Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight – SE project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound
$790 pledged of $8,500 goal
backers

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by .

$790 pledged of $8,500 goal
backers

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by .

About

Ever since I was little

I enjoyed playing video games and even more-so watching my mom and uncle play them, since there were a few parts I just couldn’t get past as kid lacking skill and patience.

 Being constantly inspired by the games I grew up with, I aspired to make my own stories and worlds for others to feel that same enjoyment from, however I didn’t really want to be a game designer. As I matured, I grew increasingly interested in comics and manga and always wondered if I could blend the two together somehow. Seamlessly. With Crystal Story, I think I was able to. 

Crystal Story started out as a passion project. I set out to create a world where the reader could turn into the main character. Inspired by The Legend of Zelda series, the MOTHER series (known as EarthBound in the west), and the Final Fantasy series, as well as an art style influenced by the works of Shotaro Ishinomori, Yoichi Kotabe, Bryan Lee O'Malley, and Benimaru Itoh, the world of Crystal Story began taking shape. It grew and consumed elements of the things I loved and felt familiar with, but kept itself original. Its own world. Its own adventure.

Click to read the whole series!
Click to read the whole series!

Almost five years later, its fanbase, while small, has been immensely dedicated. As the story progressed past the first episode (Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight), it seemed like the right time to create something special for the people who’ve been there since its inception, as well as newcomers to the series, which is why I created the concept of the Special Editions.

With Crystal Story, the style adapts to the situation. Some pages are pixel art, while others blend in RPG elements.
With Crystal Story, the style adapts to the situation. Some pages are pixel art, while others blend in RPG elements.
Mina faces off against her first boss monster, Kolderghast.
Mina faces off against her first boss monster, Kolderghast.
 

Crystal Story is not a traditional comic, in the sense that you’re not just reading a story. It’s designed to be more immersive to where you feel like you’re part of the long haul with everyone inside it, borrowing RPG elements like Hit Point counters (or HP, if you’re savvy), Magic Points for spell casting (MP), a leveling system and even new abilities to be learned.  

Who's the hero of this story?

You! Yes, you! You take the role of Mina Mahaulu, an aspiring freelance adventurer. On the inside, Mina is half Human and half Fire Esper. True Espers have infinite MP because their hearts are made entirely of elemental gems called Crystallicite. Depending on what element their Crystallicite is atoned to, they can limitlessly conjure and manipulate those elements as magic spells.

In Mina's case, she is half Fire Esper!
In Mina's case, she is half Fire Esper!

In Mina's case, she is half Fire Esper! In Mina's case, she is half Fire Esper! Since Mina is only half Esper though, her abilities are somewhat “nerfed” and she becomes easily exhausted if she overuses them, so she has to come up with creative ways to make do. A good, pointy blade helps a lot!

In the world of Rydia, Mina must traverse the lands of Falsung and Norsung to find, collect, and combine four crystal shards in order to seal away Termina, a colossal demon that threatens unknown horrors once fully revived. Mina must learn new abilities and master ancient weaponry to defeat the beast! Grow and become strong with Mina, while taking on evil enemies, badass bosses, and dangerous dungeons!

So, what is this Special Edition about? Is it really a game?

Short answer – No, It’s not a real game. The Special Editions of the comic are meant to be an awesome companion piece to the book. They’re a bit of loot to help enrich your experience the comic and are essentially collectables. For a long time, I struggled with an idea on how to distribute Crystal Story in physical format. I knew from the start that I didn’t just want to print a book and call it a day. Since it’s a comic that reads like a game (or is it a game that plays like a comic?), packaging it like one sounded perfect. An excellent way to kickstart the experience for someone checking out the comic for the first time, or for endearing fans wanting to have something they can hold onto.



There was a certain magic to opening up a new game in the past that is lost nowadays. I wanted to bring some of that magic back with the Special Edition sets. Since the series is inspired by games mostly from the SNES era, having it in an SNES-themed package seemed like the only right thing to do – all the fun and charm of unboxing a classic without having to pay a ridiculous premium.



The process that went into making these was a huge learning experience for me, but the design of the packaging received a lot of love because of it. I designed it to be as true-to-life as possible, while still being a joy to unbox and display. 


In my research, I studied many SNES boxes. Here's how the Collector's Edition box compares to a real SNES box!
In my research, I studied many SNES boxes. Here's how the Collector's Edition box compares to a real SNES box!

 

The original NES Zelda cartridge was a stunning gold, and this motif was used on a few Zelda games and products. I felt that the look fit right in with Crystal Story, so I decided to borrow that motif as well.
The original NES Zelda cartridge was a stunning gold, and this motif was used on a few Zelda games and products. I felt that the look fit right in with Crystal Story, so I decided to borrow that motif as well.

 

A behind-the-scenes look at the near-finished box and materials.
A behind-the-scenes look at the near-finished box and materials.

 

I took this picture as soon as the first printed prototypes arrived. It was so exciting! Uncle Tusk.com, a retro-gaming restoration company, handled the printing of the packaging and labels.
I took this picture as soon as the first printed prototypes arrived. It was so exciting! Uncle Tusk.com, a retro-gaming restoration company, handled the printing of the packaging and labels.

 

Uncle Tusk is an awesome dude who re-creates and prints retro game boxes, manuals, labels, etc. You name it. I opted to go with him so I could achieve perfect results when printing the boxes, labels, and accompanying materials in the Special Editions. He also handled the printing of the actual book itself, since it needed to be SNES Instruction Booklet size in order to properly fit in the packaging.

For fulfillment, I went with a great company called Make That Thing. These folks handle the kitting, shipping, and fulfillment of the rewards, so that you can guarantee they will be exactly as they should be when they’re delivered to you.

For handling Crystal Story’s online store, I utilized Liftoff Ecommerce. The team at Liftoff is simply amazing, and was able to help me upgrade the dated Item Shop on the webcomic’s site to something much more presentable and solidly-built.

Andrew Alford, the CEO of Liftoff Ecommerce, also does video projects as a hobby. He’s an extremely talented guy and his stuff is amazing in its own right. I employed him to shoot the intro video we used in this very campaign and I hope to work with him on future projects, video or otherwise, pertaining to Crystal Story!

So, what’s inside every complete Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight Special Edition? 

This is the complete Dawn of the Knight - Special Edition set. The only thing not pictured here is the poster.
This is the complete Dawn of the Knight - Special Edition set. The only thing not pictured here is the poster.

 

This 11" x 17" Poster is included in all complete Dawn of the Knight: Special Editions.
This 11" x 17" Poster is included in all complete Dawn of the Knight: Special Editions.

Each complete Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - Special Edition will come packaged with:


  • 1 SNES-style Collector’s Box (with plastic protector case). 
  • 1 Gold Special Edition Collectable Cartridge. (For collecting and display purposes only. Not an actual game.
  • 1 Bronze Metal USB Key pre-loaded with digital high-resolution versions of Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight and Crystal Story: Artwork Historia Vol. 1. 
  • 1 Printed copy of Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight (in SNES Instruction Booklet size). 
  • 1 11x17 Poster.

Backer Rewards

Complete Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - Special Edition, 
1 “Level Up!” Shirt, 
1 Signed Poster, 
1 Sticker Sheet, Your character in the comic!
Complete Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - Special Edition, 
1 “Level Up!” Shirt, 
1 Signed Poster, 
1 Sticker Sheet, Your character in the comic!

 

Complete Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - Special Edition
Complete Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - Special Edition

 

1 Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - Special Edition Collectable Gold Cartridge, 1 Bronze Metal USB key with digital high-res versions of Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight and Crystal Story: Artwork Historia Vol. 1

1 Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - Special Edition Collectable Gold Cartridge, 1 Bronze Metal USB key with digital high-res versions of Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight and Crystal Story: Artwork Historia Vol. 1


Dreamer’s Set (Not Pictured)
This set includes: 
1 Bronze Metal USB key with digital high-res versions of Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight and Crystal Story: Artwork Historia Vol. 1

Historia Set (Not Pictured
This set includes: 
1 printed copy of Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight and a download code for Crystal Story: Artwork Historia Vol. 1

Special Thanks
This set includes:
 Download codes for high-res versions of Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight and Crystal Story: Artwork Historia Vol. 1

Where will the money go?

The money from this campaign will be used directly towards manufacturing costs and fulfillment. Any additional money made from the campaign will go towards extending the Crystal Story universe – maybe an actual game!

About the Author

Fred Brown (a.k.a. Bredfrown) is an illustrator, cartoonist, graphic designer, web designer, and occasional t-shirt designer. He hails from Atlanta.


Risks and challenges

Because this piece has multiple parts, I’ve worked hard with contacting vendors well in advance in order to have vendors that feel comfortable with the production bandwidth this project requires. Since I will be outsourcing printing and fulfillment to the pros, I can focus on signing personalized rewards and other project particulars. 



Rest assured, I will do my absolute best to make sure these are shipped out to you in a timely fashion, and up to strict quality standards so you may enjoy your reward without reserve.



This is getting long-winded, but I truly appreciate everyone who takes the time to read this proposal and I thank you for your time and effort. I’ve got a lot of big ideas and promises and I intend to make good on each and every one of them.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Make a pledge without a reward

    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

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

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Special Thanks

    As a special thanks, you get complete, hi-resolution digital copies of Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight and Crystal Story: Artwork Historia Vol. 1
.

    Includes:
    • Digital downloads of Dawn of the Knight and Art Book
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    6 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

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

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Historia Set

    This set is ideal for those wishing to have a printed copy. Goes well with any comic book collection! Also comes with a digital download code of Crystal Story: Artwork Historia Vol. 1

    Includes:
    • Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - Printed Version
    • Digital download code for Crystal Story: Artwork Historia Vol. 1
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    4 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

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

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    Dreamer’s Set

    The key to a dreamer's heart.

    Includes:
    • USB Key loaded with Dawn of the Knight and Art Book
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

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

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Freelancer’s Set

    For adventurers wanting to pack light, but still enjoy the trip!

    Includes:
    • USB Key loaded with Dawn of the Knight and Art Book
    • Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - SE Collectable Gold Cartridge
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

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

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Adventurer's Set

    A Special Edition set with everything an aspiring adventurer needs to get started with their journey!

    Includes:
    • Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - SE Collector's Box
    • Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - SE Collectable Gold Cartridge
    • USB Key loaded with Dawn of the Knight and Art Book
    • Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - Printed Version
    • 11" x 17" Poster
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    8 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

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

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Knight’s Set

    A Special Edition set fit for a true Knight. This set includes many extras!

    Includes:
    • Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - SE Collector's Box
    • Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - SE Collectable Gold Cartridge
    • USB Key loaded with Dawn of the Knight and Art Book
    • Crystal Story: Dawn of the Knight - Printed Version
    • Navy "Level Up!” Shirt
    • Sticker Sheet
    • Signed 11" x 17" Poster
    • Your character in the comic!
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    2 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

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

    Learn more about accountability.