I’ve backed Mighty No. 9 on Kickstarter. My hopes for it were high and the hype was real back then. But the backers got burnt time and again. The change in art style and the numerous delays made a lot of fans and backers angry. My personal feelings? I don’t care about the game all that much anymore. But there are some very important lessons to be learnt from the game and its Kickstarter campaign.
Communication is key
Here’s the obvious one: If you get a publisher or change the release date, communicate properly. Long periods of silence are a total no go when you’re dealing with your backers. Remember: These are the people that backed your game based on a promise, a vision, something not tangible. They are your biggest fans and believers. So treat them well!
Avoid mixed messages
If you have to delay the game, don’t tell people about that at the same moment as you tell them about you having found a publisher. Why? Because at firs, a lot of people assumed it was delayed because a publisher has been found. And that made for a lot of very angry reactions.
Don’t make promises
Especially concerning the release date. Seriously, that was pretty weak.
I was simply amazed when Inafune went ahead and started a new Kickstarter Campaign, when Mighty No. 9 still wasn’t out. That’s just a terrible plan! At best, you come across as being sleazy, happy to take the money of people without giving them the product you promised.
These are all the lessons I could come up with. For me personally, the most important lesson was to be more careful about what games I back on Kickstarter. So far, this has served me well, since all the games I have backed since have been released. Still, I don’t really know what to expect from Mighty No. 9, but we all get to play it very soon…