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Atari has tons of franchises under its belt, and it wants to continue to expand on those franchises, which includes porting some of the more popular games to different platforms. In this case, Atari is looking for crowd-sourced equity investors to bring RollerCoaster Tycoon to the Nintendo Switch.
Over on the Start Engine page, there's currently a crowd-drive to bring in investors to help port RollerCoaster Tycoon to the Switch. It's not a typical crowd-funding campaign where gamers donate out of the goodness of their hearts and hope to see the game of their dreams make its way to the platform of their choice. No, instead this is an investor drive where those who contribute to the project could potentially see some returns on their investment depending on how well the game does on the market, not too dissimilar to the way Fig has it setup for its crowd-sourced campaigns.
Part of the pitch is that the original RollerCoaster Tycoon would be brought over to the Nintendo Switch with all new high-resolution output, updated assets, touchscreen support when playing in the portable mode, and Joy-Con controls when playing in the TV mode.
One of the things that's made clear in the pitch is that Atari isn't crowd-sourcing funds so that people can invest in Atari, but rather the pitch is that people will buy into the RollerCoaster Tycoon brand.
It's a risky proposition given how shaky the history of Atari has been over the years. A number of ownership changes have taken place so that it's not even really the original Atari from back in the 1970s, but a shell representing the IP still under the current Atari brand.
The YouTube pitch video doesn't have the best of responses from the community. Only 78 people, as of the writing of this article, have up-voted the video, whereas more than 1,000 have down-voted the video.
While the idea of possibly making back your investment in the project like a Fig campaign might have seemed like a good pitch, it apparently hasn't gone over too well with the community. A lot of the comments are ridiculing Atari for bragging about making billions from its properties but going to the crowd to ask for funds to port RollerCoaster Tycoon to the Nintendo Switch. Many see it as being rather offensive.
Eurogamer offers a more in-depth look at the situation, pointing out exactly why some members of the gaming community are rather peeved at the pitch. It turns out that Atari has plans on using Nvizzio Creations to port the game to the Switch. For those of you who don't know, this was the developer used later on in the lifespan of RollerCoaster Tycoon World, which received massive backlash from the fans.
The version that is being ported to Switch will be based on RollerCoaster Tycoon Touch, which was a mobile release for Android and iOS devices. The Eurogamer article also points out that there's a fine print noting that not all of the proceeds from the crowd-sourcing will be used for development, which has earned further scorn from the gaming community.
Despite some of the push back, Atari still seems to have garnered enough attention and support to round up more than $20,000 in crowd-funds. There's an undefined goal set between $10,000 and $1 million, so there's 89 days to go to reach that goal.