A Cartoon-iriffic Minimalist Survival Sidescroller Action Game set in an Alien Rainforest!
A Cartoon-iriffic Minimalist Survival Sidescroller Action Game set in an Alien Rainforest!
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Native is a Cartoon-iriffic 2D survival side-scroller set in an alien rainforest. You play as the Native Guy (epic main character name pending) and must figure out how to live in the strange and dangerous neon-tastic jungle.
The Rainforest - The bioluminescent rainforest will bask the player in a neon glow no matter where ya go. It's teeming with unique creatures, bizarre foods and nifty foliage. Feel free to explore it as much as you like then munch on a HearthApple to teleport home! After beating the game you get the honor of naming this mysterious forest.
*Note* - If the initial goal is met there will undoubtedly be an option for procedurally generated levels when you create a new save.
Fluid Action Controls - Meant especially for a controller, the movements of Native Guy include directional dodging, double jump, fast fall, crouching, dagger combos, blocking, parrying and a skillshot bow'n'arrow. The controls were built with speedrunning in mind as the initial "endgame" focus. Spamming dodge does NOT save time... I know it's fun but stop doing it, JUST STOP ALREADY.
Minimalist UI - No more excessive stack sizes, massive grids or walls of texts to deal with. You'll never have to gather 4,9378,1236,267898 (roughly 4 bajillion) twigs or look at headache-inducing numbers like that ever again!
Choose-Your-Own-Loot System - No longer will you be a hapless victim to the dreaded RNG. You get to take what you want from slain enemies, allowing you to craft armor and weapons in the order you want!
Craft! - The demo currently has 24 items, 14 recipes, and 2 full 4-piece armor sets to be discovered. If the minimum is met, the plan is to greatly increase all of these numbers for the Steam Early Access release. Anything beyond will directly result in even more stuff to be found and crafted.
There are 3 Types of creatures in Native, Critters, Prey and the PREDATORS! Each one is encountered differently, but all drop sweet, sweet loot, of your choosing, upon death.
Dynamic Combat - No hack-n-slash to see here! Every battle will be deadly and engaging, forcing you to pay attention to attack patterns and effectively use all of your maneuvers. There are many 1-2 shot kill moves with obvious telegraphs on ALL enemy types, it won't be easy.
- Critters, such as the purple Buzzabug, will spawn randomly around the forest and have a neutral type of aggression. They will not attack you unless provoked, but that doesn't make them any easier to fight! Loot from critters is typically used to make 'active' items, such as poisons and the HearthApple (teleports you home).
- Prey are quite skiddish and elusive. Approaching a prey type creature without tip-toeing behind them, or landing a well aimed arrow shot, will scare them away.
- They have to be Tracked by following a series of clues consisting of broken branches and footprints, in order to find them. If you go down the wrong path and pass over too many incorrect clues, the creature will jump in the bushes and relocate to a new spawn in the forest. Each Prey creature has a full armor set to be crafted!
- Predators roam the jungle and don't take kindly to anyone encroaching on their turf for too long. For example, the Hexther will growl and shake nearby bushes if you're in his section of the jungle for more than 30 seconds, before leaping out of the woods and pouncing on you!
- Once you've been pounced, an active cutscene is triggered to mash a random face button to get out of his pin. This will be a common theme with the Predators, they are all essentially Mini-Boss encounters. Each Predator will also have an entire armor set to be crafted from their parts.
*Note* - There are stretch goal plans to add some "true" boss fights. They will have their own room for a more frantic encounter and a greater range of attack patterns. The bosses will also have some epic excecution related cutscenes as a part of their combat flow. Battling them will likely be a one time encounter in each playthrough.
YOU WILL DIE A LOT! Native is not immediately easy and you might even die a few times while playing the tutorial. Do not get discouraged though! There are easy mode difficulty settings for beginners who just want to learn the recipes and explore for the first time. The plan is to expand the range of options a lot when creating a new save for the difficulty settings, complete with sliders for hunger/thirst intervals etc.
Normal mode allows you to respawn, but resets your progress for that night. The game auto-saves each time you survive a night, which is about every 8 minutes.
True HARDCORE mode available (1 death = game over) for dedicated players who have become a Native of the land!
*Note* - Hardcore Mode has the original timings for the hunger and thirst meters that I balanced the game around for my enjoyment. You will barely have a surplus of materials, even with perfect play, (MUAHAHAHA). It is only for the bravest of players.
OBSCURITY - Some gameplay mechanics are melded with the environment art and hidden in the form of audio cues. Players are forced to observe their surroundings rather than having their hand held with blatant highlights and blinking indicators. Predators growl to indicate when they are stalking you, prey will make a sound to tell they have respawned, and all collectible items are outlined in black. The items are noticeable but still require some observational skills to spot, sort of like an I-spy minigame.
The music of Native will be produced by Adam Lee (1AD7 Productions), a longtime friend and REAL musician (I'm a fake one and brought him on board after the people started demanding some stuff made up of ACTUAL notes and chords in Native). He has worked on some animated shorts and collaborated with me in the last few Global Game Jams on the sound/music side of things.
Here is the song that he created for the trailer:
The rest of the game sounds are being made by me, Trickeri, with the goal of trying to meet somewhere in between the organic and the electronic in order to create a believable alien soundscape. I also try to sneak in sounds from my cats into the game audio as much as possible. It turns out they are great voice actors.
Here is the rainforest ambient loop that is currently in the demo:
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NOTES ON THE GOALS
$10,000 - With the minimum amount met, this ensures that I can continue working on the game full-time until Early Access release. The money will also go towards taking Native to another show to promote it (Submitting it to EGX next).
Here are the main things that I am planning on adding for the release:
- More enemies, items, levels and recipes
- Procedurally generated level option when creating a new game
$27,000 - I'm going to be honest here, most of the stretch goals are going to be in large chunks because it is DIRECTLY translating into hiring an additional person. I'm going to be stretched pretty thin if just the minimum is met so I can't promise much else without some extra hands on deck. The money is not going into my Megayacht fund, I SWEAR.
If this goal is achieved there will be a full-time artist on deck to help, which very much means a NEW BIOME! Yes, you heard me, a whole new part of the forest with completely different foliage and lighting to look at. Heck it might not even be a forest! It depends on what you guys / the artist feels like adding. Also an intro cut-scene and some small semblance of a story will start to take shape.
I want to add a Day / Night cycle at this tier but it has been proving difficult and cannot be guaranteed until some of my other duties are freed up, allowing me to devote more time to finding a solution.
$33,000 - A part-time programmer will be hired to help add 2 Full-on boss encounters complete with lots of running and panic. The first one will be the regular Hexther but recolored and with a tail + stinger. The second boss is a mystery and will be revealed upon reaching this goal.
$40,000 - More programming assistance will be funded so that a Poison System can be added. Poisons can be crafted and applied to either your arrows or daggers for different attributes.
$50,000 - Networked Leaderboards will really create a "community" feeling around the game and bring it to life. I want speedrunning to be a core part of the demographic which is why these leaderboards are so crucial. The hand-placed levels will always be an option so that the speedrunning category isn't forced to deal with random level layouts.
- Creature Horde Mode would consist of being placed in a jungle gladiator arena where the player has to battle tons of creatures with increasing difficulty. Ideally the leaderboards would be integrated with this features as well.
$80,000 - Add an animator to the team to free me up for programming a third set of of enemies (including another Boss reveal) and the day/night cycle will surely be hammered out.
$150,000 - Hire some serious help to implement an online Co-Op mode. If this goal is reached, I will actually be so stoked because this game would be too fun to play online with friends, in both survival and horde mode. Also, I'll cry tears of stress-joy for a prolonged amount of time.
$200,000 - PS4 & Xbox One versions! I really wish I could guarantee Vita because I enjoy mine so much but from what I can gather it is one of the most difficult optimization challenges. I will also cry tears of stress-joy live on stream and probably for the rest of the development process as a guess.
The Game - A copy of the game comes automatically with the $10 tier. This is a price exclusive to the Kickstarter. Once the Early Access release happens the price will increase to $15, so get it now while you can!
SECRET BETA ACCESS - Once you unlock the secret beta access you will be invited to a secret folder that I will update anytime a major feature is completed, (roughly every 3 - 5 weeks). I will update the build with bug fixes every couple days though depending on how urgent they are and how many you guys find. The secret beta will STOP receiving updates 2 - 3 months prior to release so that there is still some exciting new stuff for you guys to discover in the Early Access version.
Maps + Recipe Guide (In digital PDF form only) - This guidebook will greatly assist you in navigating the forest and crafting goodies. Without it the game will be difficult, but with it you should be able to breeze through everything and gain the satisfaction of being a big fat cheater!
The Art Book (Digital PDF Reward and Physical version) - The digital art book will be broken into three pieces for the different reward tiers. It will consist of a compilation of scans of sketchbook concepts / doodles, scrapped digital drawing ideas, a nice picture of the final sprites and assorted cries for help, food, and sleep that are buried in our flash files. Here are some examples!
OST Digital Download - The OST will feature about 4 - 5 songs created by Adam Lee for the trailers and biomes of the world of Native. I will also include some of the ambient loops so you can fall asleep and dream peacefully (OR HAVE SOME HORRIFIC NIGHTMARES) to the sounds of the rainforest.
Official Nuldrums / Native T-Shirt - These shirts are pretty sweet, 90% cotton and 10% spandex they feel like some future-space-jersey-things, check em out!
3D Printed Moosehog Figurine - You can own a figurine of the Moosehog himself, standing idly by. We are aiming for them to be about 3 - 4 inches tall and wide.
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Add extra rewards to your current tier by keeping the same one and adding an addition donation amount to it. Leave a note in your post-campaign survey telling us what you want it to go towards.
Extra Copies of The Game - $10 These will be distributed as Steam keys.
Physical Art Book - $30 (No international shipping as an addon)
Maps + Recipe Guide (In digital PDF form only) - $10
OST Digital Download - $5
Official Nuldrums / Native T-Shirt - $30 (No international shipping as an addon yet)
3D Printed Moosehog Figurine - $25 (No international shipping as an addon yet)
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Troy Maynard - @Trickeri, Twitch Stream
Lead Designer & All The Things
I've been designing games since I was a kid and steadily worked on accruing the skills needed to bring a video game to life. Native is the most complete game I've built so far and hopefully the start of bringing the Nuldrums into existence.
On a side note, I've been streaming the development process as much as possible, the stream has ran over 300 days! Feel free to swing by anytime to say hi and check on the progress. If you need help with something gamedev related, either I or one of my cool viewers is usually available to provide some insight.
Max Mayhew - maxmayhew.info, @MaxOkay
Primary Artist & Web Dev Guru
"Computers and art are sweet. I draw stuff for native. 8)" - Max
Adam Lee (1AD7 Productions)
Adam was born in a world of sound. From banging on his mother's pots to creating songs as he played with his toys in his room. He then got into making beats and realized that creating his own sounds was the way to go. Adam graduated from Living Arts College with a degree in Applied Science in Audio Production. He went on to mix live sounds from big venues, small local churches, sound engineering and designing, and scoring for small projects.
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Risks and challenges
*STANDARD VIDEO GAME DISCLAIMER* - Video games are unfortunately prone to setbacks because as you increase the amount of interconnected features the complexity level goes up exponentially, causing many unexpected things to occur. The largest risk (for the minimum goal) is that the release date could be pushed back by 1-3 months if it isn't the right time to put it on the market or if some freakishly hideous bugs show up.
STRETCH GOAL TECHNICAL CHALLENGES: If any of the more technical stretch goals are met (local co-op, day/night cycle, fully fledged boss fights, creature horde mode, console releases and ESPECIALLY online co-op) there is a strong chance they won't be finished in time for the Early Access release date. The technical difficulty for the stretch goals range from "I know exactly how to do it, I just don't have the time" to "I have absolutely no idea how to implement this and need to hire an expert" so results will vary. They will definitely be rolled out DURING the Early Access and before the full release (shooting for a "Full" release 1 year following).
MINIMUM GOAL GUARANTEE: I can guarantee the amount of content for the minimum, just the time frame could skew slightly for reasons mentioned above. Everything I listed in the minimum consists of work well within my capabilities so the release date estimate is fairly accurate. The framework is in place to easily add items and recipes as well as the foundations for the procedurally generated level option.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (31 days)