Spicy Horse downsized after Akaneiro lost $1.7 million

By Alice O'Connor, Jan 31, 2014 11:30am PST

American McGee's Spicy Horse has downsized its Shanghai studio due to the Akaneiro: Demon Hunters failing quite massively. McGee revealed that Spicy Horse has spent about $2 million in total making the free-to-play action-RPG, which first launched at the end of January 2013, but has only made back around $300,000.

Around 15 people have been working on Akaneiro since early 2011, putting out "around 360 man-months" of work, and resulting in a total investment of almost $2 million, McGee explained in a Kickstarter update (via Joystiq). "In that same period, we've generated roughly 300kUSD in revenue - this includes funds collected via the Kickstarter campaign, F2P purchases in-game, and one-time purchases via Steam. In simple math: We've spent $2 million, we've made $300k, we're 'in the hole' $1.7 million."

Spicy Horse has now cut the Akaneiro development team down to only two people, downsized the studio, and is focusing everyone else on The Gate, its hybird RTS-collectible card game formerly known as Hell Invaders. According to McGee, The Gate "offers the greatest chance of bringing much-needed stability to our studio."

Last August, the studio also successfully Kickstarted Alice: Otherlands, a series of animated short films based upon American McGee's Alice.

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