We've got a good week for viewers today! A modular game controller for any size gamer, the sexiest dice you'll ever see, and a Swiss Knife for your digital needs. All that and more you'll find This Week In Kickstarter!
Edge of Eternity
@MidgarStudioAn indie tribute to J-RPG classics, designed by a team of just four.
Edge of Eternity is inspired by the J-RPG classics while mixing in real-time and turn-based gameplay in an active time based battle system. In addition, Edge of Eternity features a unique weapon progression system involving item leveling and skill trees. On the planet Heryon, players can explore an open world (on a giant kitty-cat!!!) of hidden caverns, grassy plains, ancient cities, and dark spaceships. The non-linear story is driven by your choices along a branching storyline with sub-quests.
Edge of Eternity releases on PC/Mac/Linux/Xbox One/PS4. The 4 man team plans to release the game in 2016. The game also has a demo available if you want to get a better idea of what you're possibly funding.
Edge of Eternity looks interesting, and I'd love to see where the team takes this vision. However, their seems to be no distinction between "classic" and "standard" in this game's description, and I'm having trouble deciphering which "classics" the team is referring to outside of the Final Fantasy style visuals. I'm a sucker for this type of game though, and even if Edge of Eternity doesn't look to be anything ground breaking, a good game done well is a good game regardless of how original it is.
Edge of Eternity broke through its original $44,000 goal, ascending to over $70,000 at the time of writing. Donations close March 22, 2015.
A controller made for customization, comfort, and choice. This gamepad isn't one-size-fits-all, its all-sizes-to-fit-you.
The Grifta is a modular gaming controller that gives the player choice, without sacrificing functionality or quality. Designed in response to the somewhat restrictive "one for all sizes" approach to gamepad design, The Grifta allows for different set ups and changes to accommodate you.
These changes can be as simple as morphing the handles to better suit your hands, or even ditching one side of the controller to use a mouse instead. The Grifta also comes with mechanical buttons and replaces the standard shoulder buttons with capacitive switch triggers. You can play with it as one controller, split it in two, or as mentioned above, use one side with a mouse.
The Grifta seems like a pretty solid buy for those who play enough PC games to warrant buying a modular controller like this. The Grifta + mouse set up seems like the optimal set up for an FPS. Personally, I'm not a fan of replacing the L1R1/LBRB buttons with triggers, but the shoulder buttons being replaced with triggers could be a definite plus, especially for shooters, which this controller seems to be primarily designed for. In fact, I'm wondering if I would really use this for any game other than shooters. I don't really see a benefit with this set up for something like, say, To The Moon, The Walking Dead, Gone Home, etc. So this seems primarily beneficial to people who play games in first person, or action games (primarily shooting).
The Grifta nears its £65,000 goal, having earned £40,441 at the time of writing. With the closing date of April 2, 2015, drawing near, this one may come down to the wire.
Just a really nice set of dice. Like really nice.
Coming off the heels of two other successful Kickstarters, Kacha once again took to crowd funding for a set of fancy, minimal, and sleek looking dice. The AKO DICE are six-sided die with a twist on the standard dots to represent the numbers, opting instead for engraved lines.
Unlike many Kickstarter projects, Kacha has earned your trust; having two Kickstarters in the past and delivering means that you needn't worry this person can get the job done. The dice took me a moment to understand, but once you wrap your head around it, its not in the least bit confusing and can make reading dice its own fun. The price is pretty significant for two die, even one's as cool as these. But if you play a lot of tabletop, these may be worth it for showing off at the next meet up with your pals.
For being six sided die, these somehow rolled a natural 20, because AKO DICE aimed for $5,000 and raised $81,082 at the time of writing! Over 1,600%! Funding will close March 3, 2015.
A smart projector you control with your phone or tablet, used for displaying information for your everyday activities.
Beam makes use of any flat surface in your home turning into a display. Instead of running in through a plug-in outlet, Beam works by screwing the device into an electric socket. The devices functionality really shines when pairing it with the If This Then That app, where you can set apps to perform actions under specified conditions (Ex: If it's 7:00am on a Monday, then display the weather forecast.
The main purpose of the device is to give you a display any time you turn on the lights, as the power source for Beam is directly tied to your lights on/off switch. The Kickstarter page mentions you can use it to watch Netflix, but as I'll explain below, that probably wouldn't be a good idea. However displaying your phone could prove interesting for certain actions such as if you wanted to display information on your phone to an entire room.
I think this is an interesting idea. I also think this is kind of a pointless idea with no real consumer in mind. Powering the display through the light socket is a novel idea, but that means all the other lights in the room must be on, which ultimately means, as is painfully obvious in every screenshot and video, you're going to have one hell of a light washed image.
Incoming rant: Another baffling aspect is using the Beam to display photos on your phone or tablet, when it would be faster, easier, and more cost efficient to just show them the photo on your phone or tablet. Yeah photos on the wall are nice, but think of all the times you've ever shown someone a photo. In general, if it was on your phone you sent it to them when you took it. When in their presence, do you really want to go through the process of connecting your phone to this thing, awkwardly waiting with your friend saying "just wait you'll see" to display that half blurred image of you annoying a London guard?
Cooking in the kitchen with the image is neat, but why do I need this when my tablet or laptop is equally viable, easier to use, and doesn't need to be unscrewed before I take it into the next room? And perhaps the biggest hurdle for this device is utility. Again, I like this outside the box thinking with using light sockets instead of electric outlets, but using such means instead just plugging and unplugging means you have to go through the much more involved process of unscrewing the thing, which is made all the more complicated if you put it on the ceiling light socket.
Never the less, there is obviously a market for this sort of thing, as Beam raised well over its $200,000 goal with $322, 085 at the time of writing. Maybe Beam just isn't for me, or of course, there's the real possibility I just don't "get it." I'm human after all. Funding ends March 24, 2015, so there is still plenty of time to earn even more!
The functionality of several devices in one, KiiTAG 2 looks to be your digital Swiss Knife, covering all your modern day needs.
KiiTAG 2 covers a variety of functions for the modern man/woman/dinosaur on the go. Phone manufactures these days are far more concerned with pixel density and screen size than battery, and you'll be lucky to get 20 hours out of most modern phones. KiiTAG 2 functions as a portable battery to re-juice your phone with a micro USB and Lightning cable. KiiTAG 2 also functions as a portable memory stick, where you can stick photos, movies, and music on. A built in flashlight also means keeping your phone in your pocket when all you need is a quick light, rather than fumble for the battery app or shortcut. Just click, and it's on.
With four separate button prompts (two buttons which you can press once or twice) you can set up what each one does: take photo, play sound, make a fake phone call, etc. Maybe my favorite function of the device is the key/phone finder. We've seen this functionality before in other devices, where pressing a button makes your phone sound off, but here we see it goes both ways - if you lose the KiiTAG 2, your phone will locate it through an app. The KiiTAG 2 is meant to hang from your keys, so as long as you have either your phone or your keys, you'll never lose the other one.
Many Kickstarters try to solve problems that don't really exist and are more for convenience's sake. The KiiTAG 2 is not one of those things. It has several very tangible, easy to understand functions that I can actually see myself using several times, rather than once just to try it out and never actually needing it. That alone makes it interesting and having it attached to my keys means I don't have to think about it when I'm leaving somewhere, I'll just have it. That's what I call handy!
The KiiTAG 2 has already well funded itself, earning $77,277 when only needing $20,000. With funding remaining open till March 21, 2015, we can expect a successful future for this device.
A cloud connected personal assistant.
Listnr is a small, low profile device that listens to what sounds you make and lets you control your environment around you. The device connects to the cloud and can trigger different, internet connected functions through things like snapping your fingers, stamping your foot, or clapping your hands.
Listnr can also be your personal assistant if you have a toddler at home. Listnr can distinguish between crying, laughing, screaming, and, um, "bubble"? You'll then receive alerts on your phone incase your little one needs attending to. Another nice feature, though small, are the different colors Listnr can display just to add a little color to your room. Of course the Listnr is completely hackable and ready to be used by the brilliant and inventive Kickstarter funders.
Listnr seems like a cool idea, but I feel some concern for how useful it actually is. For one, you need to actually own the products necessary for things like your lights to connect to the internet in the first place. Noting that, lights and baby sounds were the only examples shown, and with only a handful of other examples I could think of (play music, security, voice search) it seems the potential prospects fall on us to invent. But Listnr seems designed for simple yes/no or on/off functions, not more complex tasks that assistants are generally needed for.
Listenr sits at $30,399 of its $50,000 goal at the time of writing, and the device still has till March 7, 2015 to fund itself.
Disclaimer: The author (Bryan Heraghty) does not back any Kickstarter projects he writes about, nor are any of these inclusions sponsoring TechRaptor. These projects are included solely because the author thinks they are interesting.
What are your thoughts on some of the Kickstarters we saw this week? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below! If you have a game or technology Kickstarter you think deserves attention, you can either comment below, email TechRaptor, or tweet @techraptr or @greyhoodedbryan your suggestion!