Kickstarter scam rumbled

Kickstarter scam rumbled
Craig Chapple

By Craig Chapple

May 1st 2012 at 10:32AM

Concept art and studio images stolen from other websites by developer Little Monster Productions

Potential donators have rumbled a Kickstarter scam claimed to be run by former Activision and Blizzard employees after raising just under $5,000.

The project, an action/strategy RPG called Mythic: The Story of Gods and Men, had a funding target of $80,000, and promised to bring the gameplay of World of Warcraft and the graphics of Skyrim.

The game’s developers, Little Monster Productions, led by co-founder Seth Westfall (pictured) claimed to have raised the rest of the title’s budget through angel investors, VCs and their own savings.

But as uncovered by the Kickstarter users, it was spotted that the game’s concept art and studio images had been stolen from other projects and websites.

Once rumbled, the game’s creators cancelled the funding initiative and closed its Facebook page and website, but still claimed the game ”was not a scam of any kind”.

“A few members of our team worked at Burton Design Group last year before others found out the owner was being shady with funds. They left and joined our team shortly after,” read a statement on the team’s Kickstarter page.

“As for the concept art, it seems we have been subjected to false claims of ownership right to our concepts. The game itself is well in progress and is NOT a scam of any kind. Thank you for understanding. If you have any further questions please feel free to ask.”

As well as claiming to have former members of Activision and Blizzard working on the project, the team of “12 industry veterans” was said to include two former creative directors, a former CTO, senior programmers and an ex-VP of production.

News of an attempted scam comes after the crowdfunding website has exploded into life in recent months, raising millions for various game’s, such as Tim Schafer’s Double Fine adventure title, which garnered more than $3.3m in donations.

Despite raising nearly $5,000, the money has not been released to the scammers as the project did not reach its $80,000 target.