In an interview with Penny Arcade Report (via PCGamesN), Monaco designer Andy Schatz shared his thoughts on Kickstarter campaigns and the inclusion of stretch goals—promises made at tiers above the minimum funding goal—bluntly calling the latter “bulls***” and “the perfect way to make a game that’s insufficiently complete or bloated.”
“When you’re designing a game, the way I think you should do it is you figure out what the game is, you figure out what the game needs, and you should make that,” Schatz said. “There’s a difference between allowing your fans to have an extreme amount of input on the game and letting them design the game in the sense of, ‘If the budget is this, then I’ll do this, and if the budget is that, then I’ll do that.’ That to me sounds like the perfect way to make a game that’s insufficiently complete or bloated.”
According to Schatz, designers should follow a simple formula: if stretch goal features are necessary, then simply add them in. “That’s sort of my take on Kickstarters,” he explained. “That said, there’s the possibility that at some point I’ll try doing one, but I don’t like what it does to design.”
Schatz’s current project, the top-down heist/stealth combo Monaco, started offering pre-orders in December for a “March-ish” release. Developer Pocketwatch Games drew its budget from the Indie Fund, a financial resource for indie developers run by Braid creator Jonathan Blow and World of Goo designers Ron Carmel and Kyle Gabler, among others.