Non-linear 90s style adventure with dark atmosphere and intriguing sci-fi plot.
Non-linear 90s style adventure with dark atmosphere and intriguing sci-fi plot.
An incident during a routine expedition transforms the underwater mining facility into a deathtrap. You find yourself surrounded by fire, water, bare wires, and crewmembers, off their heads and ready to take a chunk out of you.
Will you be able to escape the Station?
Vote for Station on Steam Greenlight!
Station is about an underwater expedition. The action takes place deep in the Arctic Ocean, not far from the North Pole, where a survey crew sent by the ARC corporation is searching for exploitable natural resources. The work is hard and dangerous, and the people who do it have become hard and dangerous themselves. Some of the crewmembers are working off parole contracts. Others are in search for some easy money and will do anything to make a buck. The rest just have nothing to lose. And all the while the management of ARC is mired in an internecine power struggle. During this routine survey mission a bizarre event takes place that causes the crewmembers to go insane and start killing each other.
The protagonist is an ordinary man. No one has chosen him for a great mission. He has no latent extrasensory abilities or other special powers. He isn’t even a former Marine. He’s just an average Joe who signed a work contract to make some money and was unlucky enough to end up in the thick of it. He isn’t particularly fast or athletic, and he doesn’t have any weapons training. He’s terrified by what’s happening around him, and he’ll have to think on his feet to survive the Station. The protagonist does have one advantage, however: his professional skills. He knows how to use the equipment on the Station, and that’s his only chance to survive. The bathyscaphes, cranes, forklifts, and tools he finds are his weapons.
Station's most distinctive feature is its atmosphere, which is characterized primarily by a constant, oppressive, yet vague menace and a feeling of vulnerability. This isn’t the kind of danger you experience when some thugs corner you in a dark alley and demand your wallet – the world of Station functions according to the laws of cause and effect, so the threats lurking around every corner are more than just jump scares. In Station, the world around you is entirely hostile, and you have no idea how things got the way they are or how it will all end. Our models in developing the concept for Station were old adventure games like Another World (Out of This World) and Flashback.
Station’s atmosphere is comprised of three elements: visual style, music and sound, and plot. The game’s visual style is pretty straightforward – it’s old-school big pixel. Why? Let’s say it’s the developers’ vision.
Station’s plot will be non-linear and will depend not only on the choices the player makes in dialog trees or which NPCs they help, but also on which paths they choose. It’s ultimately up to the player to determine the causes of the strange events on the Station. This means that these causes will not be revealed as part of the main storyline. The player will have to hack computer terminals and learn about ARC by reading crewmembers’ logs and correspondence.
Another one of the most distinctive features of Station is the player’s independence. We don’t lead the player around by the nose or funnel them from place to place with waypoints. Everyone will have to find their own way out of the situation we have created. And that’s how it should be!
Rock, Paper, Shotgun:
Indie Retro News:
- Choose your own escape route from a variety of alternate paths.
- Solve challenging puzzles using whatever items you happen to stumble upon.
- Explore technical documents and crewmembers’ diaries and correspondence to reveal the real causes behind the incident.
- Use the equipment on the Station, including cranes, bathyscaphs, loading robots, and security systems.
- Decide who you want to trust (and get useful information) and who you’d better avoid (and stay alive).
- Survive the soul-chilling terror of the Arctic depths.
- $33,000 CAD Initial goal
- $40,000 CAD Three additional translations chosen by the community
- $45,000 CAD Alternate campaign (free for all backers)
- $55,000 CAD PS4 & PSVita versions (free for all backers)
- $70,000 CAD Professional voice-over
Boxed version of the game.
- $3 CAD – ROOKIE: you get our heartfelt gratitude! Your name will appear in credits and on Station website.
- $8 CAD – PIONEER (Early Bird tier): you get a digital copy of the game. (Limit of 620). Your name will appear in credits and on Station website.
- $10 CAD – TEMP: you get a digital copy of the game. Your name will appear in credits and on Station website.
- $15 CAD – CLERK: you get a digital copy of the game + soundtrack. Your name will appear in credits and on Station website.
- $20 CAD – TECHNICIAN: the contents of the $15 CAD tier + digital artbook.
- $50 CAD – EXPLORATION PILOT: the contents of the $20 CAD tier + badge + “making of” featurette.
- $100 CAD – SHIP'S DOCTOR: you get a digital copy of the game + soundtrack + printed artbook + badge + “making of” featurette. Your name will appear in credits and on Station website.
- $250 CAD – COMMUNICATIONS ENGINEER: boxed version of the game + soundtrack + printed artbook + badge + “making of” featurette. Your name will appear in credits and on Station website.
- $500 CAD – NAVIGATOR: boxed version of the game + printed artbook + badge + boxed version of the game soundtrack + “making of” featurette. Your name will appear in credits and on Station website.
- $1,000 CAD – SENIOR OFFICER: boxed version of the game + printed artbook + badge + boxed version of the game soundtrack + “making of” featurette + executive producer credit + written Thank you letter signed by Station development team (limit of 6).
- $2,500 CAD – CAPTAIN: boxed version of the game + printed artbook + badge + boxed version of the game soundtrack + “making of” featurette + you appear in the game as an NPC (your name, appearance and personality) + executive producer credit + your name as executive producer printed on boxed versions of game and soundtrack + written Thank you letter signed by Station development team (limit of 6).
- $8,000 CAD – ARCTIC RISING COMPANY CEO: boxed version of the game + printed artbook + badge + boxed version of the game soundtrack + “making of” featurette + you appear in the game as an NPC (your name, appearance and personality) + executive producer credit + your name as executive producer printed on boxed versions of game and soundtrack + written Thank you letter signed by Station development team + lunch with developers + we will conduct an all-day tour of our home town Samara for you (includes plane tickets if needed) (limit of 1)
Your first instinct when making a pixel art game is to have its soundscape match its visuals – take Retro City Rampage, for example. Well, we had that instinct – and we rejected it. We decided that the atmosphere we wanted to create demanded more realistic audio. That’s also why we decided not to have music playing constantly in the background, but only during specific, plot-driven moments. We felt that this cinematic approach would create the desired emotional tension – and, most importantly, it would save it for when it was really needed.
Into the Unknown
- Programmer. We tried different ways of getting a programmer to join our team, but all of them just wasted our time. There’s only one way to do it: hire a professional programmer and pay them.
- Bills. In order to avoid having the game take years to develop we’re going to have to put all our time and effort into the project. We won’t rent an office and will work from home. But our homes still cost money.
- Software. We will need to buy some licensed software.
- Translation. We will have to translate our game into English, which means paying translators and editors to do the work.
Why are you making this game?
Because we always wanted to. The concept for Station was both interesting enough for us to put our time and effort into and simple enough to allow just the two of us make a demo.
How did you get the idea for Station?
Vladimir: It was after I saw demo for Attendant developed by soft_h; the impression was very strong. The rest happened of its own accord.
Why are you making your game in this style?
Vladimir: This is also Attendant’s fault. And also because we love big pixels.
Roman: It depends on which style we’re talking about. If we’re talking about the visuals, then yeah, it’s Attendant and pixels. If we’re talking about the setting, then we should probably thank the Alien movies for that. And in my case also Bioshock and Dead Space.
What makes your game different from other, similar projects?
Vladimir: Mostly its non-linearity. Adventure games can rarely offer alternative paths to the player. Also the atmosphere, which we’ve already talked about. Station has quite an unusual setting, which also adds to the atmosphere. And, of course, there’s the mystery component.
Who are you guys? What do you do?
Roman: I’m an artist. I guess I always have been, as far back as I can remember. I mostly work with sprites and animation for 2D games, although I’ve recently started working with 3D modeling. So far it’s going pretty well. Maybe next time it will be 3D game.
Vladimir: Once, when I was fifteen, I decided to draw a comic book. There was just one problem: the characters talked too much. So I ended up with pictures along the edges and a wall of text in the middle. It goes without saying that everything that took place in my comic book was brilliant, just like everything you do when you’re fifteen. As the story unfolded there was less and less pictures and more and more text. Finally it turned into my first book, which I actually finished (96 notebook pages). Since then I’ve been writing little by little. I’ve published pieces in several literature forums, but that was quite a while ago.
Which games did you play when you were kids?
Roman: The first game I can remember was about a wolf catching eggs. Then it was Robin Hood on the ZX Spectrum. When I got to the NES I played everything. The games I remember best are Batman 2, Power Blade, and James Bond, Jr.
Vladmir: I think I should mention Another World/Out of This World and Flashback. These were pivotal games for me in the sense that it was thanks to them that I started getting interested in video game storylines.
Risks and challenges
We've been working on Station for about two years by now and spent thousands of hours on it.
We know exactly what we want and how to get it.
We have thoroughly planned our budget and time schedule.
However no one knows the future. Things might go wrong. Anything might happen. In this case you, the backers, will be the first to know about any difficulties we encounter so that we could cope with them together.
We will surely release Station one day, but with your help we will do it a great deal faster and make it much, much better.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)