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$900K and Counting - Todd Coleman on Kickstarter Success

Posted by William Murphy on Mar 02, 2015  | Comments

$900K and Counting - Todd Coleman on Kickstarter Success -

We grabbed Todd Coleman to pester him about the Kickstarter for Crowfall, Artcraft Entertainment's new Throne War Simulator MMO. With $900K in just five days, it's time to start looking at stretch goals. We asked Todd about the few that have been announced so far, and what may come down the road after the Kickstarter ends.

MMORPG: On the female Centaur: does this race's female counterpart being a stretch goal mean there are other races who may need stretch goals to receive the opposite sex? Except Guiniceans, because let's face it... how would we know the difference?

Todd Coleman: We certainly could, though the remaining gender-locked races all have a pretty strong narrative reason for the restriction.  The only real candidates would be the Fae (currently female only), the Guineceans (as you mention, they would look the same except for clothing choices) and the Elken, which I'm afraid might look rather silly.  The centaurs were the most obvious choice of the group, because there wasn't any narrative reason not to include them; it was simply done for cost reasons.

MMORPG: On the subject of mounts: if the 1.3 mln goal isn't hit, does this mean we'd never see mounts in Crowfall, or that we'd just have to wait until after launch? 

Todd: It means we'll have to wait until we can afford it.  That doesn't mean launch -- we'll keep raising money via crowdfunding. And potentially via other means as well -- and IMO mounts and caravans are something pretty key to the design vision.  Hopefully we'll hit that stretch goal, though, and be able to move on them immediately!

MMORPG: Being optimistic, do you have any other hints about what other stretch goals we might see?

Todd: We have a long list of items that we would love to work on, but that just didn't make the cut of being "core" to the vision.  The first priority after mounts and caravans is to go back to the idea of variant rulesets and really flesh those out.

MMORPG: When the KS funding is over, do you plan to keep allowing pledges similar to how your friends at Shards Online, or even Portalarium allow? And if so, will further pledges get players additional goodies like more parcels for their Eternal Kingdom, and so forth?

Todd: Yes, absolutely -- it helps us funding the ongoing development of the game, which is better for everyone.  We won't be offering the Kickstarter exclusive rewards any more, however.  

MMORPG: My last questions brings up an interesting thought I don't think we've covered quite yet... Crowfall launches, sells a ton of copies, and then what? How will you guys obtain further revenue? Do you have any ideas we could talk about yet, even if there's nothing specific? 

Todd: We have an optional subscription that we'll be offering players -- our hope, obviously, is that the optional subscription (which grants the ability to passively train multiple characters in parallel) will be attractive enough to our players that it will create a sustainable revenue base for the game service.  We're also going to sell cosmetic items at some point, which has proven to be pretty effective in other games for generating incremental revenue.

MMORPG: Okay, one more. $900k in just 5 days. That's pretty astounding. What does the reaction to your Kickstarter say to you about the design of Crowfall, and are you feeling any pressure to deliver now?

Todd: Yeah, it's amazing how quickly your brain can shift from the stress of "will they like it?" to the stress of "OK, now we have to build it!"  

Overall, the response has been astounding.  We are incredibly grateful.  We knew that Crowfall would be a niche title, the only question was "Will the niche be large enough to support us?"  That was the gamble -- a leap of faith that 'if we build it, they will come'.  So far, so good.

And remember, the success of our Kickstarter is great -- even for players who aren't interested in Crowfall.  Whenever a studio can find success with a niche vision, other developers think, "maybe we should take a risk, too!”

We wouldn't have tried Crowfall if not for previous successes like Shroud of the Avatar and Star Citizen.  If our success helps convince other studios to try different ideas, to target other potential audiences -- that's a huge win for everyone.  Innovation begets innovation.

If you're interested in backing Crowfall, you can find more about the game and their fundraising at

William Murphy / Bill is the Managing Editor of,, and lover of all things gaming. He's been playing and writing about MMOs and geekery since 2002, and you can harass him and his views on Twitter @thebillmurphy.