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Magic the Gathering creator seeks Kickstarter funding for mobile game
Magic the Gathering creator seeks Kickstarter funding for mobile game
April 26, 2012 | By Eric Caoili

Richard Garfield, creator of popular collectible card game Magic: The Gathering, has launched a fundraising campaign to finance development for a new location-based mobile game.

He joins a growing list of notable game designers who have turned to crowdfunding platform Kickstarter and fans to front the bill for their new projects -- recent success stories include campaigns from Tim Schafer (Psychonauts), Jordan Weisman (Shadowrun), and Brian Fargo (Wasteland).

Garfield hopes to raise $40,000 in pledges by May 5 to fund a free-to-play location-based adventure title called Map Monsters. In the game, players capture monsters that they can find in different physical areas. It will release for iPhone and iPad initially, and will eventually receive an Android port.

The designer has teamed up with BodSix, a Seattle-based independent studio that specializes in location-based mobile and social games, to create Map Monsters. The team is made up of veterans from companies like Amazon, Apple, Pixar, and Wizards of the Coast.

The Kickstarter campaign is offering credits for virtual goods, signed posters, Map Monsters shirts, a "game night" with Garfield, and other incentives to donators. So far, Garfield and BodSix have received around $10,000 in pledges, a fourth of their goal.

Though Garfield is best known for creating seminal card game Magic: The Gathering, he has helped design a number of video games in recent years like Torpex's Schizoid, Mind Control's Mind Twist, and Hothead's Kard Combat.

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Carl Chavez
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"...he has helped design a number of video games in recent years like Torpex's Schizoid, Mind Control's Mind Twist, and Hothead's Kard Combat."

One must not leave Spectromancer off such a list!

Jamorn Horathai
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After looking at his campaign, it's not as well executed as the major successes of other game campaigns (notably the Double Fine, Wasteland 2, Shadowrun, Banner Saga, etc.)

He didn't really connect with me and wasn't as passionate about the project in his vid. The art work was also not something that resonated with me... it's a shame really. I'd like to see whether this project ultimately reaches their funding goal, but with 8 days to go with only 1/4 of the target raised, I'm doubtful.

Robert Boyd
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I think what's really sinking this kickstarter is the fact that it's a freemium game. People want to get a game for their donation - not credits to use in a game.

Adam Bishop
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He's also not leveraging his reputation very well. Schafer leveraged the love fans have for his and Gilbert's old adventure games. Weisman leveraged the love that fans have for the Shadowrun universe. Fargo leveraged the love that fans have for old school CRPGs. But Garfield is making something that doesn't seem at all connected to what he's most well known for - a collectable card game. A card game that, for that matter, is still extremely popular and widely available. It just doesn't seem like the kind of project that people have much reason to line up to get involved with.

Jeremy Reaban
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I can understand Kickstarter being used to fund niche games that publishers or investors won't. Turn based RPGs are basically dead on PCs (which is one thing that drove me to console, then handheld gaming). So I was thrilled to lay down money for WL2 and Shadowrun.

But do we really need more free to play iOS games? At least, is it something that people would want to fund?

Luis Blondet
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So it's location-based Pokemon with boring art and mechanics.


I expected better from the guy who gloriously resurrected CCGs.