What is Cross of the Dutchman?
Cross of the Dutchman is an action-adventure game about our cultural heritage, the place where we come from (Friesland) and the language that the locals still speak (Frisian). It tells the legend of ‘Grutte Pier’ (Pier the Great), a folk hero who fought to free the land of our ancestors. Our goal is to create an authentic product that not only reflects the story of Grutte Pier, but also what living in the 16th century must have been like. All wrapped up in a stunning game experience.
What is the game about?
Cross of the Dutchman is based on the folk legend of Pier Gerlofs Donia. He lived peacefully with his wife Rintsje in Kimswerd and he was destined to be a farmer. One day their village got plundered by saxon mercenaries. While he was trying to save the village from burning down, they caught Rintsje and killed her. In search for revenge he gathered an army around him and started fighting against the oppressors of Friesland. Soon his cause became a matter for all Frisian people, because he took it upon him to free Friesland. That’s when he received his famous nickname ‘Grutte Pier’ (Pier the Great).
How will it play?
The game will have a 3rd person birds-eye perspective, similar to what you're seeing in the Animated GIF. You as the player will control "Grutte Pier" who will gather an army of soldiers (farmers) to aid him in his quest. The main goal is to liberate the towns and villages from the enemy oppressors who appear in about four different factions (even though the saxxons were the reason Pier went to battle, there were many small armies trying to get as much as they could back then). Each faction has a different level of hostility against Pier and his men, and different levels of hostility against each other. The result is an interesting game world where you have to watch where you're going, or who you're challenging.
Pier will start out as a humble farmer, but soon people will recognize his cause and start joining his group of warriors. We've created this group to be a flexible company, so soldiers will leave and join the group depending on which village travel through. They might stick around in the inns or brothels or they might get up from their chair and follow you to the next battle. As Piers' actions become known to the people, more soldiers will join the group, ultimately forming a formidable army.
Controls are kept clean and simple. Similar to games like Zelda, action is based on timing and reading the opponent's movements. However, there are several forms of attacks, and Pier is able to use the (destructable) environment as a weapon as well, throwing debris and objects at groups of enemies to knock them over. As the legend tells us, Pier was so strong he could lift a horse, Pier would not have a problem picking up something that would crush an opponent with ease. Your men won't get in your way, and are actually eager to start fighting themselves. The result is t hat once you encounter a group of enemies, the scene turns into a battlefield in no-time. Pier is still able to move around the battle field, "helping out" his men with his huge 6-foot sword. By using simple commands, Pier is able to focus his army on certain enemies to weaken or create diversions.
We plan to have pretty big battle scenes, and we've tested battles of over 200 soldiers at once without any problems. Battles in villages will likely be a lot smaller than this, but because the bodies of the victims remain out in the open until they are removed by the villagers, you will be able to "enjoy" your victory for quite some time after the battle is finished.
What rewards are available?
First of we appreciate everyone's pledge no matter which amount you choose. We offer a wide range of pledges which will all give you an equal valuable reward. When you're backing $25 or more, you're guaranteed to experience Cross of the Dutchman in all its glory as well as join us for the Beta to help us dot the i's and cross the t's. We also offer awards such as the official novel to the game, being able to appear in the game as an NPC or even a handcrafted zweihander sword as the ultimate reward for premium backers!
Cross of the Dutchman novel:
Kickstarter exclusive T-shirt:
Detail of a hand drawn sketch by our art director:
What's the money for?
We are funding the game up to a point where we are able to build a playable prototype. Which is a vertical slice of everything we have in mind for the campaign of Cross of the Dutchman. Backers of this project will help us finish the game. Your pledges will enable us to move forward on developing the main quest for Cross of the Dutchman. We're grateful for every pledged dollar.
We will use the funds to create:
- New game modes, Multiplayer co-op is on the very top of our list.
- Voice overs for the entire campaign.
- Additional main and sidequests.
- Additional characters and animations.
- Additional cutscenes (see teaser trailer).
On top of that, we will also use the funds to:
- Hire translators to localize the game to German, French, Spanish and Italian (In addition to English, Dutch and Frisian).
- Attend tradeshows such as the GDC and GamesCOM to form partnerships that allows us to bring the game to consoles.
- Fund the writing and publishing of the novel Cross of the Dutchman.
click to view animated version
When will the game be released?
We aim to release beta of the game in the third quarter of 2012, depending on how quickly we are able to smooth out the final issues, the game itself will be released soon after. If you're backing us for $25 or more, you're automatically invited to the beta.
What platform are you developing for?
The game is being developed for PC and MAC. We are expecting to bring Cross of the Dutchman to the Steam platform, but we're also considering alternative forms of distribution. At the same time we are actively looking for partners or publishers who can help us to bring the game also to consoles.
What is this Ambassador status?
The Ambassador status is a special Cross of the Dutchman community status. Which will give you access to exclusive information and content. We add value to the opinion of our Ambassadors and we will often ask them to join discussions on development subjects.
Who is on the Cross of the Dutchman team?
The Cross of the Dutchman team exists of the people listed below. We're only listing the people with active tasks of the development team. In reality, many more people are contributing to our cause: our friends, families, interns and the Ambassadors on our forums, giving us constant feedback on our work!
- Remco de Rooij - producer
- Pascal Brander - art director
- Jildert Hoekstra - development
- Ronald Houtermans - 3d artist
- Erik de Jong - development
- Stefan Kuizenga - composer / game design
- Timen Rienstra - game design
- Frank Slofstra - development
- Margriet Spriensma - lineal descendant of 'Grutte Pier'
- Ate Grypstra - story writer
click to view animated version
Where can I follow the development?
Of course we will write regular updates on our kickstarter page, but you might also want to check out the official website, where you can participate and talk with others about the design, development and direction of the project. If you are a backer, and you're rewarded with the Ambassador status on our forums, you will be able to create your account, and we will upgrade your status right away. Check it out on crossofthedutchman.com. Or follow us on Facebook, Twitter: @trianglestudios or use #CotD.
To get Cross of the Dutchman up to the level where it is now, we've already made a lot of personal and financial sacrifices. However we would not have been able to make it to this stage if we had not received the public funding to help us in the first steps of the development. We are confident that the contents of our game will help grow awareness of cultural history to a new generation of students, not only in Friesland, but around the world!