Kickstarter Kompliation: May 2019 edition

Back an NES game, a Game Boy Color game, or a streaming service with ALL the games!

It's a new month, a new season, and possibly a new era depending on where you live in the world and there's no better time to share our monthly collection of video game crowdfunding campaigns. These projects are picked purely on our hunches and personal tastes: we have no insider information and have not been compensated for highlighting these over the many, many, other crowdfunding campaigns in progress at this time.

AdventureQuest 8-Bit: Dungeons & DoomKnights
Platform: NES
Campaign ends: May 2
Estimated delivery time: October 2019
Minimum pledge to receive the game: $12 (digital only)

So here's how out of touch I am: I put this on the list because I love new-old NES games and a "zeldavania" is an easy sell. Turns out this is actually a goofy demake based on an existing online game called AdventureQuest, and backing the Kickstarter for this game earns rewards in the MMORPG version.

Either way, the campaign ends soon but it's already been funded ten times over. Take note that the $12 tier is a digital-only reward of an NES ROM; to get an actual cartridge requires a donation of at least $48 - or $99 if you want that cartridge to be gold.

Tobu Tobu Girl Deluxe
Platform: Game Boy, Game Boy Color
Campaign ends: May 4
Estimated delivery time: June 2019
Minimum pledge to receive the game: €5 (about $6 US)

Tobu Tobu Girl began its existence at a 2014 Game Boy game jam. In less than 48 hours, the TangramGames team had made an adorable puzzle platformer about jumping to rescue a cat. They released the ROM for free in 2017 and made a physical version as well which sold out quickly.

Jump to 2019 and they've made Tobu Tobu Girl Deluxe, the Game Boy Color version of their original creation. This version will also be released for free eventually, but Kickstarter backers can get a copy early or, starting at the €49 tier, get a physical cartridge version. The campaign has been fully funded but one of the as-yet-unfulfilled stretch goals is a Super Game Boy border and custom color palettes - a very nice touch.

Hunt the Night
Platform: PC, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch
Campaign ends: May 5
Estimated delivery time: October 2020
Minimum pledge to receive the game: €15 (about $17 US)

Hunt the Night isn't an actual retro game - the SNES cartridge reward is just a shell - but it is a modern game that looks to harness the aesthetic of 16-bit action games. There's some wonderful pixel art at work in the trailer for the characters, the imposing bosses, and even for the backgrounds. But Hunt the Night isn't content to settle for the retro look as there's also a modern sheen of 3D effects that augment the action. The result feels somewhere adjacent to late PlayStation releases or early Dreamcast games that fused 2D and 3D together - a good look, one that doesn't get as much love these days.

Platform: PC, Mac, Xbox One, mobile devices
Campaign ends: May 10
Estimated delivery time: "as soon as end of May 2019"
Minimum pledge to receive all of the games: £28 (about $36 US)

Of all the Kickstarters in this month's roundup, this one is the riskiest as well as the most intriguing: Antstream is a self-described "streaming platform for retro gaming." Subscribers would be able to access "hundreds of games" (I couldn't find an exact number, or a list) via a single app with the promise of "thousands" in the future. The app also adds modern touches like a friends list, online play, and a "challenge" system where players win medals for accomplishing certain feats in game.

If the name or concept sounds familiar, Kim Justice wrote about Antstream last summer, saying "I came away from the demo a lot more hopeful for the product, and generally pleased with what I saw." The service is supposedly launching this month in North America and Europe on home computers, mobile devices, and Xbox One. The campaign are been fully funded already and with that they've added PlayStation 4 support as a stretch goal. Antstream excites me because I'm old enough to remember GameTap, but I'd likewise be hesitant to invest in a streaming service for old games because I remember GameTap.