Kickstarter Kompliation: March 2019 edition

This month's crowdfunding round-up includes a lost NES game, an actual arcade in New York City, and *sigh* Bubsy

Greetings to all the retro-fans out there, here is our latest monthly collection of crowdfunding projects that we here at Retronauts suspect you would enjoy seeing completed. Donate if you like, promote if you prefer, just know that our staff has no monetary interest in any of these projects nor have we received any favors in exchange for writing this list.

Born Punk
Platform: PC, Mac, Linux, PSN, Xbox Marketplace, Nintendo eShop, iOS, Android
Campaign ends: March 7
Estimated delivery time: January 2020
Minimum pledge to receive the game: $20 AUD (about $14 USD)

There's something funny about how consistently adventure games end up on Kickstarter. Are people still chasing Double Fine's success? Or is the genre just one that doesn't sit well with modern publishers yet continues to draw older fans willing to pay in advance? In either case, Born Punk looks like an old adventure game but it has a lot of polish for an indie project. It's a sci-fi adventure (more specifically: cyberpunk) that promises full voice acting and a few laughs as well.

The project was fully funded inside of a day and the creator has already pledged to release or port the game to nearly every modern platform, so the only uncertainty left is how many stretch goals will be reached before the campaign ends.

Platform: PC, Mac, Linux
Campaign ends: March 7
Estimated delivery time: January 2021
Minimum pledge to receive the game: £11 (about $15 USD)

Ada, a "story driven single-player 2d top-down action rpg" according to the campaign, has been in development for almost two years already and it shows. The characters move well. The backgrounds are lush. And the video teases some gigantic beasts. A demo is available for players who want a taste of Ada but the finished game will use procedural generation to create random encounters and keep each playthough feeling a little different than the last.

Ada's solo creator, Jakub Hakiel, is eyeing a Q1 2021 release for computers at first and then Q2 for consoles, although if the campaign draws enough attention (and pounds) they say that a simultaneous release may be possible.

Bubsy: Paws on Fire!
Platform: Steam, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch
Campaign ends: March 7
Estimated delivery time: April 2019!?
Minimum pledge to receive the game: $20

It's...more Bubsy? And it'll be ready next month? The campaign claims that Bubsy: Paws on Fire! "is already being submitted to Steam, Nintendo and Sony for final approval, so the game is basically done." Then again, the campaign also talks about Bubsy as if he is real and sharing his opinions on the project. If you had no idea Bubsy was coming back and now you're eager to assist Bubsy in his time of need, you're welcome. Alternately, you can back at a lower tier and get copies of older Bubsy games...but I'm guessing you already own those.

Panic! Dizzy
Platform: NES
Campaign ends: March 10
Estimated delivery time: May 2020
Minimum pledge to receive the game: £8 (about $11 USD)

Having never set foot on the British Isles I know naught of Dizzy, the curious egg created by twins that allegedly starred in multiple computer games in the 1980s. This campaign, introduced by the Oliver twins themselves, will be to release an NES game featuring Dizzy which they developed decades ago but never brought to market. It doesn't get more retro than that.

Do note that 8 quid will only net backers a digital copy of the NES ROM, as a proper cartridge with a box and a manual requires a donation of at least 9 fivers (that's nearly 60 American clams).

Platform: Windows, Mac, Linux, Android
Campaign ends: March 13
Estimated delivery time: January 2020
Minimum pledge to receive the game: £6 (about $8 USD)

Perhaps the most high-concept video game Kickstarter I've ever seen, this project is a first-person dungeon crawler made to look like Doom. The game will feature three character classes (Warrior, Hunter, and Mage) and procedural generation so that each game played is unique with an "optional" permadeath feature.

At present Doomgeon is being made by one person living in the UK but the Kickstarter exists so that they can "hire a professional pixel artist and a musician."

Ninja Chowdown
Platform: PC, iOS, Android
Campaign ends: March 15
Estimated delivery time: September 2019
Minimum pledge to receive the game: $1!

Ninja Chowdown is a bouncy, colorful game starring a ninja who runs to the right and loves donuts (#relatable am I right??). Various obstacles (and donuts) appear and the ninja - who is literally named Donatsu - must evade or collect them. The more Donatsu eats, the bigger Donatsu gets, eventually turning in a rolling boulder of a human being.

The developers of Ninja Chowdown are treating this project like a mobile game which helps explain the low price-point for the campaign: the minimum donation to back the project is just one dollar and that includes an "ad-free copy of the game."

Platform: the World Wide Web
Campaign ends: March 22
Estimated delivery time: April 2019
Minimum pledge to receive the game: Nothing at all!

Sryth is a unique Kickstarter in that the project is already a fully-functional video game playable for free. It already exists and no one need donate a dime to experience it. However, Sryth is a "browser-based, story-driven fantasy RPG" which has been running since 2003 and has been a full-time commitment for the game's creator, Matthew Yarrows, for 12 years. He's soliciting donations to keep Sryth alive and available to all "through 2019 and beyond." As Yarrows writes, "The success of this Kickstarter campaign will help determine the continued viability of Sryth as a full-time endeavour."

As stated above, Sryth is online and free for all, but there are aspects of the game restricted to "upgraded" accounts. A $10 Kickstarter pledge qualifies for a "lifetime upgrade" with various in-game rewards included at higher tiers.

Platform: The Real World (specifically, Brooklyn)
Campaign ends: April 3
Estimated delivery time: 2019
Minimum pledge to receive the game: $20, $15 if you hurry

Wonderville isn't a game, or particularly retro, as it does not yet exist. But if the campaign succeeds, Wonderville will become a "brand new arcade, event space and bar in Brooklyn specializing in independent video games." So in a way it's extremely not retro, as the campaign specifically highlights how they want to distinguish themselves from other bar-arcades which only focus on older games. On the other hand, indie games are amazing, and arcades are by their very nature retro. Also, if this project takes off, it could launch the careers of untold numbers of video game creators in the future.

For those who don't live in New York City and have no plans to visit, there's still something worth donating for: a "Wonderbundle" of new games made by established indie creators available at the $20 tier. Alternatively, for $10 grand, they will design a custom full-size arcade cabinet, fill it with games, and ship it anywhere (in the US or Canada).