Most of the time if a developer can’t get enough money in to develop a project they simply leave it dormant until a suitor finally comes along. Of course smaller indie developers go all out to develop their passion projects by working tirelessly and even going into their own bank accounts to get things done if need be. Developer Robomodo is doing something a bit different as an established studio as they’ve opened a Kickstarter page for their new XBLA title Bodoink.
Robomodo may be a familiar name to certain gamers as they were responsible for the last two Tony Hawk games, which as gamers will remember had a somewhat poorly executed skateboard peripheral as the key way to play the game. After being dropped by Activision, Robomodo went through a tough time as the studio was forced to make staff reductions but things appear to be better now. In an effort to get their family focused Kinect title Bodoink off the ground, Robomodo is looking at the community to make contributions to develop the game which of course includes a few cool perks to those who help out with the project.
The target goal Robomodo has for Bodoink is $35,000 and so far $580 has been raised in advanced of the December 29 deadline. Those who want to help an indie studio out with a project in an effort to retain complete control of it can lend donations as low as $15 (get the game for free when it’s on XBLA) or as high as $100 (you get a poster and other goodies).
It may seem odd that an established indie studio is going the Kickstarter route with an XBLA project, especially a Kinect focused family title, but Robomodo is doing such a thing to finish off the project and retain complete ownership of it instead of having the aid of a publisher. As a gamer and as someone who follows the industry it’s interesting to see Robomodo go the Kickstarter route and more importantly if they get any headway with their goal. The video game industry has improved over the years but it’s still somewhat hard for a developer to get their dream projects going and actually hold onto their IP. I don’t know if Robomodo is a bit ahead of the curve as far as Kickstarter is concerned but it could be the beginning of a more grassroots side in indie game development given the community aspect of it.
Bodoink itself seems like an fun game (you control your Avatar inside a pinball machine) so I hope nothing but the best to Robomodo. Gamers may not think the best of Robomodo given what transpired with the last two Tony Hawk games, but I think Robomodo should be given another a shot to at least show us what sort of content they can put together on their own. Hopefully Robomodo will finally be able to thrive as they’re one of the last few game studios in my hometown of Chicago.