Swap Fire was an intriguing 2016 arrival on the Wii U eShop - its clever hook to flip multiplayer shooter gameplay on its head was certainly worthy of note. We awarded a 6 in our review - we felt that it was a game that could have been great were it not for a few mis-steps and issues that can in theory be corrected.
Developer Midnight Status is still working towards a major update to improve the game, but is also plotting a route to bring Swap Fire 2 for the Switch eShop. The original is a title that's had a slightly unconventional short history to date; we know from exchanging emails with the developer that it's a passion project, yet arriving relatively late on the Wii U download store and as a newcomer to Nintendo gamers didn't help with its commercial prospects. As a result the potential path to Switch for the sequel isn't exactly the standard route, either.
Let's break down some key details shared with us in relation to the performance of the first game on Wii U, and plans for a Switch sequel.
- To date Swap Fire has managed less than 500 paid copies on Wii U.
- As a free download in March, however, it was downloaded over 20,000 times.
- The goal of that giveaway was to win over new fans, and the developer says a number have expressed interest in buying the game for Switch.
- Investors have been impressed but want market validation for Swap Fire 2, proof that it'll achieve solid sales on Switch. In other words, proof it can be a success when not given away for free.
- A 'short but sweet' Kickstarter project is therefore being planned that will provide proof of its potential market.
- The remainder of funds beyond those from the Kickstarter will then be sourced from investors.
In addition the original is currently 50% off on the Wii U eShop, as another drive to attract sales and prove the audience for the game.
It's a game with promise that's defied convention to date on Wii U, and it seems Midnight Status is keen to find any means it can to fund a full sequel for the Switch.
We'll keep an eye out for the Kickstarter going live - it'll be interesting to see how this campaign progresses.