Project image
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$716
pledged of $50,000pledged of $50,000 goal
8
backers
Funding Canceled
Funding for this project was canceled by the project creator on Sep 14 2013
$716
pledged of $50,000pledged of $50,000 goal
8
backers
Funding Canceled
Funding for this project was canceled by the project creator on Sep 14 2013

About

What type of game is Ithica... Wait What is Atom Technology?

Atoms are ultra small voxels. Since 2000, polygons have been the best choice for 3d graphics in games. However, with resolution and detail increasing every console generation, polygons have hit their limit. Voxels leap past these limitations. Below is a video that best show what atoms can do.

Voxels are 3d cubes drawn on a grid that can have color and opacity. You can make an object in voxels by storing them in an Octree. A sphere for example, can be sub divided in voxels until the cubes disappear and the sphere appears circular.

Voxels can handle quality lighting, detail, run at higher frames per second, and push the hardware far less than polygons. Polys counts are measured in flat triangles or rectangles. A 3d box is 6 planes, or 12 triangles. Polygons are effective and easy to use in the hundreds of thousands. When they hit the low millions they begin to heavily, tax PCs. The problem increases as polygons have not advanced far from their initial limit. A single detailed tree can push into the millions. Because of this, it's impractical to create certain geometry. However, voxels can display the equivalent in trillions. With voxels that same tree can be placed in hundreds, to thousands times in a scene, and run in real time! The technology has surpassed its 2010 limitations, now becoming a question of, "What can't voxels do?"

The new software emerging can offer us new graphical possibilities. Some software that we show great interest in is fractals. As shown below. We plan to implement this technology into the game.

Point Cloud Data is a form of image mapping real objects into 3d using lasers. Its detail is almost photo real. We plan to create tools to generate 3d detail on flat surfaces in voxels. The video below uses aerial photogrammetry, and creates 3D textured meshes.

Does this mean polygons will become obsolete? Yes and no. Polygons use several tricks to hide limitations in geometric detail, by as utilizing a variety of texture layers. There in lies the problem. These tricks became requirements to show more and more detail in higher resolutions. This taxes the hardware severely. For now, it's a transition. Polygons and voxels can work in the same environment. As the engines become more developed, we will eventually run games fully in voxels. Then use less expensive hardware to make games look and run better.

The physics required for Voxels to animate in smooth bodies (skin stretching), is more intensive on the graphics card. Polygons currently remain the best choice. A solution could be surface animation, or voxels influenced by the skeleton? Voxel objects using rigid body animation is viable. Thus, to counter any major delays the game will be produced with poly, voxel hybrids in mind. Despite this, our goal remains full usage of voxels. We have prepared to compensate for any limitations. The result should be no major delays in the production.

Prologue

The game takes place on an alien world, an island. The name of the island is Ithica. It starts and it ends on Ithica. You play Fenril, the son of an archeologist Troy. Fenril visits after being away for 10 years. Upon arriving, he finds something has gone horribly wrong. Explore the island, and uncover mysteries of the past. Ithica's being remade from its 1999 2d version in next gen 3d graphics, overhauled game play, new mini games, and original story.

Planet Nobius- A planet with two suns and a moon. The suns are located mostly at the South Pole of the planet. This leaves the North Pole almost barren and cold while the south is brimming with life.

Ithica Island- A tropical island almost located on the South Pole. Due to the lush vegetation Ithica is a hub for exporting many unique foods and herbs used as medicine. The monster population is mostly quarantined to the forests, ensuring safer living for the citizens. The island has two ports on each end with a dormant super volcano taking up a quarter of the east side of the island.

Zuni- A race that survived by hunting the most powerful monsters of their lands. With many of their clothing and tools used from the bodies of the monsters, they slay. The Zuni quickly exhausted their homeland resources. In order to survive they started pitting their most powerful against each other. Eventually mutants arose who could wield magic and live incredibly long. Those with the longest life spans, greatest combative skills became rulers. When Phaeton took over, he ended many of their traditions, focused on a war economy, and wiped out his entire family to ensure he could rule unopposed. Luckily, his trusted ambassador was a distant cousin who survived the purge by hiding his identity. When Phaeton died, Zero took over and changed the Zuni culture again. Science became their priority as they used their powers to advance themselves far beyond the Duras. To this day Zero has kept their race withdrawn to the northern continent, maintaining the peace of the world behind the scenes.

Duras- Unlike the Zuni, the monsters hunted the Duras. As a result, they learned balance, and technology. They developed weapons, armor, and other abilities to combat the monsters. Some of the Duras sought to gain more power by training with the Zuni. Over the course of many generations, they came back possessing magic. Although most Duras did not inherit magic, those that did often became monster hunters. After Phaeton was defeated, the Duras expanded across the planet. Not as advanced as the Zuni, and with short life spans. The Duras are only recently mastering dominion over their lands.

Hybrid- Zero teamed up with the Duras military and scientists to create a means to defeat Phaeton. They came up with a method to cross breed the races. They created two hybrid names Veeorah, Nocturne. As the war ended, Zero grew to fear Nocturne's blood lust in battle. Zero decided to seal away Nocturne and have Veeorah watch over his imprisonment for all time. Unlike the Zuni and Duras the hybrid are immortal, wield powerful magic, and can heal any wound almost instantly. Zero punished the researchers, and their families for creating Nocturne by locking them up with him. Zero feared he would continue what Phaeton started so long ago. Veeorah resides on Ithica Island, occasionally hiring hunters or mercenaries to keep the monster population manageable.

Monsters- They are carnivorous animals that eat people. When monster populations grow too big, they call in mercenaries or monster hunters. Mercenaries travel the world using their fighting skills to protect people from any physical threats, such as bandits. Monster hunters specifically deal with the most dangerous beasts that would normally take many people to tackle.

Ruins- Thanks to the influx of powerful hunters, the monster population became manageable. This allowed people to venture into parts of Ithica Island that were long lost. Most of the ruins were old Phaeton strong holds. Zero decided to use these ruins to hide the gateway to Nocturne's prison and path to the ultimate relic, the Infernal Blade.

Relics- Items created by the Zuni, abandoned after the war. Most relics require magic to use. Due to this, the Duras ignored many of them as rubble. Hundreds of years after the war, the Duras began to take interest in relics, mostly using them as light sources. The Zuni pay well for returning weapon-based relics. They have funded several academies that teach magic, and archeology. 

Fusion Blade- Many believe it's the Infernal Blade renamed, sealed away in a hidden location. Only the Zuni know why.

Infernal Blade- The Zuni are capable of forming shields around their body when they concentrate. Paired with their agility, injuring them is extremely difficult, with the most powerful being invulnerable. Therefore, they created a blade to dispel their magic. Due to this, the blade creates a barrier of its own, allowing it to cut through anything. The only thing required to wield it is the ability to use magic. The more powerful the wielder the stronger the blade becomes.

Troy- An archeologist, he visits Ithica Island to uncover the ruins. Thanks to the reduced monster population and his best friend Kain, they are able to open up the great passage (A tunnel that leads to Phaeton's old fortress).

Kain- While both of them are skilled in magic, Kain specializes in fighting monsters. They both taught combat at the academy. When Kain learns of Troy's expedition, he imagines the possibilities. Troy decides to take his girl friend Irene and Kain with him. Later Irene marries Troy, gives birth to Fenril.

Fenril- He is the son of Troy. Fenril moved to the mainland with his mother after the divorce. Fenril helped his mother run a shop in the port town. Eventually Irene remarried, made a small fortune with her new husband. She then lets Fenril visit his estranged father after being away for so long. The tale begins here.

Around July of 2012, Jonathan Murphy approached certain game companies for possible funding, and distribution. He talked to the owner of Atomontage, Branislav Siles. They agreed the best course of action was the initial decision, to remain independent from each other. This means he could use another voxel-based engine. This decision allows us at Vercus to choose what we feel will be the best choice, when stage 2 is complete. With that said, Jonathan has been in contact with Siles since August 2011. Ultimately, we do plan to use Siles' engine. To tell that to certain investors, that the technology was unproven, and its release was unknown. Especially back in 2012 was not beneficial. We don't need a lot of money. Even though we're using real next gen graphics, it's still an indie game made by a small team. The other factor for this decision was availability. A single investor could monopolize the production. With Kickstarter, we can release Ithica at an extremely low price, production cost, without sacrificing integrity.

For the first time ever we can push games into frames higher than any television can output. 2,000 frames per second! With atoms, we can push 8k resolution, higher quality shadows, using ambient occlusion. What would normally take a computer minutes to hours in rendering, we can run those shadows in real time! Rigo realized we could be making graphics so bleeding edge that people could get horribly nauseous. Somewhere around 15% of people can get motion sickness playing Halo 1 on the PC. As next gen games emerge, we need to keep games as available to the human eye as DVD movies. If we're successful with Kickstarter, we'll create this new system, and hope all games use this meter. Unlike the ESRB, we want this to be free and optional to all game developers.

After the funding, we'll determine how much staff we can hire. We have scouted talented artists and programmers, and will be contacting them again during the mid point of the Kickstarter. Overall, the staff size will remain small, and hired in stages of production. As it has been since we began.We had several talented people who currently work in the game industry help us with the music and other portions.

Jonathan Murphy

Programmed his first PC game at age 10 on the Apple IIe. Later on, he discovered the Graal engine in 1998, made his first 2d online PC game in 1999. After college, he has worked mostly in the field of art for various game companies, on almost every genre. Even though half of the games were never released, the vast experience he gained was not lost. With his discovery of the atom engine in late 2011, he dropped everything he was doing to use this technology, recreating Ithica in 3d.

Allen Gardner

His jobs involve voice acting, dialogue editing, and other odd jobs. An enthusiastic hobby collector, Allen does a lot of things, such as sword smith, sales, and hunting with a blunt weapon. A self-described modern day Viking, Allen believes that every problem can be solved with the application of a big enough hammer.

Rigo Gonzalez

He is a tester of all things that need testing. The Dalton Standard creator. Rigo has a track record for completing many assignments in the game industry on time. He does so without losing his cool and often finds new ways to accomplish his tasks. Those that worked under him found his practical, creative methods a lifesaver during the most strenuous times.

Stage 1 was to take the old 2d game and remake from scratch in 3d. I, Jonathan Murphy built the entire game world, all the rooms, all the dungeons, some clothing, character models, and monsters. As it stands stage 1 is virtually complete. I also tested the basic game play, the mini games, created the design doc, finalized the storyline, dialogue, and hired the team. Stage 1 also involved testing atom technology. I probed its benefits and disadvantages. I worked hard to test basic game play, complete stage 1 and confirm atom technology is close to ready. If everything goes as planned the SDK (software development kit) will be available as we complete stage 2. This was all planned back in January of 2012. Everything went as planned. Well... my hard drive died in July 2012, the motherboard, and the CPU fan... Aside from that, my plan was perfect!

The minimum goal, $50k for stage 2 of game development. With stage 2 complete, we'd be able to secure any additional funding. Stage 2 is dependent on how much funding we receive. It covers all animation, character models, cinematics, voice actors, and game world further tested. If fully funded we'll add in The Dalton Standard (Nausea Meter), sound track, and a few other bonuses.

Stage 3 we hire the last two staff members. Minimum goal $150k. The special effects artist, he/she will provide the final layer of polish. The last staff member will be the programmer. Due to the complexity, we'll have to test the game in a completed SDK to determine what type of programmer is needed. With that said, we still scouted several talented programmers.

There are two ways to experience the storyline. There are two ways to experience the combat. With the Dual System, players can choose between a serious play through, or a humorous one. Due to this system, Ithica is one of the first M-T rated games. Blood on and off? It's not that simple. A truly different experience between those looking for serious game play and those looking for humor. A game world with different play through experiences.

Secret Announcement 1
To be announced soon.

Secret Announcement 2
To be announced soon.

Secret Announcement 3
To be announced soon.


FAQ

Have a question?

Of course, there will be questions this page can't answer. Rather than trying to guestimate, we'll do our best to answer all questions asked through various outlets. We put community first and hope to live up to that standard the entire Kickstarter. Expect a weekly update using Twitch, Twitter, and YouTube. Afterwards we disappear forever! Ok, I'm kidding. We'll give a monthly YouTube update after KS.

Twitter Tuesday-

Every Tuesday, your twitter questions are answered @vercusgames. I'll take the most common questions asked and answer them again on YouTube.

Risks and challenges

You can't measure progress in time. It's measured in breakthroughs. We waited for the technology to reach a certain point. As of now most of it works. But we're still waiting for some final advancements. Ithica is intended to be completed before the due date. But if the SDK gets delayed we can only promise we won't stop until it's complete. Ithica has been in development since, October 2011. We are seeking funding to complete the game.

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Funding period

- (30 days)