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$6,950 pledged of $31,700 goal
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By Joel Jonientz
$6,950 pledged of $31,700 goal
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About this project

Rhythm Planet is a game that has been in development by students at the University of North Dakota since 2010. It is a 2d platformer with a look and design that was based on the classic Looney Tunes animation of the 1950s. Our goal through this Kickstarter campaign is to complete game development and make Rhythm Planet available to a wide audience.

Game Play

Game Development

Sound Design

Sound was an important element in the game from the beginning. All of the music in our promotional videos is from the game. We felt that by incorporating music into the game's concept we could create a unique playing experience. The three sound files below demonstrate our basic template for integrating the soundtrack into the gameplay.

The first track utilizes two distinct tones, which signal power up opportunities to the player. The first is the boost tone. It allows players to propel themselves into the air and to arrest falls from great heights. The second is the wave push tone. When activated, this power will allow the player to move large objects and destroy barriers.

The second track is the panic track. When a player begins their mining run this track is activated and will play until the player reaches the entry point or the mineral sample expires. 

The final track is a combination of the two. It is what the player will hear while on the mining run for this level.

Level Design

Each level was designed to incorporate the music and powers into its solution. Here are two early maps for an unrealized level.

This map indicates the layout of obstacles, the entry, and mining points
This map indicates the layout of obstacles, the entry, and mining points
This map indicates the approach solution
This map indicates the approach solution

These maps aided the artists and were used as a template for level design.

This is the original level map
This is the original level map
This is the finished level
This is the finished level

Visual Design

The look of the game is inspired by two things, classic science fiction illustrations and the animated background painting style of the 1940s and 50s.

Not quite Karl, but totally awesome
Not quite Karl, but totally awesome
Retro born and bred
Retro born and bred
They seemed to know what the moon looked like before we had even been there
They seemed to know what the moon looked like before we had even been there
Road Runner Cartoons hugely influenced the look of the game
Road Runner Cartoons hugely influenced the look of the game
Looks like space.
Looks like space.
100% road runner influenced
100% road runner influenced

Question and Answer

Question: It has been three years.  Why haven't you finished the game?

Answer: Students graduate. With an alarming frequency the students who have worked on the game stop being students and start being productive members of society.

Question: Why don't you find new students? There must be hundreds of undergraduates who would like to work on a video game.

Answer: We are continuously looking for students who would like to develop games. The catch-22 in this is that they want to develop their own games. Very few are interested in working on a project that was first developed while they were still in high school.

So, we are asking you to help us. We would like to hire a few select students who have worked on the game in the past and pay them to finish the developing the game.

Question: Alright, we get all that, but how is the game played? 

Answer: You begin the game by selecting one of three characters, Karl, Karl's junior or the Karl-a-Tron 2500.

Perhaps the three greatest miners in the galaxy
Perhaps the three greatest miners in the galaxy

There are three zones available all with multiple levels. The desert zone is first. Followed by the cave and mountain zones. 

Desert Zone
Desert Zone
Cave Zone
Cave Zone
Mountain Zone
Mountain Zone

Your goal is to mine the planet's most unstable mineral and get back to the entry point as quickly as possible. The melody and beats of the soundtrack provide powers you can utilize during game play. Each power has a distinct sound. When activated these powers will allow you to navigate the levels with a greater precision.

We built this game to provide opportunities to play a level multiple times in a quest for the perfect mineral sample. To progress to the next zone you must unlock the entry point by collecting high quality specimens. 

Rewards

Sticker set

Miner Men Corps sticker 1
Miner Men Corps sticker 1
Miner Men Sticker 2
Miner Men Sticker 2
Miner Men Sticker 3
Miner Men Sticker 3
Miner Men Sticker 4
Miner Men Sticker 4

Poster

Serve the Corps
Serve the Corps

T-shirts

Karl of the Miner Men Shirt A
Karl of the Miner Men Shirt A
Karl of the Miner Men Shirt B
Karl of the Miner Men Shirt B
Karl's jr. "Greatness is genetic" Shirt A
Karl's jr. "Greatness is genetic" Shirt A
Karl's jr. "Greatness is Genetic" shirt B
Karl's jr. "Greatness is Genetic" shirt B
Karl-a-Tron 2500 shirt A
Karl-a-Tron 2500 shirt A
Karl-a-Tron 2500 Shirt B
Karl-a-Tron 2500 Shirt B
Official MMC shirt
Official MMC shirt

Game Pack One

Concept art for Celebrity Game Pack One
Concept art for Celebrity Game Pack One
Concept Art for Celebrity Game Pack Two
Concept Art for Celebrity Game Pack Two
Concept Art for Celebrity Game Pack Three
Concept Art for Celebrity Game Pack Three

A few final words

Over the past three years graduate and undergraduate students from the University of North Dakota have worked together to develop Rhythm Planet. Throughout that time they have all had but one goal. To make the game available so that their friends and families can play it. To make this happen, we need to finish what we started. We are hoping you can help us. Thank you.

Risks and challenges

There is always a risk when employing students. Their priorities can vary depending on the amount of credits and how close to graduation they are. This project has been timed to attempt to avoid many of the problems associated with this. The majority of effort in any creative project is often expended to get the project off the ground and running. This project will begin soon after the end of the school year, which will allow for a focussed effort from the students we intend to have work on the game. As I have previously stated there has been quite a bit of work already done. I feel confident that if funded the game will be finished on time.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    Digital downloadable copy of the finished game DRM free on PC and Mac.

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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    Set of 4 Official Miner Men Corps stickers and a digital downloadable copy of the finished game DRM free on PC and Mac.

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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    Digital download of the Rhythm Planet soundtrack and a digital downloadable copy of the finished game DRM free on PC and Mac.

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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    PDF version of the Rhythm Planet Book filled with 40+ full color pages of concept art and more. A digital download of the Rhythm Planet soundtrack and a digital downloadable copy of the finished game DRM free on PC and Mac.

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    Official Miner Men Corps recruitment poster autographed by as many students as we can round up, a PDF version of the Rhythm Planet Book filled with 40+ full color pages of concept art and more. A digital download of the Rhythm Planet soundtrack and a digital downloadable copy of the finished game DRM free on PC and Mac.

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    Awesome Karl of the miner Men, Karl's jr. or Karl-a-tron 2500 T-shirt. Claim any one of the six examples as your own. A PDF version of the Rhythm Planet Book filled with 40+ full color pages of concept art and more. A digital download of the Rhythm Planet soundtrack and a digital downloadable copy of the finished game DRM free on PC and Mac.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Pick any 2 T-shirt designs, a PDF version of the Rhythm Planet Book filled with 40+ full color pages of concept art and more. A digital download of the Rhythm Planet soundtrack and a digital downloadable copy of the finished game DRM free on PC and Mac.

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    Celebrity Game Packs. Chose Game Pack One – Fat Elvis, Tighty Whitey Sasquatch, Napoleon Bonapenguin, or perhaps you are more of a Celebrity Game Pack Two person. That pack features, Space Dracula, The Galactic Bandit, and Astro Joan of Arc. No? Alright we understand. You are the Space Pirate type. If so then Celebrity Game Pack Three is for you. Also, pick any 2 T-shirt designs, a PDF version of the Rhythm Planet Book filled with 40+ full color pages of concept art and more. A digital download of the Rhythm Planet soundtrack and a digital downloadable copy of the finished game DRM free on PC and Mac.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    We want to put you in the suit! Karl who needs him? Not us. Send us a picture and you can play as you. Plus any 2 T-shirt designs, a PDF version of the Rhythm Planet Book filled with 40+ full color pages of concept art and more. A digital download of the Rhythm Planet soundtrack and a digital downloadable copy of the finished game DRM free on PC and Mac.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Design your own Celebrity Game pack. Always felt a need to play a game featuring flying nuns. We feel you and we can make that happen. You name the persons of note and we will make them characters in the game. Plus any 2 T-shirt designs, a PDF version of the Rhythm Planet Book filled with 40+ full color pages of concept art and more. A digital download of the Rhythm Planet soundtrack and a digital downloadable copy of the finished game DRM free on PC and Mac.

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    Always wanted to be a game designer. We are here to help. Design your own level. Pick any available zone and design a level for it. Torture others with your genius. We cannot wait to see what you come up with. Plus any 2 T-shirt designs, a PDF version of the Rhythm Planet Book filled with 40+ full color pages of concept art and more. A digital download of the Rhythm Planet soundtrack and a digital downloadable copy of the finished game DRM free on PC and Mac.

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Funding period

- (30 days)