Alien Shakespeare - A Narrative RPG
A narrative RPG that takes place on an abandoned theme park planet. Think of it as a Disney film set during the Post-Apocalypse.
Alien Shakespeare is a narrative RPG that takes place on the Globe Theatre, an abandoned theme park planet (think of it as a Disney film set during the Post-Apocalypse.) Like Telltale Games, Alien Shakespeare will have the player's decisions drive the plot forward. Our goal, however, is to create a story where the player has more of an impact on the narrative.
The funds raised through Kickstarter will help us develop the game and pay our talented cast and crew for their time. It will also cover taxes, backer rewards, business expenses and Kickstarter processing fees.
IMPROVING THE 'TELLTALE FORMULA'
Because of their focus on creating compelling stories and unique characters, Telltale Games has received critical acclaim for their work on the Walking Dead, Batman, and the Wolf Among Us (just to name a few). These games, however, follow a very formulaic, straightforward path.
To highlight this formula, let’s look at a scene in the Wolf Among Us where Sheriff Bigby (aka the Big Bad Wolf) confronts the Woodsman at a bar. No matter how you play the game, there will always be a fight that breaks out at the end of the conversation. Even if you play as a diplomatic, non-violent character and convince the Woodsman to not fight you, another character will randomly decide to attack you so that the sequence of events will play out as scripted.
There is a very practical reason why Telltale Games uses this approach. It saves money by requiring fewer game assets and locations compared to a branching storyline. However, it creates the sense that the player's decisions doesn't have that much of an impact on the overall story.
We believe that Alien Shakespeare will be able to improve on the Telltale formula by introducing the following:
1. CHARACTER CREATION
The player's Life Experience, skills, species and sex will influence how NPCs respond to them as well as what dialogue options become available during conversation.
One of the important elements in Alien Shakespeare's character creation is Life Experience. Before starting a new game, the player will pick what level of Life Experience their character will have, which will grant them a select number of skill points that can be used to acquire occupation bonuses or attributes. A higher Life Experience will give you more starting skills but will lower the character's overall Health and Action Points.
2. THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT
During the game, the player will be given a limited number of missions to accomplish at any one time. How they decide to tackle these missions and in what order will impact what missions will be available down the road.
3. 2D GRAPHICS
Alien Shakespeare will use 2d graphics and narration to tell its story, similar to the style found in “Where the Water Tastes like Wine.”
This approach allows us to create more locations, characters, and scenarios with the allotted time and budget, which in turn allows for more varied outcomes based on your decisions.
4. NO QUICK TIME EVENTS
An average playthrough for Alien Shakespeare would be roughly the same length as a stand alone Telltale Games episode, running between 1.5 to 3 hours, depending on the amount raised during the campaign (see Stretch Goals).
After being attacked by pirates, you are rescued from the wreckage of your ship and brought to the city of Doorwell for questioning. Being the lone survivor, you are given a small room and allowed to roam the streets of Doorwell until further notice.
Doorwell is a Rodent settlement built atop the remains of a water park. Recently, the prince of Doorwell died during an outbreak, marking the second time in a generation that their is no clear heir to the throne. As the king mourns, factions in the royal family fight for control while the Pirate Queen's armada prepares to invade the city.
As the game progresses, You will build a reputation among the various factions in Doorwell. A positive reputation with one group will sometimes give you a negative reputation with another. The finale will be built on the choices you made over the course of the game, but the outcomes of those choices might not be what you expect.
Due to budget and narrative limitations, only three or four of the following species will be playable during the game. Backers of the $25 or more tier will be able to vote on which species will make it into Alien Shakespeare. The limited scope will allow us to craft more in-depth interactions with NPCs based on which species you select.
Human - Mostly descended from the Hall of Clones, Humans are one of the most numerous species on the Globe.
Emrellian - Originating from the Alien Shakespeare exhibit, these green alien-looking creatures are known for their sharp memories.
Hound - Genetically engineered using Canine DNA, Hounds are characterized as strong fighters and resilient scouts. Their sensitive hearing is both a blessing and a curse.
Rodent - Rodents are known as masters of trade and commerce in the region. They are nimble but not as strong as some of the other species.
Animatron - While they cannot become sick or ill, these androids can break down or become infected with computer viruses. They are also unable to use magic items.
Quantarian - These four armed creatures reside in the seas and oceans of the Globe, but many are known to occasionally venture into the mainland. They have lightning fast reflexes and can breath underwater but tire easily while on the mainland, especially in tropical climates.
Skyborne - Created using Bird DNA, some Skyborne are able to fly short distances.
$5 - Credits and Digital Art Book
$15 - Digital Copy of the Game (PC, Lunex, and Mac)
$25 - Your Vote Counts and Beta Access
$50 - Globe Theatre Mascot Shirt
$100 - Name in the Doorwell Directory
$500 - Create an Enchanted Item
$2,000 - Create an NPC
$5,000 - Executive Producer and create a Side Quest
Initial Goal ($40,000)
Number of playable species available: 3
Playthrough: 1.5 - 2 Hours
Life Experience – A higher level of Life Experience will give you more starting skill bonuses, but will lower your overall Health and Action Points.
Dysentery and Action Points – Action Points allow you to use certain skills. In order to replenish your Action Points, you must stay hydrated. However, drinking unclean water might give you Dysentery, which will gradually sap your strength, energy, and health.
Magic and Unforeseen Consequences – It takes years for an Apprentice to learn how to wield even the most basic magic items. For those that are not trained as an Apprentice, trying to use a magic item will have Unforeseen Consequences and may inflict damage on the character.
Inventory – Equip weapons, clothing, and other gear.
$60,000 – New Location (Fish Rot) and Variables
Locations: Doorwell and Fish Rot
Number of playable species available: 3
Playthrough: 1.5 - 2.5 Hours
Fish Rot is a whaling community near Doorwell. Though an important trading post, it is also known as the home for many current or former pirates.
The following variables will be added to the game:
Looting and Lice – If you take clothing items from a fallen enemy or crate, there’s a chance you might bring along some uninvited guests. Having lice will lower your Awareness and Concentration, affecting how well you use can magic and ranged weapons.
Infection and Dragon’s Bite – Dragon’s Bite occurs when a wound becomes infected. Being left untreated, Dragon’s Bite will slowly kill the player and the only treatment may be amputation.
Firearms and Hearing Loss – When operating firearms or explosives, you have to make sure that you're wearing ear protection. Prolonged ear damage will lead to penalties on your Awareness.
$75,000 – New Location (Badland Swamp) and Playable Species
Locations: Badland Swamp, Doorwell and Fish Rot
Number of playable species available: 4
Playthrough: 2 - 3 Hours
Badland Swamp is the wilderness just outside of Doorwell. It is full of abandoned attractions, bandits, and rumors of lost treasure.
$100,000 - Join the Pirate Queen’s Armada
Locations: The Pirate Armada, Badland Swamp, Doorwell and Fish Rot
Number of playable species available: 4
Playthrough: 2 – 3.5 Hours
Why fight the Pirate Queen when you can join her crew? Players will be given the chance to help the Pirate Queen rebuild her fleet and conquer the region. This stretch goal includes additional side quests, interactions, and a new location: the Pirate Armada.
Cast & Crew
Jennifer Hale is a Canadian voice actress who has been described by the New Yorker as the “Meryl Streep of the medium.” She has done over a hundred and eighty video game roles, including Shan from Star Wars: The Old Republic, Rosalind Lutece in Bioshock Infinite, and the Female voice for Commander Shepard in Bioware’s Mass Effect series.
(Jennifer will be voicing the Pirate Queen)
Not much is known about the Pirate Queen, save for the fact that she commands one of the fiercest armadas in the region. It is rumored that she is a Doorwellian Princess that was lost at sea many years ago, but such rumors cannot be trusted.
Rupert Booth is an English actor and author who starred as Detective Jenks in the FMV Contradiction. He will be playing Chief Claude Dupont in the upcoming FMV The Shapeshifting Detective.
(Rupert will be voicing Yorick)
Always up for an adventure, Yorick is an Emrellian that has gone to almost every corner of the Globe and has a story to accompany it. His skills and knowledge of the area will come in handy if you are travelling with him.
Brigid Kelley is an actress known for SCIFI60 (Dust production), her sketch team Glamazon, the voice of ‘Adorabunny’ in Toytopia, and the voice of ‘Brigid’ in her upcoming cartoon Robits that she cowrote and produced. Robits will be making its world premiere at the New York Television Festival in July 2018. She is based in Los Angeles.
Jason is a classically trained English actor with bases in Birmingham and London. With over 6 years experience in Film, TV, Stage and Voice Overs. His most recent work includes the award winning zombie apocalypse web series ‘The 7th Day’, ‘Kingsman: The Golden Circle’ and performing for HM Queen Elizabeth II in her home of Windsor Castle in a Christmas pantomime.
Omri is an actor for Film, TV, and VO and can be seen and heard in projects such as Star Wars: Battlefront II, Emerald City, My Time in Portia, and Batman: The Long Halloween.
Kelsey Walmer is a LA-based actor and voice artist. She is known for her work on the video game Raw Data and is currently the voice of Rover.com. She has also appeared in the award-winning shorts Home Away (LA 48 Hour Film Festival Winner) and Babiole (LA Women's Independent Film Festival, Best Actress). She studied Theater and Animation at Loyola Marymount University and continues to be involved in the local theater community in Los Angeles.
Rudy Basso is a actor and writer based out of NYC. He is the producer of the audiodrama podcast "Have Spellbook, Will Travel" and one of the co-owners of the podcast network Don't Split the Podcast Network. He recently completed production on the audiobook version of the best selling RPG supplement "Fantastic Locations", which can be found on Audible.com.
Audio Drama: http://havespellbook.com/
Navigation Interface Design and Character Design
Combo 21 is a creative team with specialization in full-stack web development, 2d art, and web design.
Lisa is a concept artist and illustrator based in Seattle. She has worked on Pillars of Eternity and BattleTech.
Globe Theatre Mascot
Risks and challenges
We’ve gone for a minimalist approach in designing Alien Shakespeare. This includes taking out or changing systems that wouldn’t fit the initial budget or schedule. Those ideas that we felt were interesting but were not essential to the overall story have been added to our stretch goals.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (38 days)