About this project
$25,000 – Best Friend - UNLOCKED
We design and animate a really cute doggie and make her your pet in the game. Come on, who doesn’t want a dog?
$28,000 – Increased Branching & Randomized Events - UNLOCKED
Increased branching means more surprising paths your life can take, based on the choices you make. With randomized events, each play-through might be affected by occurrences out of your control that present unique challenges, sort of like life. We think surprise is crucial to a meaningful narrative experience, so we don’t want to tell what they are just yet, but one might involve unwittingly dropping acid at a company training seminar.
$32,000 – Voice Acting - UNLOCKED
We want to bring Close Your’s colorful characters to life with gripping performances from a cast of talented actors. We’ve already attached the extraordinary Dileep Rao (Avatar, Inception) to lend his vocal chords to the character of Death.
NEW 35,000 - New Game PlusWith New Game Plus you’ll be able to pick the version of Close Your you want to replay, and strategize ways to make sure you see all the story content the game has to offer. Want to share your unique experience of Close Your with a friend? At the start of the game you’ll be able to control what Randomized events will feature in your play playthrough Want to explore every nook and cranny of what Close Your has to offer? You’ll be able to pause and view a constantly updating diagram showing paths you’ve already taken and give you hints to what's still out there to explore. This mode will appeal to die-hard complesionists, but also anyone who wants to make their experience of Close Your completely their own, becoming a true co-author in the story we’re telling together everytime you play.
Close Your is a first person interactive short story where you live an entire life, from birth to death, and make decisions big and small that shape the outcome of that life. The catch is that each scene only lasts as long as you can keep your eyes open. The game uses your webcam to track your eyes in real life, so every time you blink, you skip forward: could be five seconds or five years. Life literally flashes before your eyes as you try desperately to hold onto each fleeting moment.
With your help, Close Your will release onto Steam in February 2017.
As you look up, you see the oncoming car. It's too late. You close your eyes to brace for impact and time seems to stop. When you open them again, you are standing in front of Death himself…
After signing away your life, Death sends you back to earth for one last visit. You now blink through your entire life, from the most mundane moments to the most vital. You learn to walk, struggle through school, face the monotony of work, meet the person you’ll spend the rest of your life with, and even raise a child of your own.
Since blinking is an inevitable physical process, each of these vignettes is imbued with inherent tension. You may close your eyes on your first kiss, and open them at your wedding, or close your eyes on a fight with your mother, only to open them at her funeral.
Close Your’s narrative branches by tracking how you behave in each scene, rather than presenting you with obvious moral choices. When sitting at the office do you do your work on the computer, or do you listen to an amusing co-worker’s joke? The game clocks these behaviors and the story adapts dynamically to reflect your unique disposition and values, your strengths as well as your flaws.
With each iteration of Close Your we’ve improved our game's look with the resources we had at our disposal. With your help, we want to redesign our game’s look from the ground up, with unique models and animations for each character and every scene. We think this is absolutely vital to creating an immediate connection between players and in-game characters.
We’ve already begun creating a more specific and emotionally rich aesthetic for Close Your’s levels and NPC's. Take a look at a small sampling of concept art below:
Close Your has a dynamic score that responds to the game's branching narrative. Each scene triggers a unique musical sequence or phrase, so as we expand the game, we're going to need to record a much larger score. We also want to elevate the tonal quality of the score by paying for high quality recording equipment and professional musicians. We think that a more lush expansive score will bring Close Your to life.
Listen to some samples of our current demo’s music below:
Right now, Close Your is a great proof of concept demo, but we're asking for your support to make it the best game it can possibly be.
Redesigning the characters and environments will be our largest task. We’re going back to the drawing board in order to create characters and environments that live and breath. With your support we’ll be able to hire talented 3D artists to model, rig, and animate our concepts.
One of our big goals for this campaign is to rebuild the blink detection software we’ve been using so that it’s universally compatible with any webcam-equipped computer. We've already spoken with capable freelancers who've given us quotes and are ready to go.
3D art without 2D art is like rhythm without melody. This part of our budget will go towards texturing our 3D models and creating other assets like user interface, titles, and promotional images.
This part of our budget goes towards recording a new score with professional musicians and diverse instrumentation. We’re also going to use sound design to add another layer of detail and texture.
T-shirts, posters, shipping, and any other costs associated with delivering physical assets to get you what we've promised.
Kickstarter takes a 5% fee, and additional 3-5% are charged for processing payments. The last 5-7% is to help us account for cancelled payments and taxes.
GoodbyeWorld Games is a fresh game studio made from old friends with new ideas. We came together to find out what games are really capable of, and what kinds of stories they can tell. We believe in technology that is indistinguishable from magic, and we want to show it to you.
Will is a game designer, programmer, and fanatic. A nerd since birth, growing up modding until he grew up and decided that games were the medium of his life. Inspired by nature and by things that can never exist, Will aims to bring light to the unknown and the undiscovered for the benefit of everyone, not just those who already play games.
John Billingsley is an aspiring game designer and LA native. John is currently attending Case Western Reserve University, finishing his degree in computer science. John is interested in the competitive psychology that arises from player versus player interactions, and how games can be used to express feelings or emotions that are hard to simply put into words. It is John’s hope that through playing games, people will be opened up to new viewpoints, patterns of thinking, and understanding.
Graham Parkes is a filmmaker, playwright and independent game designer from Los Angeles. He studied game design through the NYU Game Center, where he co-authored the tabletop game Kulak, which became an IndieCade Finalist in 2013. His short film Where You Are premiered at South by Southwest this year, and will be available online through Short of The Week later this month.
Griffin will be overseeing all aspects of Close Your’s aesthetic overhaul. A commercial designer and illustrator based in Santa Monica, Griffin has been doing visual development with Goodbyeworld Games for longer than he can remember.
Oliver Lewin is a composer from Santa Monica. He studied music at The New School in New York and has scored award-winning short films and games, as well as all of Close Your's previous versions.
Working closely with GoodbyeWorld Games, Hexany Audio will be handling the sound design for Close Your. Hexany is a Los Angeles based studio specializing in sound and music for games, VR, and interactive media. A team of award winning sound designers and composers, they have developed audio for everything from AAA console to small one-man indie mobile projects. Their clients include companies like Activision, Ubisoft, Disney, and many more.
In addition to our digital rewards, we have a limited number of personalized and physical rewards which outlined below.
Backers who give $40+ will get a digital portrait created just for you by our art director. Just send in a picture of yourself or a loved one. We're going to get working on these during the campaign to help get the word out so make sure to get in early! These portraits will also be available in limited quantities at our Hero tier for a few awesome individuals. We had Griffin knock one out for our composer to give you an idea of what to expect:
Risks and challenges
The main challenge ahead will be creating a stable blink detection system that works with any webcam. At the moment our software is PC only, so one of our biggest priorities will be making it universally compatible. That's one of the main reasons why we decided our game was right for Kickstarter. We've joined forces with a team of programmers who are geared up and ready to rebuild a more robust, flexible and OS agnostic blink detection software. If we reach our goal anyone with a webcam will be able to play our game.
A challenge that many video game Kickstarters face is the possibility of delay. With Close Your, we've given ourselves a reasonable margin of error in our timeline. Even so, we know from experience that making games can be a visceral and organic process. Ensuring that every moment feels and plays right is always going to be the most important thing to us, but we've learned over the years how to prioritize perfectionism without sacrificing expediency.
With your support we hope to make the best possible version of our game. We have a clear idea of what that entails: A rich new look and feel; a longer, more intricate branching narrative; a sweeping, emotional score; and a homegrown blink recognition software that will work on any computer with a webcam. We won't be able to make this happen without you.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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