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A new adventure game made of clay. From the Neverhood creators - made possible because of YOU, our generous supporters.
A new adventure game made of clay. From the Neverhood creators - made possible because of YOU, our generous supporters.
A new adventure game made of clay. From the Neverhood creators - made possible because of YOU, our generous supporters.
18,126 backers pledged $974,578 to help bring this project to life.

Thank You All For a Great First 24 Hours!

Wow. We're just blown away by the show of support from everyone so far... not just that you're backing the project, but the way everyone is working so hard to spread the word about the game and pull more people to the site. I always see KS creators make references to how their backers are part of "the team", and to be honest, before now, I always thought they were pandering to their backers a little bit just to make them feel good. Well, I now know I was wrong... I can see how much all of you are going out of your way to spread the word, share it with others, offer ideas and other means of support, anything you can do to help... basically, I see you investing yourselves emotionally in the project as much as we have here, and that just humbles and amazes me. No matter what happens with this campaign, succeed or fail, I've already gained a new level of appreciation and connection with our fans and supporters far greater than ever before, and for that I'm grateful.

That said, we must succeed! Doug, Ed and I know what Armikrog is going to be, and it's a game I want... no... I need to play! So please keep at it, please continue to reach out to everyone in your personal networks and share with them the Joy of the Armikrog. We've done amazingly well out of the gate, 175K in the first 24 hours, KS Project of the Day on day 2, but we need to push hard all the way through. If we all continue working together on this we can make it happen.

As a way of thanking you for your support, we're going to open up our doors to you via these updates and share with you the process of creating stop motion animation for games... seems only fair that you should be privy to this info as team members, right? We get so much interest from people concerning the process of stop motion, there just seems to be something about it that connects with people at an emotional level. I think it's because it's the most magical yet accessible form of animation, imbuing life in otherwise inanimate objects that we know are real and we can reach out and touch. So over the next few weeks we'll take you though the process, offering you studio tours, work in progress reels, concept and production art, and some step by step "how it's done" videos.

So to start, lets take a look at where it all starts, with the storyboards and animatic. For the stop motion piece you see at the beginning of the KS movie, we started with storyboards, which as most of you know are basically a series sequential drawings that tell the story comic book style. These were done by master story teller Doug, who pitched his ideas with his first pass at the boards. After several brainstorming sessions, the boards and the story were finalized, allowing us to move on to creating the heart of any animated project, the animatic. The animatic is where the boards are brought into video editing software, dropped into a timeline, timed out, set to dialogue, music and sound effects, and then played back as a movie. It's the first time a project is seen as a movie, which is where you can really start to see what's working and what isn't in terms of clarity, entertainment, drama, and in this case, humor.

So here, for your viewing pleasure, is one of the animatics for the opening sequence.

Enjoy, and once again, thank you for you support!

MikeD

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    1. Inkan - Armikrog.Army$4.96 on

      As a later add-on to this comments thread, please consider to "join the army".

      Curious about the Armikrog. Army? Add $4.96: ('96 in honor of The Neverhood release, and 4 hyper-intelligent Earthworm brains all thinking about how awesome Armikrog will be) to your pledge and change your tag line to show you've enlisted. It's a fun way to help the project by putting in a little extra.
      You Got This! Seize the clay!

    2. Michael Vezina on

      I didn't really mean a "Hey look, it's Neverhood in here!" I get that such a move is a no-no. *Sad face* Just saying, that once upon a time I actually read the entire Chronicle (useful for learning Hoborg's backstory), and was wondering if armakrog was going to happen in one of those worlds in a non-explicit, nudge-nudge sort of way. Just me being fanciful is all. Excited for this one any way it turns out.

      Also extendo-belching FTW. Excellent gag. Also the Teddy Bear Retrieval Unit.

    3. Duck on

      You should see if you can hand out a flyer or something at E3,
      Would be a perfect way to generate more buz about the game!
      This needs to happen, it's been such a long time since a Stop Motion games came out. :)

    4. Vojtěch Palme on

      O boy! I got so excited when a friend of mine sent me a link to this kickstarter! The Neverhood chronicles quite drasticaly formed my artistic development, might just as well be the reason why I ended up as movie comositor and animator :)
      It was also one of the 1st games I ever played and we even formed sort of a club around it with bunch pals. Solving the game (which was quite complicated since non of us knew any English :D ) making cartoons and claymation.. hack Im even signed on my id as Clogg :D
      Take my money and have fun working!

    5. TenNapel on

      Like Mike said, if Klaymen shows up in our game, and EA lawyer could show up at our door. It could prevent our game from being released with a single cease and desist letter. No can do.

    6. Devin on

      @Massimo

      You sir, have just stated one of the many features that needs to be in this new game.
      Was i the only one who kept eating fruit to see of i could get an even bigger belch?

    7. Vince Vazquez
      Superbacker
      on

      Michael Vezina, I too was wondering/hoping if Armikrog can tie into the Neverhood in any way. But let's not get our hopes up - that game was published by EA under their Dreamworks label (remember how the first Medal of Honor was technically a tie-in to Saving Private Ryan?). I'm assuming that the world of The Neverhood is off-limits if EA still controls the trademark and stuff. I mean, let's cross our fingers... but let's also be prepared for a little disappointment if Klayman doesn't show up in Armikrog, yeah?

      Armikrog will be amazing whether it's tied into that wonderful, creative, quirky universe or whether it stands on it's own! :)

    8. Lukáš Duběda on

      Oh, hell yeah! Massive belching for the win! I'm all with Massimo on this one! :D

    9. Massimo Fiorentino on

      One question: Will there be massive belching? Consider it a feature request. :-)

    10. Michael Vezina on

      Just last week I popped in the Neverhood soundtrack and bounced around while cooking.... 1/2 cause I loved it, and 1/2 cause I wanted to see if my kids thought I was weird. They didn't even blink. I asked what they thought of the music. "It's pretty cool". When we all know it's damn Nutty! I guess I (and my kids by extension) share some of the strange quirkiness that all the creators have put into these games, and I am thrilled to see your team back together for this amazing project. I told my wife (whom i gave, as a teenager, a printout of Doug's Klato son of Klaymen comic), and she started singing "Operator plays a little ping pong".

      Will this game occur on any of the world described in "The Neverhood Chronicles"?

    11. When I do, you won't know. on

      Brian Fargo and his twitter brought me here. Where does he get the time to play? Or search for the best games?

    12. Waqqas Hanafi on

      So, how about some better stretch goals?

    13. Vince Vazquez
      Superbacker
      on

      Never played the Neverhood personally - until GOG puts it up on their site, I likely never will - but whenever I think of the bizarre, unique, fresh, and exciting games that developers were putting out for PC in the 90's, The Neverhood always comes to mind. You know how striking that game has to be so that I never forgot it, never having even played it!?! They don't make'em like that anymore. Except for this game here :)

      For what it's worth, I did totally spoil the game for myself by watching the whole thing on Youtube :)

      Anyway, to help spread the word, I took advantage of the user-submitted articles on PCGamesN and did this: http://www.pcgamesn.com/s/armikrog-spiritual-successor-neverhood-production-also-seeks-crowdfunding. Good luck guys!

    14. Anubis on

      I've played Neverhood when I was in my primary school. I'll put some $ into the pot to bring my childhood back ;)

      cheers

    15. Devin on

      so when do we get milestone rewards for us backers? ;^)

    16. luciash d’ being on

      This is going to be awesome ! Whatever the name of the game is ... Armikrog, Amrikrog or Arimkrog (as mistyped in the $5 and $20 pledge descriptions on the left side) ... just sayin' ... ;)

    17. Devin on

      @Jessica

      couldnt have worded it better myself.

    18. Elliot | Armikrog. Army - Grunt on

      Honestly I really hope you guys also just show more of you being you. Not necessarily gaming, just your interaction together. I think that was one of my favorite things when years later I saw the Neverhood making of video which just showed you guys horsing around. As many of you inspired us, maybe tell us what inspired you. What drives you?

    19. Missing avatar

      Jessica Holden on

      Ridiculously excited for this. The Neverhood is quite possibly my favourite game. Ever. It's certainly the one I kept going back to play more than any other, throughout my childhood. About time for another play through, I think!

      If this game is anything at all like it, I just know I'll love it. And from what I've seen so far, it looks fantastic. I haven't been this excited about a game in a long time!

      It's good to know there are still some developers out there making adventure games!

    20. Marcin Konowalczyk on

      I see I'm not alone in my everlasting love towards Neverhood. I think I'm just another typical example of a child growing up on this game; and I'm proud of it. The absurdity and the awesomeness of the humor in Neverhood have scarred me for the rest of my life and i couldn't be more grateful for it. One of my earliest memories is singing 'Cough Drops' with my Dad and walking though the doorstep and stopping for a while as Klayman did (when the PC was loading the next room). I am still scared every time I watch the scene with green dragon running after Klayman and I always cough involuntarily in 'Skat Radio' every time i listen to it. (close to the 40th second of the track) I love you guys dearly and I'm very grateful that you're making more projects happen. :)

    21. Tyler Kedziorski on

      With how much time I spent a kid playing through games like Earthworm Jim and The Neverhood, as soon as I heard about this I jumped on the chance to put as much down on it as I could possibly afford. With you guys behind the wheel again, I'm positive I'm in for another masterpiece of art.

      I'm definitely looking forward to the behind the scenes stuff as I've always enjoyed looking at the work process of creating games like these, especially the stop motion animation and the writing process that goes into it. (Writer here, with a bit of a knack for sarcastic humor) so I'm hoping to really get a sense of what goes into the making of games that I've always really enjoyed.

      Really, though, thanks for making this all possible for us by starting the project. I'm sure every fan of the games you've created have a bigger sense of gratitude than you do for us.

    22. Devin on

      bought it day one back when i was just 9.
      its on of those games you just pick up and play when all those newer games loose their "new"

    23. Devin on

      I still play the neverhood.

    24. Kazimierz Firszt on

      I spent many hours playing The Neverhood. I'm looking forward to get this one (so is my family).

    25. Mark Barrett on

      Thank you guys for creating awesome. I can't tell you how your work has inspired me. After Earthworm Jim, Neverhood, and Skullmonkeys my desire to do art and create my own worlds rocketed to a new level. Not to mention how MANY MANY MANY times I listened to the Neverhood soundtrack. Now I'm a grown up, sort of :) And as an artist on the upcoming Plants vs.Zombies 2 I will tell you I unashamedly looked at old sprites and concept art you guys created to inspire me. You're huge. Thank you!

    26. Nina Christensen on

      Eep, I'm so happy I randomly came across this page today! I loved playing The Neverhood and I have the best memories of my sister, brother and I solving the puzzles together and just enjoying that special universe. The pace, the music, the darkness. Thank you for that beautiful game! I can't wait to see what you come up with this time.

    27. Moeez Siddiqui on

      Pretty much pitch perfect transition from animatic to actual clay cutscene. Impressive.

    28. Missing avatar

      takopus on

      I've been playing videogames constantly for last 26 years, and i just want to say that The Neverhood is one of my most loved games. Thank you guys so much for it and best of luck with Armikrog - i already can't wait to see it!

    29. Missing avatar

      Vitaly Makarkin on

      Awesome Keep doing it!

    30. Pencil Test Studios, Inc. Creator on

      @Andrii: Don't worry, we will!
      -MikeD

    31. Apanasik Andrey on

      Nice video. Good luck, guys. I'm waiting for this game =3

    32. Missing avatar

      Matthew Nicholson on

      I'd so give up my computer programming job to work on this game and play with clay, hah.

    33. Andrii on

      I mean, it's always interesting to watch how much work goes into different processes like filming, making stryboards, voicing, writing music, sound design, level design, character design and everyday life at a studio.

    34. Andrii on

      It would be cool if you'd post some short documentaries for backers like Double Fine does. I know, they have a dedicated crew filming them and you don't, but even some iPhone videos about making of this game would be awesome to watch.

    35. Sir Jordi
      Superbacker
      on

      Thanks nfor sharing the production process!
      I will be great staing by your side during all the filming process!

    36. Ira on

      Well, our support is not out of the blue, you do have a proven legacy, so I clicked the $75 button without thinking twice. Doug and Terry played on my screen and for years later in my earphones, I'd love to see this unique art form stay live :-)

      And here's an idea for a future project - gather enough money to buy the old materials and rights for Neverhood from Lucas and republish it on Unity! I have a feeling a few people would appreciate this enough to donate too, Count me in! Stretch goal - resurrect skullmonkeys!

      And for the rest of you fans of TenNapel, look for his books like Gear and Creature Tech at your favourite book stores, I love his art!

    37. Steve Venezia on

      Earthworm Jim was such a big part of my childhood, and this project oozes with the same charisma and humour. Funny games are a real rarity these days. I love that you went for a traditional point and click adventure, with the even more traditional claymation visuals. It just saddens me that we might have to wait a year to play it! Best of luck with the project.

    38. Manu Nieves on

      I have the feeling Tommynaut is gonna be a very enjoyable guy :)

    39. Pencil Test Studios, Inc. Creator on

      @Laserschwert: There used to be a n old TV show called Movie Magic that I loved. Any time they did an episode on stop motion or visual effects my eyes were glued to the screen -- usually looking in the background behind the interviewee to see what was going on.
      As far as camera moves, yes we'll be moving the camera in gameplay, both with real camera moves and multiplane style shots.
      -MikeD

    40. Michael Stearns on

      Oh cool. Back in the day I showed the behind-the-scenes Neverhood video to just about anybody I could. Even people with no usual interest in games were really taken with that project and getting to see how literally hand-made it was.

    41. Pencil Test Studios, Inc. Creator on

      @Matthew Nicholson: I think you're exactly right -- that's one of the most accurate, concise explanations of the magic of stop motion I've ever heard.
      -MikeD

    42. Laserschwert on

      Yay, animatics!

      And I'm REALLY looking forward to any making of stuff you can bring on. Ever since The Empire Strikes Back all the way to Aardman and the Burton films, I was fascinated by stop-motion animation, and yet I still can't wrap my head around it. I mean, I understand the process, but I just can't figure out how the hell you guys can bring up the patience, attention and care (not to mention nerves of steel to not bump a thing and put a week's work to waste) it takes for stop-motion to work, because to me it seems like such a FRIGGINGLY INSANE AMOUNT OF WORK (let alone the artistry of character animation, without setting keyframes and scrubbing through a timeline in 3ds max or Maya ;) ).

      And II've got a question regarding the pitch video: In one of the last shots (which appears to be a - probably preliminary in-game shot), there's a dolly camera move across the scenery. Are you seriously going to pull off live action camera moves during point-and-click gameplay? That'd be amazing!

    43. Missing avatar

      Matthew Nicholson on

      There's two reasons I think clay animation works so well: 1) real life lighting, with none of the computer generated approximations and yet 2) clay characters can do cartooney things. It's like the best of the real world and the best of the imaginary world coming together.

    44. Missing avatar

      Matthew Fink on

      I never got a chance to play Neverhood, but I live claymation and can't wait to enjoy this!

    45. Martin Mulrooney ⌠⌠ Order of the Goat ⌠⌠ on

      It's really interesting seeing the rough animatic compared to the finished sequence - thanks for the update! :)

    46. Elliot | Armikrog. Army - Grunt on

      already 20% Funded Congrats!