Currently being a rising star on Kickstarter, from another perspective, City of Titans is a replica game from a company with no track record. The newly founded team will beg to differ. The game may have risen from the death of another, ‘It is a new home for the heroic spirit, but not a clone or replica.’ And it looks great – have a look at the video below.
On August 31, 2012, NCsoft terminated its Paragon Studios development team, ending all production on City of Heroes (CoH). A few fans decided not to accept the death of their beloved game and revive the game using modern technologies: City of Titans. That didn’t come easy, it turned out to be a process of many hurdles, revisions, regrouping, rising and falling again and again. Against all odds, the game is now over 150% funded. How did they get this far?
“We’re lucky in that we’re trying to do something that hasn’t been done before.”, says PR lead Lauren “Rae” O’Neill. One journalist told them ‘it’s 50% genius, and 50% utterly mad’. They’re quite proud of that label – even considering making it the official company motto. Here’s the story of that mad plan.
Starting out with a MMORG and storyline that had just been shut down after 8 years running – and no company eager to pick it up. “When we were told our game was going to close, we didn’t sit back and take it, we did everything we could to fight. And when that failed, instead of just finding a new home or quietly settling down in other games, we decided to roll up our sleeves and make our new home ourselves.”
Indeed, the company, Missing Worlds Media was founded for the specific purpose to create City of Titans. The team has been working together for just a little over a year. But the game had been around for eight plus years. Thus they decided ‘We’ve grown up. We’ve got programmers and artists, lawyers and writers. Let’s make our own game.”
Even though several of them have worked on games ranging from Nick Arcade to Crackdown 2. It is their first game as an organization. Leaving them with a huge challenge. What unique advantage do they bring? Chris “Warcabbit” Hare, project lead: “Besides our internal skills, besides our experience with fields of comics, games, technology… We are diverse. We are from all sides of the spectrum, including people who never played our spiritual predecessor. We have no monoculture, we have no blind eye.”
One other strength of their mad plan is the strength of the CoH community. Reason why hey decided to bring the game to Kickstarter, to confirm that fan-base. As Chris “Warcabbit” Hare puts it, ‘One of the things we can bring to the table is the awareness that we have a market. Each and every backer is a sign that we have a market.
That’s when things sky rocketed. The CoH community turned out to be alive and kicking. PR lead Lauren “Rae” O’Neill had planned to send out a press release every time they’d hit a milestone on Kickstarter – at $10,000, $25,000, $50,000 and so on. ”On the first day of the Kickstarter all I could do was stare in excitement and disbelief as the number kept rocketing upwards. On day three, I actually posted a photo of the plan ripped up on my desk – I didn’t even get a chance to implement it, because they hit the target so fast.”
Meanwhile the art team was cranking out graphics to keep up with the milestones and were only just keeping up with the speed the community were pledging.
Still. They’re going to need more money than this kickstarter will bring. As it goes with massively multiplayer RP games, it’s a long-term plan. The game will keep developing for years to come, building new worlds and layers.
At the time of writing the Kickstarter campaign has reached $489,155, with an initial $320,000 goal. That means the game will have and Avatar builder for Android and IOS phones and will also launch on MacOS. Should they reach the $500,000 and up stretch goals they’ll be adding some funky powers, have a look at The Phoenix Project – City of Titans