LabZero Games, the developers of Skullgirls, launched their crowdfunding initiative on Indiegogo in an effort to release their first DLC character, Squigly. The character is about 1/3 of the way done, so the development team needs about $150,000 to complete the character. At the time of this article, they have already raised $75,000, which is fantastic, considering the Indiegogo page has been live for just over six hours. In fact, the more expensive donation options sold out once already, and have had their inventory increased. They will soon sell out again!
Squigly is a unique character with an ability never before seen in a fighting game: By singing, she can make the camera focus on her. This means the edges of the playfield move as well, resulting in enemies being pulled towards her! She can also use this move as an assist, giving all existing characters all kinds of ridiculous new possibilities previously unimaginable!
There are plenty of stretch goals as well. $175,000 adds a story mode for Squigly, and a new stage, with music to be composed by Konami’s Michiru Yamane, who did most of the music for Skullgirls.
If $375,000 is raised, Skullgirls‘ first male character, Big Band, will be developed. Big Band has been described as “a charge character with command grabs.” Translated, that means his special moves are activated by holding a movement direction for a short time, then pressing in the opposite direction and pressing a button. Command grabs are special moves like Zangief’s Spinning Pile Driver. Big Band has also been described by Skullgirls‘ lead designer Mike Zaimont as “like [Street Fighter 3: Third Strike's] Q, only better.” Getting to $400,000 adds a story mode and stage for Big Band.
At $600,000, a third character, decided by fan vote, will be developed. $625,000 will get that third character a story mode and stage.
Some of the donation incentives include digital and physical copies of the Skullgirls soundtrack and PC downloads of Skullgirls, with beta access to be provided before the game releases on Steam. More expensive options include a voicemail greeting provided by a Skullgirls voice actress, the ability to create a custom color palette for a character, or even a chance to design a character to appear in the background of a stage.
Some might balk at these prices to develop one character, but rumors and estimates peg the cost to develop a character for Street Fighter IV at around 1 million dollars. The Labzero team has actually taken a pay cut in the hopes of continuing Skullgirls development, and at the pace the Skullgirls Indiegogo campaign is currently running, getting Squigly developed shouldn’t be a problem.