An infinitely expanding video game about changing perspectives.
Some More Info
Vivian Clark exists in a secret passage inside another game I made called Soda Drinker Pro. (You can see what I mean by this in this interview here, it's right at the end of it.) You can access the current version of Vivian Clark if you know the secret passage inside the Soda Drinker Pro game. Currently there are around 40 worlds to explore inside this game. But with your help we are looking to build this out to at least 150 worlds. You can find out how to access this secret passage by searching the internet. (It's much more fun that way.)
The main goal of this Kickstarter is to build this game out to its greatest potential and make it even deeper, with more challenges, levels and characters. We would like to add at least 100 new worlds into the current game. We know that with the budget in the Kickstarter we can do this.
If we surpass our original goal we will use the rest of the budget to continue to build out the game. We estimate that for every 10K pledged on top of the original goal we could make about 100 more worlds. So if we are fortunate enough to be given extra support we won't stop working. We will keep on building this out, making it even better!
Other possibilities for stretch goals would be ports to other platforms (maybe Android, IOS, OUYA, etc. depending on what happens).
This game was originally called “Scale,” and it started out as a project for a weekend hackathon project at Microsoft in Cambridge, MA.
Sorry the audio isn't too great. But listen to the audience's reaction when they see the game. That's the most important part.
Recently we changed the name to “Vivian Clark.” Why Vivian Clark? Well you'll have to play the game to find out!
When I was at the hackathon, I had so much fun making the game that I kept on working on it. The original inspiration came from a couple things. The first is a Harry Nilsson song in the movie “The Point!” There is a song in the movie called “Think About Your Troubles.” If you haven't seen the movie or heard the song, I highly recommend checking it out. The lyrics go from one thing to another, constantly interconnecting in a pretty way, and that gave me an idea for the game. Other inspiration came from the TV show “Mr. Show.” I always loved how all the skits in that were interconnected in the same way as the Nilsson tune.
Here is one of Nicole's Paintings (this isn't in the game but it will give you an idea of what she can do).
Here is a painting from Matt too.
We all have very different styles, but because of the way the game is set up we are not locked into one specific aesthetic. This is because in the game, you are following paths of players into their own worlds, and each world can have its own look and style. There is purposely no UI in the game, giving the player the freedom to figure out what they are supposed to do in each level based on experimentation and exploration. It also encourages players to share their experience with friends and to teach each other how to access different worlds.
Here are some screenshots of current game footage
The music is all written by my one of my favorite musicians, Scott Levesque. He is also the singer for the band Wheat.
Here's a couple tracks from the game!
The neat thing with this game is there are a ton of main characters to play as. Everything from a raindrop to a turtlefish to microscopic organisms to electricity to a star wearing roller skates. We want you to be able to experience countless players, but also give them all depth and a reason for being there. This isn't just a bunch of random stuff happening; it's all interconnected and makes sense within the game. It might take a while for you to figure what it's all about and it might seem random at the beginning, but the more you play the more you will understand.
The controls are simple: arrow keys or WASD keys move, and the space bar sometimes performs some type of action. I wanted to keep the controls simple so anyone can pick it up and enjoy it, but there are a lot of subtleties in the controls to players as well.
Each world has different rules. Sometimes the physics are different, sometimes it's a platformer or a puzzle, sometimes the levels go by fast and other levels take a lot longer. It's up to the player to decide what they are supposed to do in each world. Every world has multiple entrances and exits. What you do in every world will affect the gameplay and the characters in other worlds.
For example, at one point in the game you are flying a plane randomly bombing houses. You are never told if you are supposed to do that or not, but if you do, later in the game you become the family that lives in one of those houses, and depending on if you bombed the house their world is quite different and the gameplay changes.
Goal of the game
As you play through each world you'll be taken from place to place. Some interactions will take you to a new world while others will take you to what's called the campfire.
Here you will see picture frames of what you have accomplished in the game. In the current version there are 40 of these frames. But with your help we can bring that number up quite a bit. As you accomplish those goals the picture frames fill in. If you get all of them then maybe the game ends or maybe more happens. You'll have to unlock them to find out.
This game is infinitely expandable. We would love to keep adding worlds and connecting them with all of the other worlds.
The main reason is to make this the best possible game it can be. Currently there are around 40 different worlds, each with various goals and things that can be interacted with. With your help we'd love to take this to 500+ worlds. So each time you play you are having a hugely different experience, exploring new worlds and making it a massive, deep game. Each character or object in the game could potentially lead to whole new worlds, and that's what makes it so fun. The possibilities are endless! We've been able to accomplish quite a bit so far on the game, but with your help we can work on this full-time to make it absolutely amazing!
The other reason we are really interested in crowdfunding this project is to give you a say in the game. For example, if you pledge $150 or more, you can send us a sentence, and we'll use that sentence for inspiration to build a world in the game. When you pause the game in the world you inspired, it will say your name and the sentence that you sent us.
I really like the idea of creating worlds based on people's ideas too. This way it's not just what we think is neat, but a combination of what lots of fun people think is neat.
People who pledge $75 or more will have access to developer chats where we show new areas we are working on and can give everyone clues on fun hidden places in this world.
What's really cool about this Kickstarter is that people are supporting a game to make it better for everyone rather than buying a game and keeping it for themselves.
Thank you so much for reading this and I hope you enjoy the world of Vivian Clark!
We are also participating in Kicking it Forward, this is a wonderful idea and I will gladly help other projects as well You can learn about what Kicking it Forward is here
Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
As with anything there is always the possibility that things will take longer than usual or it might not go as expected. I have known everyone on the team for many years and I trust their work. They are all extremely passionate and do what they say they will do. I have known Matt since high school, Nicole was once my roommate so we lived together for over a year and we got to know each other really well. And I have known Scott for a long time now too. All of us have a proven track record of getting really neat things done. Matt has worked on movies and TV shows providing artistic direction. Nicole's work has been in museums and galleries all over the world and she was also featured in a highly successful Kickstarter from Amanda Palmer. Scott has toured all over the world playing with his band Wheat and always putting out great albums. As for my history, I've released a few games that have done well. I've also toured the country playing music and I've run a company for the past ten years. So together we can make this happen. It won't be easy, but we will do everything to make it amazing, and we'll stay in close contact the whole time with updates and news on our progress.
As of right now, PC, Mac & Linux. But depending on how things go we would love to port it to other platforms. We are open and up for any really.
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Pledge $7 or moreYou selected
Have your name in the credits of the gameEstimated delivery:
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Digital copy of Vivian Clark for PC, Mac or Linux. (When we release it after the Kickstarter we are thinking it will cost $30 so this will save you 20! RAD!) You will also have your name in the credits.Estimated delivery:
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Digital copy of Vivian Clark with a beautifully designed PDF instruction booklet. Plus all the previous rewards!Estimated delivery:
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PDF digital book of artwork from the game (including the original hand-drawn scans), interesting notes on how the game was made, and clues to hidden areas of the world. (If you load this beautiful PDF up on a tablet and then place it on a table, it will make a perfect tabletop digital book!) Plus all the previous rewards!Estimated delivery:
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Access to a private forum where players can talk about the game and share secrets before it's released. Plus all the previous rewards!Estimated delivery:
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Access to beta builds of the game as it's being built. As new versions are launched you'll have access to them. We plan on releasing monthly builds. Plus all the previous rewards!Estimated delivery:
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DRM free digital copy of game soundtrack. Plus all the previous rewards!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $55 or moreYou selected
8 backers Limited (142 left of 150)
Anyone who pledges $55 or more will get to decide the location of a soda simulation level inside Soda Drinker Pro!!! You get to tell us where you want to drink a soda & we'll put it in the game! We will build a full Soda Drinking simulation level based on your idea! We will also include your name in the thank you credits in the game as well!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $75 or moreYou selected
Access to monthly developer chats where we'll be showing off new areas of the game and taking input from you that might make it into the game. Plus all the previous rewards!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $100 or moreYou selected
We will send you a beautifully printed signed poster with game art from Vivian Clark! Plus all the previous rewards!Estimated delivery:Add $20 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $150 or moreYou selected
You can send us a sentence about anything (as long as it's not racist or hateful) and we'll use that for inspiration to put it in the world. We'll also tell you how to get to your area, and when you pause the game you'll see your name and the sentence you sent us that inspired the level. Plus all the previous rewards!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $175 or moreYou selected
Send us a sentence and we'll build a level based on it, and we'll also send you the original hand-drawn concept art signed by the team with a little thank you note. Plus rewards 1-9!Estimated delivery:Add $20 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $200 or moreYou selected
We will make a level based on your sentence, and we'll also record a video screencast of how to get to your world and share it on our YouTube channel. Plus rewards 1-9!Estimated delivery:Add $20 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $500 or moreYou selected
You can send us 3 sentences and we'll make 3 separate worlds for you and show you how to get to it. Plus rewards 1-9!Estimated delivery:Add $20 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $1,000 or moreYou selected
If you can make it to the Boston area (you provide your own travel) we will take you out to dinner at the restaurant of your choice with the team. You can also send us 4 sentences and we will create 4 worlds based on them in the game. We will also create beautiful custom maps on how to get to your worlds. Plus rewards 1-9!Estimated delivery:Add $20 USD to ship outside the US
Pledge $10,000 or moreYou selected
We will build a custom-made tabletop arcade version of the game and ship it to you. We will also create 15 worlds for you in the game based on 15 sentences you send us. Plus rewards 1-9!Estimated delivery:Ships within the US only
- (30 days)