This project's funding goal was not reached on March 6, 2013.
About this project
PROJECT AWAKENED IS:
- AMAZING CREATE A PLAYER
- PLAY HOW YOU WANT IN A COMPELLING WORLD
- LIMITLESS MULTIPLAYER (stretchgoal)
- MOD THE GAME TO BE ANYTHING (stretchgoal)
- NEXT GEN UNREAL ENGINE 4
UNREAL ENGINE 4 TECH DEMO VIDEO UPDATE: See what we are working on for you, and imagine your dream character, your dream modd, in UE4!
MODDING VIDEO UPDATE: Here are just a few examples of modds our team put together using Project Awakened and many easily accessible assets from the internet. Imagine what you could make!
SPECIAL ABILITIES VIDEO UPDATE: Check out this deeper look at the Create-A-Player feature, and a sampling of the many special abilities that have already been prototyped!
Project Awakened is a genre-defying game that lets you answer the question: "Who do you want to be?" For the first time in a modern AAA action game, you will have the opportunity to completely define your dream videogame character, from abilities to aesthetics, all while playing in an action-packed world that responds to your personal playstyle.
Destructoid: “Awakened is a Game that may very well be brilliant”
- Modular (not class or skilltree) a-la-carte ability system
- Incredibly customizable character visualization
- Characters that are as unique as the player who created them
Project Awakened contains a modular powers and skill system that allows players to select from a huge number of abilities and combine them in unique ways. Unlike other games which use a class system or skill trees, Project Awakened leaves every choice and ability up the player. Likewise, players will have the opportunity to completely customize the appearance of their characters. Comical or serious, rough or polished, nearly any character imaginable can be created using the Project Awakened Player Creation system. The result is a game with seemingly limitless gameplay and replay potential based on which abilities players choose.
While Project Awakened allows for players to make typical videogame heroes such as Ninjas, Snipers, or Urban Warriors, what makes Project Awakened truly unique is the potential to craft gameplay experiences and challenges that have never existed before. An invisible hero who can charm enemies to fight for her. A non-violent hero with super speed and agility racing past enemies to the goal. A man who spontaneously combusts at will and touches everyone to incinerate them. The possibilities are endless, and allow players to craft a gameplay challenge unlike anything anyone has ever seen before. The only limit is the player’s imagination.
- Present day world with tomorrow's technology
- A world that responds to player creations/characters
- Missions that can be completed from multiple approaches
Pons and Fleischmann stabilized cold fusion in 1989. The Human Genome project was completed in 1993. Merritt and Rodrigo solved implant rejection in 1996. What if the scientific breakthroughs that awaken the human potential did not occur in some distant fantastical future, but in our recent past? Small ripples in time and space profoundly affecting the meaning of being human today. Black market superpowers. Breakthroughs in genetic engineering, implantation and nanotechnology have blown through the limits of human potential. Super strength, speed healing, psychic abilities, telekinesis and far more are now on the menu - but these breakthroughs are as closely and carefully regulated as weapon technology or nuclear science. Of course, that's not going to stop anyone with the will and the means to get their hands on it. But where has this bounty come from, and what is the price humanity will pay when we discover the source?
Our objective with Project Awakened is to create a robust world of incredible beauty where you can play with your powers, see real effects of your abilities on a thriving modern world, and yet still get the tight, story-driven experiences that make action games so compelling. We will build a hub-and-spoke game world, where players will explore a rich city environment, and then venture off into more linear storytelling areas that have specific puzzles and combat scenarios that can be approached differently depending on the character. The AI in the game and the world itself will be built in such a way that they will respond to any potential power the player has at their disposal in a realistic environment. Each playthrough with different characters and different powers will feel different than the last.
As a player, you will be caught between a number of factions: a government that wants to lock down and control physical augmentation, corporations that are constantly (and perhaps recklessly) trying to invent the next big leap in augmentation, rebels who believe we are descending into a police state and want to unlock human potential for all, and those who believe that, for a select few, augmentation is the next step in human evolution.
The world of Project Awakened is our world, today. Our governments, our lives, our struggles…but standing just past the tipping point of the technological evolution of humanity, and all the power and chaos that results. Governments and corporations wage covert wars with super soldiers. Police department budgets struggle to combat crime lords unhindered by constraints of money or ethics. Gods rise among us with the same fallible minds, inside superhuman bodies. And you, in our world today, are among the Awakened. Look up for a moment, look around you. What would you do in your world, if you were a god?
- Customizable Multiplayer scenarios
- Unique character creation enhances team building strategies
- Play with the characters you design
Multiplayer in Project Awakened will open players’ eyes to the creative potential of what videogames can be. The myriad of abilities and weapons available in the game will allow players to craft teams of characters never before seen in multiplayer games and specially suited to countering enemy strategies or achieving objectives. While multiplayer will take inspirations from other competitive team-building and objective based games, the focus will be providing an action-packed online experience that players can customize to their liking.
Different gameplay scenarios will call for different character makeups. A capture-the-flag game might involve one character with stealth abilities sneaking past the opposing team and grabbing their flag, while another character with freezing powers stops the enemy flag carrier. A point defense map might inspire players to create an entire team of stone-skinned tanks. There will be tradeoffs and counter strategies to every combination of abilities, and only through solid strategy and teamwork, as well as individual player skill, will a team's potential be truly unlocked.
VG247: “Bloody brilliant”
- Game editor ships with the game
- Player created abilities and gameplay scenarios
- Community driven mods promoted and shared with everyone
Project Awakened has huge potential to foster a robust Mod community. If the Stretch Goal is achieved, Project Awakened will ship with the editor exposed, and the game itself will be built in such a modular fashion that it will be easy to modify any values on any abilities, weapons, maps, etc. to the player’s liking. Craft new weapons, new character outfits, and create entirely new maps and gameplay scenarios using the easy to use editor and our massive art library.
- Game Industry Veterans
- Critically acclaimed mobile games Horn and Dark Meadow
- An Unreal Engine 4 Developer
Phosphor is a team of industry vets, many coming from Midway Chicago, where we worked on titles like Psi-Ops, Stranglehold, and Mortal Kombat. At Midway, many of us started working on a project called Hero, which was ultimately the nucleus for many of the concepts of Project Awakened. Since then, we’ve bided our time making our critically acclaimed mobile games like Dark Meadow and Horn, and even worked on Gears of War 3. It’s in our DNA to make this game. Phosphor was created to bring Project Awakened to the masses.
In addition to creating our own original games, for several years now Phosphor has worked closely with Epic Games to help develop Unreal Engine 4 itself. We are excited to announce that we are making Project Awakened with UE4, and our goal is to deliver the best experience possible by leveraging the most powerful next-gen engine available.
- Publishers are afraid to make Project Awakened, gamers want it
- The return of the PC to the forefront of gaming
- A game for players, funded by players
The idea of Project Awakened is so different from what is out there, publishers don't know how they can fund it. We've pitched this idea to every major publisher, and while they all like the concept, they are also afraid of uncharted waters. Their data shows that studios can only sell a familiar gameplay experience or a sequel, not an innovative new IP.
Project Awakened has been a dream and passion that we've been working on for the past few years, but now we need your help to finish it. PC games are now a thriving, dominant market of innovation - with all new distribution models and available services- it really is a better way to get new ideas to gamers than through all the middlemen and barriers in the retail console markets. The more we raise, the more we can bring to you, and the possibilities for unique abilities, stories, tools we can put into your hands, and dreams we can support is almost limitless. Help us bring all this to you, so you can finally show the world…
The potential for Project Awakened to grow and allow even more amazing content and tools is enormous. Any amount we raise over the base goal goes directly into making more for you to make your video game dreams a reality!
In addition to the above stretch goals, we are pleased to announce some awesome rewards for your pledge. Please see the reward tiers to the right for further explanation on some amazing things you can get.
To add on any of the following items, please add up the total for all the add ons you want, and increase your pledge by that amount, but DON'T select a higher pledge tier. We will email you later to clarify which addons you'd like.
To increase your pledge, do the following
- Go to the main kickstarter site and click the "Manage Your Pledge Button". If you haven't pledged yet it may say "Back this Project".
- Increase your Pledge Amount box by the total cost of the add-ons you are interested in.
- Don't change your pledge tier, otherwise you'll need to recalculate the above and add it onto the cost of the new pledge tier
You need to select at least the $5 pledge tier to make use of the add-ons. Here's the list
- Extra beta key + digital copy of the game - $20
- Exclusive "Dev Team" T-Shirt - $50
- Physical Art Book signed by the artists - $100
- Physical Copy of the soundtrack (DRM free) - $25
- Physical Copy of the final game (DRM free) - $50
- Project Awakened Poster signed by the team - $50
- Physical Soundtrack CD, especially for backers, signed by Austin Wintory - $100
- Portion of the Soundtrack Conductor's Score, signed by Austin Wintory - $300
The press are already excited for Project Awakened, and have had great things to say about our past projects as well!
1UP: "The Best Downloadable Games of 2011"
Joystiq: "A surprisingly funny, gorgeous game that's an easy recommendation"
Gizmodo UK: "Extremely Monstrous and Incredibly Beautiful… The Dark Meadow is a splendid achievement. The bar has been raised"
MODOJO: "Hauntingly beautiful and intriguing game everyone should play"
IGN: "The Dark Meadow is worth playing just to experience the game’s huge amount of eccentric dialogue, and to experience the unfolding mystery"
Kotaku: "A disturbingly gorgeous experience"
IGN: “Horn is the real deal. It looks, sounds and plays great.”
Entertainment Weekly: “ 9 out of 10-Editor’s Choice”
New York Times: “The game has gorgeous scenery, but the characters truly bring it to life. Warm, witty and full of heart”
Tech Crunch: “Horn is the best game of 2012 because it combines an imaginative narrative with top-of-the-line graphics”
Games.com: “For the nonbelievers with controllers in hand: Let Horn show you something cool.”
Risks and challenges
Project Awakened is like nothing that has been made before. With that comes challenges we are aware of, and have been working on for years.
- This powerful and open ended Character Creation tool allows for vast visual and ability combinations, which will be difficult to balance and implement at the scale which makes this project truly unique. Fortunately, we have been prototyping such systems for over 6 years now, knowing it was a cornerstone of delivering the vision of Project Awakened. Furthermore, we have a veteran team of passionate designers with lots of experience designing games on this scale.
- Unreal Engine 4 is new and incredibly powerful engine technology. Phosphor Games is in the position of working with Epic Games to help develop UE4, so we are in the best possible place to make such a game, but using a new engine comes with some inherent risk. We will mitigate this by working closely with Epic to use the engine as it has been intended, and unlock its full potential.
- There is a lot of content in this game for us to create. Luckily, we already have a huge backlog of content that we've built for other games, or prototyped for earlier versions of Awakened, that we can use as a starting point. This should allow us to achieve the variety we are shooting for without falling short in terms of scope, as we already have a significant head-start. The majority of our effort will be spent getting things to work well together in a new engine, versus building the actual art and animations.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
We are currently planning to use Steam for our digital distribution, though in the future and with enough community support, we may explore alternate distribution options.
Presently the only platform that we can commit to is Windows PC as Epic has not yet publicly released platform support information for UE4. However, we plan to launch on all platforms that will work with both UE4 and Steam. Epic has not publicly confirmed if there will be Mac support in UE4, however, keep in mind that OSX is now a supported platform in UE3.
There is also a chance we would consider console support in the future, but that would be further down the line and would depend on cost and freedom to support the community features we will be developing.
Our basic multiplayer stretch goal will include cooperative gameplay.
We will support multiple input methods for PC including mouse/keyboard and standard gamepads. In addition, we are happy to announce that we will be supporting Oculus Rift in Project Awakened!
It is too early to tell what our ESRB rating will be at launch, but it will likely be either a T or an M rating.
As the game will not be in beta for PC until late next year, it is too early to tell what the minimum specs will be, however we will attempt to support at a minimum a medium-tier gaming PC that you could buy in today's market.
With the Character Creator in the initial Beta release, everyone will have access to changing the character in looks and abilities. At launch, even if we don't hit the 800k stretch goal, you will have access to an unsupported Multiplayer through old fashioned ad hoc networking, where you could create whole game modes. For example, you can make one character an overpowered Zombie / Vampire / Alien, and everyone else is powered normal people. Or make a game of Pirates vs Ninjas. You can make whole different game modes just by what kinds of characters you create and what sorts of limits you impose. All of this would be would be possible without having to know any scripting or asset creation tools, it is just from using Create-A-Player.
Beyond this, at the 800k level we will release a version of the editor, allowing you to create new levels, outfits, and abilities. Further down the road, if the community wants it, we will release even more user friendly tools.
- (30 days)