Bad news for Kickstarted turn-based haunted house project, Haunts, as the game has ceased production. According to Mob Rules Games head Rick Dakan, both of Haunts' programmers have left the project, with the lead programmer moving on to Google, and the other taking a new job as well. Neither programmer is able to work on the project in their spare time.
"The game as it stands has all the systems in place, but there are a lot of bugs," writes Dakan on Kickstarter. Neither he nor the game's lead artist are programmers, leaving the project in dire straits. Implementing online play "took three times longer than estimated" and, unfortunately, will require additional programming to make existing levels work, even when played offline. Dakan is currently shopping Haunts around, specifically to a studio "owned by some old friends and coworkers," in hopes of eventually seeing the project finished. Dakan admits that, even should the studio agree, it would still be "months before anything came out."
Dakan elaborates that "bets" were made in developing Haunts, but they "haven't paid off like we needed them to," and that "things were constantly going from bad to worse." The $28,000 raised on Kickstarter has been spent, he writes, "but I will personally refund out of my own pocket anyone who wants to withdraw their support, no questions asked." Backers seeking refunds may contact Mob Rules through Dakan's Kickstarter email. Dakan concludes by reaching out to anyone willing and able to help complete the game, though he's hopeful the current partnership that Mob Rules is pursuing will work out. Thus far, the majority of those commenting on Kickstarter are not asking for a refund.
The video above showcases some of Haunts' gameplay as it currently stands. Mob Rules has also put together a summary of the game's ten chapters, along with associated screens.