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$1,211 pledged of $35,000 goal
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By Swift Creek Games
$1,211 pledged of $35,000 goal
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About this project

Fish vs. Crabs is a fully immersive 3D underwater Tower Defense Game. You play the role of the fish defending your eggs from invading crabs, shrimp and lobster. The invaders advance along the sandy ocean bottom toward their goal. You must strategically place your towers in an effort to prevent the invaders from reaching your eggs and escaping with them.

Once you have successfully defended your eggs, they are taken to a protected reef that you see as your main game menu. This reef is unique to the player and you may customize this reef by adding and removing corals, sponges, rocks, other fish and special items that you may discover during game play.

In addition to the standard tower defense game, Fish vs. Crabs has other small games built into it. By discovering hidden objects around the reef and completing objectives with those objects such as raising the flag on the pirate ship, the player will unlock additional corals, sponges and other items that may be used to decorate the reef on the main menu.

If you are connected to a social network, you may visit your friends reef or they may visit yours so you may see how they have chosen to decorate your reef, which fish you have unlocked or even leave you a message in a bottle or other trinkets for you to discover. You may even hide objects in your reef for them to entice them to visit.

New items will be added to the system at regular intervals for you to discover and decorate your reef system with. We will continuously be refining fish behaviors, improving visuals and balancing game play to give you the best game experience and enjoyment of your reef in addition to new and challenging Tower Defense levels and new objectives.

Once your reef is built the way you like it, why not spend some more time there? Download the screensaver for your PC (and other systems later). If you don’t like it, play some more and change it.

Our official game trailer was constructed entire with actual game art, but even here we couldn't help but make a game out of it. Part story, part hidden object game. How many things from the game can you see in the trailer?

Did you see:

  • Tiki Idol
  • Ship in the bottle
  • Shell with fish eggs
  • Tablet from the lost city of Atlantis with crystals
  • Ancient jar
  • Treasure chest
  • Cutlass
  • Pirate flag
  • Cannons
  • Crab Trap
  • Jar of Marbles
  • Golden sea stars
  • Old key

We have an enormous amount of time, energy and money invested in Fish vs. Crabs. Fish vs. Crabs is a reality, a game that is almost ready for the real world.

Our Kickstarter campaign will give us the boost to improve the game prior to release, to offer more options such as multi-player, and give the best game play experience we can. To ensure the levels are beautiful, the animations are fantastic, the reef system is easy to construct. We want to take Fish vs. Crabs from an amazing Indie Game to AAA quality in every way.

Here's Cliff talking about Fish vs. Crabs:

Every aspect of game development has costs, whether that comes from the time spent developing the title or from tools and equipment. Don't be fooled by folks who said "we wrote this game for $150" because they already had the equipment, the tools and the training to do so. In time alone while writing the game they probably spent more than $150 in pot noodle soup to create that game. Here's some real numbers.

Costs for computers, iPads, development tools alone costs tens of thousands of dollars a year. Some very real costs that we deal with:

Audio for 1 game costs between $5,000 and $10,000 per title
1 copy of 3DS Max costs more than $3,500
1 copy of Photoshop costs around $500
Licenses for our development tools costs $10,500
Programmer costs are typically around $40,000 per title
Artist costs are typically about $30,000 per title
iPads, iPhones, Android devices, computers, server costs and more add up to thousands more per year.

Fortunately, this is not all at once and not all these costs are per title. Professional game development by an experienced team does cost money.

According to Gamasutra, the typical cost for development of a quality casual game is over $60,000 per title.

The best news: this game is nearly done. We have already covered most of these costs through years of development on other titles.

As a thank you for helping us fund completion of the title, we have some incentives and rewards.

The incentives

Unless you make an enormous pledge, it will take more than your help to reach our fundraising goals. We need you to talk to the people you play games with, or people that you believe will enjoy the game. Please don't SPAM the world. This is not what we're asking for. Your second cousin's best friend's sister might not like to hear about it. Then again, maybe they would. Please use good judgement. People do enjoy playing games with their friends, so please talk to your friends that you do play games with.

If you bring 5 people to the kickstarter campaign and they pledge any amount, we will give you a unique fish in the game. A Powder Blue Tang. When your friends visit your reef system and they see a Powder Blue Tang they will certainly want to know where you got it and you can tell them you got it because you helped bring contributors to Kickstarter.

Powder Blue Tang
Powder Blue Tang

You do not have to pledge yourself to get this fish, but 5 people do. There are no minimums. If 5 people come and pledge $5, that's good enough.

If you bring 10 people, we will give you another unique fish: A Sailfin Tang.

If you bring 15 or more people, we have one of the rarest collectable fish in the world. At the moment there is only one known in captivity, but I'm holding that as a secret for the moment.

The paid rewards

At an entry level of $5, which is slightly less than what the cost of the game is expected to be. You will get early access to the game beta.

At $10, you will get early access to the game beta as well as whatever Steam Promotion codes you need for PC, Mac or Linux based play. Remember to go to Steam Greenlight and vote for us since we are running these campaigns together.

Support us on Greenlight
Support us on Greenlight

At the $25 Backer level you will get access to limited edition wallpapers, as well as Steam codes. There are a couple Wallpapers available right now at the bottom of the page.

At the $50 contributor level, this is where things get kicked up a bit. You will get the Steam Codes, wallpapers and your reef will receive a limited edition fish. The Clown Trigger will only be available in your reef. You can be the envy of your friends with the Clown Trigger, as well as the constant reminder of how cool it was to be an early contributor to the game. Your name will be placed in the credits screen at the “contributor” level.

Clown Trigger
Clown Trigger

At the $75 Supporter level, you will also get the clown fish, the wallpapers, the steam codes and a cool t-shirt. Our artists haven’t designed the t-shirt yet but it will be cool. Your name will be placed in the credits as a “Supporter” of the game.

At the $100 level, you must be a fish enthusiast. All of the previous items such as the clown trigger and cool wallpapers and a t-shirt. We will have a couple designs but one is shown below. In addition you will receive the longnose hawkfish and your name will be placed in the credits at the “Calypso” level.

1 of 3 t-shirt options
1 of 3 t-shirt options

At the $200 level, you must love the sea. You get the longnose hawkfish, the clown trigger, the wallpapers, the t-shirt and steam codes as well as a collection of rare corals and a flame angel. Remember, even though there will be new fish added to the game on a regular basis, the kickstarter items will only be available to backers on kickstarter.

Longnose Hawkfish
Longnose Hawkfish

At the $350 level, you are a fish fanatic. 20 people and only 20 will get to pick their favorite fish or if it’s already in the game, pick your next favorite fish. It will be placed in the game for your reef as well as placed on at least 3 levels in the game for you to see as you defend your eggs or search for artifacts. Your name will be shown in the credits as the “butterfly fish” level. That means there are at least 20 fish you haven’t seen that will be in the game.

$500, we are getting up there and we still have stuff. At the $500, you get all the previous stuff. The longnose hawkfish, the clown trigger, the flame angel and corals, the t-shirt, the wallpapers, early beta access, steam codes and you get to name one of the two fishing trawlers in the game. There are only 2 of these and you can see them on the island hopper view used to select the levels of play.

One of two trawlers in the menu system
One of two trawlers in the menu system

$500, there are 54 reef systems in the game. It’s very common for reefs to be named after characteristics of the reef or after people who discovered them, or even where they are. You will will be able to name the reef to almost anything you want, subject to approval of good taste and game relevance. I’ve been diving in many places around the world at locations such as Sheraton Caverns, Zack’s pocket, Z’s Reef, the Ice Box or Keystone Jetty. Take an active part in the life of the game by helping name the ecosystem. In addition, you get all the other stuff. The t-shirts, the wallpapers, the steam codes.

Additionally, at the $500 level for the trawler and the reefs, everyone that backs us at the $500 level gets the peppermint Angelfish. The peppermint Angelfish is one of the rarest collectable fish in the ocean and they can only be found in certain areas of the Pacific over 200 feet deep. Wth Waikiki aquarium in Hawaii has one of these fish and it has an estimated value of $30,000. Fewer than 100 in the entire game will have this fish.

Peppermint Angel Fish
Peppermint Angel Fish

$750 There is 1 research submarine in the game that explores certain areas of the reef system. You get to name the submarine, subject to game relevance and good taste approval as previously mentioned naming the reefs.

Research Submarine
Research Submarine

$1000. This is the one of a kind, wow, over the top cool. The pirate ship. The pirate ship shows up around pirate island but is also beached on that island. You not only get to name the ship, but you get to work with one of our artists to design the flag on that ship. You will also get a letter, signed by the queen, stating how your good merchant vessel was beset by those evil pirates. Taken and used to plunder up and down the coasts, until it was eventually sunk in battle with the navy.

Sunken Pirate Ship
Sunken Pirate Ship

The pirate ship is also used in the main game trailer as a staging area for the crab and shrimp to plan their assault. The pirate ship will be renamed and fly your pirate colors as we rebuild the game trailer to go with the final game.

You will also get the peppermint angel fish, the clown trigger, the flame angel and rare corals, the t-shirts and steam codes. Name in the credits.

Stay tuned for some possible additions to the awards that we have been considering. Remember to contact us with your information if you have selected a reward that is appropriate for that or feel free to ask us questions, or wait for an AMA session on Reddit.

Ok. So where is all this money going? That's a total fair question to ask and since we have all the development tools, the people and equipment, then where?

$35,000 - Staff Salaries, 4 people for the next 3 months. This is the minimum we can work for and feed our families
$10,000 - Game Audio. This is contracted through CleanCuts. They have won numerous awards for their games work as well as documentaries. They did the music and sound effects for our game trailer in about a week.
$15,000 - Game Q&A
$9,000 - Kickstarter, Amazon and taxes
$1,000 - Physical goods and shipping
All together, we need $70,000. We are asking for less than this to give us the boost to get the game out the door with the best quality a small team can and a budget that allows us to take the time to focus our energy on the game.

If we can get to the full $70,000 then we will really be off to a fantastic start but it doesn't just stop there. With your continued contribution, we can do so much more.

Beyond $70,000 there is far more that we can do. Here is our current plan.

At $75,000 we will develop screen savers for the PC that show your fully constructed reef and fish. To change the reef itself or to add or remove fish, you may simply enter the game and make those changes. It's like having an enormous aquarium that's as big as the sea. How many of your friends have aquariums with Manta Rays, Octopus and Dolphins? Imagine the possibilities. If you cannot, here is a teaser from an in-game reef that has visuals months away from ship quality.

At $80,000 - We will provide a support for the Oculus Rift, a 3D Virtual Reality headset. We have a developer kit right now, but additional time and resources are required to ensure the swim through scenario is seamless as well and the new requirements of a dual display can be met with the best visual quality and performance.

For each $22,000 raised beyond this level we will be adding additional content and levels, each with specific themes. This is programming time, artist time, localization overhead.

$102,000 - Antarctica. Your fish and crabs switch to their cold water equivalents, and penguins cruise through your scenes

$124,000 - The Deep. Deep sea creatures, deep water volcanos. Whale graveyards and crazy cavernous terrain give you some creepy underwater in the abyss.

$146,000 - Pirates. Gold and other plunder are scattered around the sea floor and across the decks and bowls of sunken ships and hidden grottos.

$168,000 - The Greeks. Fight across the surface of ancient sunken triremes and imagine days of Gods and glory, across spears and shields in search of Posiden's Trident.

$190,000 - Vikings. The battle to save your eggs takes you to the edge of bifrost the rainbow bridge. Sea Dragons have tossed your viking ships into a sea of wrecks and debris.

$270,000 - Playstation 3 (and possibly Playstation 4) support. Big Theatre game experiences. Imagine playing on your mobile phone and then coming home to the visual enhancements of a dedicated game system... or about $80k over. Give us feedback on the priority of this for you. Perhaps this is more important than DLC or multiplayer.

$300,000 - Multiplayer Cooperative and PvP play, or about $30k over our goal. Give us feedback. Perhaps this is higher priority than some DLC packs or console support. Tell us what you think.

$350,000 - Level editor. It's the perfect merge of the crab controller in PvP and the reef builder, but this unfortunately does require more work than that. Paths must be defined, meshes and textures need to be build-able and loaded, egg locations need to be set up, scene lighting needs to be enhanced. It's a good amount of work and we want to do it. It's good for you and good for the game.

$425,000 - Our dream requires Microsoft to get on board and we've already started talking to them about it... XBox 360 (and later) support on XBLA. To make this happen, multiplayer support must be there.

Other DLC, at about $22k each:

The Harbor
The Great Barrier Reef
Shark Haven
Mermaid Lagoon

Other items:

Screen savers for Mac, active desktops for Android and more.

Go ahead, give us more ideas. We can keep going. There are more plans and ideas, such as the Steam Box. If it should ever come true, Valve may be releasing the Steam Box this year and we want to be there. But it comes with a cost. This cost is unknown. 

If we did all these things, we would easily need $600,000. Can we get there? With your help I believe we can!

Wallpapers now public as a thank you for visiting our campaign

Wallpaper 1 of 3
Wallpaper 1 of 3
Wallpaper 2 of 3
Wallpaper 2 of 3
Wallpaper 3 of 3
Wallpaper 3 of 3

Risks and challenges

Fish vs. Crabs is a large undertaking but it is nearly completed. Here are some of the challenges facing us:

Artwork:

Because users can build their own reef systems and will consume a great deal of art assets, there are two unique problems regarding the artwork. The first is the very large amount of art assets to create. We have dozens and dozens of fish, crab, shrimp, hard and soft corals, rocks and other items the player will use to create their reef. This simply takes time and determination.

The second problem is how to allow the user to add these items to their reef without causing the system to slow down or consume too much memory. Artwork must be high quality which usually means high resolution textures and high polygon counts. Only the fastest PCs can handle that.

Fortunately, our artists have a great deal of experience creating 3D artwork for games with almost a dozen AAA titles between them and 40 years of combined experience creating game art.

Programming:

Cliff, the lead programmer, has written dozens of games and has over 25 years experience developing software, as well as more than a decade of experience working with 3D graphics. Every one of his games has been featured or marked as "New and Noteworthy" on the Apple iTunes Store or on Google Play.

Massive deployment:

Swift Creek Games uses a custom designed build system that is capable of creating new builds for all supported platforms in just a couple hours. As part of a nightly build process, we have new testable builds every single day for iPhone and iPad, Android phones and tablets, PCs, Macs and Web builds each with their platform's own unique branding requirements.

Servers:

We use massively scalable network servers from OverDriver for data storage and Photon Servers from ExitGames. These servers are well supported and sit on very high end internet backbones boasting the ability to scale from 1,000 users to 10,000,000 users in a couple seconds.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    This is slightly less than what the game is expected to cost. You will get early access to the open beta.

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    You will get early access to the game beta as well as whatever Steam Promotion codes you need for PC, Mac or Linux based play. Remember to go to Steam Greenlight and vote for us since we are running these campaigns together

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    At the $25 Backer level you will get access to limited edition wallpapers, as well as Steam codes and early beta access.

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    At the $50 contributor level, this is where things get kicked up a bit. You will get the Steam Codes, wallpapers and your reef will receive a limited edition fish. The Clown Trigger will only be available in your reef. You can be the envy of your friends with the Clown Trigger, as well as the constant reminder of how cool it was to be an early contributor to the game. Your name will be placed in the credits screen at the “contributor” level.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    At the $75 Supporter level, you will also get the clown fish, the wallpapers, the steam codes and a cool t-shirt. Our artists haven’t designed the t-shirt yet but it will be cool. Your name will be placed in the credits as a “Supporter” of the game.

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    At the $100 level, you must be a fish enthusiast. All of the previous items such as the clown trigger and cool wallpapers and the yet-to-be-designed t-shirt will be yours. In addition you will receive the longnose hawkfish and your name will be placed in the credits at the “Calypso” level.

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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    At the $200 level, you must love the sea. You get the longnose hawkfish, the clown trigger, the wallpapers, the t-shirt and steam codes as well as a collection of rare corals and a flame angel. Remember, even though there will be new fish added to the game on a regular basis, the kickstarter items will only be available to backers on kickstarter.

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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $350 or more About $350

    At the $350 level, you are a fish fanatic. 20 people and only 20 will get to pick their favorite fish or if it’s already in the game, pick your next favorite fish. It will be placed in the game for your reef as well as placed on at least 3 levels in the game for you to see as you defend your eggs or search for artifacts. Your name will be shown in the credits as the “butterfly fish” level. That means there are at least 20 fish you haven’t seen that will be in the game.

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    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 2 backers
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    we are getting up there and we still have stuff. At the $500, you get all the previous stuff. The longnose hawkfish, the clown trigger, the flame angel and corals, the t-shirt, the wallpapers, early beta access, steam codes and you get to name one of the two fishing trawlers in the game. There are only 2 of these and you can see them on the island hopper view used to select the levels of play. Additionally, at the $500 level for the trawler and the reefs, everyone that backs us at the $500 level gets the peppermint Angelfish.

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    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 0 backers
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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    There are 54 reef systems in the game. It’s very common for reefs to be named after characteristics of the reef or after people who discovered them, or even where they are. You will will be able to name the reef to almost anything you want, subject to approval of good taste and game relevance. I’ve been diving in many places around the world at locations such as Sheraton Caverns, Zack’s pocket, Z’s Reef, the Ice Box or Keystone Jetty. Take an active part in the life of the game by helping name the ecosystem. In addition, you get all the other stuff. The t-shirts, the wallpapers, the steam codes. Additionally, at the $500 level for the trawler and the reefs, everyone that backs us at the $500 level gets the peppermint Angelfish.

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    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 0 backers
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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    If you don't want to name the reefs or trawlers but you do want the fish, you get them all at the $500 level. You also get everything else that comes at this level like the Steam codes and T-shirts.

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  12. Select this reward

    Pledge $750 or more About $750

    There is 1 research submarine in the game that explores certain areas of the reef. You get to name the submarine, subject to game relevance and good taste approval. You also get the fish, the t-shirt, steam codes and early beta access.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 0 backers
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  13. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    This is the one of a kind, wow, over the top cool. The pirate ship. The pirate ship shows up around pirate island but is also beached on that island. You not only get to name the ship, but you get to work with one of our artists to design the flag on that ship. You will also get a letter, signed by the queen, stating how your good merchant vessel was beset by those evil pirates. Taken and used to plunder up and down the coasts, until it was eventually sunk in battle with the navy. The pirate ship is also used in the main game trailer as a staging area for the crab and shrimp to plan their assault. The pirate ship will be renamed and fly your pirate colors as we rebuild the game trailer to go with the final game. You also get the fish, the t-shirt, steam codes and early beta access.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

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

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Funding period

- (31 days)