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Phil Fish's next game won't be on XBLA, might be Kickstarter'd

Jordan Mallory

Fez may just now be undergoing the certification process at Microsoft, but that doesn't mean designer Phil Fish is resting on his laurels. Quite the contrary, in fact; Fish's next project is already in its formative stages, and he's so anxious to begin work that he may use Kickstarter to fund it. Whatever that project might be, however, it won't be an XBLA game.

"Well, our next project is going to be not for XBLA," Fish told us during SXSW Interactive, in response to a question regarding Fez's limited XBLA exclusivity, and the possibility of a similar arrangement for his next title. "I think it's unfortunate that Microsoft works that way, but like I said [during the panel] we gave them what they wanted and they've been backing us up the whole time. I'm sure you've heard many horror stories of people working with XBLA; they've been nothing but understanding and supporting of us this whole entire time."

It's been three months since Fish's work on Fez ended; the game is still being debugged by other members of the team, but in his capacity as a designer he's finished. He hasn't quite known what to do with himself in the interim, and that restlessness has lead him and his team to heavily consider Kickstarter for their next project.

"It's going to take a while before we get money from Microsoft, and I want to get started on this project that I'm making with a couple people, a larger team than just me and another guy," Fish said. "We wouldn't need much and we wouldn't ask for much, but I assume we'll get more than we ask for, having just won the grand prize and Fez about to come out."

The campaign wouldn't start until after the release of Fez, which Fish is concerned about: "I'm afraid people might take [the Kickstarter] the wrong way. Like, 'Why do you need a Kickstarter, you just made Fez?' Yeah, but it takes five months before we get paid, maybe, it's totally variable, but at least three months. The best case scenario is we get paid three months after the release. I don't want to wait three months."

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