How do you like then gold-coated apples? Introversion's Kickstarter-like approach to the alpha release of its upcoming Prison Architect has worked out handsomely, with the indie dev raking in a cool $US100,000, just 72 hours after opening the doors to the offer.
Like Kickstarter, Introversion's setup involves multiple pricing tiers, with the minimum contribution being $US30. Unlike Kickstarter (well, some projects anyway), all the tiers guarantee you a copy of the final game, as well as immediate access to the game's alpha.
The most fascinating takeaway is that the "Warden Norton I Presume?" pack, priced at $US1000 and limited to five people, has already been snapped up by four interested gamers. As of September 29, here's how all of the sales (2667) were distributed (courtesy of Eurogamer, in US dollars):
Base ($30) — 1801 Aficionado ($35) — 343 Introversioner ($40) — 134 Name in the Game ($50) — 302 Physical Pleasures ($100) — 69 Digital-Immorto-Criminalise Your Face ($250) — 13 Shake it Like a Polaroid Picture ($500) — 1 Warden Norton I Presume? ($1000) — 4
Obviously, the $US30 bundle was the most popular, however, the numbers don't necessarily shrink as the price goes up. If you look at the $US35, $US40 and $US50 tiers, you'll see the $US40 is a bit over one-third of the $US50 one. I'd say the motivating factor is that the $US10 more you pay is not that significant, compared to the $US50 jump between "Name in the Game" and "Physical Pleasures".