Project Rap Rabbit has officially missed its Kickstarter goal by a wide margin. The developers had originally asked for over one million dollars but only managed to garner around two hundred thousand before the date of the funding goal had been reached.
This game was a co-venture between the creators of PaRappa The Rapper and Gitaroo Man, who were working with a UK-based developer in order to make a new rhythm action title. Project Rap Rabbit features a cast of anthropomorphic animals, who live in a setting based on ancient Japan. The main character is a rapping rabbit, named Toto-Maru, who uses the power of hip-hop to overcome his enemies. Project Rap Rabbit promised to offer a dynamic new take on the formula created by PaRappa The Rapper by giving the player multiple different choices during their rapping, which will provide different results, rather than just hitting the same button combinations over and over again.
The failure of Project Rap Rabbit could easily be linked to a growing dissatisfaction with Kickstarter-funded games. While there have been a few excellent games to come out of the crowd-funding platform (such as Undertale), there are also catastrophic failures, which tend to stick in people's minds more. Mighty No. 9 and Yooka Laylee have both greatly diminished Kickstarter projects in the eyes of video game fans, as they promised a lot and delivered little. There are also the cases of games being funded, only to then be canceled or put on indefinite hiatus, such as Yogventures! or Unsung Story. It seems that the honeymoon period for nostalgia-bait Kickstarter games is over and the fans are now a lot warier about what projects they are willing to back.
It seems that the story of Project Rap Rabbit was all too familiar. The creator of a beloved retro game wants to make something that is just like it but cannot get the support of a big publisher, so they have decided to come to the fans with some concept art and a lot of promises. If this game had been pitched two or three years ago, then it likely would have hit its goal and began production. It seems that the developers waited for a little too long before attempting the crowd-funding route.
Project Rap Rabbit's Kickstarter has now officially ended. The developers claim that they intend to continue on with the project in other ventures, as the support that the game did receive has proven that there is interest out there. Does this mean that Project Rap Rabbit will be taken directly to publishers? Will they offer it one of the big three console makers, with the hope of turning the game into a PlayStation 4/Xbox One/Nintendo Switch exclusive? Only time will tell. Right now, however, it seems that the dream of Project Rap Rabbit is over.