Harebrained Scheme’s Kickstarter for the BattleTech game concluded Tuesday after a month of gathering money from crowdfunding. The Kickstarter for the turn-based PC game can only be described as a success after reaching all stretch funding goals and Harebrained communicating what it would do with all funds earned in excess of the final stretch goal.
BattleTech raised $2.8 million from more than 41,000 backers through its 30-day Kickstarter campaign. The final stretch goal of $2.5 million was reached the day prior to the end of the campaign, and Harebrained pledged not to add additional stretch goals. That was a relief to hear, as it is not uncommon for Kickstarter campaigns to start throwing on stretch goals to generate additional funding with little investigation into whether they can be delivered. This inevitably contributes to delays and other issues with crowdfunded games.
So what is Harebrained going to do with the additional money received?
“Funding after $2.5m will go into polishing the features and content we’ve already committed to,” the developer wrote on the Kickstarter page. “After that, any additional funds will go toward funding a Post-Launch Live Team that will continue developing additional features and content. First among them will be Cooperative Multiplayer, which will allow you and a friend to face-off against AI opponents.”
As previously covered, this is Harebrained Schemes’ second revival project. The small studio’s first experiment was with Shadowrun Returns, which revitalized the moribund cyber-punk role-playing game into a successful Kickstarter campaign in 2012. That produced a well-received game that eventually spawned an expansion set in Hong Kong.
The fully-funded and operational BattleTech, targeted for a May, 2017, release, will feature a base turn-based skirmish game along with a single-player story campaign complete with cinematics, voice-acting, a customizable Dropship home base, plus “Legendary ‘Mechs and Mechwarriors.” A competitive PVP multiplayer is also being added thanks to the final Kickstarter stretch goal.
The single-player story campaign will put players in control of a mercenary outfit hired to do battle for the various ruling Houses of the Inner Sphere. Players will need to manage individual Mechs, pilots, loadouts, modifications, skills, and even finances.
Those backers that funded the game at $50 or more will all get to participate in betas for both the skirmish mode and PVP multiplayer. Unsurprisingly, this was the most funded tier, with more than 12,000 backers.
For those unfamiliar, BattleTech started as a tabletop game featuring giant mech battles set in a deep, complex universe. Here is the official description of where Harebrained Scheme’s title fits in the universe.
“BATTLETECH is set in a universe at perpetual war, fought by militarized factions utilizing huge, mechanized combat vehicles called BattleMechs.
“Following centuries of space colonization and the rise of six Great Noble Houses, treachery undermined the Star League and toppled its First Lord. The rulers of the five remaining Houses each proclaimed themselves the new First Lord, and so the Succession Wars began – hundreds of years of mechanized armies, scavenged technology, and political machinations.
“Now, in 3025, each faction is near its breaking point. An uneasy stalemate sets in as the Houses scrape to rebuild their holdings, reinforce their worlds, and restock their ‘Mech armies. But the conflict continues as the nobility drives their agendas forward covertly through the use of mercenaries.”
Harebrained Schemes has become a Kickstarter veteran at this point, with BattleTech being the fourth campaign funded. They build their experience from Shadowrun Returns and the Shadowrun: Hong Kong expansions. Only the Golem Arcana campaign, that had a risky mix of collectible figures with a mobile app, did not reach all of its stretch goals.
What do you think of the BattleTech Kickstarter campaign? Sound off in the comments below.
Disclosure: This author backed the BattleTech Kickstarter.
[Image via Kickstarter]