Funded! This project was successfully funded on February 13, 2013.

Update #45



Hey Folks,

First off, to all the backers, journalists, and other fine human beings that have left kind words of support (especially for my family), thank you so much. They are much appreciated.

Second, for the people that have messaged for a refund, these will be processed by the end of this week by PayPal. You should receive a reply on Kickstarter and a message from PayPal when your refund has been put in. If a week goes by without either of these things please send another message.

Third, I just wanted to clear up something that seems to be in confusion. There have been some comments that express frustration that the game doesn't continue slowly in what time I can find. However, that's exactly what's going on right now. The game is continuing forward. However, the premise of the Kickstarter phase of the project was a short fulltime effort from me and my team (with monthly updates at the very least), and this is no longer true. This is why I felt it was the right thing to notify the backers.

However, since the project is still ongoing (if on life-support), means that opening the project or releasing the music/art, etc (as many have requested), is problematic.

Since I am still hoping to figure this out (once my family situation stabilizes), it would be premature to release all the assets. Also, the other contributors are invested in the project and are (at least for now) continuing to work on the game on their own. This is especially true for Julian, who is especially committed to the music of Unwritten Passage and told me he is revising his musical vision for the game. Since I can no longer pay these talented people, at the very least I can respect their wishes regarding work that they feel is "in progress".

Of course the situation is obviously "fluid" right now. If things change I'm not opposed to opening the project up, and I'll post here if that is the direction things go.

Thanks yet again,

Joe Houston - Roxlou Games

samm, Akryum, and 6 more people like this update.


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      Creator Guy-Justin Nuyda on March 24

      Just making sure that you will remember us backers when it does come time to release the game/sound track. :) Thank you for working so hard, and I'm sorry things have been rough....

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      Creator Jonah Falcon on March 2

      I'm not asking for my money back. I'll just patiently wait for the finished product, whenever that is.

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      Creator Michael Erwin on February 10

      Take care of yourself and your family first, Joe. No worries here; keep plugging away on it when you get time. :)

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      Creator The Evolutionary on January 23

      I suggested opening up the project for others to volunteer but I had missed the part where the other developers are working "in gratis" so I guess that would be out. Or could you guys release the engine source (but not the art) so if the core is not complete at least get some work on that like the guys at "Asylum" with their sizable 'Dagon' adventure game engine. They've done a remarkable job and that and perhaps a similar model, where you make the core mechanics open sourced to get free testing/development/support from the community, gives something to the community in return and keeps the art and story your property. Just another thought.

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      Creator ThePinkNinja on January 17

      I think that perhaps the fact a KS project will fail is a risk anyone takes backing it. If it wasn't risky it wouldn't be here but instead would be directly funded by a games publisher or suchlike. Keep my money and I hope you one day release the game.

      That said a video of what you have done so far would make me feel less like a patsy, proof that despite the team's best efforts it failed because of factors out of control and an ambition that made this worth funding in the first place.

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      Creator Seumas Froemke on January 14

      Obviously, Kickstarter obligates projects to fulfill their pledge rewards or provide refunds, instead. When the game, itself, is one of those rewards, that ties the obligation to fulfill the reward to the success of the project itself.

      I'm also growing frustrated with the hundreds of dollars down the drain from all of the projects that have failed, thus far. (More than one of them coming down simply to "well, this is getting too hard so I quit and sorry about the $50k").

      However, if the project is still in-progress (even slowly), I see no reason to request a refund at the moment. I would rather receive a completed game in two or three years than have a refund today.

      If you determine that there is no future for the project, then perhaps it would be fair to reconsider refunds to your backers. Based on your current statements, that does not appear to be the case.

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      Creator GoneJackalsLegacy on January 10

      I pledged to this Kickstarter project, so you (and the other developers) could work on the game, create such a unique world, characters, environments. As far as I know, you did that, as much as you could, and it seems (from your messages) that some amazing work was done - with my little contribution, and your great work, something great was created.

      And it won't disappear: the game will eventually be finished/playable, we'll be able to admire the art and listen to the mesmerizing soundtrack.

      Sure, the game isn't released now, but the main objective of that Kickstarter project for me - funding an exploration in terms of game design and world building - was (mostly) achieved, and I'm happy with that.

      If I wanted more and more games to play right now, I could just connect on Steam and stare at my 100+ excellent-titles backlog, then do the same on my Humble Bundle account, then do the same on all the other indie bundles/stores. Then there's the old mods I missed. Then there's the emulators. I've got enough games to last me several years: I didn't pledged to this project for more and more games, I only wanted to support an original, unique, new indie game design - I don't mind if it takes a few more months, or even years to be done.

      For now Joe, I really want you to focus on caring for your family, getting a job (or two) (even if it's not game development) to cover these medical bills, and being with them as much as you can. I've not pledged on your project to ruin your life or your family - I supported your project because I care about developers like you (who want to try something different, who want to make that extra effort, take that extra risk, think a little more, to give us (gamers) some unique games to play) and that includes the well-being of the devteam and their families.

      What would crowdfunding be, if it was just mimicking the same old system burning out people through crunching, putting them under the same inhuman pressure, not understand people have personal needs and families to care for ? The only reason I pledged to so many crowdfunding projects was the hope that it would be different. The few dollars I gave to this project are nothing compared to the trust that was built between the devteam and us backers, the trust that let you, Joe, be so honest with us in your recent messages. If a developer knows he can trust his/her backers, rely on their patience, much greater games will be made.

      Many other crowdfunding projects had troubles too (frequent delays), and most of them were able to directly tell their backers, and eventually deliver the final product a little later. So I don't mind waiting, a wise bearded-man once said "these things... they take time" :)

      Best wishes

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      Creator Sam Brian on January 7

      That's totally a fair point about not releasing assets. For my part, I thought that would be a good decision if the project ever got permanently shuffled off. I still hope to play this game =) and I'm glad to hear you'll still be working on it (though family still comes first). Best of luck to you and your family.

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      Creator Adam Diran on January 7

      Disappointed but not angry. The game you proposed, the art, the music... Had things gone differently it could have been epic, and maybe some day it will be. Hopefully you can return to the project some day, but like many others I'd love to get my hands on that sound track.....

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      Creator saluk on January 6

      Good luck Joe hope things get better for you and your family.

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      Creator Pablo Olmos de Aguilera Corradini on January 6

      FWIW, I have never called for a refund. I am frustrated though, as you are honest about your feelings, backers we should too :)

      I understood (and looks like a lot of people too), that you were dropping the game, though, every point you recall problematic make total sense (same with open sourcing the engine).

      It's cool, take the time you need :), hopefully we will see it sooner than later.

      Saludos desde Chile =)

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      Creator Raphael S. Neto on January 6

      Yay! Great news Joe! I was interested in this project basically for the art - which i think is wonderful and very unique - and as the artist (don't recall if it's a guy or a gal) did his/her job, he/she deserves payment, so I don't care about a refund.

      Hope your family get better and if the game is finished at some time in the future after that, i'll be anxious waiting to play it.

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      Creator Aggiekev on January 6

      Good Luck is all I can say.

      You don't need to refund my money. Take care of your family first, if this game was meant to be, you'll find time in the future.

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      Creator Andrew Park on January 6

      OK, having actually taken the time to read more about the situation, I will say that I am not interested in a refund regardless of the project's progress. You have more important things to worry about at the moment. I will just say that I hope to see you and the project back in the saddle again at some point.

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      Creator Andrew Park on January 6

      Joe, I appreciate the candor and understand that you and your family must come first.

      I'm happy to wait because of how interested I still am in the initial premise. Do we think the project has a chance of seeing the light of day? If so, I have 0 interest in any refund.


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      Creator Sean Marks on January 6

      Thank you for clarifying - your initial post made it seem like the game was dead so I take back my snarkiness.

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      Creator Donald M Pollack on January 6

      Initially I was upset that my investment might not yield anything. But after spending some time thinking about the situation I can come to sympathize with your struggles.

      My pledge was a paltry sum but i hope we can still get the soundtrack.

      Also, if the project is merely stalled and side lined I am ok with that. If it continues int he future will our pledges get fulfilled?

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      Creator Brent Ahern on January 6

      Joe, I'm sympathetic to your situation and I wish you the best of luck in resolving your current troubles. The US medical system is a train wreck and I've seen many successful friends utterly ruined by a single medical incident.

      I would like to point out that the last several updates have not given us any idea of the type of progress that has or is being made and how close the game is to completion in different areas. It would probably relieve a great deal of backer frustration if they knew how far you feel the Kickstarter funding has gotten the project. IE Are you are you 80% Done?, are you 50% done? do you feel the project is 20% done? Without this information, the assumption based on your previous updates is the project never got very far.

      Ideally It would be nice to know where the various aspects of the game are relative to completion. IE Game Engine 80%, Game Design 90%, Programming 30%, Art Assets 60%, Music 50%, Ect Ect. This information might even open the door for volunteers to step forward and help with the project.

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      Creator Luke Padgett on January 6

      Thanks for the clarifications Joe and for being open to the idea of opening the project up if things change. I've waited longer for other KS projects so I have no problem waiting on this one.

      Best wishes to you and your family.

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      Creator anonymous on January 6

      I appreciate your frankness and communication, and wish you and your family all the best. More selfishly, I am very happy to hear that you will continue to plug away at this game with what time you are able. I was not going to request a refund before I understood you would continue to work on it, but I wanted to at least put it out there that I still find the game concept exciting, and look forward to getting my grubby paws on it, whenever that may be. Your priorities are where they should be, and I only hope that you are somehow rewarded for your fortitude.

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      Creator darthkiwi on January 6

      Ah, good. I took two things away from this: 1) your family situation should stabilise at some point, which means things can get better, which is VERY GOOD. 2) The game is being worked on, albeit slowly. This is also good.

      You've treated us all very sensibly and respectfully, so I trust you to figure this out as best you can. You've clearly got a hectic time ahead of you but, as always, I reckon you'll do your best.

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      Creator Imban on January 6

      Best of luck, then, especially with your family's health. Even if it's not done until 2015, well, I have a games backlog that will last that long anyway. :P

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      Creator Valeroth on January 6

      Same here, When I back on kickstarter I know I'm investing in a small scale operation were all sorts of things can go wrong. So I'm hoping to just keep my backing, and if ever stuff does get released get access then, however long it takes.

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      Creator Jörn Huxhorn on January 6

      I hope that you'll be able to pull this off. Still intrigued by the idea and style of the game.
      Best wishes.

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      Creator John on January 6

      I hope to play this game at some point, keep working on it, and keep my pledge to help you make it happen even if cause of life's difficulties it takes a lot longer to make that happen.. good luck, and all the best.

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      Creator Matt Giuca on January 6

      Thanks for the update, Joe. As always, I think I can speak for other backers in saying we respect your honesty and updates.

      I'm glad to hear you're still working on the game. It's a cool concept which I hope one day gets to see the light of day. I'm happy to wait. Hopefully, in the end, we will either get the game, or you will decide enough is enough and release the assets.

      I wish you a swift and happy resolution to your family situation.

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      Creator Edwin Barnett on January 6

      Does this mean that if we haven't asked for a refund, and are not planning to, that eventually we might still receive a product? If so I think I can live with that.

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