By Jeff Neuenschwander / February 13th, 2013
One of the purposes of the Crowdfunding Spotlight is to bring to light games and projects that don’t necessarily get the same press that other games would get. So, for your consideration, here are a couple of games we feel are deserving of more attention: Cryamore and Power Up. First, here’s author Kyle Emch to discuss Cryamore.
Cryamore is an action-adventure game (with RPG elements) that takes some influences from a good number of classic games, including The Legend of Zelda, Mega Man, and the Mana series. It’s essentially a love letter to games from the ’80s and ’90s. Here’s some info from the Kickstarter page:
Cryamore is about a spunky bookworm who goes by the name of Esmyrelda Maximus! Cryamore is a mineral discovered by her early settlers on Noka Island to replace the now-ancient steam-powered technology. It was later found out that they could be used as elemental catalysts to power a wide variety of things, even humans.
But this is causing an imbalance on the island, causing monsters to appear out of nowhere and sapping the town’s resources. Since Esmy (the nickname she prefers to be called) is passionate and a good candidate for Cryamore research, she’s commissioned by the Town Council Chief to search for alternate Cryamore resources, which spirals into a much more ominous dilemma.
At its core, the game is based around the use of various Cryamore elements. Each of the eight elements has a series of skills that can be used in combat or for solving puzzles to progress through the game. There are a total of 81 elemental skills you can unlock. The game also boasts incredible visuals, including character models and hand-drawn backgrounds, as well as an impressive soundtrack. You can listen to a sample of some of the songs for the game on Cryamore‘s Kickstarter page.
Cryamore has been very successful, having reached its goal of $60,000 USD in just a few days. It also knocked out most of the stretch goals for the game, including complete voice acting, additional areas to explore, new weapons to wield in battle, and even a Japanese translation. As of this writing, they’re about to hit their $150,000 stretch goal, which will allow them to port the game to Android, iOS, Linux, and the OUYA. They recently added two new stretch goals, which include an in-game arcade at $175,000 and major console support at $225,000. And by major console support, I mean the 360, PS3, and the Wii U.
Rewards currently start at $15, giving you a discounted reserve for the game (its actual price being $20). Other rewards include the 40+ song soundtrack ($30), a world map poster of the game ($40), a physical 2-disc version of the game’s soundtrack ($50), a physical version of the game ($70), a hardcover art book ($100), one of two available figurines of Esmy or Bliss ($115) or both ($250), the chance to design your own enemy in the game ($600), the chance to become an NPC wandering around in the game’s main town ($750) or an NPC shopkeeper ($1200), and the chance to design your own side quest ($1500).
Funding closes on February 26th at 1:38 AM EST. Check out the Kickstarter page to support the game. Cryamore is estimated for a March 2014 release.
If you’re one of those that believe that every single side-scrolling shooter is the same, then just skip past this part of the article. There’s no way that I’ll convince you in five to seven paragraphs that you should support this game. However, feel free to ogle at the pictures as you skim past it all.
Power Up is a labor of love (or, since he’s British, a labour of love) from Mike Hanson. He started working on this game more or less to teach himself simple game programming. A year later, what began as a simple hobby has turned into what looks like a well-crafted game.
So, the game looks good. It’s probably simple enough for him to finish on his own. So what is he raising money for on Kickstarter? Basically, he needs money to purchase the products he’s been using (“borrowed the software”; not sure if there’s a double meaning; make of it what you will) to finish the game.
While fiddling around on the borrowed software, he was saving money to purchase his own copies. Unfortunately, life got in the way and he needed to use the money elsewhere. So, instead of tossing his projects into the trash, he’s looking for help in purchasing 3D Studio Max, Adobe Photoshop (commercial version), Steinberg Cubase 7, and Adobe Audition.
And did I mention that he’s the only one doing this?
As for the game itself, you’re the last human alive. You decide to take your fighter into battle against the reptilian monsters in revenge for destroying humankind.
Outside of the story, he cites several games as influencing this game, which include (but are not limited to) Hellfire, R-Type, Defender, Battle Squadron, and Project-X. These were influential when creating the stars and nebulae for the background, as well as weapon selections and power-up systems. Ultimately, he promises the game will be nostalgic while still expanding on the side-scrolling shooter genre.
Mike Hanson is looking to raise £5,000 (roughly $7770.50 USD). Currently, he’s raised just over £1,800. But he still has 14 days left before the campaign is over. Rewards start at £2 with Power Up on the PC (note: this will be a few months after the hopeful release on Xbox Live). Other unlimited rewards including getting your name in the game (£5; £7 if you want the game on PC, as well), and the soundtrack (£12; £14 to include the PC game). Other reward tiers include concept art (starting at £35) and having your company advertise its logo in the game (starting at £75).
Funding will continue until February 28th, 7:00 AM EST. If you wish to support the project, click here. If funded, the game should be ready anytime between August and November of this year, depending on the version.
And these aren’t the only projects we’ve been following. Here’s what else we’ve been looking at, starting with a rather sad update.
Kickstarter Project. Status: Cancelled.
This is unfortunate. The game looked like it would have been good. Unfortunately, the fate of this project was pretty much sealed over the past couple of weeks with the lack of consistent funding. After weeks of trying anything to not just save the project but keep Gas Powered Games (GPG) afloat, Chris Taylor mercifully ended the campaign with just a few days left. He’s now working on trying to find ways to keep his studio open.
But the GPG CEO seemed rather optimistic in his last update for Wildman:
I’ve been working in the background to find other ways to keep Gas Powered Games running… And if all goes well, which I think it will, I’ll be able to give you all some great news in the weeks ahead. And if we do in fact make that happen, I want everyone on Kickstarter who’s pledged for Wildman to be the first in line to see what we’ve got going on.
Taylor also thanked the fans for their passion, support, and hard work towards spreading the word about Wildman. We’ll be sure to update you on what happens next for both Wildman and GPG.
Kickstarter Project. Status: Goal Reached
With less than a day to go before the crowdfunding campaign is over, Freedom Planet sits at $23,000 raised for the game. With this new influx of funds, they will reward their fans with a playthrough of the game by the voice actors in character—a very cool reward. But they weren’t done yet, as they announced one more stretch goal. Here’s what will happen if the game reaches $30,000 before tomorrow night:
We have been actively searching for pixel artists to help us improve the game’s look, and we don’t want to settle for anything but the best we can get our hands on – which of course means that we will need to hire professionals who can work their magic quickly and efficiently. If we reach $30,000, we will personally guarantee an improved art style for the game that retains the vibrant colors and unique style while making it look like something you’d see on a Nintendo handheld system.
So, if they get $30,000, they’ll improve the graphics. Also, they used an interesting choice of words by mentioning “Nintendo” and “handheld.” Could this mean that they’re thinking about a possible 3DS release? Well, maybe not, but I can dream about it.
And that’s it for this week’s Crowdfunding Spotlight. Special thanks to Kyle Emch for helping out with this. Be sure to check back next week, when we look at even more projects. Here’s a quick peek at what else we’re following.
Chris TaylorcrowdfundingCryamoreFreedom PlanetGas Powered GamesKickstarterMike HansonNostalgiCOPower UpWildman