“A devastating apocalyptic event has mysteriously annihilated most of the world’s population. No one knows what happened and there are many theories circulating, from the great Malthusian collapse to a technological singularity. According to some legends, it´s the result of a Von Neumann Berserker probe, but nobody can be too sure. Pockets of depraved humans still exist, surrounded by wilderness, abandoned cities left in ruins, and the unknown."
The Silent Roads is an additional dosis of FTL + Fallout, for all of you who finished these games and are craving for a better post apocalyptic roguelike-like.
Robert, a simple man, lives a relatively customary life -if you can call a person residing in an old rundown hut strewn with hay on an abandoned farm in the Pampas normal. A hunter-gatherer, he scavenges for his food on a daily basis. With a strict routine followed every day, he goes about life as well as he possibly can, trying to survive in some of the world’s most arduous conditions. Robert has no recollection of the past. He has few memories of the harder days gone by of conflict, war, blood, and hunger. There is no need for him to remember; why would he want to recollect such ill-fate when he has found solitude in this quiet unspoiled place that he now calls home?
Robert lives by these principles:
- Free will
- Procedural scenarios and combat situations
- Turn based combat, switchable to real time
- Day/night cycle
- Algorithmic AI and combat variables
- Simple interface but deep, complex mechanics
- Single Player
- Permanent death
We believe a game should always include the right mix between proven formulas and the unexpected, which is why over many cups of coffee we have come up with our own twists that think will engage and thrill the adventurer.
Our twists include:
1. World and Enemy Persistency
There are a number of severe threats you will meet along your epic journey, but there will continue to be one enemy that will follow you, persistently hunt you, and if you are unlucky, kill you; which is something to avoid at all costs because death is permanent. You will not endure a so-called ‘final battle’ standoff with him, but instead it will be a case of an everlasting game of ‘cat and mouse’ – sometimes you will even pleasure in being the predator, but at times you will also inevitably be the mouse.
2. Combat Psychology
Throughout the game you will be required to use intelligence and quick wit. Combat psychology and special strategies, not necessarily pertaining to physical warfare, will be needed as you approach each individual challenge.
3. Combat Awareness
Before engaging in any kind of battle, you will be required to make a series of decisions. These decisions will always keep you on your feet, helping you to possibly avoid an untimely death. One of the videos posted here shows you this pre-combat moment of truth.
4. Unpredictable AI
The implementation of unpredictable AI, which is triggered by different situations and the smallest of details, will keep you on your toes and add an element of surprise. We studied Ellie's intelligence on "The Last of us", and think we can do a better job.
5. Countless enemies
We don't like a limited one-on-one combat in every encounter. We love FTL, but we always enjoy the possibility of fighting a whole town like in Fallout. We are building an engine that could theoretically put you in front of dozens of enemies at a time. A battle with multiple enemies and sometimes, an impossible battle that you might still choose to fight. (we said free will, and it includes the free will for being suicidal!)
6. Impossible battles
Have you noticed that every game has a carefully crafted battle almost perfectly aligned to your capabilities? That's fine with us, only we think that in real situations, some impossible scenarios might occur, so it would be more realistic to add some locations where combat could become a nearly insurmountable challenge. Do you remember attacking the military HQ in Grand Theft Auto? We are looking into the same kind of situation, except for the unrealistic, unlimited enemies. There's another image that has been part of our discussions. If you can recall Star Wars: Jedi Knight, at some point you would find yourself overlooking an Empire Fortress full of Stormtroopers in formation. You knew that making a sound or being seen would send all enemies in pursuit, with infinite odds against you. That kind of suspense and tension is something we want to replicate.
7. Our own secret sauce
We want to avoid the spoiler here. If we reveal this too early, our unique concept might get swiped by one of the big gaming studios and turned into a boring, soul-less 3D franchise! Nonetheless, we can let you know that we found a sweet spot between FTL -Faster than light-, Fallout, Minecraft and Jagged Alliance. Something related to the higher CPU capabilities of today + complex algorithms. Staying Away from Stereotypes – What we want to Avoid These days, it´s difficult to find a game in this genre that doesn´t involve fighting countless mutated creatures such as insects or infected vermin, and this is something we plan to steer clear of in The Silent Roads. The same goes for long boring combat situations that result in nothing. Other things you will surely not find in our game are generic concepts that many developers like to add for no apparent reason such as farming, running errands or leveling over nonthreatening creatures. Our protagonist does not have superhuman powers. What he does possess is a keen intellect and a relentless will.
Set in six different locations across South America where the majority of the remaining population have migrated after the hardships they have endured, Silent Roads will take you on a journey across rugged and desolate landscapes, where Robert, the game’s protagonist must survive. A lonely man with little other human interaction, Robert is accompanied by his faithful companion, Sparky, and sometimes a mysterious crow that can either choose to assist the main character or just stand by and watch what unfolds.The game features a vast, beautiful, mysterious world with more than 240 explorable areas. Robert chooses to head north. With his own personal quest in mind, he traverses difficult land.
Each region is rather unique, has its own set of characteristics, geographical features, and of course its own pitfalls and dangers. And each has its own characteristics, feeding an algorithm for differentiated combat and looting. The weather is unpredictable and harsh, which is not helped by the thick fog of war present in unexplored areas. Each time you enter the vicinity of a new region, part of that thick fog will lift, revealing only a couple of options around you.
1. The Desert
The first region you will be expected to traverse is the Desert. Desolate and cruel, the Desert offers little hope and only the toughest survive. There is little shelter, and what cover there is, it is poor and inadequate. The Desert, a mysterious place without stealth possibilities except by night, is a place of misfortune.
People are sparse, and those few remaining survivors are desperate. Ravished and plagued by war, these people will show you no mercy and will stop at nothing. If you are not careful and lose focus, these underhanded marauders will win, stealing your only supplies and perhaps even your life.
The Desert is the focus of phase 1. Make sure you check the concept art at the bottom of this page and also the different updates on this perilous territory.
2. The Andes
The second region you will find yourself immersed in is the formidable Andes. Full of unexplored caves, caverns, and chasms that run deep into the mountain ranges, there is the constant risk of a deadly ambush, forcing you to remain alert and on your guard at all times. The climate is no better – it is unforgiving and unpredictable, which is why a person heading in this direction must have compelling reasons to explore it. When facing the imposing range, Robert will feel like he is about to enter the Moria ruins where darkness is prominent, evil is omnipresent, and the derelict landscape will engulf you in fear. This is a test for the fittest and the most fearless. If you do manage to survive, you will come out to be one of the strongest and most seasoned survivors.
The third region where you will find yourself is Amazonia, the last untouched pocket of rainforest, deep in the heart of South America. The lush beauty is awe-inspiring with the lofty exotic trees and cascading waterfalls. With plentiful water and food supplies of wild game, berries, and plants, you will never go hungry. The humid climate allows you to enjoy the pristine pools of water along the way, but beware, the Amazonia, although it appears to be paradise, is teeming with deadly snakes, spiders and piranhas, adding an extra risk. The labyrinth of trees, flora and fauna will confuse and it is easy to get disorientated and lost. Make it through alive and you will be rewarded, because among the towering trees in the midst of the world’s largest forest lies civilization’s most advanced and guarded city, which is the only region you will discover to be booming.
4. The Oil Towers
The Oil Rig As you head eastbound, you will find yourself stuck in a bleak desert where the sun is so powerful the sand is charred. With its endless rolling dunes that are infested with scorpions and snakes, you will feel in no-man’s land. After days of navigating the cryptic dunes, you will find yourself at the sea, which is both dark and mystifying. During your adventure, you will eventually fall upon an abandoned Oil Rig, which has been conditioned and transformed into an outpost. The tower is heaving with brainwashed followers, all of whom answer to the terrifying commands of the rig’s deranged cult leader. For almost two decades he has terrorized the lands around him, causing havoc among the area. Completely devoid of empathy, why would anyone want to risk going near this God forsaken place?
5. The Beach
Unspoiled white sandy beaches that stretch for miles and miles are inviting, and they will most certainly flirt with you, making you believe you are in paradise. Towering palms line the beachfront in front of the alluring sea that shares the same color as a beautiful polished jade stone. Small ripples break on the sandy shore, inviting you to swim out to the depths of the ocean beyond. It tempts you and calls out your name, whispering in the winds, begging you to enter, but would you dare? Water and food is plentiful, and the coconuts that hang at the base of the palm’s fronds offer nourishment and a source of energy. What could possible go wrong in utopia?
6. Machu Picchu
Standing 8,000 ft. above sea-level in the midst of a tropical mountain forest, the mystifying ruins of Machu Picchu, the lost city, can be reached. Shrouded in a ubiquitous mist, the ancient ruins rise above, urging you to investigate further.
Awe-inspired, you will be able to explore the world that remained one of the best kept secrets for centuries – Machu Picchu preserves an unparallel aura of magic and mystery. Here you will experience beauty, peril and inevitably you will discover a big secret waiting to be uncovered.
One of the biggest parts of our game is the story. We really want the players to connect to Robert and the rest of the characters; to feel they are real. We are making a big effort to get the best possible actors and actresses for our adventure. The story has a lot of dark moments, but Robert never looses his sense of humor.
We've been recording for hours, the following are several examples of our sessions and the final product below! Enjoy!
The final version:
The final version:
The final version:
The final version:
A last good line of Robert encountering the Cultists:
Combat is an essential part of the experience when playing The Silent Roads and one of the features which our team has devoted the most time to.
- This is a demo of basic gameplay. We expect our first bet to look much better and different too, as we are considering dropping the frames around the enemies and several other improvements. Let us know your thoughts!
The core of the game has been perfectly balanced with a unique combat system that depends on a number of different algorithms. Balanced does not mean you never find an impossible battle, but rather, that even the toughest scenario obeys a careful set of rules. Our algorithms randomize numerous variables, creating a unique battle experience each time you enter a conflict zone.
Our protagonist is intelligent and quick-witted, and he possesses more mental resources than physical ones. Each time he decides upon entering a hostile area, the player will need to assess the situation and risk. As the player moves forward closer to his final destination, the game will continue to offer varying challenges not necessarily increasingly difficult. With the knowledge the players receive prior to combat, they will have the choice whether to take the risk or head in another direction – a decision they must make wisely. Think carefully before going full force into a battle – you only have one chance as death is permanent. As soon as the player decides to advance, anything can happen. At that moment, the unique algorithm will randomize a set of specific variables with certain constraints based on the location, enemies, world persistence, and any additional threats that may be lurking in the Silent Roads realms.
When danger is near, the only natural response is to fight back or run for your life, but running away will just push you further away from your goals. Dare to fight and you'll find that Robert’s willpower is hard to match, and you can nearly always topple your enemies if you play smart. In The Silent Roads, combat is turn based, however, if the player does not pause, the action will continue by default. Combat is a huge feature of The Silent Roads, but the player is not limited to only fighting.
Depending on the situation that Robert finds himself in, there are a number of different actions he can perform other than using violence. Manipulation tactics, deceit, and even begging, can all be used to navigate through an area safely, bringing you much closer to your goals, find new secrets and overcome your enemies. Unlike other games, The Silent Road’s combat scenes are realistic, emulating real life dynamics. In some cases, combat can last only a few seconds for the simple fact that it may only take a single shot to either kill or seriously disable an opponent or, if you are unlucky, yourself.
Summarizing, our combat system falls between Fallout 2 and Faster than Light (FTL), however, our own twists and turns have been included to make the player’s experience a unique. The Silent Roads requires intelligence, with luck playing only a minimal role. Although the game will allow you to save your progress as you navigate through difficult regions, you must start from the very beginning should your character find an untimely death. The neural helmet The neural helmet is a unique item within the game system. It offers our character the ability to better control his body, direct his actions and plan his strategies. It is not central to our gaming experience, but it gives you the possibility of being inside our character's head and leverage his intellect in ways that can help him overcome overwhelming odds. We are currently discussing if this unique item will give the adventurer the possibility of going back in time to one single point of the game every time he dies. Something like Edge of Tomorrow: live, die, repeat. More on Robert It's easy to underestimate Robert. He is an average guy, and his fearsome enemies will tend to disregard him as a threat. They will commit this mistake very often, resulting in a bad outcome for them.
Robert´s mind occasionally wanders, considering alternatives for his future and his loneliness. He often perches himself on his favorite rock, that sits in front the shack that he calls home. With his neck stretched back, he allows the powerful beating sun to bounce off his face, warming his entire body, helping him to recall his younger, more blameless days. Day in day out he goes about the same pattern, which consists of short bursts of sleep on an uncomfortable bed of hay, something which he has grown accustomed to over the years, with Sparky watching his back. He is, as Mad Max, a man reduced to one instinct: survival. He loves hunting boar and Sparky is also a valuable ally for this. The dog is young and full of energy, and has a fierce resolve like his master. He does not leave Robert´s side and is always standing watch and running behind armadillos and rabbits. In spite of several years of peace and tranquility, Sparky hasn´t lost one bit of his innate watchful and wary side. He is also a friend.
Occasionally, Robert will muster up the energy to walk 80 km east where a town, once struck by poverty and great misfortune, is slowly coming to life. It is in this town, still haunted by the past, that he has the opportunity for some limited human interaction. As far as he can tell, the other humans seem somewhat normal, but then again what is normal anymore? Robert takes momentary pleasure in the simplicity of life there. Like all other local men, he engages in friendly games, gambling over a flat beer in a derelict bar overcome by flies. As they throw down their cards and shout, they casually swat at the stubborn flies hovering around their bearded faces.
The trip is long, tedious and difficult. The dirt roads fill the air with dust, making it difficult to breathe and see. His visits to town are few and far between, but he always makes sure to stay a number of days at a time, making his bar sessions worthwhile. He often puts off the arduous trip back home to the lonely Pampas. Flies, reptiles, the sticky humid air that is difficult to inhale, and the dust-filled skies always make the trip seemingly longer and lonelier. When he heads back, his feet swell and uncomfortable blisters sting his heels. He numbs his mind by trying to refocus his thoughts. The jumping hares that flirt with the unused train tracks somehow remind him of the days gone by. What is so captivating about the old crumbling train bridge that cuts across the Second River? He typically rests on the bridge, feeling safe as a result of the enhanced awareness provided by the elevated point. Dangling his legs aimlessly over the bridge’s edge while elegant dragonflies buzz haphazardly around his head, he tries to block unpleasant memories, to no avail. Back home in the deathly quietness, days go by slowly, silently, as thick honey dripping from a beehive.
One day, after noon, Robert’s peace is finally broken. An acquaintance from town visits him with unsettling news, of people searching for him – outlanders. They had gone from home to home banging on doors, demanding any news on Robert and his brother’s whereabouts. Upon hearing the news, Robert shows little surprise – it is almost as if he knows his time has come. The visitor recounts a bloody scene between the outsiders and an innocent old man who knew nothing. The thugs had threatened the man, shaking him for any word on Robert or his sibling. The old man, claiming he knew nothing of Robert, did not give in. Frustrated by the lack of information, they beat him badly, knocking him to the ground with a large thump resulting on a broken nose. Those outlanders – Robert knows exactly who they are and what they want- are corrupt agents seeking revenge and searching for something that he and his brother had taken years before. No one really knows who or what these agents do, but one thing is for sure: if their paths ever crossed, it will result in loss of freedom, health or life. Information about the mysterious agents is vague. What is known is that they are powerful, commanding exclusive technology and benefiting from their sheer numbers and organisation.
They are the remaining operatives from the last-standing giant corporation. Somehow they are still functioning and even expanding, filling the grim voids with hate and fear that previous civilizations had left behind. Robert smiles smugly as he recalls the faces of these agents vividly. Every single detail from their odd clothing to their rugged exteriors was implanted in his brain, and as he visualizes them, he shudders, recalling the atrocity they have the power to inflict. It never ceases to amaze him how some men will continue to clash and fight for power even if society has collapsed, even if there is no real power to seize. He has always struggled to comprehend why some men without mercy would continue to try and rise among their peers without any logical reason other than their sick desire to rule. He knows these men too well. He knows what they’re capable of. They are ruthless and evil and they will stop at nothing. With these thoughts in mind,
Robert knows too well that his quiet, undisturbed life in the lowlands of the Pampas is about to come to an end. Robert’s comrade continues with more news on the struggle that followed. The agents have learned that Robert’s brother, whom he had not seen for some time, had left and was headed towards the barren tussock covered land where Peru once stood. His exact whereabouts are unknown, but everybody assumes that people going north will finally end up in the reviving civilization of Machu Picchu. Sweating at the brow, his friend continues, hurriedly explaining to Robert what he had overheard. One of the leaders of the agents, a small and creepy individual with a pitched voice, had gathered a group of his strongest men in haste. They are heading to old Peru. Robert knows he must locate his long-lost brother before the agents do. He needs to pack up quickly and go in search for his sibling. During his epic journey he will try to avoid any contact with the agents, risking a sudden end to his imminent adventure. Robert will sometimes brake the fourth wall, so stay tuned for his thoughts and commentaries. The Enemies Most enemies you will encounter will be humanoid because we already said we don´t approve of spending hours killing mutant ants or scarabs that appear to have endless power. The first chapter of Fallout 2 has always tested our patience...
Each enemy belongs to a different enemy group, all of which have their own agenda or their own mood and morale. You'll also meet neutral entities but your trail is packed with militias, bandits, thugs and cult members.
But humans, while significant, are not the only threat. Rogue drones and even derelict AI with a few cycles of battery life left, guarding ancient farmlands and old military bases with jealousy.
Meeting militia, thugs, aggressive cult-members and blood-thirsty robots is terrifying, but there's a shadow following you around with an ever dark intent. The agents leader, with a special group, is tracking you personally.
As you navigate the mapped regions, the corporation will not be too far behind. With a number of invaluable resources at their disposal, you better remain on guard. They have control on almost everything in the region, the drones, the last existing vehicles, some towns, power supplies, and they are also the chief commanders of a vast and fearsome army of merciless henchmen, all of whom want you, dead or alive. However, there is one thing they do not know. They cannot read your thoughts so they are clueless as to what you are thinking. Also, the group following you is limited to 10 elite agents and their leader.
Should you manage to get rid of this group early in the game, you might enjoy a much greater freedom of action. An ambush maybe?
We are a team of designers/developers/gamers looking to create the deepest possible experience for other gamers who have exceptionally high standards like us. We belong to a gaming era where an intelligent game with a well-crafted plot could transport you to a faraway place and trigger your imagination in ways that the majority of big studio games fail to achieve today. This is the first game of our little indie studio. We are reaching out and inviting you to join our Kickstarter campaign to support this initiative.
We will use the funding to: - Cover the costs of 3 developers to complete coding of the game during the next 2 months. - Complete our soundtrack, expand our art and add nice to haves. - We already have part of the code, a strong team, office space, full storyline, the algorithms and the database with rules and game dynamics.
System Requirements Supported platforms include Windows, OS X, Linux (mainly Ubuntu), Android, iOS, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Wii U, and Wii
Thank You and best regards!
Risks and challenges
Our new plan is focused on minimizing risk. Dividing the project in six, seeking less funding per Region while leveraging agreements with our collaborators, working efficiently; are all actions intended to making this project happen soon. Thanks for your support.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)