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Dreamfall Chapters goes episodic in order to deliver something to backers this fall

Owen S. Good is a longtime veteran of video games writing, well known for his coverage of sports and racing games.

Dreamfall Chapters, the Kickstarter-funded sequel to the 2006 adventure game Dreamfall, will adopt an episodic format in order to deliver backers something this fall, the game's creators announced on Friday.

Dreamfall Chapters, funded on Kickstarter with more than $1.5 million in donations, originally eschewed the episodic approach, despite its title. "The creative process is unpredictable, however," wrote Ragnar Tornquist, creative director for developing studio Red Thread Games, "and the story we're telling has turned out to be bigger and more ambitious than first envisioned.

"We're not on track to meet the release date we estimated a year and a half ago, and we've had to take a long, hard look at our schedule and budget," he wrote.

Five episodes are planned. Those who backed Dreamfall Chapters by Kickstarter and PayPal will receive all five free. New customers will be able to purchase a season pass on Steam, GOG and the Humble Store. Dreamfall Chapters will be released on PC, Mac and Linux.

"We could have made deep cuts, removed a lot of the characters, story-lines and locations — but we would have ended up with a different game than the one that's played inside our heads for the better part of a decade, a different game than the one we've promised our backers," Tornquist wrote. "We've also realised that while, as a small studio, we are capable of producing a massively ambitious game like Dreamfall Chapters, we're not satisfied with our ability to properly finish, polish and bug fix the whole game in one go.

"By releasing Book One this autumn, we hope to start generating income, all of which will go right back into improving the quality and scope of subsequent books," he said.

For more on the nearly two-year development of Dreamfall Chapters, see Polygon's in-depth profile of Tornquist and Red Thread Games.