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Fearing failure, Reset devs almost pulled their successful crowdfunding campaign

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Theory Interactive's time-traveling puzzle game Reset recently ended its crowdfunding campaign on a successful note, but it's a story that almost had a different ending.

As funding efforts drew to a close on the final day, Dec. 23, a last-minute rush of backers helped push the project over its €65,000 goal. Its final tally was €71,398.

But the close call didn't go unnoticed by Theory Interactive, who briefly considered pulling the campaign before it was over. Speaking with Polygon via email, Theory Interactive co-founder Alpo Oksaharju explained that the last-minute save was a pleasant surprise.

"It was really not looking that good," Oksaharju said of the campaign. "There is always sense of a sports match in a crowd funding campaign. And I guess it's only natural for the brain to start cooking up all kinds of silly ideas, like folding, when the situation is not the best possible. But we managed to push all silliness aside and focus on the task at hand."

According to Oksaharju, the developer went into the campaign more unprepared than anticipated. There isn't one major aspect they'd do different, but communication, game material and perks could have been improved, while other optional routes should have been explored. Regardless of the campaign's outcome, he said, production on Reset would have continued one way or another. Other options included taking on outsourcing work or other engagements that wouldn't compromise the two-man team's independence.

"This is a pretty important project for us."

"This is a pretty important project for us," Oksaharju said. "We've been on such [a] shoestring budget from the beginning so we wouldn't have had to squeeze a lot of dough from somewhere to continue. But of course that would have stretched the development."

Reset is still on track to release at the end of the year as Theory Interactive buckles down to complete its work. Although Reset is very much the same game in theory, Oksaharju said, the two-man team is placing its focus on nailing the game's puzzles and the delivery of its story.

"We already have to means to convey the feeling, atmosphere and story we're aiming for, the sauce or seasoning so to speak," Oksaharju said. "Now it's time to add more meat to absorb all the taste.

"We've committed to delivering the game on PC next Christmas. At least to our funders at that time. We've not ruled out consoles, but if they happen, it will be after the PC."