A project soliciting funds for a new video game to compete with the likes of World of Warcraft and Skyrim has been pulled from the crowd funding website Kickstarter after it became clear that the proposal was a sham.
Mythic: The Story of Gods and Men raised $4,739 from 83 backers before it was cancelled, reportedly by the project creator, on April 28. The account of the project’s creator, “Little Monster Productions” has also been removed from Kickstarter.
Mythic was pitched to the kickstarter crowd last week as an “action/strategy based RPG (role playing game)” from a team of seasoned game developers that would allow players to take the roles of heroes or villains in ancient biblical, Greek or Egyptian myths. It attracted a flurry of interest early on promising partnerships with animation giant Pixar studios and a soundtrack from Disney Studios. Backers were promised copies of the soundtrack, t-shirts and even replica artwork inspired by the game.
However, it didn’t take long for Kickstarter users to discover that something was amiss. A Kickstarter user named “Mark” warned potential contributors off the project on April 28, noting that concept art promoting the project had been lifted from other Web sites. As other would-be contributors began sniffing around, almost every aspect of the Mythic project ended up to be a cut-and-paste job, from the game’s Web site to photos of the Little Monster’s offices on the company’s Facebook page. Even the rewards offered for different contribution levels were copied from another Kickstarter project, Kickstarter users discovered.
While project organizers attempted to deflect criticisms at first, alleging that the game was not a scam and that “we have been subjected to false claims of ownership right to our concepts,” those behind the project quickly pulled up stakes and withdrew their project from the site.
Kickstarter has been more noted for its eye-popping fund raising successes in recent months. Video game makers have had particular success in raising funds. Notably, a project to develop the game Wasteland 2 -a sequel to the 1988 role playing game – raised $2.9 million – more than triple the target of project founders.
Those who pledged funds would not have had their credit cards debited because the project failed to reach its fundraising goal of $80,000.