Earlier today, a new game project called Yooka-Laylee went live on Kickstarter. A spiritual successor to the beloved 3-D platformer Banjo-Kazooie, it hit its $270,000 funding goal in just 40 minutes, and by the time you read this it’ll be on the fast track to becoming the biggest Kickstarter game project ever.
The current reigning champ for most-funded Kickstarter game project is Exploding Kittens, a card game from Elan Lee and The Oatmeal-creator Matthew Inman, which raised $8,782,571—around $2 million of that in the first 24 hours. Second and third in line are the Ouya game console, which raised $8,596,474, and Torment: Tides of Numenera, which raised $4,188,927.
Yooka-Laylee, however, is on track to raise more than $25 million, according to Kicktraq, a website that analyzes funding periods, average pledges, and other data to estimate a project’s success. As of this writing, Yooka-Laylee—a product of Playtronic Games, a new outfit formed by former employees of Banjo-Kazooie studio Rare—has raised more than $670,000 after being live for only a few hours. At this rate it should well surpass Exploding Kittens‘ $2-million-in-24-hours record and scream past it by the end of its 46-day funding period, which happens to fall on the first day of this year’s E3.
The game’s popularity is largely due to its creators’ Rare pedigree, and the lack of good 3-D platforming games in recent years. Like Banjo-Kazooie, Yooka-Laylee features two protagonists (this time an anthropomorphic lizard named Yooka and his wisecracking lady-bat sidekick Laylee) who explore a vibrant 3-D platforming world. Playtronic Games is made up of the Steve Mayles and Chris Southerland, the character artist and lead programmer of Banjo-Kazooie and Donkey Kong Country, Gavin Price, creative lead on Viva Piñata and Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts ‘n Bolts, and several other former Rare developers.
Having already blown past its funding goal, Yooka-Laylee will definitely go forward with development. The project lists October 2016 as the estimated delivery date, but if we’ve learned anything about massively over-funded Kickstarters, that date might get blown past as well.
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