Precursor Games looking for another $1.35 million to fund new psychological horror

Shadow of the Eternals turns to Kickstarter

Denis Dyack’s new studio Precursor Games has turned to Kickstarter to fund development of the spiritual successor to Eternal Darkness, Shadow of the Eternals.

The developer, which had already been looking to raise funds through its own website, is looking for $1.35m to create the psychological horror.

With 35 days to go, at the time of writing the campaign has raised $27,324 from 490 backers.

Planned as an episodic series, the funding will pay for the “pilot” episode, and other game engine and development costs. The description promised that future episodes would be “significantly cheaper and faster to produce”, although it did not state how much this would be, or if the developer would be starting further crowdfunding campaigns for new releases down the line.

The CryEngine 3-powered game is being developed for PC and Wii U, although other platforms may be added depending on how much funding the title receives.

Precursor, formed of a number of former Silicon Knights developers including studio head Denis Dyack, who is chief creative officer for the new developer, sparked controversy when it began crowdfunding Shadow of the Eternals through its own website.

Terms and Conditions on the studio’s official website, through which it has raised $156,000 of a different $1.5m goal, state that any donations made cannot be cancelled or returned once they have been completed, “whether or not Precursor Games completes the game or fulfils the specified reward”.

It also states that any pledges to back the project are “strictly donations, and are not consideration for any service or product”.

It is not currently clear whether Precursor also need both crowdfunding campaigns to be successful to raise money for the game’s development, or simply just one of them.

Develop has reached out for comment from Precursor to clarify some of the terms and conditions on the campaign, and its plans going forward.

Dyack’s former studio, Silicon Knights, is reported to have closed its office as well as selling off a number of assets last week, some of which went to Precursor Games.

The developer has been involved in a multi-million dollar legal battle with Epic Games for a number of years, and is currently down to just a few employees.

The studio has also been ordered to pay up $4.5m to Epic, after the Gears of War developer successfully argued that Silicon Knights had stolen trade secrets with regards to Unreal Engine 3.

Despite the close ties however, Precursor CEO Paul Caporicci recently told Polygon it “has no connection with Silicon Knights”, nor was there any liability or claim against the company.

“We are a completely separate and independent entity and always have been," he said.

"Precursor is not and never has been a party to that case, and is not involved in it whatsoever. We purchased completely wiped clean machines, that is all. There is no basis for any liability or any claim against Precursor Games. We wish Silicon Knights the best of luck in their future."

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