Update #7: Forgot to put up the Skullforge: The Hunt description video for those who want to watch it.
Update #6: We're doing pretty well on Steam Greenlight, so thanks to everyone who has voted for us. I'm really surprised at the response the game has gotten. Also, today we released the second Skullforge podcast. Should have it up on Youtube as well within the next 24 hours. Enjoy!
Update #5: We're on Steam Greenlight!
Update #4: Skullforge: The Hunt Podast 1 - Exploration
Update #3: Skullforge: The Hunt is headed to Linux systems! This will be under the original funding goal.
Update #2: New video is live! Take a look.
Update #1: Lot's of changes going on. Here's the original Skullforge: The Hunt trailer. The Kickstarter video will change in a few minutes.
Skullforge: The Hunt is a single player action RPG set in a medieval fantasy world. The combat will be fast, interesting, and most of all fun. Players will take the role of Desinarious "Desi" Cornerstone as she tracks down one of her enslavers. This game is made for those who like action RPGs with a good mix of fun storytelling, action, exploration, and the ability to make interesting choices along the way.
This game is what you get when you take the action of great games like Secret of Evermore, Secret of Mana, Soul Blazer and even modern RPGs like Kingdoms of Amalur and Darksiders with the survival aspects of the cult classic Alternate Reality. These games were our inspiration when laying down what Skullforge is and we know everyone who likes RPGs will be happy with the result.
What you can expect when you load up Skullforge: The Hunt is:
Realtime action combat where you can block, dodge, cast spells, and use awesome weapon skills.
A rich and engaging story which will expose the dark underbelly of Sorova.
Progress through three talent trees each having its own gameplay flavor.
Explore the island of Sorova searching for rare monsters, collecting bounties, or just take in the scenery.
Robust conversation system that has many branches which will open or close depending on how you interact with them.
Non linear quests which allows the player to find various ways to solve them.
Crafting system where you contract work out to various smiths around the island.
Loot! (Keep in mind this isn't a loot game.)
Large dungeons to explore!
I've been gaming a long time and I want all of my games to be consistent in how we approach them. For this game, I wanted to make something with a compelling action/adventure/RPG style. This meant that it had to grip the player and encourage them to be part of the world. This includes making friends and enemies, helping out the locals, exploring, and taking care of themselves (eating, sleeping, etc.).
Everything you've seen so far for the game has been done in only a few short months by only two people. Think of what we can accomplish with more time and resources!
It's simple, because we feel like we have a great idea that deserves a spot in the world of RPG gaming. There aren't many games like it, and it would be a shame to see the idea not see the light of day. Unfortunately, we are a small studio and resources are limited. By pledging you can allow us to finish the game and add great new art, lots of custom music and sounds, as well as contracting others to help get the game out to you quicker. We have a plan, and you can help us get there.
Skullforge: The Hunt is planned for PC, Mac, and Wii U under the base funding level.
Note about the Wii U version: We have been in contact with Nintendo and we will be on the Wii U if funded. Things are looking positive at the moment.
"It's difficult to think back to those days. The torture, the beatings...memories of things that just blur together like ripples in a pond. Most times I can avoid thinking about it. The throes of combat take me to a place where I can forget those days and lose myself to the euphoria of the dance of death. Yet, it's the quiet times I fear most, as my mind loves to pull the haunting dreams forward to remind me of why I'm here. It's been over three hundred years and the memories of those tunnels, the foul stench of decay, sweat, and many things I dare not describe linger to slowly drive me insane. I don't know why, but I always survive. Living to fight one more day. I'd like to say there is comfort in that thought, however all it does is prolong the insanity I know is coming.
The future looked brighter back then. Strange and new, with a hopeful freshness. I never stopped to dwell on the possibilities after I earned my freedom. Instead I only dreamt of death. My trip to Sorova was quiet, with a hopeful longing that I would find my prey. There was no doubt in my mind what the outcome would be. He would die by my hand and no one was going to stop me. At least I kept telling myself that. The gods had other plans for me on that island. What looked bright and happy on the surface concealed a dark, evil disease festering with corruption, greed, and a disdain for life. As much as I told myself not to get involved, I couldn't ignore a land in need." -Desi Cornerstone from the Annals of Lyra
The game takes place after the events in Skullforge: The Destined One. Desi arrives on the island of Sorova and gets pulled into a political struggle. The player will ultimately be able to decide how deep they want to delve into the intrigue.
If you're interested in more of the story, check out Skullforge: The Destined One using the links below:
Also available on Barnes & Noble and Apple iBooks stores.
The sounds of Skullforge: The Hunt are something that I have been thinking about since I started working on the game. The trick for any soundtrack is figuring out how to capture the magic of the game, while offering some kind of musical identity players can relate to. Since this is a fantasy game, one would think that the soundtrack would be easy as it is usually some kind of "epic fantasy".
However, when I was first working on the idea for the music, it was modern guitar. My first inspiration was grunge rock like Alice In Chains or Soundgarden. I liked the idea of guitar heavy tracks, but after listening to many, many tracks, I'm leaning towards a more techno modern sound. A good example would be something like (Gitanjali by Cadra):
Or something like this (Merciful Lie by Siren):
However, I'm also open to the idea of a more traditional "dark fantasy" sound such as (Warsong by David Orr):
I am in talks with a musician and as we get closer to our goal, I'll go into more detail. Let us know what you think.
Who are the people working on Skullforge: The Hunt? Let's meet them:
The mastermind behind the Skullforge series and manipulator of 1s and 0s. Known as "Garv", he works tirelessly to make the game a reality. Once a member of the band of brothers known as NCsoft, Garv was a GM and wielder of the "ban hammer" for a game formally known as City of Heroes. He is now the leader of OMC Games and writer for HieroGraphix Game Journal.
FAVORITE GAMES: Alternate Reality, World of Warcraft, Wizard's Crown, NHL 2k1, PSO, Shutokou Battle, Test Drive Unlimited
Heather is in charge of designing the UI and populating the world of Skullforge: The Hunt. At one point in her career she was a GM at Blizzard for World of Warcraft. Currently, she assists with the HieroCast and graphical work for OMC Games.
FAVORITE GAMES: World of Warcraft, PSO, Final Fantasy VII, Xenoblade, Pokemon, Wave Race, Test Drive Unlimited, FF Tactics
Here's a list of the various rewards tiers for Skullforge: The Hunt.
EARLY BIRD TIER: Get a digital copy of the game for the platform of your choice. Get in early while the option is available.
DIGITAL DOWNLOAD TIER: Get a digital copy of the game for the platform of your choice.
EASY LISTENING TIER: Enjoy all of the previous rewards, and throw in a digital copy of the soundtrack.
SOMETHING TO WEAR TIER: Get all previous rewards, and get one really awesome Skullforge t-shirt. Please remember to add $10 USD to ship outside the U.S. Below is a mockup of the shirt.
SWORD QUEST TIER: Get all previous rewards, including the great t-shirt. This tier will add a new quest to the game which will allow you to go on an epic sword quest. Once you reach a certain point in the game, the quest will open up and at the end you'll receive the sword. The quest doesn't have any impact on the main story. This tier also gets an extra copy of the game.
MAP TIER: Get all previous rewards, including the sword quest. This tier adds a cloth map to the pot. Like those old style cloth maps? Want something collectable? This is the tier to jump in on. This tier also gets an extra copy of the game.
EPIC ARMOR TIER: Get all previous rewards, including the cloth map. Added to this tier is the quest for an awesome high quality suit of armor. It includes chest, boots, pants, belt, and gloves. This quest will unlock once you reach a certain level in the game. As you make your way through the quest chain, the pieces will be awarded. The quest story doesn't have any impact on the main story. This tier also gets an extra copy of the game.
MOUNT TIER: Get all previous rewards, including the armor quest. Traveling around Sorova can be long if quick travel isn't used, so renting a horse may be essential to the experience. What if you could own your own mount? Look no further than this tier! Jumping in at this level will open up a quest for your own sabertooth mount. That's right, a sabertooth mount. As with all other Kickstarter quests, not having access to this does not affect the story in any way. Completing the quest will net a mount to be used while traveling around Sorova. This tier also gets 2 extra copies of the game.
MINI-BOSS TIER: Get all previous rewards, as well as the mount quest. This tier gives you the chance to become a brigand mini-boss or a quest giver in the game. You can choose your race, name, and provide some details about the character (i.e. battle cry or quote) and we'll add it to the game. If you decide to be a mini-boss, then we'll add you to a questline or as a bounty from the Adventurer's Guild. If you choose to be a quest giver, then you'll be able to choose to be a starting quest giver or part of a connected storyline. We'll discuss the details as we get to that point. We reserve the right to change names if they're not appropriate. This tier also gets 2 extra copies of the game.
TAVERN OWNER TIER: Get all previous rewards except for the MINI-BOSS TIER. We'll be giving two lucky people the chance to setup their own tavern. You'll be able to choose who runs it from a list of available races, as well as the floor plan. There will be a number of options to choose from including what part of town it's in (A dive? Up scale place?). Leave your mark on the world of Sorova. As with the MINI-BOSS TIER, we'll discuss details once we get to that point. Also, remember, we reserve the right to change inappropriate names. This tier also gets 2 extra copies of the game.
Both sets of quests will be available in the final game at some point. The goal is to allow people who backed the Kickstarter at various tiers, get first crack at the quests and items. After some time, the quests will be available for all players via free DLC. The items themselves will be identical with the backers having a different looking item. This way, there's no power difference, but backers will have something that looks unique. At the end of the day, everyone can experience the content and the differences will ultimately only be cosmetic.
Our initial funding goal of $20,000 breaks down as follows:
10% for taxes and fees.
12% for licenses and dev kits.
15% for custom music
40% for custom art and models.
10% for specialized icons and portraits
13% petty cash and incidentals
We have an artist and musician ready to go once we get funding with costs already laid out which is how we arrived at the numbers you see above. Any overage will go towards more art and music and we'll release stretch goals once we get closer to the goal.
Risks and challenges
The biggest risk has to do with potential artists. Getting models done as well as animation is a large task and in my experience finding artists to handle the load is difficult. The whole purpose of this Kickstarter is to bring in some much needed resources to make the task of finding an artist easier. Up until this point, I have been contacting many artists without much luck. I'm hoping that by the end of this campaign we'll have a couple of awesome people to help us out. That said, I'm well aware that this may not happen and if that's the case, then we'll improvise. We just hope it doesn't come to that.
The second challenge is with regards to spreading the word. One thing I'm not good at is marketing. Setting things up, programming, managing the behind the scenes issues is something I can do. However, promoting and marketing are difficult. It's going to take a lot of focus on my end, but I suppose it's time to step to the challenge.
Finally, is just the fact of trying to deliver a game in a reasonable amount of time. I am committed to providing players with the best experience I can make with the time and resources available to me. However, life is a random and fickle thing. History is full of good intentions and as much as I want to get Skullforge: The Hunt finished, sometimes life has other plans. It's one of the scariest things about this whole affair both for you and me as well. At this point, I have put many hours of work into the project and the thought of losing all that work is something I try not to think about too much. None of us should be naive about how this sort of thing can work out. All I can do is move forward.
There are lots of challenges coming, but it's ultimately how we deal with them that is most important. I hope you guys join us for the ride.
SWORD QUEST: All previous rewards + unlock a quest for an epic sword in the game. Once you reach a certain level, the quest will open an you'll be able battle your way towards something awesome. Remember that all Kickstarter quests don't affect the main story. Also comes with 1 additional digital copy of the game (2 copies total).
EPIC ARMOR: All previous rewards + unlock a quest to gather up a complete armor set. The set includes pants, boots, belt, gloves, and chestpiece. Once you attain a certain level in the game the quest will open. Remember that all Kickstarter quests don't affect the main story. Also comes with 1 additional digital copy of the game (2 copies total).
MOUNT: All previous rewards + unlock a quest to get the sabertooth mount. Traveling around Sorova has never been cooler. Remember that all Kickstarter quests don't affect the main story. Also comes with 2 additional digital copies of the game (3 copies total).
MINI-BOSS: All previous rewards + be part of the game as either a mini-boss or quest giver. It's your chance to either help or hurt the player. Leave your mark on the game in one of the coolest ways possible. Also comes with 2 additional digital copies of the game (3 copies total).
TAVERN OWNER: All previous rewards (except the MINI-BOSS reward) + become the owner of your own tavern. Name and choose a great layout for your own tavern. You'll even be able to choose the city it's in. Awesome? You bet! Also comes with 2 additional digital copies of the game (3 copies total).