Kickstarter Weekly vol. 25 Alison Fleming April 30, 2014 Features Hover: Revolt of Gamers – Funding Goal: $38,000 Midgar Studio Inspired by both Mirror’s Edge and Jet Set Radio, Hover is a first person, open world free running/parkour game. You are cast as a team of aliens trapped in another world that is ruled by a dictatorship. Said dictatorship has banned video games, which is an affront to your characters. This is either the pettiest dictatorship ever or the most morally myopic protagonists in recent memory. While the premise is incredibly silly, the gameplay itself looks really solid. Your characters have special suits designed to improve mobility and maneuverability, so you can jump to incredible heights and perform impossible series of tricks as you run across the brightly lit city. From gameplay videos already released, movement looks really smooth and the tricks and abilities available look exceptionally fun. The goal might be to inspire the population and dismantle the corrupt government, sure, but I could easily see myself getting lost in the free-roam mode for hours. Hover is already funded, having hit 184 percent of its initial goal! Funding continues until May 22nd. A pledge of $10 will get you access to the game. The game is currently planned to be released on PC, Mac, Linux, Xbox One and PS4, but Midgar will look into a WiiU version if the specific stretch goal is met. Hextraction – Funding Goal: $75,000CAD ComboMash Conceived during a game jam, Hextraction is being developed into a fully fledged RTS/RPG hybrid that hopes to break genre barriers. On the surface it’s a standard enough RTS that puts you in charge of a crew of space-faring mercenaries, has you guide them through hostile environments and build up base defenses for them. However, there’s something deeper lurking beneath the surface. It’s not just a mundane Strategy game where you command a faceless legion of grunts. From the start, you choose your corporation and captain, both of which can greatly change the abilities and upgrades you have access to and the way the game plays. Your crew is fully customizable too, and characters have their own skills, attributes and personalities. Beyond that, different regions have randomized stories and quests, and the world is procedurally generated so there is a lot of replayability and depth on offer. Hextraction is 9 percent of the way to being funded, and the project ends on May 22nd. Pledging $15CAD will get you a copy of the game. It’s set to be released on PC, Mac, Linux and the OUYA. Exogenesis – Funding Goal: $32,000 Kwan Exogenesis is a mash-up of adventure games and visual novels, inspired by the likes of Ace Attorney and Zero Escape. It aims to combine the point and click style puzzles of the former with the narrative focus of the latter. The game is set to be rather expansive, with 150,000 words and numerous puzzles meaning a playthrough clocks in at over 20 hours. Additionally, there are a lot of moral choices and ways the story can branch off, so multiple playthroughs should be rewarding. Exogenesis casts you as Yudai Sayashi, head of a group of “treasure hunters” – looters by any other name – called Durchhalten, several decades in the future after the world as we know it has collapsed. His sister has recently died on one of the group’s missions and the group has disbanded. Yudai learns of a vault named after Noah’s Ark, which contains something called the Lazarus Protocol. This protocol can recreate the Old World and, perhaps, bring back his sister. He therefore seeks to reunite Durchhalten and seek out the Ark. The project is 34 percent of the way to its goal, with funding continuing until May 23rd. Pledging $25 will get you a copy of the game. Exogenesis is being developed for PC, Mac and Linux, and a demo is available here for those interested in giving it a shot! Codemancer – Funding Goal: $12,000 Important Little Games Codemancer is an educational game that is primarily designed to introduce kids and teenagers to the basics of programming, though it is accessible for everyone. It uses inclusiveness is to remove the stigma associated with programming and help connect with as many people as possible. For example, the protagonist is female and the world is gender neutral. The game is played by manipulating runes that represent commands. Some are simple, like move forward or turn right, while others are more complex and certain things, like spellcasting, require multiple actions and streams of commands. These actions play out on a hexagonal grid, which means things like movement and angles for turning are easy enough to grasp. The game is designed to be forgiving to prevent frustration and encourage experimentation – you can freeze time to prevent failure and, if you do still fail, restarting is quick and simple. The project is 75 percent of the way to its goal, and funding will continue until May 28th. Pledging $20 will get you a copy. The game is planned for PC, Mac, iPad and Android tablets. The Universim – Funding Goal: $320,000 Crytivo Games A god game on a grand scale, The Universim sees you guide your planet and the people populating it as they grow and develop throughout the ages. Starting from the stone age and continuing well into the eras of space exploration and colonization, you can shape your civilizations as you wish. Taking a hands-off approach is possible – the AI will handle a lot of basic tasks and will live and thrive on their own, as the world changes dynamically around them – but your input still shapes the way technology and research advance. The game is designed to avoid easy choices, with the importance of each technology being reliant on a large number of factors. Planets are generated and controlled using an engine called Prometheus, which aims to simulate realistic physics and environments. Events can occur based on various situations, including things like seasons, which can challenge and even destroy your civilization. Seasons direct the flow of the game, with winter being harsh and requiring resources to be stockpiled in early eras. Your guidance, and even the tools you have given your humans to work with can mean the difference between life and death. However, the AI controlled humans are smart enough to survive most civilizations. Indeed, if left mostly to their own devices, the AI can thrive. Cities, for instance, are constructed by placing an Epicenter in any reasonably survivable region on the planet. From there, the AI will construct the buildings and the city will develop and expand on its own. How it develops is dependent on things like the food available and the surrounding terrain, but your civilization can still support themselves. You can create your own special buildings to direct the flow of the city and give it special attributes if you desire, but direct interference is hardly necessary. Exploring the galaxy is also an incredibly interesting prospect for a similar reason. Planets are generated with a number of factors that can make them more or less hospitable to life and colonization. As always, there are multiple ways to handle these situations and they all have their own consequences. An example given is that a planet could spawn with an oxygen deprived atmosphere. To combat this, your intrepid explorers could either bring machines to generate a survivable atmosphere, which is quick but extremely costly, or slowly terraform and introduce flora to the world to create oxygen which would be far less costly but take longer. All in all, it’s an incredibly ambitious idea, certainly, and one that could be fascinating if done right. All we can hope is that it doesn’t go the way of Spore by promising us the world but giving us a handful of mud. The Universim is 36 percent of the way to being funded, and continues until May 24th. A pledge of $15 will net you a copy of the game. It is being developed for PC, Mac and Linux, but Crytivo hopes to explore the idea of bringing it to next-gen consoles. Fall Schematic by Drawn By Clouds Funding for Fall Schematic was cancelled on April 20th, and Drawn By Clouds have given two reasons. As well as attracting external funding, the developers were worried about the state of the project, and thought the focus was getting too far away from the games and too into the miniatures. Backers will still get all their digital awards, for free, and the game is still being developed! Apexicon by Actos Games LLC Apexicon was successfully funded, reaching 113 percent of its initial goal, which means one stretch goal – Villain Sidequests – was reached. Hero Generations by Scott Brodie Hero Generations was funded, finishing at 144 percent of its goal. A number of stretch goals were met, including expanded tech trees and new world types. Hex Heroes by Prismatic Games LLC The project was successful, ending at 109 percent of its goal. Serpent in the Staglands by Whalenought Studios The project was funded, ending at 281 percent of its initial goal! This encompassed a number of stretch goals, including an expanded content and the ability to fully customize your entire party. The Weird Story of Waldemar the Warlock by Encomplot The project was not funded, finishing at around 50 percent of its goal. Encomplot are looking to continue developing the game, and eventually maybe open it up to preorders.