They still plan on making the luxury controller at some point but the when remains a question mark
Panda Global found themselves an immediate and massive success with their Panda Controller Kickstarter earlier this month when they rocketed past their initial $100,000 goal, but the project has been hit with some unfortunate and major setbacks.
The company announced today they are canceling the Kickstarter campaign and refunding nearly $2 million to backers who wanted to purchase the customizable GameCube-style controller though it doesn’t mean the product won’t ever release.
In a new blog post, Panda Global reveals their main manufacturing partner in China is being impacted by ongoing rolling blackouts, which is slowing down their production line more than it already was with the coronavirus pandemic and parts shortages.
With the apparent hurdles in their path Panda states they could no longer guarantee the original December 2022 ship date for the controller and don’t have a clear picture of when things will actually be up and running smoothly again.
“So, with the Panda Controller timeline not having a clear end date, we had to figure out what the best next steps are,” reads the announcement post. “After a lot of deliberation, we felt it wasn’t right of us to hold onto your funds for an unknown amount of time without being able to guarantee when delivery will be. We had to make an incredibly difficult decision that we hope is the right one for everyone. As of today, we’ll be canceling our Kickstarter early with all pledges fully refunded while we pursue outside investment to continue the project internally.”
An important and unfortunate update on the Panda Controller Kickstarter. But we’re still very excited for the future.
Read: https://t.co/KJJTeOIs9i pic.twitter.com/burv2FZ3Ru
— Panda (@PandaGlobal) December 27, 2021
Before it was closed, the crowdfunding campaign managed to raise $1.9 million from 14,713 backers, so that’s going to be a large chunk of change the growing eSports company is sending back out.
The Panda Controller was positioning itself to be the ultimate competitive GameCube controller for Super Smash Bros. players, touting an improved control stick, adjustable triggers, removable back buttons, adjustable face buttons and dozens of more options.
They had planned to release additional add-ons for the device too including a wireless battery pack, weight packs and a variety of different shell options for players to make the controller look and feel as they wish.
A base Panda Controller was set to be priced at $90 USD through Kickstarter backing.
While this is an unfortunate turn of events, at least Panda are being open with the hurdles in front of them and willing to refund everybody instead of sitting on the money for potentially years after its originally scheduled release.
Hopefully, they can score that outside funding to keep the controller project going since there definitely appears to be a sizable market of players looking for more out of their competitive controllers.
This setback hasn’t scared Panda off from crafting more hardware and accessories in the future, as the announcement ends with them stating they are still planning to expand their PGhardware team soon.
This article originally appeared on https://www.eventhubs.com/news/2021/dec/27/panda-controller-cancel-refund/