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$55,715 pledged of $25,000 goal
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All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by .

$55,715 pledged of $25,000 goal
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All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by .

About

True Blood, Twilight, and Vampire the Masquerade have proven to us that Gothic fantasy is incredibly popular, yet there is no online world for fans of the genre to play in. Do you want to play a space captain… or a wizard… or a mech pilot… or even Batman? If so, there’s an online game for that. But if you want to play online as a vampire or werewolf, as a fallen angel or an insatiable monster, well, you’re out of luck.

We at Clockwork Throne have seen that glaring hole in the Massively Multiplayer Online game market. We’ve watched as not one decade, but two decades, have gone by, and the big publishers have not stepped up. They don’t understand this dream, but like you, we’ve dreamt of ruling the night ever since our first encounter with the undead, in an RPG, on the pages of a book, or on the silver screen. They don’t get this dream. They won’t build it for us, so we’ll build it ourselves.

We are looking for people who share that dream, and want to make it happen…  

We've funded! You will now see two kinds of stretch goals: those that are immediately on the horizon, so you can know what kind of new benefits and systems will become available, and also our “prestige stretch goals”. The prestige stretch goals are for the Adepts, Loupgarou, and Revenants, which require large amounts of art, programming, UI, story, quest lines, character modeling, and animations to add to the game.  

These mini-factions will become playable to all backers at $15 or above if their respective stretch goals are met!

 

 

 

 

UPDATE! We’ve had a lot of questions about our lore, and are very proud of the new directions and innovations we’ve taken. Read more about our lore here!

Shadow’s Kiss is a game of darkness, adventure, passion, and horror, set in the fictional city of San Cipriano. The game casts you as a vampire (or possibly other supernatural creature…) who goes on quests, faces off against other supernatural factions, and gains items of power to rule the night.  

While Shadow’s Kiss incorporates many of the classical elements of a Massively Multiplayer Game (MMO), it also seeks to innovate, especially in ways that make for an interesting gaming experience within a society of vampires and supernatural creatures. Parlay and diplomacy are critical parts of the experience, including building your influence in vampire society through intimidation, bribery, and seduction. You cooperate or compete with other players to rule the various aspects of the city, including law enforcement, organized crime, and the media. Your rise to power, and your story, are built around your Rogue’s Gallery, also known as your Cast of Characters, which are the allies, enemies, thralls, spies and blood dolls you’ve acquired through questing and exploration.

Clockwork Throne Inc. is a small independent studio of game industry veterans who have been working on Shadow’s Kiss for the last two years. We need your help to get this innovative MMO across the finish line and realized as a full playable experience.

We’ve poured our hearts and souls into building this game, and have already completed a lot of the things that are difficult and risky with MMO’s: server architecture, client and patcher, persistence, and a wide variety of game systems. If we are to continue, however, we need to raise money to go forward, and coming to YOU directly, via Kickstarter, makes the most sense. In a world where big money is primarily put behind World of Warcraft clones, we need the community’s help and passion to bring a vampire and supernatural MMO to life.

 

Food for the Immortals
Food for the Immortals

 

 

Choose your identity
Choose your identity

Create your avatar according to what kind of monster you want to be, and how you want to explore this world of shadows. Choose gender, orientation, and a story motivation. Would you rescue the child from the cultists? Play as the Fallen Angel. Do you prefer instead to walk into the room and kill everyone? You may enjoy playing the Diabolic Monster.

 

Customize your vampire mode
Customize your vampire mode

Becoming a vampire means transforming. Choose what sort of teeth, eyes, and facial transformation (if any) occurs during your dark metamorphosis.

 

The Loupgarou belong to the Lunar Covenant
The Loupgarou belong to the Lunar Covenant

 You do not walk the long night alone. Other supernatural groups may be enemies or allies. The Loupgarou are one breed of a society of shapeshifters known as the Lunar Covenant…

Necromancers force the dead to walk again
Necromancers force the dead to walk again

The techno-mystical Necromancers used stolen technology from Nichola Tesla to force the dead back to life, and to communicate beyond the Vale.

Loa Masters deal in nightmares
Loa Masters deal in nightmares

 The Loa Masters are a cargo cult of terror, profaning and appropriating religions and mysticism to conquer the world with nightmares.

A demon summoned by cultists
A demon summoned by cultists

 Cultists summon demons and other unspeakable horrors from beyond the edges of reality.

Shadow’s Kiss doesn’t divide you into vampire ethnic groups. Instead, you promote to the kind of vampire you want to be, including the Lovecraftian Tenebrous Vampire and the zombie-commanding Verdilak.

Evolve your vampiric incarnation
Evolve your vampiric incarnation

 

Shadow’s Kiss has a large, overarching narrative built by our master storyteller. The central story will follow familiar quest progression, starting with your introduction to Vampire King Logan, who tasks you to investigate the apparent treachery of his queen, Daley.

Accept quests or discover them through exploration
Accept quests or discover them through exploration

As your story progresses, however, you will choose the direction it takes, as you build up a Rogues’ Gallery of spies, enforcers, and blood familiars.

Red shirt cast members can be killed
Red shirt cast members can be killed

Some quests will require you to have Thralls -- mortals you have drained and transformed into vampires. Feeding is an essential part of the game, but beware: slayers are always looking to stop you!

Most MMO’s subscribe to the “Face Roll” system where you hit your power combos repeatedly to win. Others require “Jedi-like reflexes” and a good internet connection for realtime combat. Both of these can be fun, and there are great games that make use of them, but we wanted a combat system that would allow you to parlay with or intimidate your opponents, that would let you set traps and use stealth, and that would make magic something based on rituals and danger.

To achieve that end, we are building a turn based combat system, giving you just enough time to strategize, summon allies, and maybe even to convince that slayer that you’re his friend…

 

The combat powers in Shadow’s Kiss are designed to make you feel like a near unstoppable supernatural creature. Use preterspeed to run impossibly fast, and “Break Neck” to simply snap the spine of a mook level enemy.

Vampire powers often involve incredible strength and speed
Vampire powers often involve incredible strength and speed

Powers work on a combo system, where you make an initial attack and then follow through with a more impressive one, often consuming blood or energy. Skill and exploration unlock new powers and power trees, such as Siren Song, Tainted Blood, and Necromancy.

Gain new powers as you explore the world
Gain new powers as you explore the world

 

 

Shadow’s Kiss is a classless system. You build skill in any area you train in, both during gameplay and while logged out. This can include everything from vampire claws to pistols to alchemy. If you want to be the best martial artist who also charms or tricks members of the court you can, all the while being able to craft awesome gear for your guild. All you need is the time and dedication to invest in your character.

 

Everything we’ve described so far is part of what we consider the “core game,” and is at least partially implemented as of this point in the project. We need your support to bring this all together into a complete, balanced, fun game experience. Our Kickstarter is intended to let us build the following into the game: 

  • Adventure zones! Sewers, caves, basements, abandoned mansions, subways, industrial ruins, graveyards, catacombs, and derelict apartment buildings.  
  • Social zones! Museums, nightclubs, fetish clubs, penthouses, and restaurants.  
  • Character progression: Start as a fledgling vampire and promote to more advanced bloodlines, such as Shadowfiends, the Undying, Succubi, Verdilaks, and the Noble Vampires. Level up to gain and use stronger items and abilities.  
  • Core story: investigate the enemies of King Logan, discover why San Cipriano is a hotbed for the supernatural and the undead, and work to either ally or oppose the other supernatural factions. 
  • Procedural story: allow a “sandbox” experience where you can explore the world and quests find YOU.
Social zones are as important as adventure zones
Social zones are as important as adventure zones

  

Kickstarter campaigns traditionally include stretch goals: those features that we’d like to add if we exceed the base dollar goal for our game. It’s often considered taboo to list too many of these stretch goals before the basic amount has been raised, but we have consistent fan requests that we want to underscore as our “primary stretch goals” on Shadow’s Kiss: other playable supernatural creatures.

If we get enough support, with enough fans of the supernatural coming to our aid, we want to add the following three mini-factions:

If we exceed our basic target, we want to raise enough to add other supernatural factions
If we exceed our basic target, we want to raise enough to add other supernatural factions

The Adepts  

Magicians, witches, shamans, and others Adepts have discovered and harnessed magic, living in the shadows and edges of society.  Your Adept will be able to ally with the vampires of San Cipriano or work with Slayers to destroy them. "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law".

The Loupgarou  

Shapeshifter belonging to the Lunar Covenant, these werewolves are actually ancient beings from the dawn of creation, born and reborn in new bodies to mimic mortal creatures.  As one of these shapeshifters, you may find temporary allies among the undead, or you may seek to purge them from the city.

The Revenants  

Dead slayers brought back to life by the profane science of the Necromancers, Revenants are part zombie, part Frankenstein’s Creature, neither truly alive nor truly dead. When playing as one of these re-animated slayers, you may choose to follow the agenda of the Necromancers, or break free to find your own path.

We’re calling them “mini-factions” because they won’t have the same amount of content as vampires, initially, but they will be playable, and most quests and areas will be open to them. This will allow you to team up werewolves, adepts, and revenants with vampire “allies”, if you and your friends want to do so, although you should still expect risk in bringing non-vampires onto sacred ground or other meeting places of vampire society. Each faction will have a core storyline as well.

Adding the Adepts, Revenants, and especially the Loupgarou means hiring new members of the team to do that, and those costs drive the stretch goals. New playable races require art, animations, coding, story, sounds, interface, and design. We hope you’re excited enough by the possibility of playing them that you will help us hit those goals!

 

A game industry veteran with experience in programming, design, and production, Thomas Sitch has long flirted with becoming a creature of the night, going all the way back to vampire LARP in the 90's. His love of cosplay and things gothic is matched only by his passion for collaborative and competitive online RPGs.  He first started working on MMOs in 2000 on Shadowbane, and went on to work on Pirates of the Burning Sea, Wizard 101, and most recently, Crowfall.

Richard A. Becker is a professional writer with broad-ranging experience in fiction and non-fiction, across multiple print, digital, visual and interactive media. He has also been a gaming storyteller, with particular interest in vampires and other monsters, for many years.  

Tre Zieman is a veteran character modeler and animator, and a 3D artist of the first order. He’s the first line of defense in creating the custom models and monsters for Shadow’s Kiss.  

Monique Blaize is an incredibly versatile game developer. While primarily a generalist game designer (for both 2D and 3D design) she also freelances as a comic artist. Additionally, she is talented in indie game production and marketing. She loves reading manga and anything related to anime.

An actor turned game designer and programmer, Rich Osborn is a rising star helping with the world building, scripting, and design of Shadow’s Kiss.

 

 

Getting in as one of our early supporters and helping us get Shadow’s Kiss across the finish line means that you get the good stuff! $15 or more gets you access to the alpha, beta, and released version of the game, and all levels from there on up grant you special in game benefits:

  • Pets – including werewolves, soul eaters, ninjas, succubae, etc. A pet appropriate to your adventuring area will appear and aid you in combat, and pets always level up when you do. If defeated, they go out of service for a period of time to heal their wounds. Pets also appear in your lairs and may offer their own quest lines.  Read more about pets and their power level here.
  • Lairs – vampire havens where you can keep one of your coffins, including sewers, mansions, cemeteries, and clubs. Havens allow you to store items, and all havens come with a servitor: some kind of supernatural creature that trains the Inspirations which are the fuel of the classless system.  
  • Summoning Powers – Unlike pets, a summoning power can be used once per combat, as long as you have the blood or energy to activate it. Most summoning powers are learned from skills in-game, but these Kickstarter powers are automatically granted to all characters on your account.
  • Control Powers – Used to paralyze or disorient foes. Most control powers come from training your skills, but for the Kickstarter powers they are granted to all characters on your account.  
  • Reanimation Powers – Invoked to create zombies from any fresh corpses laying around. This is normally learned through great effort in Necromancy, most often as a Verdilak vampire, but for Kickstarter these powers are granted to all characters on your account.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our basic Kickstarter goal represents our bare minimum to complete the playable experience of Shadow’s Kiss: a fun, engaging first 30 levels of the vampire story, exploring the game as the diabolical monster, sinister mastermind, fallen angel, or the vengeful antihero. This let’s us create the immersive story of the betrayal in the court of King Logan, along with a lot of personal storyline content that develops you as a vampire rising to power in San Cipriano. We’ll also be able to iterate on combat, integrate the adventure zones needed, improve feeding and thrall recruitment, create the variety of skintone and avatar customizations, and do the critical work on fixing bugs and polishing the game.  

If we successfully raise our target $25,000, the following is deducted automatically:  

Kickstarter fee of 5% ($1,250)  

Payment processing fee of 4% ($1000)  

We project the use of the Kickstarter funds, after those deductions, as being as follows:  

World Building: 30% Story and Lore: 20% Programming - Game Systems: 30% Programming – Architecture: 5% Avatar Customization: 5% Art – UI and Characters: 5% Design – Game Systems: 5%

If we exceed our basic Kickstarter goal, we expand our use of funds into improving our art, expanding and improving our animations, voice over and more Midnight Syndicate music, building systems like ritual magic and crafting, and especially our stretch goal playable factions: Revenants, Loupgarou, and Adepts.

Visit our Shadow's Kiss Website

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Risks and challenges

Game design, and moreover, game implementation, is inherently risky, and massively multiplayer games are particularly challenging to scope and create. We have tackled a lot of this risk in the last two years with deploying servers, reflecting combat and interactions, and building a core client, but challenges always arise when you add more players and more complexity to the system.

There are always risks that third party libraries that we rely on may not scale, may have memory issues, or may need to be replaced for other reasons, resulting in setbacks in time and funds.

Games also have to be fun, not just complete, unlike office software. Risk derives from the revisions and testing necessary to make a fun and compelling game.

Despite all this, we are very confident in our ability to deliver this project, since we already have a working client, working servers, and core “vertical slice” aspects of gameplay operational.

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    Countess Bathory

    Do you demand style and good taste when you’re exsanguinating virgins? This pledge level grants you the Siberian Tiger pet, the Fetish Club Lair, and the Siren Song power for all characters on your account, in addition to all prior rewards.

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    Dead and Loving It

    You get to design the name and background of a custom NPC, and give input on his or her appearance (with editorial discretion from Clockwork Throne; it must fit the lore and mood of the game). Includes all prior pets, powers, and lairs.

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    Scion of Osiris

    You get to design and name a custom NPC that appears in the Natural History Museum, along with a “closed” exhibit that leads to a unique Museum Lair. You also gain a mummy pet that can be summoned in combat. Includes all prior pets, powers, and lairs.

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    Dhampyr

    You get to design a custom NPC and a special quest line to go along with her/him (with editorial discretion from Clockwork Throne; it must fit the lore and mood of the game). This quest can involve any supernatural factions you want, and tie into the main storyline. Includes all prior pets, powers, and lairs.

    Includes:
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    Childe of Dracula

    “How did I never notice that big honking castle?” – Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Yes, you’ve brought over the Victorian Castle Lair, stone by stone, from the Old Country. You also gain the Wings of Night power, allowing you to turn into a swarm of bats and reform elsewhere on the battlefield. It’s enough to make old uncle Vlad proud!

    Includes:
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    • Name in credits
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    • Siberian Tiger Pet
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    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    High Roller

    In addition to a wide variety of other lairs, pets, and powers from prior levels, you get access to a Casino with a FIXED LOCATION in the game world… this means your main lair is a landmark where everyone knows your name. Kind of like Cheers, but with black jack and exsanguinations.

    Includes:
    • Cavern Lair
    • Design Custom NPC
    • Design Quest
    • Digital Copy of the Game
    • Name in credits
    • Sewer Lair
    • Summon Winter Wolf power
    • Werewolf Pet
    • Casino Lair (IN GAME LANDMARK)
    • Abandoned Manor Lair
    • Abomination Pet
    • Cemetery Lair
    • Raise Dead Power
    • Soul Eater Pet
    • Summon the Unspeakable Power
    • Cloud the Minds Eye Power
    • Fetish Club Lair
    • Ninja Pet
    • Siberian Tiger Pet
    • Succubus Pet
    • Summon Wolf Power
    • Wings of Night Power
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited (11 left of 15) 4 backers
    $
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  21. Select this reward

    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    Archon

    This jackpot gives you all lairs in the game (but not with fixed locations), all powers, and all pets, and our team will custom model your unique NPC to look like YOU, and have a strong tie in to the main storyline. Additionally you get to hang out with us when we show at PAX (airfare and transportation not included), and will receive a laser cut Shadow’s Kiss plaque, autographed by the team!

    Includes:
    • Laser cut plaque
    • NPC modeled after you
    • Cavern Lair
    • Design Custom NPC
    • Design Quest
    • Digital Copy of the Game
    • Name in credits
    • Sewer Lair
    • Summon Winter Wolf power
    • Summon Wolf Power
    • Werewolf Pet
    • Casino Lair
    • Hang out with Dev Team at PAX
    • Abandoned Manor Lair
    • Abomination Pet
    • Cemetery Lair
    • Museum Lair
    • Raise Dead Power
    • Soul Eater Pet
    • Summon the Unspeakable Power
    • Cloud the Minds Eye Power
    • Fetish Club Lair
    • Ninja Pet
    • Siberian Tiger Pet
    • Succubus Pet
    • Victorian Castle Lair
    • Wings of Night Power
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only certain countries
    1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

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  22. Select this reward

    Pledge $10,000 About $10,000

    Queen (or King) of the Damned

    You gain all lairs, powers, and pets in the prior levels. Additionally, we will craft a custom version of any one of those lairs (your choice) as a fixed landmark in the game with its own background, and our artists will model your likeness for your own story NPC. You get to hang with the team at PAX (airfare and transportation not included) and will receive the laser cut Shadow’s Kiss plaque, fully autographed. Finally, we’ll fly you out (if you live within the continental United States) to party with us at the Austin Vampire Ball in 2018!

    Includes:
    • NPC modeled after you
    • Fixed landmark of your choosing
    • Party at Austin Vampire Ball 2018
    • Laser cut plaque
    • Hang out with Dev Team at PAX
    • Abandoned Manor Lair
    • Abomination Pet
    • Casino Lair
    • Cavern Lair
    • Cemetery Lair
    • Cloud the Minds Eye Power
    • Design Custom NPC
    • Design Quest
    • Digital Copy of the Game
    • Fetish Club Lair
    • Museum Lair
    • Name in credits
    • Ninja Pet
    • Raise Dead Power
    • Sewer Lair
    • Siberian Tiger Pet
    • Soul Eater Pet
    • Succubus Pet
    • Summon the Unspeakable Power
    • Summon Winter Wolf power
    • Summon Wolf Power
    • Victorian Castle Lair
    • Werewolf Pet
    • Wings of Night Power
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only certain countries
    1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.