania. That’s probably based largely on the number of copies sold, but the thing is, I don’t get any of that money,” Thomley continued, detailing how his work as a developer was paid on a milestone basis.

For the last 13 minutes of the video, Thomley thanks each Kickstarter backer who supported Vertebreaker over its short-lived campaign.

Thomley states in this video that Headcannon is “hoping to restructure and start a new campaign in a few months,” so this may not be the end for Vertebreaker.

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Craig Snyder
Craig fell in love with video games after being spoiled with all of the NES games he could ever want as a kid, and his passion for gaming continues decades later. After discovering a knack for writing in grade school, the two have come together nicely for him. River City Ransom and Final Fantasy VII are his jams.

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