I like to describe the game as the Team Fortress of plane games; the theme is silly, but the combat is still quick and skill based.
First off, to clear any confusion: 350,000SEK is around $50,000
Voting up the game on greenlight makes a huge difference for the project!
I feel that its unfair to ask people for money without giving them a chance to try your product out first. Above is a multiplayer demo.
Unique and interesting weapons is one of Air Brawls biggest focuses.
The game lets the player pick two weapons, a primary and a secondary.
The primary weapon is often something reliable that can be used in most situations like a gatling gun or a shotgun. While the secondaries fill the role of being more specialized and hard hitting. Here are some examples of such weapons:
Ever played a game with a Batapult? It's a catapult that fires canisters of angry bats. The player fires a canister of bats forward in an arc, shattering on impact or on the player's command. Once shattered, the bats are released and seek out nearby targets to attack.
Everyone knows that anchors are the anti-aircraft weapons of the future. The player fires a harpoon on a chain that sticks to surfaces and planes. This can be used as a grappling hook, or as a "Get over here!" However, the other end of the chain is attached to a 10-ton anchor, which, when released from your plane, drags the unfortunate target down with it.
The Witch Doctor has the ability to leave clouds of toxic gas behind to get rid of pesky followers.
When equipped, this weapon totally changes the dynamic of dogfighting, rendering attacks from behind almost useless. It also makes for some interesting tactics, such as denying areas of the map, or making a safe getaway.
The second big focus of Air Brawl is enabling players to use the terrain to their advantage.
In most dogfighting games, the combat happens high up in the sky. Air Brawl brings the fight to the streets. The quick turn speed and responsive controls are what makes this possible. Flying low is often necessary for survival, as targets in the open don't often last long.
This is especially true for the flag bearer in Capture The Flag. When all eyes are on you, the best choice is to try to stay low and outmaneuver your pursuers.
All maps are designed with the idea of player interactivity in mind, with loads of tunnels, alleyways, and buildings to fly through. Above is a GIF showing me flying through the Witch Doctor's tower.
The themes and time-eras of the planes in Air Brawl are quite varied. There are futuristic planes, a steampunk plane and ancient warrior planes. Even a witch doctor has taken to the skies. They all have different strengths and weaknesses, making them excel in different roles.
The Fatbird* isn't the fastest or most agile plane out there but it does pack a fierce punch. The plane uses high-skill, high-damage weapons like a cog-powered gatling gun and a trusty sawed-off shotgun.
The Fatbird looks down upon silly things like lock-on weapons or magic, preferring a simpler solution: more bullets.
*The name is very much placeholder
The Sniper* uses its advanced technology to get the upper hand in the battlefield. With its small size and great aerodynamics, the Sniper easily outperforms all other planes in speed and agility. Not only is it easily maneuvered, it's also very flexible in the roles it can play. The Sniper can equip a lock-on turret for close-range combat, or a massive sniper rifle for picking off targets at a distance.
*The name is very much placeholder
Did somebody call for a doctor?
The Witch Doctor has perfected the use of its tribe's ancient rituals in aerial combat. With Toxic Gas and the Batapult, the witch doctor makes a fearsome enemy in the sky, able to control areas of the map at will. These two weapons make the Witch Doctor a valuable asset in tactical game modes such as Capture The Flag.
The Witch Doctor isn't only good at creating road blocks, however. The plane can also be equipped with Poison Arrows, great at taking out enemies at a distance, or the Soul Harvester, which steals the life of enemies, returning it to the witch doctor and repairing damage.
If you like big explosions and tough steel, then the Viking is definitely the plane for you!
The Viking terrorizes the skies much like its ancestors once terrorized the seas. The Viking's plane is completely combat-focused, and overpowers its foes with brute force and sheer firepower. The Viking can have several different play-styles, but they all fill the same role on the battlefield: destroying enemies. It is up to the player whether this is to be achieved with frost missiles, swarm missiles or strapping them to an anchor.
The game might look like it's far along in its development. The core gameplay has come a long way but there is still a huge amount of content that has to be added. There is only one map at the moment and I'm planning on adding 3 more. These maps take a huge amount of time to make because of how important they are for gameplay. I'm currently working mostly alone on the project, doing all programming and 3D modeling. The project would benefit greatly from me being able to hire another programmer or artist.
I have already been working on the game for half a year without pay. For me to be able to continue working on the game full time I need to acquire funding somehow. One way of doing it could have been to put the game up for early access, but this is something that can go very wrong for indie multiplayer games. Early access games easily get forgotten and having an active player base is crucial for a multiplayer game.
So, this is why I decided that kickstarter was the best way to go. The game gets funded while still having the benefit of a big release that brings in a large player base.
A part would go to me, but since I'm still living with my parents I don't have many expenses and would not need a very big share of the money.
The biggest part of the funding would go to making it possible for me to hire additional developers to work on the project. Making a multiplayer game takes a lot of work and me working mostly alone means that the game wont be completed in a long time without additional help.
There will most likely also be many unexpected costs along the way, equipment breaking, software that has to be purchased and so on.
Risks and challenges
The game has already come so far that I am confident that it will be completed. But like in every game ever made there will be bumps and obstacles along the way.
One obstacle I can see coming is combatting hacking. This is something that a lot of multiplayer games struggle with.
If it becomes apparent that we won't be able to combat hacking well enough ourselves, that part can outsourced with the help of the Kickstarter funding.
- (30 days)