This Week in Kickstarter, we at Techraptor thought we would look at some upcoming projects that have us excited. CT: Demon's Revenge - a side scrolling arcade rpg as well as animated adventure game based on H.P Lovecraft's "The Case of Charles Dexter Ward" as well as numerous others. This week is a special "games only" edition. We will have more tech for you next week.
Celestial Tears: Demon's Revenge is a new 16-bit role playing game inspired by classic games like Suikoden 2 as well as a host of old Capcom classics. It is designed by White Guardian Studios, a husband and wife team, Tyrell and Whitney White. [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jvnnvzudnEQ?feature=player_detailpage&w=640&h=360]
Celestial Tears: Demon's revenge has been in development for 4 years now and due to the developer's concerns about raising money for it, they have opted to make the game into chapters. They plan to release each new part in a bi-monthly portion of the game, with part 1 coming out some time in quarter 1 of next year. As of the time of writing this, the Kickstarter has only accrued $2,875 of it's $4,500 goal. There's still a dozen days to go, with the campaign ending on November 3, so it looks very likely that it will succeed. Don't forget to upvote it on Steam's Greenlight as well if you like what you see. It is currently only for PC but if is worth noting if it reaches it's stretch goal of $20,000, White Guardian plan to convert it to the Unity game engine. This means it will be available for PS3, PS4, WiiU, Android, iOS and windows 8.
Celestial Tear's story is set in a realm called Hasphal where humans rule the world. Another race, "Jehts" are persecuted by the humans and exiled by the Gods the humans worship called Gaddock. Time passes. Some new technology is surfacing and the Gaddocks are becoming forgotten. The stage is set for the Jeht's to try to claim some foothold within humanity. You play as Sen, a disconnected young woman who has horrific dreams and episodes, who is cast out of home by her parents after seemingly murdering her only brother and their only son.
The game revolves around several characters along with Sen. Gameplay for Celestial tears seems to focus on exploration within the world as well as multiple paths. You move around and discover lore the more you explore. Combat for Celestial Tears focuses on strategy and uses what they call a conditional turn based battle system. This means it doesn't operate in turns, instead uses an action list similar to Final Fantasy X. The game also boasts a dynamic day and night system which can effect gameplay as well as a crafting system.
This game I have to say is very intriguing. From what I've seen, it seems the best elements of classic rpgs like Valkyrie profile, The SaGa series as well as Suikoden. All the promo material for the game makes me squeal like I'm 8 years old again. It definitely feels nostalgic without only cashing in on that feeling. I'm going to give the demo a try (which you can try also here) after this article. Seeing as though the Beyond Human Kickstarter looks set to fail, I think I shall look into the possibility of backing this as it really looks like an intriguing proposition, especially with a female protagonist.
This next project, The Case of Charles Dexter Ward is one very close to my heart, due to it being an adventure game adaptation of my favourite story in the Cthulhu mythos. Senscape, the team behind Scratches and Serena are the studio bringing this marvel to life in interactive form to the PC. [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=utXQ7mobt-Q?feature=player_detailpage&w=640&h=360] The Case of Charles Dexter Ward is a faithful video game adaptation of Howard Phillip Lovecraft's classic novella written in 1927 of the same name. It's an animated point and click adventure game in the same vein of horror as Scratches, Asylum and I have no mouth and I must Scream. It is the first in what may become an entire series of officially sanctioned Lovecraft games. Currently the Kickstarter page has only managed to raise $72,255 of it's $250,000 goal required by the first of November so I'm unsure if they will make it.
The story is set in the dingy town of vintage Providence, where a powerful and evil necromancer is doing all sort of horrific experiments. Shrieking screaming and all sort of loud noises are heard as well as the mysterious endless supply of live cattle that seems to disappear into the farm and never return. It is the place of residence for Joseph Curwen.He is a truly vile creature who made a pact with forces beyond our comprehension and has been granted dark gifts for doing so. A raid is planned to mob his house and after which terrible events take place, Joseph Curwen is never heard from again. Enter young Charles Dexter Ward, a man obsessed with the occult and the way space and time fits together. You will join him as he uncovers what went on that one faithful night as well as what lead to it.
The gameplay as previously stated is a point and click adventure game. You will guide young Charles around as he reads and pieces puzzles and events together. The team has exhaustively researched aspect of the novella as well as the utilising the talents of a historian, S.T. Joshi in order to keep in line with historical accuracy. They even analysed where Charles wards story fits in relation to the rest of the Call of Cthulhu mythology as well as fully designing the game prior to actual development. They feel their game is described best as a long-lost horror classic game by LucasArts.
As a big fan of Lovecraft's stuff I would personally like to see this get developed. The Case of Charles Dexter Ward already fascinated me in how someone can become so corrupt in the pursuit of something so innocent as knowledge. It was my favourite novella next to Whisperer in the Darkness. Having read it again recently through the $4 anthology of Howard Phillip's complete works I have to say I am really stoked for this adaptation. If this game takes off I would love dearly to see an official series of Lovecraft games ranging from The Colour out of Space, Shadow over Innsmouth ranging all the way up to Whisperer in the Darkness and others. Raptor Connoisseurs, I beg you to go fund this game before it's already too late!
This next project, Battlestation: Humanity's Last Hope was suggested to me by another member of the TR team. It seems to be creating a bit of buzz around it in the realm of mobile and PC platforms with it's prequel taste of gameplay, First Contact . It's being developed by a Finland-based studio named Bugbyte. While First Contact has been developed for Android and iPhone only, The PC title Humanity's Last Hope will be available for both PC and Mac OSX [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wvMfFsOq1S8?feature=player_detailpage&w=640&h=360]
Battlestation: Humanity's Last Hope is a new space simulation rogue-like strategy. It has inspired by well known science fiction series like Babylon 5 and Aliens as well as indie games in a similar veins like FTL: Faster than light. It boasts a rich, deep story with every new game being a new story according to Bugbyte's Kickstarter page. Bugbyte have only managed to fund $8,686 of their goal. They need $40,000 by November 8, so I urge readers to go and fund this rather unique strategy-based game. Alternatively if you can't afford to back this title, you can always take a minute to help upvote it on the Battlestation Greenlight page.
The game is set in a universe with four known species and an unknown darkness threatening to wipe out humanity. You are then called on to defend humanity with it's best weapon, the Battlestation. This offensive space-station is capable of defending against relentless attacks, concuting missions to explore derelict ships, discover new technology as well as mining and answering distress calls.
Gameplay allows you to create your own Commander. This is who you play as. There are four different types of skills that affect the game in different ways. Warfrware increases the Commander's ability to command military assets while Engineering ascertains your skill in constructing and repairing your Battlestation. Research will help develop new technology and Diplomacy governs how well you can haggle, beg or threaten the npc's within the game.
You build the Battlestation with hangars, labs, generators, sensors, shield generators and security stations. You can use your biological scanner to detect the movement of your troops as well as enemy infiltrators. You'll command your troops within the Battlestation or while infiltrating enemy ships. You are also able to customize your ships within the hangar, essentially building it from the ground up as well as hiring crew to help run your Battlestation. You're not alone in your fight it seems. Your crew will help you research new tech, negotiate with other races as well as a plethora of various other different tasks.
I'll be honest. From my initial outlook I wasn't excited. It's clearly not my type of game however it seems to blur the lines between space opera, space sim and strategy and for me that is an ambitious move. While I may not be a fan of the strategy genre, I do however respect games that try new things, bending the envelope and trying to pioneer new ideas. I do like science fiction and I may long term give this a try if it turns up in any bundles for cheap. I won't go out of my way to get a copy though, I will say though it looks very true to the genre, very in-depth and right up the alley of anyone who is into these sorts of things. It's a solid looking game and I definitely think it needs community support. It is very likely to get fully funded and looks like it should do well.
Thea: The Awakening is a turn-based fantasy survival game that puts you in the role of a Slavic fantasy setting shepherding the human survivors of a terrible cataclysm to try and rebuild their society. MuHa Games is a small UK based studio and the game takes cues from Civ, Don't Starve, and the Slavic fantasy atmosphere of the Witcher. [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w39O_gCHfXI?feature=player_detailpage&w=640&h=360] Choose a Slavic god as your patron and manage a village of survivors where balancing how many you send out to gather resources can affect how many you have available to defend the village from monsters. The game splits into two sections: The Day Turn is where you send out scouts to explore a randomly generated map where they can find resources, fight monsters for those resources, or have non-combat encounters with branching dialogue trees.
In addition to being necessary to survive, resources can be crafted into other items. The Night Turn exposes the village to numerous threats and horrors, making it a bad idea to send out everyone on scouting missions during the day and leaving the vilage unattended at night. The tactical card game minigame has not been shown yet and the details are limited about it. MuHa studios have currently only manage to fund $895 out of the required $10,000 they're asking for. It's not a large amount but at the same time, they only have until the 16th of November. They are in dire need of help it seems. Dig deep and show them some love if you like turn based strategy games.
This looks promising. The random map generation and dialogue options look like they'll lend a lot of re-playability to the game. The risk/reward element of sending out people to search for supplies but leaving the village less able to defend itself could be great for tension, and the Slavic mythology element is a refreshing take on the fantasy genre that will probably show up in more games as the Witcher franchise grows in popularity.
DICETINY by Fakedice is a 1-4 player co-op board game. Well, structurally, its a board game. Dice are rolled, pieces are moved and then random events happen (monsters, traps, find treasure). Lap the board and you level up, but so do the monsters. Accomplish the goals of the map and the boss appears. Everybody teams up to fight the boss and the player who gets the final hit on the boss reaps the biggest rewards. [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3_8FZQpr-mE?feature=player_detailpage&w=640&h=360]
Cards are collected during play and at the end of games that can be used to create effects and abilities in combat. There are four races (Human, Elf, Dwarf, and Gnome) and four classes (Warrior, Mage, Cleric and Rogue).
DICETINY so far has collected more than half of their required goal of $30,000. Considering they already have $19,014 and have til the 8th of November to gain the other $11,000, this is looking like yet another successful kickstarted video game project.
Conceptually, this isn't the first time something like board games or customizable card games have been translated to video games, but the art style is incredibly charming and hopefully the humor can match up to it. The leveling mechanics for both players and monsters look like the game will be fast paced. There's a lot of humor in the trailer, but much of it is the referential parody kind, so your mileage may vary.
Take first person horror. Now set it in ancient Greece. Now set it in the Labyrinth where you are hunted by mythological monsters. And all you have is a torch and a bow and arrow. On the Oculus Rift. That is the goal Guiding Rules Games AB's Medusa's Labyrinth has. [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7kbtkLEW0wk?feature=player_detailpage&w=640&h=360]
The footage shown for the game is early pre-alpha, but shows off claustrophobic corridors, torches being lit and thrown, the bow and arrow, and glimpses of monsters. The developers have also stated that while there are weapons (the bow), there are no plans for melee weapons in the game. Stealth and running are the two major ways to escape from danger.
Currently the amount the Swedish-based Guru Games has raised is only 35,135 SEK. This is a pittance compared to the 500,000 SEK required by the campaign, however they still have until November 22 to raise the money, so only time will tell if this one succeeds.
The most interesting feature of the game, besides built-in VR support, is what they call a “manifested inventory.” They use the example of arrow inventory. Instead of opening a chart to see how many arrows are left, you have to look at the quiver itself and take stock. For a game about tension and horror, this could be nerve-wracking or brilliant, or both.
That's it for This Week In Kickstarter. We at Techraptor apologise about the lack of technology related projects. We will remedy that post in next week's article. As always, thank you for taking the time to read our Kickstarter recommendations.