The Phoenix Project, the spiritual successor to Paragon Studios’ doomed City of Heroes, aka City of Titans—has officially started their Kickstarter!
The Kickstarter has been an obstacle for the community-built development project by Missing Worlds Media who when their original September 18th date was upended and it was reset to today, October 2nd. Earlier this week, Missing Worlds Media announced the new date and the finalized name of the project.
With the blog announcement of the opening of the Kickstarter, Missing Worlds Media has assured that they’re prepared to deliver. All that’s missing right now is the funding for the project.
“Our group includes a wide range of skilled personnel, in fields related to both actual game production and making sure we earn enough with that game to keep the lights on indefinitely,” explains Sara ‘Firefairy’ Quinn, President, Missing Worlds Media. “We have published novelists, coders with decades of experience, so many experienced pen-and-paper designers that almost every department has at least one or two, artists in a variety of specialties, copyeditors, historians, process specialists, marketers…all spending their otherwise free time working on this project, with so much dedication that I had to make a rule requiring everyone to take some downtime periodically so that people wouldn’t burn themselves out by working every waking moment.”
As of this writing the Kickstarter already has 753 backers and $111,793 pledged to its $320,000 goal (making it about 35% funded) and the Kickstarter has only been live for 12 hours at this point.
While Missing Worlds Media isn’t looking to use this fund a payroll yet, instead the fund will be used to get the equipment and licenses necessary for the development team to work legally—such as 3D modeling software and computers needed to begin development. This could mean that the current sights on the Kickstarter are set low compared to the operating costs and equipment needed to eventually run the game (and that could be a problem point in the future) but a solid foundation is a necessary place to start from.
“If we can demonstrate that our community really does support us with more than just moral support,” Quinn adds, hearkening to the sense of loss every City of Heroes player felt when NCSoft shut down the game, “if we can show that this really is a viable market that the previous distributor disregarded, if we can show that a fan initiative can truly become a competitive MMO, we have won much more than we lost.”
The team and the hope for the future
Recently, SiliconANGLE did an exclusive interview with the Missing Worlds Media development staff to talk about their intent with the game and the Kickstarter. Right now we know that the game will be coded in Unreal, and use UnrealScript, a powerful rendering engine well known in the industry. That the team hopes to mimic much of what made City of Heroes such an amazing superpowered MMORPG—including the extreme costuming, vast cities, movement powers, and heroic animation—but the team also wants to make a next-generation MMO that builds on what CoH created without copying it directly.
For players interested in things to come, Missing Worlds Media will be holding a livestream event with one of the team’s 2D artists, RocketCat, at 8pm EST on Friday, October 4th.