If you’ve never designed a game for money, you probably do not have a very clear picture of what video game budgets look like. This is honestly not unusual; if you don’t work in plumbing, you probably do not have a very clear picture about how to price out installing a new tub. But it also means that a new entry from Ron Gilbert (the man behind classics such as Maniac Mansion and The Secret of Monkey Island) about the distribution of funds and budgeting for his upcoming game Thimbleweed Park is particularly enlightening.
The spreadsheet Gilbert shows off outlines where all of the money is going, accounts for ramping up production times, and breaks down the amount of money it takes to produce even a small game with a relatively small team. Gilbert points out that even a project as small as his easily costs $20,000 – $30,000 a month just to keep moving forward, something worthy of consideration when discussing MMOs and the Kickstarted budgets thereof.