September 5, 2013
Mega Man Creator Looks To Kickstarter For Mega Man-Like Game
As Star Wars fans know (unless they’ve been living in a Sarlac pit), George Lucas has announced he’s stepping back from the Star Wars universe. He’s not the first creator of something big who found himself burnt out, or just simply decided to move onto something different.
The problem is that when people leave their creations to someone else, they tend to regret it. We’ll see if after the next wave of Star Wars films come out whether Lucas has a change of heart.
This already seems to be the case with Keiji Inafune, a video game creator who was behind the popular Mega Man franchise. Inafune quit Capcom, the developer/publisher of the Mega Man titles, after 23 years with the company.
TechCrunch noted that in October of 2010 he wrote on his blog, “I’m leaving Capcom with the intention of starting my life over.”
True to his word he’s apparently doing just that… only his new concept at this development studio – fitting named Comcept – sounds a lot like Mega Man. Inafune now promises gamers will get to: “play as Beck, the 9th in a line of powerful robots, and the only one not infected by a mysterious computer virus that has caused mechanized creatures the world over to go berserk. Run, jump, blast, and transform your way through six stages (or more, via stretch goals) you can tackle in any order you choose, using weapons and abilities stolen from your enemies to take down your fellow Mighty Number robots and confront the final evil that threatens the planet!”
While Capcom lawyers might have a problem with the similarity to Mega Man, the fans of Inafune apparently are quite impressed. With almost a month to go, his Kickstarter effort for Mighty No. 9 has raised nearly $1.3 million dollars on a goal of $900,000. There are nearly 22,000 backers of the project and, as of this week, nearly 4,000 comments posted.
Apparently Mega Man fans like the fact that Inafune is passionate about creating another Mega Man game.
The question will be whether this will deliver what the fans expect. This is certainly a case of “more of the same,” but similarity is kind of a common theme in video games. This is after all an industry where fans clamor for some innovation, but really want more of what they just finished playing.
So, Mega Man, or rather Mighty No. 9, should do well with the fans. Yet, let’s consider that Inafune could have taken a cue from developers such as Will Wright or Sid Meier.
Those two are visionaries who created some rather different games. Meier even more than Wright, but both knew that making something completely different wasn’t so bad for the industry.
Will Wright can be credited with creating the Sim genre, but also ventured into games such as Spore, suggesting that even with the familiar there is room for growth.
Sid Meier might be best known for Civilization, but created RailRoad Tycoon, Pirates and even made a war game – Sid Meier’s Gettysburg.
My point is that while Inafune certainly has the fans lining up, and managed to raise quite a comfortable sum creating a new Mega Man, the real game visionaries know that sometimes it is worth taking that Monty Python cue – “and now for something completely different.”
Image Credit: comcept USA, LLC via Kickstarter