It is with a heavy heart that I am writing this today, because the news I bring are not good. As of today, we have cancelled the development of “Deathfire: Ruins of Nethermore!”
I know that very many of you will be very disappointed, and I want you to know that I am every bit as disappointed as you are. Perhaps even more so, because we had invested one entire year of work, sweat, effort, hope and money into this project. It has become a dream project of sorts, the kind of game you really want to make, because you know that in the end it would have all the hallmarks of becoming a classic genre title. But alas, it was not supposed to be!
It is not a decision we have made lightly, and the fact that we tried to fight for the survival of the project tooth and nail is, I think, evidence of that. However, the way the project has shaped up and the way things have developed, we feel that we can no longer safely guarantee the completion of the game, and it would be entirely unethical to take your money and spend it without any real hope of ever completing the game.
Despite the fact that we are within reach of the $50,000 mark we had outlined to get started on the development of Chapter 1, the notion behind this has always been to see if we can rally enough support outside of Kickstarter to generate a steady flow of backers who could help us raise the necessary funds over time. This attempt was not a Kickstarter-like campaign, and it was never so much about reaching the actual amount of $50,000 in a fixed amount of time, as it was to see how support shaped up and whether the project had the ability to generate a sustainable flow of income that would guarantee its safety.
As our data show, the continuous stream of backing is simply not strong enough to support the development. While we had fairly good initial momentum and a number of high-prized backers that brought the amount to a good level very quickly, for a project to sustain itself over the long term, we were mostly looking at how many low-tiered backers would join us. It shows us the general level of interest and visibility, as well as the potential to get these backers to increase their pledges over time as they see more of the game and get more excited about it. They are the lifeblood of an ongoing project and this level of backers has been low and very unsteady, telling us that very quickly we would eat up the $50,000 we raised as base funding, without any hope of replenishing the funds at the level that is required in order to guarantee and to pay for the actual development. This puts the entire project in serious jeopardy from the very beginning, turning it into a huge and dangerous gamble!
In addition, there have been several changes going on behind the scenes that also affect our ability to develop and complete the project within a reasonable amount of time—even under the best of circumstances, and without proper and steady funding there is simply no way for us to remedy that situation. Therefore, we have to acknowledge the fact that we are simply in no position at this time to create “Deathfire: Ruins of Nethermore.”
We might have been able to cobble together *something* but it would not have been what we had set out to do and what we had promised. If Chapter 1 would have a reduced feature set it would have been a disappointment for fans. As opposed to adding momentum, it would have turned people away from the project and would have given us a bad reputation. It would, essentially, have turned us into frauds, which is absolutely unacceptable, of course.
It is therefore in everyone’s best interest to terminate the project before any real damage is done. We will refund all your pledges over the next few days. Please keep in mind that this is a manual process that is actually rather tedious, and with over 1,000 pledges and the holidays, this may take a few days to complete, so please bear with us.
Before we do that, however, we would like to take a moment to celebrate our fans!
In a world of hopelessly vitriolic message boards and web site comment sections filled with unqualified hatred, it has truly been a fresh breeze to watch the “Deathfire” community spring to life. The outpour of support from our fans has been astonishing and often helped us forget the struggle we were going through.
We met some great new people and made some new friends along the way, fans all, who approached us with ideas, suggestions and comments, fans who went out of their way to help us promote the project. If we could thank each and everyone one of you individually and in person, we would. We may never be able to properly express our gratitude to everyone who supported us, but we want you to know, that in our book, you are the greatest fans we could ever have asked for!
Thank you for the great ride. It was fun and exciting, and we could not have done it without you!
Have a Merry Christmas!
The Deathfire Team