This Week in Kickstarter we've got Shenmue 3, projector software that makes mapping easy, and The Bard's Tale 4!
Apple TV meets Spotify for digital art
A system dedicated to the delivery and display of digital and video art. In short, it's meant to be an ever changing picture frame for your home or business, displaying beautiful HD art that moves and provides atmosphere to your space.
The easy to use app provides access to the large curation of art at your disposal through the DAD drive, a 500gb hard drive stocked with HD artwork. Simply connect the drive to your TV or projector through an HDMI port. The artwork is diffused without streaming in their original optimal quality.
This doesn't seem like something for an average consumer (especially at its massive price tag), but for a business trying to make a statement, this seems like a pretty cool thing to have in your lobby, displaying beautiful artwork or maybe small clips of things your company has accomplished. It would certainly look better than a lesser quality projector.
Have you heard the news?
Yes! The acclaimed series' long-awaited third installment is underway. Shenmue 3 is a modern sequel for the open world action RPG Shenmue and Shenmue 2. Shenmue 3 will feature familiar elements from the former games, along with brand new fight mechanics. The game (which at the time of this article going live will have already found tremendous success on Kickstarter) will be for PC and PS4. The objective is to draw in new fans to the series and reward the old fans with "deep story and rich gameplay."
Some (including myself) might have been confused at the sight of the Kickstarter logo on the Sony stage and wondered "why isn't Sony just funding this themselves?" The answer is that this project (as well as the new Igavania game) is really a radical new "proof of concept," but rather than for the game, it's to prove that people are willing to put their money where their mouths are. The publishers, seeing people are willing to support the game, pick it up from there. $2 million is a hilariously small amount to ask for a game of this size, the original costing $70 million to make. On the one hand, this provides a way for gamers to finally prove to publishers we actually will buy these types of games if they revitalize them. On the other hand, it provides a clean, risk-free way for publishers to make games while footing a partial sum of the bill onto gamers.
Really, there isn't much to say on Shenmue 3, we have a couple of pictures and some promises to go off. I haven't played Shenmue 1 or 2, so unfortunately I can't grasp how exciting an announcement like this really is, but I've seen the series routinely praised for its story and gameplay, and people regularly point to its inception system, the Dreamcast, as the cause of its downfall.
A tiny GPS tracker, accurate within a few meters, anywhere around the world
HidnSeek determined its location using GPS technology and broadcasts the data using SIGFOX network connectivity, which means its range extends as far as the SIGFOX network coverage. Though SIGFOX plans to cover several major cities in the UK, and other countries in Europe, only the San Francisco Bay area is currently covered.
Tracking something with HidnSeek is as simple as dropping the tag into whatever it is you mean to track. Simply throw it into your luggage (or your child's backpack if you're a paranoid upperclass suburban mom) and you're good to go!
I'll be honest, and maybe this is just the way this product was presented, but man does this have an eerie spy thing going on, what with watching your child or spying on your grandpa while he does a marathon. Ignoring that, the HidnSeek has some practical application with luggage and for the traveling person with valuables, that could be a real asset to feeling more secure with your belongings on trips.
From the creators of Wasteland 2 and Torment, the sequel to the Bard's Tale trilogy.
The Bards Tale IV is a single player, party based RPG from the same developer that made Wasteland 2, another game that found success on Kickstarter. In The Bard's Tale IV, dungeons will be filled with dangerous fights and challenging puzzles. A dynamic phase-based combat system keeps the pace of battles fluid, while still giving players time to think and respond to your enemies.
Being a Bard's Tale game, players can expect beautiful Gaelic music that affects gameplay. The game will be available in English, French, German, Russian, Spanish and Polish. In addition, should the game meet it's goal (which it already has) inXile, a video game developer, will put in an additional $1,250,000 to double the funds.
I admit I'm really not sure what to make of the developers "doubling" the funds of it's goal. On the one hand, I understand why they would want to continue using the crowd funding venues, as it allows fans to have a direct input and worked before. At the same time, if the goal was really just $1.25 million, and you had $1.25 million you were willing and able to spend ... But regardless of that, inXile has proven themselves a capable developer, and it put a smile on my face that they left no room to change their stance that they refuse to implement in-game purchases or cave into DLC revenue streams.
Projection mapping made easy
What is projection mapping? Projection mapping in layman's terms lets you project lights that "fit" around the various corners and shapes the light is projecting onto. If you've ever been to Disney World, this is how they pull off a lot of their effects. The HeavyM is designed to put that kind of cool effects work into the hands of creative people everywhere by making it as easy as tapping a couple buttons.
We saw in the video they were able to sketch up the projection mapping with some simple tools and dragging their corners, fitting things onto the wall with ease. HeavyM even has built in animations, so you don't need to be a graphic artist to pull off some cool light shows. The inclusion of Olga allows you to create interesting shapes to project onto, making for some sweet back drops to your warehouse rave.
HeavyM looks to be a pretty exciting tool for anyone who owns a projector. You'd certainly liven up a number of parties with this software, and making it easy to use for everyone is really what got my attention. Having included animations as well is a great touch, keeping the needed skill per entry low, and really letting the public have a chance to make something unique.
A real world, "bio activated" maze game.
Hyde is a maze game inspired by the tale of Jekyll and Hyde being built in London. The game is set in the near future where a pharmaceutical company plans on creating a drug that turns people into super humans. But before they can sell it, the drug needs human test subjects ...
You play as one of those subjects. Armed with wearable tech, you are assigned to navigate the maze of connected rooms, using your new powers of controlling your environment through your pulse rate, breathing, posture, etc. The creators plan to build Hyde in London and New York City if they hit their stretch goal. The attraction will open to the public in 2016 as a ticketed experience that lasts 45-60 minutes.
Hyde seems like tons of fun, definitely a big attraction around Halloween for sure. Unlike spooky houses though, getting a chance to really interact with the environment and "win" makes it all the more enticing. This really does seem like we live in the future, combining the old entertainment of the Halloween haunted house with a modern story, agency, and tech to make the experience really come alive in a way it couldn't before!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!