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There's a new page on Steam's store; it's for Kickstarter projects. The page starts with a simple slogan: You Made Them. You Backed Them. Now Play Them. The Kickstarter page on Steam boasts more than a 100 games that have been crowd-sourced and brought to life on everyone's favorite PC gaming digital distribution outlet.
Forbes took note of the page writing...
“That triple digit milestone is undoubtedly important for Kickstarter’s visibility, viability, and even integrity. For all of its wish fulfillment opportunities, the crowdfunding portal is consistently steeped in controversy and disappointment.”
Writer Jason Evangelho ends his piece questioning why some games have garnered more support than others, or how some titles are positioned to deserve more attention than other games, but the reality is that the gaming industry isn't equal and neither is crowd funding. Some gamers are naturally more popular than others (i.e., Grand Theft Auto trumps Mass Effect all day long) while other games resonate with larger audiences over others (i.e., Mario Kart Wii sold more than GTA IV). The reality is that there's really no telling why or how certain games get the kind of attention that they do from their respective market(s).
One thing that can be stated for certain is that some of the prices on Early Access for Kickstarted games reflect their pricing based on backer tiers. Evangelho questions how a game like Wasteland 2 manages a $50 price tag on Early Access, well certain Kickstarter games had certain pricing tiers they had to uphold when going into the early sale phases, such as Planetary Annihilation's super-high $80 price-point when it first landed on Steam's Early Access. They wanted to honor their Kickstarter tier that promised backers who paid $80 the alpha access they paid for. It only seemed right that anyone else who wanted that same level of access would have to pay what the Kickstarter backers paid.
Even still, the rest of the games on the list are very much encouraging of the crowd-sourced scene. Yes, there have been some rotten apples, like the recent Areal game being called a fraud, however the page on Steam's store for successful Kickstarter ventures definitely shows that the game community has a deep desire to see new and unique games make a return to the gaming market that aren't force-fed AAA ideas or concepts.
It's also cool to see some of the more esoteric genres and ideas becoming a reality, such as games like Among the Sleep, which is a suspense thriller that puts players in the role of a two-year-old toddler. Or Blade Symphony, the 3D sword-fighting game that focuses a lot on timing, counter-attacks and fancy combo attacks, aiming to rekindle a genre that seems to have faded away like the prominence of the Soul Calibur series.
Recent entries like DieselStormers and Unrest have also made it onto Steam, showing that the trend of crowd-sourcing cool ideas hasn't quite died off just yet.
As the system gets refined and gamers continue to pick and choose what they want to fund, it will be interesting to see how the Kickstarter gaming community continues to grow and expand in this ever-changing market.
You can check out the full list of Kickstarted titles available on Steam by visiting the official page.