Leave 'em Laughing - The Stand Up Comedy Videogame
Mix a rogue-like with the humor and story of a point-and-click adventure. Help Nelson find his dad and perform awesome stand up comedy!
Leave 'em Laughing is a procedurally generated stand up comedy game that lets you live the life of comedian Nelson Smith as he creates and performs his act, constantly insults people, avoids his ex, and listens to sweet vinyl.
When comedian Nelson Smith's sister stays with him during her divorce, he decides he doesn’t need any more positive karma points for the rest of the year. So, when he wakes up beside his sociopath ex-girlfriend, gets a call asking for bail money from his manager, and learns that his father is missing in Indonesia, his first thought is what to get for breakfast and whether today is a shorts day.
The game is planned for PC and Mac, with other platforms to be added as stretch goals.
When the game starts, you pick one of 8 episodes, each with a unique story that changes each time you play it.
1. The game generates a unique cityscape in which you can have fun interacting with people/shops/objects, nursing your chronic coffee addiction, and avoiding anything resembling your parents, elderly relatives or crazy ex-girlfriends.
Everything you do affects not only the story, but what jokes you will be able to craft later on.
2. Once you've collected enough comedic material, you'll head back to your trendy loft apartment to craft your act. The different people/shops/locations you interacted with will feed off each other to generate what jokes you can choose to craft and place in your stand-up comedy routine.
3. The big night! Your stand-up comedy performance is like a bossfight in some other non-funny game. Like any stand up comic knows, timing is everything, so you have to know what to say and when if you're going to make people's heads explode with laughter and get those 5-star reviews. Additionally, every audience has its different tastes, and will find some jokes more entertaining than others.
Finally... Leave 'em Laughing features the world's first heckling mechanic!
Each play session feels like an episode of a sitcom like Seinfeld, Curb Your Enthusiasm, or Lead Balloon, lasting 20 minutes and with recurring characters and themes that develop Nelson as a character and comedian.
- A unique, realistic setting populated with many relatable characters you can grow to hate (just like IRL!)
- Both Story Mode and One Night Only! One Night Only mode is where you will experience random maps and episodes, while Story Mode features a longer, more structured narrative. (just like IRL!)
- A bangin' soudtrack by bands from Perth, Western Australia.
- Tonnes of jokes that you can splice together into thousands of possible stand up routines.
- Photo-realistic art style that looks IDENTICAL to actual pixel art that someone painted onto canvas using a felt-tip pen, then threw grease all over it, then left it in the sun!
- Online leaderboards that let you see just who is the funniest, the funkiest and the furriest comedian in all the world.
All the music in the game is by local Fremantle bands, so Leave 'em Laughing is like a kind of mad-science mixtape of brash tunes from Down Under.
Check some shiz righ' here:
The game in it's current state was made using Game Maker:Studio, and the art was made in GIMP. These are great tools, and I only need a few extra bits and bobs to get the game running just right. Here is a list of things that we all know cost money:
- RENT! Okay, this is a big one. The prototype I'm showing off at the Perth Games Festival was made in less than a month. The reason I was able to do it is because I quit college and lived off my savings for a while. I work part-time at a clothing store, but this doesn't cover much more than my food, car and bills. Rent is a killer in Perth.
- SOUNDS! This game live or dies on it's world being believable and intricate, which means it needs to sound right. My friend owns a recording studio, I just have to bring the goods.
- VOICE! Yes, you heard right, the game has voice acting. I didn't plan on having any, but then it was weird reading a comedian's jokes and seeing the audience type 'HA HA HA' like robots.
- MUSIC! Musicians do their best work when they feel loved, and nothing makes them feel loved like throwing some coin their way. I can only make so much of the soundtrack myself, so I need to pay musicians.
- THINGS I DIDN'T THINK OF! "I'm sorry you need to ____ your game's ____. That'll be US$99." Okay, these hit you at the worst time. They are unknown unknowns that sap money out of me that I sorely need for cheep noodles. Things like domain addresses, GM:S modules, appstore certificates... they all add up.
- EVENTS! The Perth Games Festival is coming up, and it's costing me a lot. Printing posters, banners, renting space, it all adds up.
- HAIRCUT! I really need a haircut :P
- A BIGGER GAME! Any money left over will be spent getting am awesome game out to as many peeps as possible! Additional platforms are the obvious thing to aim for, additional music, additional art, more levels and locations, general polish, entering the game into competitions, and any other financial requirements the project runs into.
So, don't fret. All the numbers are crunched, you just sit back, drink a latte, and don't worry your pretty, little head about it.
The crux of the art and coding has been/will be done my myself, but a few other people are/will be involved. Here's the lowdown:
Me (Oscar) I am 24, live in Fremantle, WA, and have been making games for a while (I don't how long, a few years?) I fancy myself an arteest, a writer and musician. I studied Journalism and Archaeology for a while, but now I want to make games.
Josh owns Bruno Sweetdog Records and is our one-stop-shop for getting in with the bands who's music will make this game something magical delicious. Also, he owns his own recording studio, which I can use to record the game's sounds and voice acting.
Nelson is the main character of most of my games. He is a real person and likes to be consulted about what I am putting him into next.
Backers pledging $25 or more will have access to the game's closed beta once it's made available. Playing the game while it's in development, you will have the opportunity to better the final game and give us feedback. It's worth it if only for the fact that you get to play the game's latest content before anyone else!
I'm aiming to have the beta begin as soon as possible, a rough date being the beginning of January. As on right now, Windows PCs are the only platform supported for the closed beta. Sorry Mac and Linux users!
Risks and challenges
While the only thing that could stop me from completing this game is my untimely death, the workload for this project is significant, as I am the only person working the game and will be handling both the game development and the business side of things.
Naturally, it's tempting for me to just keep adding to the game, but I understand that continually tweaking and adding things won't make a great game and won't make backers happy. I promise to not just release a great game, but to release it on time.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)