In MMORPG's, the destination is often not as important as the journey, and in Crowfall, the recent announcement of their July release doesn’t signal the end of that journey for ArtCraft entertainment, but the beginning. In a founder’s update released on the same day of the announcement, Creative Director and Co-Founder of Crowfall, J. Todd Coleman, provided a humble victory lap blog, as he outlined the team’s trials, accomplishments, and how the ArtCraft way was the right way for them.
On July 6th, Crowfall will launch after 6 years in development, signaling an extraordinary win not just for fans of the game, but for proponents of Kickstarter MMO’s everywhere. ArtCraft joins only a small handful of development teams that transitioned their Kickstarter MMO’s into a release state. These currently released games include Shroud of the Avatar and Elite: Dangerous, while many Kickstarted MMO’s that successfully funded prior to Crowfall are still in various stages of development, such as Camelot Unchained and City of Titans, both of which funded in 2013.
Coleman acknowledged that, while Crowfall may not be for everyone, the way that ArtCraft went about development was uniquely theirs. ArtCraft took risks, and in the MMO business, it’s rather, well, risky, to take risks.
“There is a reason that these games have settled into a standard design. In business, and in life, innovation means risk, and risk is scary. Risk is expensive. Risk is unpredictable. Risk makes your schedule erratic. Risk means trying ideas that might not work at all.
...Crowfall is now ready for the next step in its evolution, “going live” – but let me be very clear. I’m not going to announce today that “we’ve finished” Crowfall or call it “done”. A game like this is never finished. An online world is never done. Even the word “launch” is a misnomer, I think, because “going live” is not the end of the journey -- it is the beginning. "
-J. Todd Coleman, Director and Co-Founder, Crowfall
Crowfall has 11 different classes, 12 different races, massive throne war battles, and unique worlds where players will directly impact and change them forever. Players will have thousands of choices between their talents, abilities and disciplines. During Crowfall’s development, the game never required an NDA and encouraged streamers and content creators to take active roles in creating a community. With over 10 thousand unofficial Reddit subscribers, and over 400K hours watched of Crowfall on Twitch in the past year, at a maximum of 21K viewers, it could signal that, while Crowfall may remain a niche game, it’s a niche that has found a following.
Yet, Coleman also seems to understand that simply finding their niche and launching the game can’t and won’t herald unfettered success. Coleman thanks all of the backers that brought the team to this point and ends with a request that players continue to engage with the ArtCraft team:
“Your support got us this far, but we have one more request. If you want to see more of this – more game companies taking risks – help us prove that this model works. Tell people about our approach. Tell them about Crowfall, and how we built this game together. Spread the word. Invite your friends. Form a guild. Build an empire. But most of all, play and have fun.
…and, of course, keep talking to us! Let us know how we can improve the game, make it even more entertaining, what we should add to keep you playing for years to come.
We are proud of Crowfall and the company we have built. From all of us at ArtCraft, thank you for helping make Crowfall a reality.”
- J. Todd Coleman, Director and Co-Founder, Crowfall
With beta invites bringing thousands of new players in to try the game leading up to the July release, hopefully ArtCraft finds the kind of success and engagement they are looking for.