On June 11th, Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night — the latest project from long-time Castlevania producer Koji Igarashi — became the most funded game in Kickstarter history, racking up $5,545,991 by the time the campaign was complete. But the record didn't last long: today Shenmue 3 has taken the crown as Kickstarter's biggest video game.
First revealed as a surprise announcement at Sony's E3 keynote, Shenmue 3's crowdfunding campaign got off to a quick start, raising more $2 million in less than nine hours. While not the biggest name, Shenmue has a large cult following, and the original games are some of the most beloved to be released on the Dreamcast (the second also launched on the original Xbox, as well). The series is especially notable for its early attempts at presenting a large, 3D open world for players explore.
The original funding goal for the game was $2 million, and while the campaign has proven successful, questions have arisen as to whether such an ambitious game could be made on such a relatively small budget. According to creator Yu Suzuki, in addition to Kickstarter, the game is receiving funding from Sony and other investors.
"While it is not business practice to discuss the specific details of such arrangements," he explained, "I can say that with their assistance on the production and marketing end, and in Sony's case with some publishing support as well, Ys Net is able to use more of the money we collect through Kickstarter purely for Shenmue 3's development."
Shenmue 3 isn't slated to launch until 2017, when it's expected to hit both the PS4 and PC.