Psychonauts 2 Is On The Verge Of Getting Funded

Asking for more than $4.58 million (US$3.3 million) seemed like a lofty goal, but Tim Schafer and Double Fine have shown that their capacity to raise money through crowdfunding is undeterred.

The campaign has 7 days left to run, but with US$3,208,857 raised at the time of writing from a goal of US$3.3 million it would be staggering if a Psychonauts sequel did not emerge.

Over 19,000 people have supported the project to date, with almost 7,200 backers jumping in at the US$39 tier after the "early bird" US$33 tier (the minimum you had to back to get a digital download for Psychonauts 2) closed.

Double Fine estimates the game will ship in the spring of 2018 Australian time. It's a fairly lengthy timeline, but understandable given the company's history with crowdfunding and the lessons they have learned from Broken Age and other ventures.

The success of Psychonauts 2 is almost important for Fig, the crowdfunding platform founded by Double Fine's former COO Jusin Bailey. Tim Schafer is a member of Fig's advisory board, alongside Brian Fargo, Obisidian's Feargus Urquhart, Harmonix's Alex Rigopulos and the Indie Fund's Aaraon Isaksen.


Comments

    How much of the game is going to be completed by this funding campaign?

      This funding will only be a portion of the money needed for the game, on the pitch video Tim mentions some of the money will come from Double Fine, and also Private investors, as well as crowd funding.

      Last edited 05/01/16 1:56 pm

      They wanted $18 million when Notch was in talks to fund the game.

    Yessssss I have my Aviators cap and goggles ready

    I like the original but the way this is being funded is really worrisome.....

    Watch for some background

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=645rgR1JoEQ&ab_channel=Bitscreed

      Please, please, PLEASE WATCH THIS VIDEO if you're thinking of pledging or have pledged.

      It summarises pretty much every point of concern about this campaign.

        Also not it doesn't tell you NOT to back it. If you have the money, then go for it. It tells you everything you NEED TO KNOW about backing it BEFORE you back it.

      Just watched the video. Most of it was ranting against the investment part of the funding, which is fair enough, since it is a risk. Otherwise, he didn't seem to have much of a problem with the rewards part of the funding, other than being pissed off that Psychonauts 2 is being partly crowd funded. But then, by his own admission, he does take a snarky view of game news.

        Yeah, the point he is raising is he wants Psychonaughts 2 and if you have that kinda money to blow then feel free to spend it however its best to make an informative decision on it.

        Primarily that FIG isnt a 3rd partry site like Kickstarter (its essentially run by Tim Schauffer and doublefine), the investment part may not pay out, if at all, and doublefine hasn't exactly managed their most recent games all that well in terms of delivery and spending.

          Fig isn't a third party site? Sure, Tim is on the board of the parent company, but so is everyone on Fig's advisory committee. It is effectively a different company, and is not run by Double Fine.

          Should we be alarmed if Tim is on the board? How about Feargus Urquhart or Brian Fargo, who are also on the board. What if they funded a game through Fig? Would that raise alarms?

          I agree that investing through Fig, or any type of investment really, is a risk. Though this whole "oh noes, Tim secretly controls Fig" thing smacks of a conspiracy in search of a theory. It really doesn't matter.

          What does matter is that Psychonauts 2 is on the verge of being made! Now that's great news.

            Lets say you're 7 years old and billy who's is 14 from down the block wants to sell you some cake. However he hasn't made that cake yet.

            He promises he will bake the cake in a week from now but you and a few of your neighbors need to pay him now for ingredients and his effort to make the cake. If the cake is REALLY good (like one of the best in the world) he may be able to sell the recipe to others and promise to give your money back in about a month and even some profit in 2 months!

            Billy has made some awesome cakes in the past. A couple months ago the whole street of kids gave him money to make some more cakes. But the cakes didn't even have any topping on them and were pretty plain. One of them he only gave you half of the cake for the price of a whole then gave you the recipe to finish the rest of it using your own ingredients.

            So skeptically you ask "What makes me think you aren't just going to run away with the money?"

            Billy goes "Simple! You all give your money to Barry here so i do't run off with it. Barry gets some of the money too for holding on to it and he helps me sell the cakes we make"

            Seems fair right? Good idea even!

            But there's a catch. Barry is actually Billys nephew. Hes pretty young too. like 6. He hasnt handled this much money before and Billy is giving Barry heaps of guidance.

            Now would you trust Barry to handle the money fairly? Billy is giving Barry guidance however Billy has had money issues in the past and in the end it doesnt matter as Billy and Barry both walk away without losing any money if it all fails.

            Now what if the cake doesnt come for 2 months instead of 1.
            What if the cake isnt up to scratch of how awesome you were promised.
            I mean you get to have some cake right so its not all that bad?
            Well now you have to sell that decent but not fantastic cake to people who weren't that interested in the first place. Billys best audience has already paid for it. So now billy had to go to the market and tell everyone his cake is fantastic! But his best fans said it was good but not great. So someone who only kinda likes cakes what makes you think they would buy one that they may not like at all?

            Billys now moved block. He's had a lot of people give him so much cake money he and his nephew have moved schools and a new block. The neighborhood kids got a bit of cake and a signed thankyou letter from Florida.

            Last edited 06/01/16 6:55 pm

              Do I have to say it?! I really want to say it. The cake is a lie. OK, that's out of my system now.

              Your analogy needs work. The money is going to Barry because he's better at collecting it than Billy. Most kids would be happy to pay Billy directly. Barry is also being mentored by his brothers Bert, Bill, Ben, and Bob (who secretly likes to be called Kate). All who are older and very responsible. It's a big family.

              The half-cake fiasco. All the kids agree that Billy stuffed up there. It was an experimental recipe, and Billy told them too late that the cake did not bake properly. Probably because he didn't realise it until too late, and then tried to make the best of a bad situation. But still, he did deliver half a cake, and also gave out his recipe for free. Billy didn't have to do that.

              Now the question is, should the kids trust Billy again? He is the cake maker, and his cakes are delicious. If the kids never trust him, they will never get cake from him again. Everyone loses. If they forgive Billy, and let him try again, there will be more cake for all in the future. The next cake that Billy bakes could be his most delicious one yet!

              Mmmm, cake. I'm getting hungry.

    Ignoring that I think all their games have been pretty average at best), why would anyone trust double fine to deliver on time or on budget???

      I don't think anyone really does.

      That said if I had the money I'd probably back this. I'm inclined to agree that every other Double Fine game was mediocre at best, including Brutal Legend, but Psychonauts was a masterpiece IMO and in the opinion of many others. I think that's probably why this campaign is doing okay despite the fact that people know that DF has had a bad run recently in terms of delivering on what they promise.

      Why would you trust _any_ game studio to deliver on time or on budget?! Making games is a creative process, and creativity has this tendency to not conform to timetables. Just the nature of the beast.

      Double Fine at least have a record of delivering, barring one early access game, which I'd say was only half delivered. I trust them well enough that I've pledged a pretty decent amount. Wish the USD exchange was more like a few years ago, though.

      Psychonauts was their best game, though I've also really enjoyed Brutal Legend, Stacking, Costume Quest, Broken Age, and Massive Chalice. Psychonauts 2 is well worth funding.

      Last edited 06/01/16 1:32 pm

        I don't. Which is why I don't pledge on kickstarter or the borderline scam which is fig.

          Fair enough, but do you trust that Double Fine will eventually deliver? I do, hence why I've pledged.

          Calling Fig a borderline scam is fairly petty. Perhaps try backing up your statements with some fact?

            Well, the fact they are trying to entice people to be 'investors' for a somewhat dodgy firm where Tim has a direct conflict of interest for a venture which is very unlikely to ever provide a return to anyone.
            They couldn't do another kickstarter given what happened with their space game. I'm sure they will deliver something. It probably won't be on time, or on budget, or necessarily good.

            There is a reason why publishers got very fed up with Tim Schafers shit.

              Have to say, you've confused me with your post.

              Yep, they're enticing investors, I can agree with that. It'd be rather strange if they tried to repulse investors.

              Somewhat dodgy firm, you say. Not sure what you're getting at here.

              Direct conflict of interest? Where's the conflict? Because Tim is on the advisory committee for Fig? There's no conflict there, unless Double Fine and Fig are in competition, which they are certainly not.

              Very unlikely to provide a return? Who knows?! Maybe the game will be a success. Maybe it will be a failure. It's not up to you to decide that.

              Can't do another kickstarter because of the space game?! Now I know you're just making things up. No reason why Kickstarter would deny Double Fine, based on Spacebase DF-9.

              I want to understand your point of view, my friend, but it all seems like whacked out rhetoric. Honestly, you're looking like a troll at the moment.

                They wouldn't, but people would be less likely to pledge. Easier to convince people to be investors than throw their cash at them for an unfinished ge again.

                Similarly, the reason he has a conflict of interest is that he never initially disclosed his stake in fi when getting up on stage to flog off a promise to make a game. Add to that the fact that the way fig has set it up is with absolutely no obligation to follow through and give the investors anything, its taking them at their word at this point with absolutely no recourse if they decide not too.

                Given that a lot of psychonauts sales have been tail end at heavily discounted steam sales and humble bundle sales, I wouldn't expect it to turn a profit ever. But who knows, maybe it'll outsell COD number whatever its up too.

                I think good on the people who are keen enough to pledge, but I'd also warn people to steer clear and wait till something is delivered given their track record.

                Tim Schafer I assume enjoys making games, and must have a passion for it, but he really needs a publisher that can keep him on a tight leash. Fact is he's been too difficult for publishers to want to keep working with him and funding his ideas for games.

                The problem with fig (and kickstarter) is the individuals have even less power and recourse to keep such projects on track and on time and meeting milestones.

                  A much better reply! Thank you. Still have a few issues with your points, but on the whole, they were more rational than your previous reply.

                  Not quite sure you understand what a conflict of interest is. The situation you described is not one.

                  Yes, Fig is under no obligation to actually accept anyone's offer of investment. This is a problem how? They can refuse your money, and you can't sue them because of that refusal. Seems fine to me.

                  Yes, totally agree the quoted number for sales of Psychonauts is misleading. The majority of sales would definitely be from humble bundle and steam sales. Still, the game has been bringing in the moolah over the years. A sale is a sale. Much better than a game sitting there not being sold.

                  The Double Fine track record for delivery is actually excellent. They've delivered on all games, bar their half-hearted Spacebase DF-9 attempt, and that was understandable. I'm 100% confident that they'll deliver Psychonauts 2.

                  Now, if you're sensitive to games being delivered _on time_, that's another story. Totally understandable if you don't want to get involved. I don't mind waiting, myself. I'm fine with the deadline being pushed back, as long as it's to improve the game.

                  You probably wouldn't want to get involved with any group in the game industry, though. It's notorious for failing to meet deadlines. This is the reality of making games. You can't truly understand unless you try to make one yourself.

    It is going to be interesting to see how things go from here, especially with regards to Fig. I imagine a lot of people are going to take a successful funding of Psychonauts 2 as a sign that Fig works but people need to keep in mind that the game still needs to ship and make money before you will see any kind of return on your investment. Given that the $3.3 million already includes the people who want to immediately purchase it, you've just lost a large chunk of your initial returns in that already so it's probably not going to be as profitable a venture as some might think.

    Of course, I'm just an armchair market analyst so don't go making any decisions from this.

      Armchair analyst or not it's a very important topic to think about when talking about Fig (or starting your own crowd funded project). To actually be successful you have to look past simply meeting the initial goal and shipping the product. For instance games like Shenmue III and Bloodstained raised a boatload of money, but they also tapped a large portion of their target audience while bringing on additional funding from other sources.
      Shenmue III in particular has tapped the die hard fans, and now it's left in a position where it needs to sell itself to hardcore fans who didn't know about the Kickstarter and the hardcore fans who have an issue with paying in advance.
      Outside of that it's a PS4 exclusive third chapter in a long dead series that made it's name on a console that never really found a proper, wide audience. Are there enough people who didn't back it but are willing to give Shenmue 3 a shot to move it from successfully produced to profitable? It's a rough question to answer.

      That said I think Psychonauts isn't too tied up in being a sequel, so it should have an easier time working around those issues while making the most of the cult classic status of the original. I wouldn't invest in it, or any game, if I were trying to make money but I think it has the potential to be successful enough to pay out enough to cover the initial investment.

      Also the tiers of investment before you actually see a return are interesting.

      It's my understanding that you need to be invested up to a certain amount before you're even eligible for profit sharing...

      A successful funding is not a successful investment or product. Given how dodg fig actually is, I can see lot of people being screwed out of their cash.

    Dodgy? They're extremely clear in the information of the investment section that it's a high-risk investment, they call attention to the number that copies that would need to be sold to break even, profit, etc. I should hope that the minority that are making use of the investment option did their homework and know what they're doing. It's probably people who are happy to support the game and for whom seeing return on their investment would be the cherry on the cake, or people that sincerely believe that Psychonauts 2 will be a hit. I think so too, even if I won't invest.
    And of course, the rewards section operates as per normal with crowdfunding. The game Outer Wilds has already been funded on Fig and the updates are promising, clearly it's a platform that works.

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