While my own Kickstarter campaign, The Illuminant Midnight Project, didn’t reach its funding goal, the first big crowdfunding story of 2015, Playtonic’s Yooka-Laylee, zoomed past its initial funding goal of £1,000,000 in less than 24 hours, and met its “final” stretch goal a few days later, pushing Playtonic to add further stretch goals. The campaign still has a little less than a month left to run, so there is little doubt it will reach the £2,000,000 goal of free DLC for everybody. The campaign’s success has been built on months of anticipation, coupled with a sweet price point for backers. I pledged £15 to get the game on Wii U, which is insanely good value for the money.
Of course, the former Rare employees have two decades worth of nostalgia to help them succeed, whereas other developers must rely on more modest means to help them complete their gaming projects, bringing us to this week’s Kickstart This! We start with the curious augmented reality game CCTV Nation, before plunging into the depths of hell with top-down shooterOverdosed. Finally, there is stunning sci-fi racer Power Drive 2000.
Where we’re going, we don’t need roads…
Project: CCTV Nation
Genre: Augmented Reality MMO
Platforms: Android / iOS
Funding Target: $20,000
What Is It?
CCTV Nation is an augmented reality version of Watch Dogs with a healthy dose of hit TV show Person of Interest. Players choose to join one of two factions – the pro-surveillance Security Guardians or the Privacy Resistance activists – taking to the streets to liberate CCTV resources and mobile network hubs.
Why Fund It?
When Niantic Labs released Ingress back in 2013, I was intrigued by the idea of augmented reality. Ingress managed to rack up seven million players at its peak, but the alien storyline never really resonated. Open Realities has taken a different approach by tapping into the fears of a generation and a growing point of contention between our civilisation and the officials that oversee them. The company’s Kickstarter video is a magnificent sales pitch, using real news footage and political rhetoric to spin the game’s story. The gameplay looks to be intuitive and simple, and as well as capturing resources, players will also have to solve puzzles to hack systems and decrypt data. As it is an MMO, players can interact, meet up, and launch strikes against rivals. The game also seeks to tap into real time events, granting extra points for securing surveillance assets in popular hotspots trending on Facebook or Twitter.
- Early alpha access (limited to 500) – $10
- Alpha access for you and a friend, plus field agent manual, founding avatar badge, and exclusive voting (limited to 250) – $25
- Three early access invites, plus extended in-game scanner range, and your name in the credits – $50
- Previous rewards, plus 10 early access invites and an exclusive t-shirt with your chosen faction’s emblem – $100
- A Blackphone II with the game pre-installed, plus create a puzzle for the game. Players also have unlimited early access invites, in addition to early testing of the desktop gameplay – $1,000
Project: Overdosed: A Trip to Hell
Genre: Top-Down Horror Shooter
Funding Target: €3,000
What Is It?
Overdosed: A Trip to Hell is a cranked up, top-down action shooter where the player has taken an experimental form of LSD and must battle their way through the horrific hallucinations. The first two areas are an industrial zone and a haunted house, with the developers taking votes for the themes of future levels.
Why Fund It?
If you like face-paced shooters and racking up points, this is definitely for you. Lazy Games Studios has already built an impressive demo of the game, with ultra-fast gameplay pumping out at a super-smooth frame rate, which you should totally try. The company is looking for a relatively small amount of funds to help push it through testing and into the big bad world. The campaign also has some achievable stretch goals, such as voice acting (£5000) and a 4th theme (£7000).
- Digital copy of the game plus a doodle on the floor (early bird limited to 100) – £5 (£7 otherwise)
- Digital copy of the game, a doodle on the floor, plus a vote on the third theme – £10
- Previous rewards, plus exclusive leaderboard nameplate and super-backer credit – £20
- Previous rewards plus Overdosed t-shirt (limited to 10) – £60
- Previous rewards, plus a physical copy of the game on a pill-shaped USB drive (limited to 10) – £80
Project: Power Drive 2000
Genre: Sci-Fi Racer
Platforms: PC (Win, Mac, Linux)
Funding Target: $45,000 CAD
What Is It?
Power Drive 2000 is an 80s-inspired sci-fi racer that looks like the love child of Blur and Far Cry: Blood Dragon, with the conception being filmed by the director of Tron and scored by Daft Punk, while David Hasselhoff sits in the corner smoking a cigar. It looks that good.
Why Fund It?
This just looks like so much fun, and if there was a console version I would be putting my own money towards it. Whereas many recent AAA racing games focus on photo-realistic graphics and handling, Power Drive 2000 takes it in the other direction. Between the funky electronica music to the trippy levels and long brake light trails, this game oozes style. This game nails every detail, from the LCD HUD to the Knight Rider-inspired talking car.
- Digital copy of the game with DRM – $12 CAD
- DRM-free copy of the game plus backer credit – $18 CAD
- Previous rewards, plus beta access – $24 CAD
- Previous rewards, plus digital copy of the soundtrack – $37
- Previous rewards, plus exclusive poster and t-shirt – $86 CAD
- Previous rewards, plus personalised in-game car decal (limited to 5) – $365 CAD
- Previous rewards, plus personalised in-game animated billboard (limited to 5) – $730 CAD
Until Next Time…
Hopefully, with your help, we will see all three of these Kickstarter campaigns racing over the finish line before the time runs out on each.
One final note… last week’s Kickstart This! highlighted Dimension Drive, a space shooter from 2Awesome Studio. Unfortunately, the developer received a fake contribution and what was expected to be a fully-funded campaign turned into a crushing defeat. But they’re back with a new Kickstarter campaign and I think it’s just as worthy for your Kickstarter coin now as it was before.