Wasteland 2 ‘Is Better Because Of Kickstarter’ – Brian Fargo
Brian Fargo, developer of popular Kickstarter project Wasteland 2, believes the industry is changing, where publishers are becoming less important.
“Working with a publisher was abysmal,” said Brian Fargo to 3D Artist at this year’s Unite event, “the publishers often give you a contract and they want you to adhere to their way of doing it. But that rubs up against my way.”
With Kickstarter, however, Fargo explains that he has “been turned loose, and we’re delivering.”
Publishers just weren’t interested in Wasteland 2, according to Fargo, claiming those he pitched to already had RPGs and therefore didn’t “need to hear it, because we already have them.
“I guess maybe if they’d jump on Harry Potter or Pixar or something, but short of those things…” said Fargo, who then suggested that popular franchises aren’t made, they “fell into it”.
“I used to tell them that, everyone of these guys with their billion dollar franchises: GTA 3, that wasn’t predicted to be a billion dollar franchise. Commander & Conquer: not. Lara Croft: not. Tony Hawk’s: not.
“The only franchise in this business that I think was actually specced out to be a billion dollar franchise and did it is probably Skylanders. That’s about it. Everything else they fell into it.”
Thanks to Kickstarter, however, Fargo was able to bypass the publisher and create the game he wanted. “But, you know what? I’m glad. Here I am. The game is better than it ever would have been because it’s been created this way. For certain.”
Fargo then explained that there is a pattern emerging, that developers are having to “compromise” and Kickstarter and social media can give devs a bit more freedom.
“The best product is coming from the visionary people who have the power to do it their way. Whether you’re Spielberg, Cameron, Ken Levine, Sam Houser, whoever, these guys have the ability to do it their way. When you’re not in that echelon, you’re being compromised.
“That’s why Kickstarter’s great because we’re getting that opportunity. It’s Tim Schafer, it’s me, it’s Molyneux – we’re seeing a trend here. We’ve all been forced to compromise and we have not wanted to.”
Wasteland 2 was one of the record-breaking Kickstarter projects, earning nearly mlilion in funding at the end of the project.