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Kickstarter has fewer video game projects, and that's a good thing

Video game projects raise less money than they did a few years ago, but more reach their goals.
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Mobius Digital/Annapurna Interactive

Video game projects may have found their stride in the crowdfunding world. According to ICO Partners, fewer games are being pitched on Kickstarter, but a greater percentage are reaching their goals. And the total amount raised by gaming campaigns is up year-over-year.

ICO's annual Kickstarter report looks at data in six-month increments. According to the numbers, the total dollar amount pledged to video game Kickstarter campaigns peaked in the first six months of 2013 at $27.5 million. In the first half of 2019, the total pledged capped out at $10.2 million. The number of products launched has gone down too. In the first half of 2014, Kickstarter saw 1,179 new video game campaigns. In the first half of this year, that number was just 678.

While those are significant drops, the number of fully funded projects has remained fairly consistent. In the second half of 2014, 233 projects reached their funding goals, and 946 missed the mark. In the first half of this year, more projects (193) met their goals than they did in either half of 2018 or 2017. Only 485 missed the mark, and so far this year, campaigns have raised more than they have in any six-month stretch since 2015.

There's no doubt that crowdfunding a video game is tough, and projects are often subject to delays and port cancelations. As we've seen with products like the Ouya gaming console, a successful crowdfunding campaign and product launch, doesn't always guarantee long-term success. There are plenty of challenges to navigate once a game is released. Of course, in some cases, projects meet their goals in a matter of hours and lead to high-profile collaborations. While plenty of video game campaigns have crashed and burned, more games are reaching their goals and people are still spending money to back them.

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