A stylish video game that mixes old school gameplay with online features to utilize player-generated content in an unique way.
A World of Danger and Mystery
Enter the world of Wicked Crush, where a centuries-spanning war between humans and beastmen dictates life. But in the isolated beastmen town of Rosachelia, where you (as either a dude or a chick) fall from the sky, it's the almighty dollar that reigns.
The town's entire economy revolves around profiting from the lives of adventurers foolish enough to enter Dynidar, the seemingly endless, constantly changing dungeon that borders the town. The townspeople provide the sales of items, services in forging equipment and even renovate the dungeon to make it deadlier. Despite this seemingly grim lifestyle, the townsfolk are actually quite friendly. Sharing a common interest in getting that paper, you are quickly welcomed among the Rosachelian people. It is then that you decide to be the first to reach the bottom depths of Dynidar and discover the endless riches and dark secrets that await.
About the Game
Wicked Crush is a PC game designed around the concept of an online game where you play alone, but everything you do has a direct effect on other players.
Taking inspiration from classic action games like Castlevania and Mega Man, along with modern games like Demon's Souls, Little Big Planet, Persona 4 and Ys, the game promises to meld the responsive controls and compact movesets of old with unique online functionality, player-generated content, and beautiful, high definition, frame-by-frame 2D animation.
The player's ultimate goal is to reach the deepest levels of Dynidar, each floor is actually made by another player pulled from an online server. If you complete the floor without dying, you will find gold or valuables at the end, and the creator of the floor will receive a small amount of gold. However, if you die, the floor's creator earns a much larger sum. What this ultimately means is that players are rewarded for making crafty levels that rake in the deaths (Check the FAQ for more balance detail).
This use of player-generated content creates the unique challenge to giving the game a fair learning curve, slowly increasing difficulty while adding mechanics, and ensuring that the aesthetics remain cohesive. This is being achieved by grouping floors together into “tiers”, each of which has a specific amount and types of enemies and traps that may be employed, combined with a constantly updating ratio of successful and failed runs to determine how easy or difficult a floor is, where in Dynidar it should be placed, and how big the payout for completing it should be.
Between dungeon runs, the player will return to the town of Rosachelia. In town, players can rest, talk to the townsfolk, purchase items (such as potions, temporary strength supplements, and signs to leave behind for other players), upgrade their equipment, and build floors for Dynidar.
The current dungeon editor is very fast and powerful, but is not yet easy enough to use to my satisfaction. I am currently working on a new editor that can be controlled with either keyboard+mouse or a gamepad, and will be as intuitive and easy to use as Kid Pix, by procedurally generating the level's aesthetics to the player's design.
Those who would prefer to not interact with others need not worry. There will be at least 100 floors included with the final game to ensure a full game experience with or without an internet connection.
Music and Sound
Because Wicked Crush has such a varied structure, the game aims to have a varied soundtrack to match. The game's music is being composed by different musicians with different backgrounds, to suit the different modes of play, whether it's building, fighting or decompressing. We hope for the game to have a soundtrack that's unique in style from other games.
Sound effects are also incredibly important to providing a rich experience, so we're taking sound design very seriously, and making sure that what you hear brings you deeper into the game world. We intend to mostly use sounds from Freesound.
Back of the Box Bullshit
Beautiful art that won't melt your eyes.
Music that doesn't make your ears bleed.
Gameplay mechanics inspired by punishing-but-fair platformers of the 90s.
Unique online functionality to ensure there's always another challenge to conquer.
Play as a dude or a chick!
A fully-functional dungeon editor that rewards players for using it.
An eyes-wettingly moving story with pants-wettingly humorous jokes.
Billy Monks (Me) – I am the game's Designer and Programmer. I love making games and want to make games until I die.
Ryan Miller – Ryan, known online as rtil, is a multifaceted digital artist, animator, videographer and designer with a BFA in Production Animation from Digipen and over 5 years of industry experience, including work on the multiplatform title Skullgirls. He is working on all aspects of the game's Art and Animation. Rumored to carry a manpurse. (?)
Kevin Studevant – Known online as SHADOWFOX2, Kevin specializes in upbeat electronic and hip-hop music. His music has been featured in many games and animations. (All of the lovely music in the trailer has been graciously prepared by Kevin)
TJ Turqman – An incredible bassist and Jazz musician who can be found working on the popular U Street in D.C.. TJ is providing high quality recordings for the game, featuring some of the other local artists he works with.
StrawberryCreme26 – Known for mixing and producing the Hiimdaisy Persona 4 comic dubs, she is providing the game's voice direction, as well as sound mixing.
GeneralIvan – A popular and talented voice actor, Ivan is best known on Youtube and Tumblr. As well as with lending his vocal talents, he is working on filling out the game's dialog and lore.
What's the Kickstarter For?
The money we (fingers crossed) receive from this Kickstarter will let us work full-time on all aspects of the game, particularly on the art assets, music and programming, as well as pay for server fees to keep the online functionality running.
Any extra funding will give us extra time and resources, which will go directly toward the game, allowing us to provide a fuller experience with local co-op, more environments, more enemies, more traps, more character customization, and more items.
Shortly after the game is finished, I plan to work on Mac and Linux conversions, provided people are interested. Adding other languages to the game is also a possibility, but getting the game done in English is the team's priority for now.
I will run a blog for the game, and make sure it's updated at least once a week so that backers can see how the game is progressing and provide feedback, as well as get an inside look at the development team's gradual slip into insanity. I will also be very accessible through my twitter.
Finally, in order to test the server and network, we will put out a beta test some time in 2012. This test will be exclusive to backers, and any well-designed levels made in the beta will be likely to make it into the full game as an offline level (with your name attached, of course).
5% of the game's profits will go toward supporting other promising Kickstarter projects, as part of the Kicking It Forward movement. http://kickingitforward.org
We are incredibly psyched to make the game, but we really need your help to make our dream a reality. Thank you for your support.
Note: Screens and videos contain placeholder assets. Level texture placeholders and explosions by ZekeySpaceyLizard, enemy placeholders by lenkobiscuit, bird placeholders by Fearn Sobers. If this is funded, all art will be done by Ryan Miller.
No. The different areas of Dynidar will have different aesthetics and levels of light. As well, players will be able to purchase items to help illuminate the darker zones.
Due to the small size of the team, we are taking a gameplay-first approach to the game, the enemy graphics and backgrounds currently in place are placeholders. Detailed animations and textures are being worked on by Ryan. The finished sprites should pop against the background much clearer, like the player character's sprites do.
Many safeguards are necessary to maintain the playability of the game while being made of user-generated content.
In order to have an area uploaded to the servers, the player that creates it must first complete the area without taking a single hit. This should not be a very difficult accomplishment, because the creator knows the position of each danger, and thus how to respond properly.
Fundamentally, the gameplay is designed to empower the player. The controls are tight and instantaneous (You can turn around on a dime, completely change the direction you're moving at any time, even while jumping), and enemies follow the same rules as the player, being just as vulnerable to traps and the attacks of other enemies. Each trap and enemy is simple to overcome by itself (skilled players can even swat down fireballs with their sword), and difficult level design comes through clever combinations.
As well, I am working on an algorithm to detect areas where players can get permanently stuck (Such as a big pit with nothing at the bottom). On top of that, I'm working on implementing a feature to let the community blacklist areas that are deemed unfair (such as if it contains an unavoidable element of luck, like if there were two pits that were too deep to see the bottom, one of which lead to the exit and the other leading to certain death).
Branching paths are being considered so that players can choose whether or not to venture into an area that's been proven to be difficult. The success/failure ratio of each area will determine the amount of treasure that is found at the end, giving an incentive to push yourself, but no real punishment for taking an easier route.
The ideal level is one that is difficult, but manageable with the proper strategy. Levels where players give up and return to town are less likely to get chosen by the server than levels where players die a few times but ultimately finish.
We probably hadn't considered that, you should let us know! Write a comment or send a message. We aim to please.
That's the plan. We can't make any guarantees that it will end up on the service, but it seems very likely.
DRM-free copies of the game will be available to backers as well. We'll hook you up.
Yes, but we cannot make guarantees on the extent yet. You will be able to change your hair, skin and equipment colors. New hairstyles and facial features would obviously be very nice, but due to the frame by frame animation, any character changes would have to be drawn into every animation frame. However, we know it's an important feature to you, and it's an important feature to us as well. We will do our very best to offer as much customization as possible.
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