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Defend the Tomb of Tyrants from greedy adventurers in this Dungeon-Keeper-meets-Tetris puzzler for PC, Linux, OSX, OUYA, and more.
Defend the Tomb of Tyrants from greedy adventurers in this Dungeon-Keeper-meets-Tetris puzzler for PC, Linux, OSX, OUYA, and more.
202 backers pledged $3,441 to help bring this project to life.

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[Final Note:  Thanks to all of your enthusiasm and support, the Tomb of Tyrants Kickstarter has met with resounding success!  An official forum and PayPal slacker-backer support will be made available here over the next couple of days!  Thank you, once again!

-Jake]

  • Unique blend of tower-defense, simulation, RPG, and puzzling!

  • Slick, simple, and frenetic matching mechanics, where reflexes and planning are both rewarded!

  • Lovingly pixeled characters, settings, and animations!

  • Tactically emergent gameplay, spawning new strategies and builds as your game evolves!

  • Tons of diverse floors, items, minions, heroes, and more--to discover and exploit!

  • Quick sessions with long-term unlocks, gradually taking your game from newbie-friendly to rich and complex!

Tomb of Tyrants is a dungeon-defense puzzler in which you take on the role of a tyrant (or historical curator, if you prefer), building a dungeon (restoring a historic site) and crushing heroes (nobly defending an anthropological treasure trove from greedy adventurers). Players match regions of resource tiles to expand the Tomb of Tyrants with additional floors, traps, and monsters, while intrepid parties of do-gooders (vandals) venture down from the surface to defeat you and claim the Tyrants' hoard. This ambiguous dual-plot setup allows you to play as either a villain or someone with grossly misplaced values.

The Tyrants' hoard lies directly beneath your dungeon; you will frantically match tiles to amass assets and clear space for new floors.  Although the hoard never ends, slain creatures will drop additional resources and items into the puzzle, increasing the frenetic pace of the game as your dungeon's death toll accelerates.

Even as the challenge ramps up, the player character remains very weak and can be easily dispatched by the humblest of heroes. Death of this load-bearing boss will bring your dungeon crumbling down upon everyone within--refilling the Tyrants' hoard once more. Every game fuels future sessions, as players unlock advanced floors, creatures, upgrades, and artifacts by completing rituals and thwarting prophecies.

Tomb of Tyrants is rapidly approaching alpha, so most core gameplay mechanics are complete. While there are still many planned features remaining, the bulk of development beyond this point will be content production. Ideally, I want to offer hundreds of creatures, floors, traps, items, and more, but this phase of development requires time and money. I am targeting an end-of-year 2014 to early 2015 release window for version 1.0, but post-releases are also planned.

Of course, anyone pledging at the Curator ($10) level and up will enjoy alpha and beta access starting in late August and running all the way up to launch.

Now you can play an updated version of the demo build seen above--containing some of the new features and content added during this Kickstarter!   This is still very much a pre-alpha demo, with limited content, non-final UI, unrefined characters and animations, and no sound (I suggest supplying your own soundtrack!), but it does offer a taste of what the final game will have to offer; click the header image and enjoy =D!

The late 2014-early 2015 release target is my estimate for the PC, Linux, OSX, and OUYA editions of the game, as those are the platforms I am actively developing for right now. However, I would love to release the game on other Android devices (tablets, phones, and microconsoles) and iOS; the game already supports touch controls, and mobile seems like a natural fit for the gameplay.

I am offering stretch goals to confirm these additional platforms, with Android mobile at $3,500 (Update: We hit it, counting PayPal!  Expect news on Android mobile soon!) and iOS at $6,000.

I've got plenty of content to show off and advanced mechanics to discuss, so expect daily project updates!  Here, you can find the big ones:

This is Tomb of Tyrants's second stab at Kickstarter.  The first time around, I set an ambitious goal and was under-prepared, but this time, I've established a more modest goal, with adjusted rewards, a cleaner presentation, and solid groundwork.

My previous goal of $6,000 proved too substantial; I set that goal based on the amount that I would need to drop everything else and finish the game without any other source of funding, but fortunately, continued development does not require me to raise that amount immediately.  $1,500 will buy me a couple of months to proceed with development unhindered, giving me time to reach beta and explore additional revenue streams, if necessary.

Ultimately, what brought me back to Kickstarter for a second attempt was the awesome community that has proven incredibly supportive and helpful, even in the face of failure.  I have greatly enjoyed working with our backers in the livestreams and exchanging ideas in the comments, and I am excited to see how you will all shape the game's future as we move forward!

Unlike many Kickstarters, where money is being raised to pay commissions or handle manufacturing, I am only seeking money to pay bills and keep working on the game.  I'm just one guy, I'm not outsourcing development, and more money can't make me work any harder or faster than I already do, so a little extra funding won't magically allow me to accomplish more in the same time frame.

However, I do have some big dreams for the game, and additional pledges can help me plan ahead for the game's future.  I have planned out several stretch goals involving new platforms, gamemodes, and more.  These are all things that I really want to do with the game, but which I cannot plan around with my immediate constraints.

Check out updates #12 and #16 (iOS) for more details on these goals!

You will receive the same undying gratitude and continued project updates that all other backers enjoy.  Thank you =)!

You will receive the above plus the game for both PC and OUYA, upon respective platform launches, and access to the backer-only forum!  You may also provide your name for inclusion in the game's credits.

You will receive the above plus any additional platform releases for Linux, Mac, Android, or iOS, if and when they launch.  Furthermore, you will be eligible to participate in the closed alpha/beta phase of development (anticipated by the end of August), and gain access to the tester sub-forum; you will help shape the game's future by testing early builds and providing valuable feedback and input.  You may also submit a name to the character generator, to be borne by some of the game's numerous characters and minions.

You will receive the Curator level plus credit as a sponsor for one of the game's champions, items, monsters, or floors!  The game will contain many small nods to its community-backed nature; throughout the codex and in-game credits, you will be listed as a sponsor on a piece of content that I create.  You will also gain access to the designer sub-forum!

You will receive the Curator level plus a banner of your own design!  The current red snake banners hang on several floors, but you may suggest a new banner design for inclusion in the game, allowing yourself and others to customize your Tyrant's taste in home decor--you'll even receive in-game credit for it!  You will also gain access to the designer sub-forum!  Check out update #22 for more details on banners and themes, and update #24 for design reward fulfillment!

You will receive the Curator level plus the opportunity to design your own champion!  Champions are high-level versions of standard heroes or minions with unique names, traits, abilities, and appearances.  You can take any of the game's existing or planned archetypes and create a more powerful--or otherwise unique--version, to make an appearance in Tomb of Tyrants.  This level includes access to the designer sub-forum and sponsor credit for your champion!  Check out update #24 for details on champions and design reward fulfillment!

You will receive the Curator level plus the opportunity to design a new item or artifact for the game!  Items are special, highlighted tiles that are collected for later use or passive bonuses; they can be usable potions, masterwork upgrades for your units, tools for manipulating the puzzle in unconventional ways, or whatever you dream up.  This level includes access to the designer sub-forum and sponsor credit for your item!  Check out update #24 for details on design reward fulfillment!

You will receive the Curator level plus the opportunity to design a new hero or minion archetype! This can be something as simple as a new race/class combo (e.g., gnomish berserker) or something totally out there (like centaur cavalry--people riding centaurs? Centaurs riding horses?  Your call!). You can design as little or as much as you like, from just giving me a race/class combo to suggesting appearance, alternative color/equipment schemes, stats, traits, abilities, codex descriptions, and more.  This level includes access to the designer sub-forum and sponsor credit for the archetype you create!  Check out update #24 for details on design reward fulfillment!

You will receive the Curator level plus the opportunity to design a new floor for the dungeon!  Floors are how players expand their fortress and build their arsenal, as each floor comes with the ability to buy new units, items, or traps. As a floor designer, you get to invent a floor, deciding what it looks like, produces, requires, unlocks, and costs. Depending upon the nature of your request, you may even get to design some of the things that go with it.  This level includes access to the designer sub-forum and sponsor credit for the floor you design!  Check out update #24 for details on design reward fulfillment!

You will receive the Curator level plus the opportunity to design a themed collection of champions/items/creatures/heroes/floors/whathaveyou! Want to design an entire party of epic adventurers, each with a unique item drop? Maybe a floor spawning new minion archetypes with champions and items to match? Or a set of artifacts that can be combined into one uber-artifact? That all sounds good to me, but we'll find something that sounds great to you!  This level includes access to the designer sub-forum and sponsor credit for everything you design!  Check out update #24 for details on design reward fulfillment!

Although many rewards are quantity-limited, you can absolutely pledge for multiple rewards if you desire; I've deliberately set low quantities to leave wiggle room for backers who want to pledge for multiple design or sponsorship rewards. Simply add any additional pledge levels' values to your pledge, and you can tell me what you want on the post-campaign survey. If you pledge for additional design rewards, you will receive extra copies of the game, as well, to share with your friends.

Risks and challenges

As a solo development project, Tomb of Tyrants will be especially susceptible to the unexpected. I have planned milestones for the coming months--just as I have hit milestones in past months--, and I intend to release frequent (at minimum monthly, but likely near-weekly) progress updates via Kickstarter. When the game hits alpha, I anticipate a bit of a speedbump as I adjust to feedback (tweaking mechanics, balancing elements, fixing bugs), but after the initial shock, I believe hitting that stage should actually help drive the development pace.

Unlike most Kickstarters, all of my rewards are digital, so physical fulfillment and logistics will not be eating up any time or money. However, I am offering a lot of design rewards, and those can be daunting, due to their collaborative and subjective nature. I really want to give everyone something that they feel is awesome, while ensuring that their awesome thing isn't "too awesome" from a balance perspective; I look forward to working with everyone at these levels, but if, by some chance, we cannot work out something agreeable, I will graciously offer reimbursement.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    Visitor: get a good feeling that lasts until you realize that nothing ever does. All this and also regular project updates fueled by my eternal gratitude!

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    Patron: receive the game on PC and OUYA when it launches + "Backer" credit! See rewards section for details.

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Curator: receive the game on PC and OUYA (and possibly other platforms) + exclusive alpha/beta access + "Backer" credit + join the name generator! See rewards section for details.

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    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    Sponsor: Curator level + sponsor a creature/hero/item/trap/floor! See rewards section for details.

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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    Herald: Curator level + design a banner and accent scheme for players to customize their Tyrant's dungeon! See rewards section for details

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Champion: Curator level + design and sponsor a unique epic-level character from one of the game's awesome archetypes! See rewards section for details.

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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    Artificer: Curator level + design and sponsor a sweet item or artifact! See rewards section for details.

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    Pledge $45 or more About $45

    Breeder: Curator level + design and sponsor a brand-new creature or character archetype! See rewards section for details.

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    Architect: Curator level + design and sponsor one of the game's deadly floors (including devious traps or creatures)! See rewards section for details.

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    Pledge $120 or more About $120

    Tyrant: Curator level + design and sponsor a themed and complex combination of the above rewards (at least 4 related creatures/champions/items/floors)! See rewards section for details.

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    Reward no longer available 5 backers
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    Pledge $125 or more About $125

    Tyrant (second batch): Curator level + design and sponsor a themed and complex combination of the above rewards (at least 4 related creatures/champions/items/floors)! See rewards section for details.

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Funding period

- (21 days)