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AU$ 1,563
pledged of AU$ 11,000pledged of AU$ 11,000 goal
52
backers
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Funding Canceled
Funding for this project was canceled by the project creator on Nov 21 2014
AU$ 1,563
pledged of AU$ 11,000pledged of AU$ 11,000 goal
52
backers
0seconds to go
Funding Canceled
Funding for this project was canceled by the project creator on Nov 21 2014

About

Vote for us on Steam Greenlight!

Update Highlights

New Reward: "$65 [Skype Apprentice] Get all rewards from previous level. PLUS. You get to be in an online training workshop (through Skype) run by Matt Cabanag: director of Protocol E! Learn how to build a game from scratch and deploy it to Android, PC and Mac. We'll hold Skype lessons and you'll get all the training materials, including lesson recordings. Matt is an adjunct lecturer at Macquarie University. Professional Unity courses are usually double or quadruple this price. You get a game and other goodies as well? Great value."

New Soundtrack: "The Back Door" is on Soundcloud.

New playable prototype! Check out the the instant barriers.

And the firewall!

 Full details and playable demo in here.

Project Summary

Protocol E tries to open up the real-time strategy game genre with an innovative control scheme. Using a combination of gesture controls and tactical AI, Protocol E players won't need ultra fast robot hands to play! Set in a cyberpunk universe, It has graphics designed by award winning artist, Tim Grant (Dystopia, Blade Symphony) and Dane Armour (Happy Feet 2, Maya the Bee Movie). Story by veteran writer, Christian Read (The Secret World, Sacred 3).

Highlight Features

  • No need for fast fingers and reflexes to do well!
  • Free-form, gesture based controls allowing for fast unit formations. We call it: "unit painting".
  • Standing orders system to automate some unit management functions. Reduces the required micromanagement!
  • Fast paced and dynamic tactical scenarios.
  • Cyberpunk graphics by award winning artist, Tim Grant and 3D animation film artist, Dane Armour.
  • Episodic story by award winning, veteran writer, Christian Read.
  • Spectacular hero powers and unit abilities.

Planned Episodes

We've broken up Protocol E into little chunks, as we realise that we can't release one monolithic game in one fell swoop. This Kickstarter campaign is initially designed to fund the completion of Protocol E: Zero and Episode 1

  • Protocol E: Zero - A collection of tactical scenarios that introduce the Protocol E universe and demonstrate the gesture based control scheme. Lots of units fighting, tons of explosions, all about those "Hell yeah" moments.
  • Episode 1 - We go deeper into the Protocol E universe and follow the exploits of hacktivist folk hero, Eve. Established power structures use lies and corruption to impose their will on the weak. The player helps Eve in her quest to seek truth and justice.
  • Episodes 2 and 3 -  A continuation of Eve's struggles against the establishment and the fight for her ideals. Production is dependent on the performance of the previous releases and fan demand.
  • Protocol E: Arena - The holy grail in terms of gameplay. This is intended to be a multiplayer, MOBA type game where you are able to control the creeps. Development is contingent on the performance of the previous releases and fan demand.

Control Scheme

If you'd like a more extensive summary of the control scheme, please take a look at this video. It has a deeper explanation of the motivations behind the project, as well as extended explanations about the automation provided by the standing orders system.

Unit Painting - The combat terrain is the canvas and unit orders is the paint. Paint movement and other orders on the ground; as if using a graphics program. Different orders are like different colours on a colour palette. 

Formation Trays - Draw an arbitrary unit formation, then use the formation tray to move it around. Use the rotation nub to change where the rotation is facing. Drag the formation to a desired location.

Standing Orders - Want your units to automatically retreat at 50% health? Set this in the standing orders. Want them to stay a minimum distance away from enemies? Do it here! Reduce the amount of micromanagement you need to do by letting your units manage themselves after you've told them what you want.

Soundtrack

The sound effects and soundtrack is created by Alex Coe. Listen to a couple of the in-game tracks:

Narrative

Protocol E’s story is crafted by veteran writer, Christian Read (The Secret World, Sacred 3,The Eldritch Kid: Hate and Whisky). The narrative revolves around Eve, a hacktivist folk hero searching for truth and fighting for justice. The game will follow the cyberspace battles of this intense, high-stakes universe of explosive secrets and treachery.

Art Style

The game takes place in the conceptual universe within a digital battlefield. The art style is inspired by other universes in a similar setting. Tron and Darwinia are strong influences. Here is some production work by Tim and Dane that give a flavour of where the art direction is gong.

Playable Preview Prototypes

You can see the steady progress this project has made as we worked part-time on it for the last 2 years. This is a viable game with real working code. It just needs to be polished with professional art and other tweaks to really reach its potential. You can go to the website and click "PLAY NOW" to see for yourself.

http://www.quantumshade.com/protocol-e/

Team Experience

Matt Cabanag (Director, Programmer) - Matt wears several hats at Macquarie University, juggling teaching and software development while being what Americans would call, "a grad student". He's won several game design awards, including "Best Game" at GGJ Sydney 2013. He was a top 10 finalist at the Qantas Spirit of Youth Awards in 2013. He is the winner of the 2014 Eric Dybsand Memorial: AI Scholarship from the IGDA.

Tim Grant (Art Supervisor) - Tim's first claim to fame was an award winning Half Life 2 mod called Dystopia (with a very similar art style to Protocol E). It won several awards including, "Best HL2 Mod" at IGF. Tim has since worked on commercial titles like Razer Salvation and Blade Symphony. He's a lead honcho at Puny Human Games, but he's agreed to give a bit of time to Protocol E.   

Dane Armour (Production Artist) - Dane is a professional 3D artist who has an impressive credit list. He's worked for some famous VFX studios in Sydney like Animal Logic. He's worked on films like Happy Feet 2, Walking with Dinosaurs 3D and the upcoming Maya the Bee Movie (AU release: 1 November!). 

Christian Read (Writer) - Christian is the most experienced professional in the team. Take a look at his LinkedIn! He was a widely circulated games journalist (IGN.com, Hyper, PC PowerPlay) but is now a full time writer, penning novels, graphic novels, comics and games! His credits include: The Secret World and Sacred 3. He's a regular at Comic Con, having written several titles for Gestalt Comics.

Alex Coe (Audio Designer) - Alex is an experienced producer and DJ. He has a regular "normal people" day job, but his audio and music is epic. He has a YouTube channel with close to a million views. He has a remix track on the official Angry Boys CD Soundtrack (track 25). Check out his website at http://acoemusic.net/.

Platforms

Our primary platforms are PC, Mac, Linux and Windows 8 touch. Android and iOS ports are on the cards, but the primary focus will be desktop platforms. PS Vita is a distinct possibility, but contingent on licensing arrangements. The control scheme would be also be sooo awesome on the Wii U, but that's contingent on getting enough funding for an SDK and Nintendo licenses.

This game is being developed with Unity3D, so jumping to different platforms won't be prohibitive. It does need some careful considerations and involves dealing with red tape, so its not trivial either.

Stretch Goals

$16,000 - Unit customisation studio. Use existing assets to mix and match unit components. Match any unit chassis with any available weapon. Switch heads, switch bodies, switch guns. So many possibilities!

$22,000 - Full voice acting and professional audio mastering. Every speaking character is voiced.  We hire out a professional, film grade, audio studio to master the soundtrack.

$27,000 - We create the "EVE Files". We flesh out the world with voiced diary entries from the main character. She details her exploits, her feelings on moral issues and talk about conspiracy theories. We also get one of our actor friends to do some fictional vlog entries to really spice up the story.

$36,000 - More professional grade game art. We dip deeper into the Sydney's talent pool to get more weapon modules, chassis and doodads into the game world. This also means more levels!

$47,000 - Asset customisation pipeline. Import your own unit chassis and weapon designs, then have it work in the game. Kind of like how you can create and import your own modules in Kerbal Space Program.

$60,000 - "Complete Protocol" backers and above get a physical comic book! A digital version will also be made available to all backers. Christian will use his considerable publishing connections to produce an awesome comic about Eve and her world. While the game concentrates on what happens inside the computer, this comic will look at what happens in the outside world. (This only applies directly to backers themselves. It does not include others that may be involved the  "Early Sharing Protocol", "Sharing Protocol" and "Sharing Eternity" levels)

$120,000 - ???

Risks and challenges

Every team member have work and/or study commitments outside of this project. The initial goal of this Kickstarter is to support the artists so this becomes their main gig for a solid month and are able to concentrate on producing the needed assets. But for the rest of the team, there isn't enough in the initial goal for them to make this their full time gig. This risk will become less as the backing funds become greater.

Having said that, we've worked part-time on this project since 2012! The game is playable. It has been extensively playtested. Most of the core features have been implemented. There isn't as much to do in the other areas when compared to production level art. The risk is in not making it awesome enough!

The more you contribute, the more awesome the whole project will be.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge AU$ 5 or more About $4

    [Ground Zero] Get a copy of Protocol E: Zero, a collection of tactical scenarios within the Protocol E universe. Conquer each challenging mission with strategic thinking and Protocol E's gesture based control scheme. Gain access to the backer-only forum. Be listed in the credits as a Kickstarter backer.

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    Pledge AU$ 10 or more About $7

    [First Strike] Get all rewards from previous level. PLUS: Protocol E: Episode 1. Experience the Protocol E universe crafted by veteran writer, Christian Read. Feel the drama and the tension as you uncover secret injustices and endeavour to correct them.

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    Pledge AU$ 15 or more About $11

    [Decal Delinquent] Get all rewards from previous level. PLUS: Receive a bunch of "standard edition" Protocol E stickers to stick on the back of your Macbook or other toys. Gain the special ability to spray decals on surfaces, in-game.

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    Pledge AU$ 20 or more About $14

    [Complete Protocol] Get all rewards from previous level. PLUS: Get a lifetime Protocol E subscription so you get all future Protocol E releases when they come out (including Episodes 2 and 3 as well as any other sequels or spinoffs). Also get a copy of Protocol E's awesome digital soundtrack crafted by Alex Coe, audio director of Protocol E!

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    Pledge AU$ 25 or more About $18

    [Vanity Core] Get all rewards from previous level. PLUS: Get a "special edition" set of Protocol E stickers and virtual sprayable decals. Also get a set of special costume items to be used for your in-game hero character and minions. Be an individual of distinction within the Protocol E universe.

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    Pledge AU$ 40 or more About $29

    [Early Sharing Protocol] Get all rewards from previous level. PLUS: You get to get 3 extra "Vanity Core" subscriptions to give to your friends! You get extra "special edition" stickers and codes to give out to your friends so they have the same rewards as you at this level. This could also be thought of as an EARLY BIRD, 4-pack deal for "Vanity Core".

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    Pledge AU$ 60 or more About $43

    [Sharing Protocol] Get all rewards from the "Vanity Core" level. PLUS: You get 3 extra "Vanity Core" subscriptions to give to your friends! You get extra "special edition" stickers and codes to give out to your friends so they have the same rewards as you at this level. This could also be thought of as a 4-pack deal for "Vanity Core".

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    Pledge AU$ 65 or more About $46

    "[Skype Apprentice] Get all rewards from previous level. PLUS. You get to be in an online training workshop (through Skype) run by Matt Cabanag: director of Protocol E! Learn how to build a game from scratch and deploy it to Android, PC and Mac - all before Christmas! We'll hold Skype lessons and you'll get all the training materials, including lesson recordings. Matt is an adjunct lecturer at Macquarie University. Professional Unity courses are usually double or quadruple this price. You get a game and other goodies as well? Great value."

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    Pledge AU$ 70 or more About $50

    [Eternal Shade] Get all rewards from previous level. PLUS: Get a lifetime Quantum Shade Interactive subscription. That means you get a copy of all of QSI's future game releases, including things other than Protocol E! In supporting this Kickstarter project, you're placing a LOT of trust in us. This is our way of expressing our gratitude for supporting us at this very early stage.

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    Pledge AU$ 90 or more About $64

    [Sharing Eternity] Get all rewards from previous level.(Excluding the "Early Sharing Protocol" and " Sharing Protocol levels) PLUS: You get to get 3 extra "Eternal Shade" subscriptions to give to your friends! You get extra "special edition" stickers and codes to give out to your friends so they have the same rewards as you at this level. This could also be thought of as a 4-pack deal for "Eternal Shade." The rewards here replace the ones from the "Early Sharing Protocol" and "Sharing Protocol" levels.

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    Pledge AU$ 100 or more About $71

    [3D Reality] Get all rewards from the "Sharing Eternity" level. PLUS: You get to choose one of three Protocol E characters to be 3D printed and shipped to you. Virtual reality jumps into actual reality!

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    Pledge AU$ 120 or more About $86

    [Triple Reality] Get all rewards from previous level. PLUS: You get the other two 3D printed characters you could choose from. Get the full set!

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    Pledge AU$ 150 or more About $107

    [Design a Doodad] Get all rewards from previous level. PLUS: You get to design a doodad or artefact that gets placed in the game. It could be a statue of yourself, a sculpture you designed, your organisation's logo or just about anything to make your personal mark on the game. Be credited as a contributing artist. You must supply the assets. Final assets subject to review for consistency with game.

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    Pledge AU$ 200 or more About $143

    [Design a Weapon] Get all rewards from previous level. PLUS: You get to work with the development team to design one of the modular weapons that can be equipped by the units in the game. Help shape the actual gameplay! Be credited as a contributing game designer. Final design subject to review for consistency with game.

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    Pledge AU$ 350 or more About $250

    [Cyber Apprentice] Get all rewards from previous level. PLUS: You get to be in a 2-day game development workshop run by Matt Cabanag: director of Protocol E! Learn how to build a game from scratch and deploy it to Android, PC and Mac. Workshop to be conducted in Sydney, Australia.

    **IMPORTANT NOTE**: Travel costs not included. Not recommended for people residing outside of Sydney, AU.

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    Pledge AU$ 5,000 or more About $3,573

    [Master of the Jam] Get all rewards from previous level. PLUS: You get to send some of the QSI team into a 48-hour game jam. You set the theme! We started out by winning awards at Global Game Jam - Sydney. We'll try to make your game just as special! Also be credited as a Protocol E producer. *Stil does not include travel costs for Cyber Apprentice level*

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Funding period

- (30 days)