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Top 10 Most Successful Kickstarter Fundraising Projects

Added by Andrew Tyson in Finance (innovations, crowdfunding) on May 26, 2014
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Most Successful Kickstarter Projects

Only four years old, Kickstarter has turned the idea of raising funds for a start-up on its head. The website has made it possible for folks with half-decent ideas to connect with investors from around the world. In the past, it was all about networking, but they have made it so that the investors will come to you, instead of the other way around. Some of these projects have been uninspiring, but others have been extremely successful, and demonstrated that Kickstarter and crowd funding could be the future of business. Here are the 10 most successful projects to get off the ground.

If you enjoy this list, you might want to check out the top 10 PC games for 2013.

10

Wasteland 2

Backers: 61,290
Pledged: $2,933,252
Kickstarter link: link

In 1988, Wasteland, a post-apocalyptic role-playing video game, set the base for an entire genre of games to come. It spawned the incredibly successful Fallout series, but never received a sequel. When the producer of the original Wasteland, Brian Fargo, started InXile, his goal was to resurrect the series, and he turned to Kickstarter. $2.9 million later, Wasteland 2 was in production, with members from the original Wasteland game as well as the Fallout series being hired on.

9

Form 1 3-D Printer

Backers: 2,068
Pledged: $2,945,885
Kickstarter link: link

A successful attempt at making a relatively affordable 3-D printer that uses stereolithography, Formlabs’ Form 1 printer received just under $3 million in funding through Kickstarter. Prior to Form 1, people looking at 3-D printers had to choose between the less-expensive heated polymer filament printers, with low resolution and detail, or the incredibly expensive but incredibly detail-oriented stereolithography printers. Thanks to the fundraising behind it, Form 1 comes in at a price point below other stereolithography printers, while maintaining the technical superiority.

8

Wish I Was Here

Backers: 46,520
Pledged: $3,105,473
Kickstarter link: link

Zach Braff’s pet project raised $3.1 million from Kickstarter, but it also raised a lot of hackles, and some questions. Namely, should an actor who has received millions in pay over the course of his career, who has connections in the film and television industry, be using Kickstarter to fund a questionably viable movie? Clearly, plenty of folks saw no issue with it, and the film is set to debut in 2014. The debate on the funding method is likely to last quite a bit longer though.

7

Double Fine Adventure

Backers: 87,142
Pledged: $3,336,371
Kickstarter link: link

The first video game to breakout through Kickstarter, Double Fine Adventure (now called Broken Age) brought in $3.3 million. This demonstrated that Kickstarter is a viable way for video game producers to raise funds for games with niche audiences. The adventure game genre has faded in recent times, with Double Fine having the last fairly successful title, Psychonauts, released in 2005. With a solid background and fan support, the company is trying to keep the genre alive, and clearly has plenty of support from fans.

6

Reaper Miniatures Dark Heaven Bones

Backers: 14,964
Pledged: $3,169,610
Kickstarter link: link

Miniature figures aimed at the role-playing market, Reaper Miniatures was looking to introduce a line of plastic figurines, instead of the usual metal. These figurines would be ready to paint right out of the package, and would be priced significantly lower than the metal figurines. Reaper was unsure of the viability of this, but $3.4 million raised through Kickstarter showed them that there was a great demand for the product.

5

Project Eternity

Backers: 73,986
Pledged: $3,986,929
Kickstarter link: link

Building on the success of InXile’s Wasteland 2, Obsidian Entertainment came out with the Project Eternity fundraising project. Another role-playing game intended to reflect the gameplay of the older Infinity Engine role-playing games, it will be for PC only. One of the game directors, Josh Sawyer, cited Kickstarter as being an advantageous funding platform as it allows the game developers to be free of limitations on subject matter, allowing the game to delve into often-avoided subjects like prejudice and slavery.

4

Torment: Tides of Numenera

Backers: 74,405
Pledged: $4,188,927
Kickstarter link: link

Set to be released in 2015, InXile’s second entry on this list capitalized on the fundraising success of its predecessor, pulling in nearly $4.2 million in funds. Torment is a spiritual sequel to Planescape: Torment, and will run on the ruleset of the Numenara table-top game, the brainchild of one of the creators of the Planescape and Dungeons & Dragons table-top role-playing games. It didn't hurt that the project was vetted by two other creative minds from the Planescape team.

3

Veronica Mars Movie

Backers: 91,585
Pledged: $5,702,153
Kickstarter link: link

With $5.7 million raised, the Veronica Mars movie showed that a fan base can resurrect a television show for one last go-round, even when the usual studio funding is not present. A show that was lauded by fans and critics alike, many felt that the show ended too soon, and without a satisfactory ending. The writer and producer, Rob Thomas, wrote a script and pushed for funding from Warner Bros., but couldn’t get it. Turning to Kickstarter, the fans came through and met the $2 million goal in less than ten hours, thanks to promotion from some of the stars of the series. This drew Warner Bros. back to the project, and they will distribute the film when it is released in early 2014.

2

Ouya Video Gaming Console

Backers: 63,416
Pledged: $8,596,474
Kickstarter link: link

Raising $8.5 million through Kickstarter on the premise of providing an inexpensive gaming console that would allow for programmers to develop games on their own seemed like a good start. However, since the successful campaign Ouya has fallen a bit short. There are only a half-dozen or so games unique to the system, the controller is below par, and the unit itself is no more powerful or usable than current smartphones, but without the game roster. This has lead to some critics questioning just how good Kickstarter is when it comes to raising funds for hardware, especially when it comes to what is promised versus what is delivered.

1

Pebble

Backers: 68,929
Pledged: $10,266,845
Kickstarter link: link

The Pebble Watch is a smartwatch, a watch that can connect to your phone and interact with the applications. Much like the old radio-wristwatch that Dick Tracy wore, the idea behind the Pebble is to give the user everything they need, right there on their arm. Having raised over $10 million through Kickstarter, it holds the record for most funds raised. The Pebble is still somewhat under development, as it currently has a limited feature set and unpredictable battery life, and it is still more of a tech toy than anything else. It’s stylish and futuristic, but its functionality is limited and will be until the apps that are in development hit the market.

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