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Goldhawk Interactive has Gone Kickstarter for Xenonauts

By on May 9th, 2012 1:40 pm

xenonauts_kickstarter

I was quite surprised, and frankly had to re-check again to see Xenonauts also on Kickstarter a few hours ago. I mean, yes, why not? But, with a talked release date for this fall and with pre-orders open a long time ago I was not expecting to see Xenonauts asking for funds at this stage.

But, Goldhawk Interactive is an indie studio, one where most of the employees work far apart in different countries. The main reason for this kickstarter campaign seems to be related with the need to get key staff together for the final integration tests. As the devs put it:

“Working remotely with part-time team members didn’t pose too many difficulties when everyone was working on separate elements of the game, but as we’ve started tying things together bugs and features frequently overlap across several different areas. This makes it essentially impossible to work to any meaningful deadlines.” ~Goldhawk Interactive

So, news are that everyone can now try Xenonauts for free, as a demo. Before only people who pre-ordered would be able to try Xenonauts through its alpha builds. There are download links in the kickstarter page. The game is PC-only but the devs don’t make any promises that it will run flawlessly on Linux, but say to run “relatively well” on WINE.

A month ago I took Xenonauts for a spin , and I really, really enjoyed what I experienced. You have my impressions of the alpha build in my Xenonauts preview article. The graphics are great, the original X-COM’s environment was really well captured but clearly there were still many things left to be done, at least when I played the game. For instance, the maps were still dummy, only 1 or 2 were available at the time. But what’s important is that Xenonauts does feel like an X-COM game, and that’s the most important part since the game doesn’t hide to be its spiritual successor, basically a remake so to speak.

Goldhawk is already 30% of the 50.000 goal, and this just in 17 hours or so after launching the campaign. All looks favorable that they will manage. Good  for them, they really deserve the cash in my opinion.

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20 Comments


  1. Nori says:

    Yeah I gotta say I was really surprised when I saw this on the KS homepage… Just logged in this morning to check updates and bam, there is Xenonauts… But hey, more power to them. I think they will greatly exceed funding and the game will be better for it…

    I plan on pledging, but it won’t be for much as I have put down wayyyy too much money on KS stuff in the last month… I mean I gotta eat right? :p

    • Adam Solo says:

      I would also pledge but I also have other kickstarter/indiegogo projects going on. Well, I think I did my share already :) I will pledge if they need. As that would make any difference :D

    • Mathias says:

      I’ve worked with Chris in the past. He’s a great guy, very dedicated – and deserves success. I’m glad to see, they’ve already achieved the 50k they were aiming for.

  2. LS35A says:

    I’m torn on this. I’d like to support it, but so many games are started and never finished.

    I did love the graphics in the demo, they’ve done a great job of updating the look and feel of the original.

    But there is a LOOOONG way to go before this is close to done.

    • Adam Solo says:

      Xenonauts had already a good base, I was confident that they would make it. Now with this kickstarter there’s no doubt in my mind that they will release a good product in the end.

      Graphics are nice aren’t they? Very clean and crisp.

      I’m not so sure that we are very far from completion. Sure there is a lot of work to be done on level design, tiles and AI but the base looks very strong already. With good scenarios and decent AI I would already be playing this game.

  3. Adam Solo says:

    70% :) They must be thinking now “D’oh!, I told you we should have gone for 100 grand…”

    • To which the community would retort: “Now, now. Don’t be greedy!”

      • Adam Solo says:

        Well, what I mean is that they could have asked for $75.000 and people wouldn’t care, they would back the game anyway. I’ve seen kickstarters/indiegogos justify the amount of money they need hundred by hundred dollar. I think that should always be the case. Otherwise this is pretty much “how big is your name/brand? Well, let’s go with $75.000 in your case”. I’m not saying that’s what they do, I’m just saying that the budget should be a bit more transparent.

        But, who cares anyway :)

      • Nori says:

        Asking for more wouldn’t make them greedy… Making good, complex video games is expensive and I’m rather surprised they are only asking for 50k.

  4. Jesse says:

    Pretty sure they went with 50k because they were unsure how successful the KS would be. Better to lowball and get something than shoot high and get nothing.

    • Adam Solo says:

      Yes, but this proves that the value people ask is always a bit too abstract. At least for us in this side it’s not really a solid ground figure. And then ridiculous (probably good) things happen, like in the FTL case. Because that’s how these things work anyway, people support by emotion, not really by reason I guess.

      But Kickstarter as anything else will only work long term if all actors (specially the campaigners) are honest about the system, if there’s enough confidence. Otherwise if people start running off with the money (I see nothing that can stop that) the kickstarter bubble, as some already call it, will explode as fast as it was created.

      And everybody would pay for the offenders. But I guess Kickstarter is well aware of that, so, they’re more worried than I am with that for sure.

  5. JD says:

    I know this does not belong here, but I am a huge fan of this game and I just need to spread the word out. After 11 years finally a sequel is announced:

    CONQUEST 2 Vyrium Uprising !!!

    http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1869102574/conquest-2-vyrium-uprising-rts-fans-unite

    • Adam Solo says:

      Looks good! A more strategic sci-fi RTS? I’m all for that. But, it isn’t 4X is it?

      • JD says:

        I did not want to pollute the forums with this, so if you need to remove comments and such do your thing. This is just one of my favorite games and I wanted to help spread the word. This is a great team of designers/developers.

        And yes it’s not really 4x but since you posted about Sins also I though why not. Besides I’m sure a lot of the spacesector visitors would like this game. One of the forgotten jewels during the turn of this century.

        I still play this game from time to time… old habits die hard.

      • Adam Solo says:

        Pollute the forums? In which way? You could use the ss forums or you could have sent me an email with the tip and I would consider making an article about it.

        One can really feel your enthusiasm. And not being 4X is not an issue since this site is about all types of sci-fi strategy games.

        No worries :)

  6. Adam Solo says:

    Done. And now Goldhawk offers to stretch the goals. They commit for a Mac / Linux port if they raise $100.000 and will add female soldiers at $200.000 (no joke apparently).

  7. fafrin says:

    Well I’ve signed up,I’ll just wait now for the problems/delays that always arise to be sorted out and maybe see the end result in a year or so!

  8. marc says:

    this is a great game from what iv played on the alphas id love to be more involved with it. if i get this ppi claim(lol yeah i know) i may well put quite a bit in to its development.


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