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Earworm is the game that has YOU recreating your favorite songs without the lyrics! Perfect for parties, with family, and friends!
Earworm is the game that has YOU recreating your favorite songs without the lyrics! Perfect for parties, with family, and friends!
569 backers pledged $21,616 to help bring this project to life.

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Earworm - Become a music legend in this rockin' party game! project video thumbnail
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Earworm - Become a music legend in this rockin' party game!

$21,616

569

Earworm is a party game for people who love music. Earworm is suited for groups of all shapes and sizes and can be played anywhere! In everything that VStheUNIVERSE produces, a healthy amount of music is infused into its creation. We developed Earworm for the music-lover, the karaoke-singer, the band geek, the shower rockstars,...We made this game for ANYONE who loves music.

Players have 30 seconds to vocalize a song to their team using any sound they can muster up with one rule: you can't use any lyrics! 

Players can play in a stress-free Party Mode or decide to get competitive and go On Tour to see who is the most worthy of rock stardom! We designed the game with two modes of play so people of all ages and skill levels would be able to join in on the fun.  

The final design of some of the song cards.
The final design of some of the song cards.

EXPANSION UNLOCKED! Click here for more information!

We designed Earworm so that it would be accessible for casual party gamers but interesting enough for the more seasoned vocalizer. There are two main modes of play: Party Mode for casual party play and On Tour for a more advanced experience. Regardless of which mode you play, Earworm always starts with picking up 5 cards and selecting a song to vocalize. These steps are shown below:

In our Party Mode the first team to guess ten songs correctly wins! Split up into two teams. Players on each team will take turns being the Vocalizer. The Vocalizer will draw five cards and select one to vocalize. If your team doesn't guess the song correctly after 30 seconds have passed, the other team has the chance to steal!

If you want something a little more competitive and skillful, then you can go On Tour and play three rounds of increasing difficulty to prove once and for all who are the Rockers and who are just Roadies!

  • ROUND ONE - THE OPENING ACT: Draw 5 song cards, select one, and discard the other 4. The Vocalizer has 30 seconds to vocalize the song. If their team does not guess the song in 30 seconds then the opposing team has one guess to steal the point. Once everyone on each team has had a turn, the round is over. 
  • ROUND TWO - THE HEADLINER: Draw 5 cards. The vocalizer has to get their team to guess as many as they can in 30 seconds. Once everyone on each team has had a turn, the round is over. (Catch a clip of Round Two being played HERE!)
  • FINAL ROUND - THE ENCORE: Draw from the top of the deck and get your teammates to guess as many songs in 30 seconds as they can. Want to see Round Three? SEE BELOW!

Once everyone on each team has had a turn, the round is over. In the event of a draw, you end up at THE BATTLE OF THE BANDS! Each team will pick a single card off the top of the deck and vocalize it for their team. Whichever team guesses the song correctly first, wins the game!

For a full set of rules, click here!

Above is a full playthrough of the full game on the ONE SHOT Twitch stream!

  • vo·cal·ize - VERB 
  • DEFINITION: to make vocal; utter; articulate; sing. 

In Earworm, you need to vocalize the song you select without using any of the lyrics. You can make any sound you want, whether it be beatboxing, scatting, humming, yodeling,...whatever you want!

The deck is comprised of 200 of your favorite songs from the last few decades, and has something for everyone! 

Each card will be made with 280gsm Blue Core card stock. We've decided to manufacture every card with a linen texture so that they're easy to shuffle for repeated sessions. We've also decided to opt for Spot Color (PMS) to be implemented for each card so our beautiful artwork looks just as gorgeous as our artist intended.

Just a sampling of some of the songs in Earworm!
Just a sampling of some of the songs in Earworm!
A sample of how the back of the song cards will look + some Seal. Gotta have some Seal.
A sample of how the back of the song cards will look + some Seal. Gotta have some Seal.

During the course of the campaign, our backers will get to vote on which songs should go into the deck, so the game will reflect exactly what our backers want to see! We've set aside 12 song cards that will be chosen by our backers!

If you donate to the campaign, you will get the opportunity to suggest three songs that you want to see in the comments section. Each week, we'll hold a special backers-only vote where every suggestion will be up for a vote! This is your chance to shape the game with the songs you want to see in the deck!

Each song that is voted on by the backers will be showcased on a KS-Exclusive background (designed by Zachary Anderson!)

The first round of voting is done! See the winners below!

Round one winners!
Round one winners!
Round two winners!
Round two winners!
Round three winners!
Round three winners!

For a full list of songs included in the base Earworm deck, click here!

36-Card Expansion!

We want to add in a 36-card expansion for all of our backers! But we need your help to do it! Head here to see how to make it happen

It's simple. If we can get 150 retweets/shares (combined) of the posts below, we'll add the 36-card expansion into the game. We'll be tabulating shares on Twitter AND Facebook, and if we get 150 total retweets/shares then we'll add the expansion. It's as simple as that. Of course, none of this will matter if we don't hit our goal so spread the word!

UPDATE: UNLOCKED!

$20 - Lead Singer Pledge Level

For $20, you'll receive one copy of Earworm! In addition to your copy of the game, you'll get the chance to submit and vote on songs to be added to the game. We'll be unveiling special "Guilty Pleasure" songs selectively exclusively by the developers throughout the campaign that aren't included in the base deck! You'll also receive a Print-And-Play version of the game as soon as it is ready. We will also include your name in the game on a special KS Backers card that will only be made for our initial print run! 

All stretch goals will be included.

$38 - Lead Singer + Backup Singer Pledge Level

For $38, you'll get two copies of the game and save some money on both! Great for gifting to your friends and enemies! 

All stretch goals will be included.

$100 - "I'm Your Biggest Fan" Pledge Level

For $100 you'll get everything you would get at the base pledge level, but we'll send you out one of our special test decks immediately when the campaign ends! You'll be like one of those hipsters who got into a band before they blew up!

All stretch goals will be included.

$100 - Retailer Exclusive Pledge Level

For $100 a retailer will receive seven copies of Earworm to sell in stores + one demo copy of the game you'll be able to use to showcase Earworm to potential customers in-store! NOTE: We will be verifying all backers of this level to ensure they are certified retailers.

All stretch goals will be included.

$125 - Get Your Own Theme Song Pledge Level

For $125, you'll get everything you would get in the base pledge level, PLUS VStheUNIVERSE will create a unique theme song exclusively for you! VStheUNIVERSE has a long history of making music for films, sketches, and music projects. We've previously made theme songs for backers of our last Kickstarter project.

You can find Volume One, Volume Two, and Volume Three of our previous theme song projects at the hyperlink referenced here on our BandCamp page.

All stretch goals will be included.

$250 - Become a Character In The Game Pledge Level

For $250 you'll get everything in the base pledge PLUS our game artist Zachary Anderson will draw you into the game for our song cards! We'll ask you to provide a photo of yourself that we can use as a reference, and then Zach will use that photo to create an Earworm character inspired by you for the game! Your character will be used on song cards throughout the game.

You can find Zach's portfolio here.

All stretch goals will be included.

The team at VStheUNIVERSE has playtested the Earworm deck for countless hours, making sure the base deck was perfectly balanced with different genres and time periods. We didn't want to hog all the fun though! We asked a few of our friends to contribute a song to the song deck so their flavor would come out in the game as well! 

Included in the song deck is the "Friends Pack" of song cards that includes the following selections:

It's easy for projects like this to bloat up with lots of stretch goals that push back the release date by months (or even years!), endangering the whole project with unpredictable added costs and development time. We have developed Earworm so that the base game is a completely enjoyable final product. All the stretch goals we have designed for the campaign will simply ENHANCE the experience, instead of changing the core experience.

See the archived stream of Earworm on the ONE SHOT Twitch stream here!

    Click play on the above video to see a full rules breakdown and playthrough of Party Mode and the On Tour mode! 

See more on the ONE SHOT Podcast Network here!

$20,622 may seem like a random number, but it's the most specific goal we've come up with from our time researching the best, most efficient way to get Earworm made. We've deliberately overestimated some costs to account for issues that may rise up along the way.

Production + Shipping - $14,898

We'll be working with PrintNinja to print our game and then ship it to our distribution partner here in America.

PrintNinja has been lovely to work with every step of the way!
PrintNinja has been lovely to work with every step of the way!

Artist Fee - $1,550

We love the art for our game! Zachary Anderson gets this cut. He's fantastic.

Insurance - $1,000

We call this our "oh shit" insurance. This covers any hurdles that can (and will) crop up during the campaign.

Kickstarter Fees - $1,874

This pays the standard Kickstarter fees and credit card processing.

Team Payment - $1,000

VStheUNIVERSE spent the last year plotting, designing, singing, playtesting, and editing Earworm. This amount will be split between Aaron, Sam, and Laura for their time.

Misc. Costs - $300

These costs cover the costs of designing the website for Earworm, securing the URLs, and all of the administrative items surrounding the game.

Aaron J. Amendola - @ImAaronJ

Aaron is one of the creative minds behind the hit live variety program The Geek Show, and the co-host of The Co-Operatives Podcast. A lifelong gamer, Aaron has created many films, songs, and other artistic creations with a musical bent. Aaron started VStheUNIVERSE with Sam Begich and Chris Chapin in 2014 and has been producing work with them ever since.

Sam Begich - @TravelingSamSam
Sam is a filmmaker, songwriter, photographer, and avid shower-singer. Sam has been producing music and music videos for various groups ever since moving to Chicago in 2011. Some of his work can be seen in the VStheUNIVERSE “Love Songs of” series. Music is in his blood and he loves turning it up to 11.

Laura Marsh - @LauraHarshMarsh
Laura has been working with Aaron and Sam on various projects since 2012. She is a performer, writer, improviser, and choreographer in Chicago. Karaoke is one of her favorite things in the world, so is making sounds with her mouth. Laura is trying to make this not sound like a dating profile.

Zachary Anderson - Art
Zack is a dude; an average dude with a passion for science fiction, video games, cartoons, illustration, mid-century design, and a penchant for writing in the third person.

Zack graduated from Columbia College Chicago with a BFA in graphic design in 2010. He's since worked as an Illustrator, Designer, and Art Director for brands such as Sprint, McDonalds, Nintendo, Tide, Redbox, Bonnaroo, and Outside Lands

Shipping costs will be charged after the campaign ends. This way, we can ensure you get charged the lowest possible shipping cost. 

By doing this, we are able to factor in your pledge tier and all of the fancy things that may occur during the campaign. However, we can offer estimated shipping costs.

US Shipping - $6-7
CA Shipping - $8-9
EU Shipping - $12-14
AUS Shipping - $15-18

Anything we can do to lower shipping costs, we'll do.

If we fund, we'll be working with Blackbox to ship our products. The people behind Blackbox have been responsible for getting some of the most successful Kickstarter games in history to backers across the globe, including Exploding Kittens and Cards Against Humanity. They are experts at what they do and we are so happy to be working with them!

We have been lucky enough to receive feedback and advice from several seasoned veterans in the games space of Kickstarter. Special thanks need to be paid to Ed Soderberg and Ironrise Games, James D'Amato and Mel Fox of the OneShot Network, Liz Brodzinski of The Co-Operatives Podcast, and Kevin Reader and Joe Gennero of The Nerdologues for their support. Mike Chuck Bretzlaff, the head of Chicago Loot Drop, has been instrumental in keeping our moods optimistic, charged-up, and excited for whatever comes next.

For a full press release, click here.

Risks and challenges

VStheUNIVERSE has been creating content since 2012. We've produced live shows, short films, and several music videos in addition to four full-length albums. We know how to make content, but a card game is new to us. We're treating this project as unknown territory and have built several safety nets into everything we're doing.

If you look at our cost breakdown, we prepared our Kickstarter goal factoring in unexpected costs. We purposely overestimated the costs in some areas to ensure we wouldn't trip over any hurdles.

Our printer, PrintNinja, has a great track record for delivering card games for Kickstarter. We've been working with them for the past few months and are confident they'll deliver for us.

Blackbox is a Chicago-based fulfillment company that has helped several of our friends with their games, like Noisy Person Cards and Master Thief. They're good at what they do, and we have the testimonials from reliable sources to make us feel confident in choosing to work with them on this project.

We've been playtesting this game since August and are eager to share it with friends and friends of friends alike. We are aware that issues and challenges can present themselves in any new venture, but we are primed and ready to listen to our audience to address any that may come along.

Thank you for your support!

Aaron, Sam, Laura

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    LEAD SINGER

    With this pledge level you'll get the full game PLUS all of the unlocked stretch goals over the course of the campaign!

    Includes:
    • [1] Copy of Earworm
    • All Stretch Goals
    • All updates from the VStheUNIVERSE team!
    • Vote on songs to go into the game
    • Your name in a special 'Thank You' section in the game
    • Print-and-Play version of the game
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    397 backers
    $
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $38 or more About $38

    LEAD SINGER + BACKUP SINGER

    With this pledge level you'll get TWO COPIES of the full game PLUS all of the unlocked stretch goals over the course of the campaign!

    Includes:
    • [2] Copies of Earworm
    • All Stretch Goals
    • All updates from the VStheUNIVERSE team!
    • Vote on songs to go into the game
    • Your name in a special 'Thank You' section in the game
    • Print-and-Play version of the game
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    90 backers
    $
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  3. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    BAND MANAGER RETAILER PLEDGE

    With this pledge level you'll get SIX COPIES of the full game PLUS all of the unlocked stretch goals over the course of the campaign! Exclusively for retailers to sell in stores!

    Includes:
    • Vote on songs to go into the game
    • [6] Copies of Earworm
    • Print-and-Play version of the game
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 4 backers
    $
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  4. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    "I'm Your Biggest Fan!"

    With this pledge level you'll get everything from the base pledge PLUS we'll ship out one of our demo decks as soon as the campaign is completed!

    Includes:
    • A special demo deck shipped out to you right after the campaign
    • [1] Copy of Earworm
    • All Stretch Goals
    • All updates from the VStheUNIVERSE team!
    • Vote on songs to go into the game
    • Your name in a special 'Thank You' section in the game
    • Print-and-Play version of the game
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 10 backers
    $
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    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    BAND MANAGER RETAILER PLEDGE

    With this pledge level you'll get SIX COPIES of the full game PLUS all of the unlocked stretch goals over the course of the campaign! Exclusively for retailers to sell in stores!

    Includes:
    • [7] Copies of Earworm
    • [1] Demo copy of Earworm to be used in stores
    • All Stretch Goals
    • All updates from the VStheUNIVERSE team!
    • Print-and-Play version of the game
    • Vote on songs to go into the game
    • Your name in a special 'Thank You' section in the game
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    6 backers
    $
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    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $125 or more About $125

    Get Your Own Theme Song + LEAD SINGER

    With this level the VStheUNIVERSE team will craft you your very own theme song! PLUS you'll get the full game PLUS all of the unlocked stretch goals over the course of the campaign!

    Includes:
    • Your very own handcrafted theme song made by VStheUNIVERSE
    • [1] Copy of Earworm
    • All Stretch Goals
    • All updates from the VStheUNIVERSE team!
    • Vote on songs to go into the game
    • Your name in a special 'Thank You' section in the game
    • Print-and-Play version of the game
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 21 backers
    $
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  7. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    NEW BAND MATE

    With this pledge level you'll get the full game PLUS all of the unlocked stretch goals over the course of the campaign PLUS we'll make you a character card to be featured in the final version of the game!

    Includes:
    • [1] Copy of Earworm
    • All Stretch Goals
    • All updates from the VStheUNIVERSE team!
    • Become a character in the game! [Drawn by Zachery Anderson]
    • Vote on songs to go into the game
    • Your name in a special 'Thank You' section in the game
    • Print-and-Play version of the game
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 10 backers
    $
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Funding period

- (36 days)