Kickstarter continues to show it is the place for developers to go to gain funding for game genres that publishers have declared dead. Former Castlevania producer Koji Igarashi started a crowd-funding project via Kickstarter for Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night for the PlayStation, Xbox One, and PC on Monday which quickly reached more than half of its $500,000 goal in the time it took to write this article.
Update: Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night not only reached its $500k funding goal, but has already passed the $850k stretch goal in half of its first day.
Like the classic Castlvevania series, Bloodstained is a side-scrolling platformer that focuses on exploration. Yes, the whip returns, but there are additional weapons that can be obtained through the use of RPG elements and crafting.
“You are Miriam, an orphan scarred by an alchemist curse which slowly crystallizes your skin,” the plot for Bloodstained reads. “You must battle your way through a demon-filled castle summoned by Gebel, your old friend whose body has become more crystal than flesh.”
Bloodstained is currently targeting a March 2017 release, which would give it nearly two years of development time. Concept art has been produced for the game, but no actual assets yet.
Igarashi is leading the development with Castlevania composer Michiru Yamane returning to handle the score. Development of the game will be handled by Japanese studio Inti Creates with backing from other companies to handle other aspects of design as well as PR, marketing, and audio.
According to the accompanying video, Igarashi has tentative outside financing support. The goal of the Bloodstained Kickstarter is to demonstrate to these potential funding sources that there is still a passionate fanbase for Castlevania-style platformer titles.
The passion is clearly there among a hardcore fanbase as Bloodstained looks to reach its $500,000 goal in its first few hours on Kickstarter. Stretch goals currently include a second playable character at $700k, a “Nightmare” difficulty m ode at $800k, and gaining the services of voice actor David Hayter (Metal Gear Solid) at $850k.
Igarashi left Konami in 2014 to form his own studio after conflicts with the game publisher’s change in direction for games. This change in direction has also affected the Metal Gear series and producer Hideo Kojima. He is said to be leaving the company after work on Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is complete and Konami has already been scrubbing his name out of various projects.
While there have been many failures and disappointments with Kickstarter-backed games, spiritual successors to beloved classics have been potently successful. Obsidian Entertainment’s Pillars of Eternity was one of the first to blow through its goal to raise nearly $4 million prior to its release earlier this year. Meanwhile, MegaMan successor Mighty No. 9 was quickly funded while the Banjo and Kazooie follow-up, Yooka-Laylee destroyed its funding goal as well.
Is Igarashi’s return to the Castlevania genre with Bloodstained a reason for excitement? Sound off in the comments below.
[Images via Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night Kickstarter]