Update - Looking for the reward tier where you unlock everything for a single payment? The immortals are like champions in League of Legends. Some are free, some are premium. The $10 tier unlocks half of the premium immortals, the $20 tier unlocks all of them. See the rewards section for details.
"Time units! Glorious, glorious time units!" - Toronto Thumbs
Glorious time units indeed. When we first played X-COM about 20 years ago, we immediately fell in love with tactical turn-based strategy games. Even back then we thought - "Wouldn't it be cool to make a game like X-COM, but where you control a group of different characters with a ton of unique spells?"
Of course, fantastic games like this have since been developed, but Immortal Empire is a different breed. Massively multiplayer with over 100 unique spells and 13 different character classes, Immortal Empire has immense depth of strategy.
Players have told us that certain levels are "impossible", only to try again the next day with a different strategy, and now the same level seems "easy". This experience, where intelligent decisions are crucial to victory, is exactly the type of gameplay we were hoping to achieve with Immortal Empire.
Immortal Empire has been playable in various early forms for years, but was formally released as a browser-based game in 2013. It was however always our goal to create a high quality "real" downloadable game. When we were Greenlit on Steam in August 2014, we wanted to seize this opportunity to give Immortal Empire the royal treatment.
And that's where you come in! Immortal Empire currently looks and feels like a browser game, but deep inside, it has tremendous potential. Users and reviewers alike frequently commented that the browser game is "surprisingly good" or "surprisingly rich" or "much better than I thought it would be". We have nothing against browser games, (after all, we made one!) but the consensus seems to be that the browser environment is limiting the potential of Immortal Empire.
We don't just want to port the browser version over to Steam, so we started this campaign to significantly enhance Immortal Empire. In the browser version we limited ourselves to only 15mb (!!) with an optional 35mb music pack. Given that it's not 1995, we have orders of magnitude more room in a downloadable version, allowing us to push the quality bar of Immortal Empire much, much higher.
This campaign is unique in that your rewards can optionally be redeemed in the browser version (once the campaign completes) and then we can transfer your account over to Steam.
You control a party of up to 5 different immortals, each with a unique set of spells. You can play through Immortal Empire alone, or co-op with a group of up to four players.
As you level up, find equipment, and enchant custom items for your party, your immortals grow in strength. But there are always more difficult enemies to face; regular mobs and bosses, with their own spells and behaviour that require new strategies to defeat.
Immortal Empire has a unique leveling system where you can apply experience towards any one of your immortals. In fact, you can even choose to play the whole game with only one (very strong) immortal, or distribute your points evenly across all five.
There are a large number of spells that need to be used creatively to emerge victorious on the battlefield.
Enemies running away? Entangle their feet with magical roots and pin them to the ground.
Powerful monster up ahead? Go invisible by blending in with the trees and sneak up close for a critical strike.
More complex encounters often involve synergizing the powers of various spells, and soon you will be silencing, stunning, and heaving giant ivory warhammers into the faces of your enemies.
The Gauntlet is a special multiplayer-only mode where you take only one immortal from your party and team up with three other players to combat increasingly difficult waves of enemies with randomized properties.
Offering a different fight every time and providing one of the most difficult challenges in Immortal Empire, The Gauntlet is a popular destination for high level players who want to push their skills to the limit.
Beating up AI monsters is fun, but they will never match the ingenuity and creativity of other human beings. A favourite mode of the staff at Tactic, you can challenge your friends or climb the PvP ladder in the ultimate test of wit and strategy.
Play 1v1 or 2v2 in a special objective-based game mode where the path to victory does not always involve beating your opponent senseless. Though it helps. A lot.
As you play the campaign, you will travel across the land through many different environments and engage in dialog with colourful characters like Dazo (above) along the way.
Your dialog choices matter! Your character has special Dialog attributes that grow as the choices you make shape the personality of your character, becoming more apt, perceptive, charismatic, or willful.
Paladin, priest, and mage? Yeah we've got those covered. But haven't you always wanted to play as a giant living tree? Huge armored wolf? Agile ninja-tiger? Well you're in luck because Immortal Empire has those too. Here are a few of the different immortals in the game.
There are so many things we can do to improve Immortal Empire now that we aren't limited to a browser. We have a bunch of goals in mind, but we wanted to engage you, the community, to help us decide how best to allocate your contributions.
We'll start off with the base goal and one fixed stretch goal. Below we have other goals we could potentially add.
Goal 1 - Steam ($8,000)
- Downloadable client on Steam for Windows, Mac, Linux
- Fullscreen mode up to 1920x1200 native resolution
- Full quality music and sound effects (double quality of browser version)
- Alternate in-game colour schemes for your immortals and alternate weapon models.
New Gameplay features: Persistent item stash, Daily quests
Goal 2 - Voice ($16,000)
- Voices for all 6 dialog characters (in English)
- Voices for all in-game cinematic characters
Lip synced dialog
Potential next stretch goals are below. These are the goals we're targetting, but you can help decide the order! Let us know which one interests you most and we'll line it up next based on user votes. (email your vote to firstname.lastname@example.org)
Potential Goal 1 - "Small but Mighty" Art upgrade (+$8,000)
A few artistic things that go a long way to making the game feel more alive.
- In-game shadows on scenery
- Animated scenery (water waves, moving foliage etc.)
- Revamp UI
Improve certain environment art assets
Potential Goal 2 - Gameplay upgrade (+$16,000)
Many more options for players as they journey through the game.
- 4 new immortals, 32 new spells
- PvP Game mode (4v4 team deathmatch)
- New solo mode ("dungeon crawl")
Potential Goal 3 - Campaign upgrade (+$25,000)
More places to travel, more magic chicken-hats, more game.
- 4 new campaign areas (20 total levels) with storyline
- 2 new tilesets
- Male romance option
- 6 fully new monsters + 2 bosses (with new AI)
- New campaign difficulty level above "Brutal"
Potential Goal 4 - Engineer's upgrade (+$35,000)
Build your own massively multiplayer X-Com? No problem.
- Release tools + source code for the 2D multiplayer Immortal Engine free for commerical or personal use.
- Clean up all tools to be user friendly like a formally shipped product.
- Clean up all source code to be highly readable, logical, with appropriate inline documentation.
- Full documentation, website, post-release support (bug fixes, questions answered, forums)
- 3 additional community requested features to the engine.
Other goal ideas we may consider depending on user feedback
- Mobile version (iOS, Android)
- Mega art upgrade (Replace all the artwork with higher quality and higher resolution art)
Localization (Subtitle translation into French, Italian, German, Spanish)
Immortal Empire was created primarily by Jesse Attard along with a group of frequent collaborators. Jesse has been a game development professional since 2005 and has worked at Ubisoft, Capcom, and Digital Extremes until 2013. At Capcom mobile and Digital Extremes Jesse was responsible for studio-wide hiring and management of programming staff. In addition to his studio-wide responsibilities, Jesse has worked directly as a lead programmer on multiple titles, most notably Bioshock 2 (multiplayer), Street Fighter II (mobile) and Resident Evil: Genesis.
Tactic Studios was founded in 2007 and originally operated as a side project, but has become a full-time endeavour for Jesse in 2013. With a professional programming background and formal music training, Jesse is a multi-disciplined game developer and contributes code, design, art, audio, and music to Immortal Empire.
All rewards can optionally be redeemed in the browser version when they become available, and when the Steam version is complete we can transfer your browser account to Steam.
All backers receive exclusive in-game chat flair.
Five immortals are available for free. Depending on the reward you select, you can choose any 4 of the remaining immortals or unlock all 8. If you already play Immortal Empire in the browser and have some immortals unlocked, you can optionally receive in-game currency (radiance) instead.
The soundtrack includes 22 total full quality mastered tracks from Immortal Empire, including 3 bonus songs that can only be found on the soundtrack.
This reward gives you a free digital download of the full soundtrack in various formats including MP3, and FLAC. You can check out the soundtrack at our Bandcamp page. The soundtrack features a number of amazing composers from the Renoise community and is, honestly, awesome. Check it out!
Alternate colour scheme
Sick of that yellow cloak on your Paladin? Get an alternate colour scheme for every immortal (even ones you haven't unlocked yet).
Custom colour scheme
Want an orange sword, purple armor, blue skin, and bright green cloak for your paladin? You sure have bright taste! Apply a custom palette swap to one of your immortals, only accessible by you! This is an awesome opportunity to stand out from the crowd with a custom look that you've created. Not an artist? No problem, just describe the look you're going for and we'll work with you to capture the right appearance.
Alternate in-game weapon artwork
Go beyond a colour swap - all your immortals will get an alternate weapon appearance. This is fully compatible with the alternate colour schemes for your character mentioned above.
Custom in-game weapon artwork
Always wanted a specific look to your weapon on your favourite immortal? We'll build a custom weapon of your design for one of your immortals. (within the game fiction - no ray guns, etc.) It's okay if you're not an artist - describe it to us and we'll do the rest. (Note that this won't affect per-immortal weapon type restrictions. eg. mages that are restricted to staves for game balance reasons can't suddenly use a sword).
T-Shirts and Hoodies
Choose between either "Immortal" or "Iso-grid" pattern on a t-shirt or hoodie depending on your contribution. The t-shirts come in black or charcoal, the Hoodie in black. Both ladies and men's fits available. Men's sizes from S to XXXL, Ladies sizes from S to XXL.
Above - "Immortal" pattern. Men's on left, Ladies on right, both shown in black.
Above - "Iso-grid" pattern. Men's charcoal on left, black hoodie on right.
Design an Immortal
Do you have an awesome character idea that you want seen in the game for everyone to use? A winged battle dragon? An arachnid-mage? You decide the look, you decide the spells, you decide the weapons. We'll work with you to bring it all together and create the fun, brand new immortal you have envisioned.
Design a game feature
Do you have a really cool feature in mind that you want prioritized for development? Step into the designer's chair. We'll work with you to create a brand new feature from your imagination. For this reward we are targetting reasonably substantial features, roughly the size of "Enchantment gems" or the "Item trading system" in scope.
Design a MAJOR game feature
Want to help define the gameplay of Immortal Empire for all future users? This very special reward will let you decide a significant special feature for the game. We'll work with you to develop a fun, engaging feature that everyone can enjoy. Examples of features in this scope include "Gauntlet mode" or "PvP Arena".
Below is a delicious cherry pie graph demonstrating how we will allocate the expenses for typical additions to Immortal Empire. The exact distribution may be somewhat different depending on stretch goals, but 100% of your contributions will be put towards development or paying the fees required by Kickstarter or our government.
We'll cover all the other administrative costs ourselves (legal, accounting, advertising, servers, physical kickstarter rewards, etc.) We want you guys funding the game, not our lawyers!
In its current form, Immortal Empire is free to play, and players can optionally pay real money to receive an in-game currency called "Radiance". Radiance can be used to buy a number of things, from unlocking new immortals, to buying a pack of randomized items, to re-specializing your character skills. The full list of things that can be purchased with Radiance can be found in our game guide.
Radiance is earned at a reasonable pace in-game through regular play by defeating monsters, completing level challenges, or earning achievements. Anything you can buy with real money you can earn by playing the game. (except our cool, cosmetic-only kickstarter exclusive rewards!)
You can comfortably play the whole game, all difficulty levels and every game mode with a full party of 5 immortals without grinding or spending a cent of real money.
You also cannot buy specific items with Radiance, only packs of randomized items. This works similar to games like Hearthstone where you can buy packs of randomized cards but no specific cards, and currency to buy packs is earned through regular play.
We don't want those people who choose to pay real money to immediately leap to the top of the leaderboards. Instead, they get more options, flexibility, and an easier trip through the game.
Many of the top PvE and PvP ladder players have never paid any real money in Immortal Empire. We have also run several PvE and PvP tournaments and paying players have never won, nor performed unusually well. We believe the reason for this is twofold:
- At a high level, most immortals and their gear are similar in strength whether they have paid real money or not. Finding a powerful item leans largely on random chance + play time.
- Strategy is generally more important to success than the strength of your immortals.
Talk to us!
Despite the above, we are exceedingly aware that the downloadable game and browser game markets are different with respect to free-to-play games. If you feel strongly about the revenue model, please voice your opinion. Now is the time for us to make changes, and we'd love to hear your thoughts. But please bear in mind the following:
- We want to keep the game and all areas free. It's a multiplayer game, by keeping it free, you will have more people to play with.
- Any revenue model changes we make to the downloadable game, we will also make to the browser version. This keeps everyone on an even playing field.
- The game needs to generate revenue somehow. It's an online game with persistent characters and ongoing costs. Radiance purchases keep the game alive.
We look forward to hearing from you!
By popular demand...
Risks and challenges
Since we already have a browser version, the risks on this project are pretty slim. Especially compared to other kickstarter campaigns which are at early or conceptual stages of development.
a) You can redeem most basic rewards in the browser game shortly after reaching our funding goal.
b) Having built and updated the browser version for years, we already know how long it takes and how much it costs to develop new features for this game. The goal amounts we've set are tight but reasonable.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)