Praetoria - Conceptual Phase
A new direction for sci-fi games. From flight simulation in an RTS to an entirely new Genre MMORPS (Role Playing Strategic Simulation)
Praetoria - Conceptual Phase
A new direction for sci-fi games. From flight simulation in an RTS to an entirely new Genre MMORPS (Role Playing Strategic Simulation)
Invisionary is a new indie company with a vision for a different future of games than just more boring grinds, pvp unfriendly level systems and one off quest chains. We will start small with our first project of a fully flight simulation enhanced RTS game that delivers galactic conquest with procedurally generated worlds. Then each year update the series with new entries which seek to push gaming forward. We will do this by adding new horizontal progression systems to enable players to do more with each other. We will constantly add new ways of increasing their ability to effect the world around them.
To understand what we want to achieve, first take a step back from what you've experienced in games thus far, and try to envision something entirely different. Our ultimate goal with Praetoria is to create a new kind of MMO experience--what we are calling an MMORPS (Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Strategic Simulation). A persistent universe on a single server architecture. An infinite, seamless, sea of star systems to discover, each containing procedurally-generated planets to terraform, and ultimately, fight over for control. A game where players will form their own cooperative player-run factions that contain both AI and player character citizens, develop unique technologies, and compete for control of the universe.
This game is for every person who grew up watching sci-fi shows, movies and anime series and thought to themselves "If only I was born in that universe.." There will be a heavy emphasis on realism, and as a result, we expect it will be rated "M".
This campaign is two-fold. Our primary goal is to receive $100,000 to launch our company and enable us to deliver a high quality, 3-D flight simulator/action RTS game to the PC & mobile platforms. We are also presenting our main goal--the MMORPS. Below you will find our stretch goals which extend all the way up to the MMO level of development. Exactly what we produce and how quickly is on the table for you to decide.
It is a new genre being created that focuses on player freedom and pushes the limits of what is considered a game. It is the idea that building an empire and waging wars should be cooperative as much as they are competitive. It combines MMORPG & FPS/3PS style character controls with cooperative civilization building similar to an RTS. It takes it a step further by incorporating simulation elements such as 3D free flight sim controls for vehicles and advanced character Artificial Intelligence. The result is a game where players will work together to dominate vast regions of space, colonize planets and live in a virtual world. We plan to do this in a futuristic, sci-fi styled universe. A dangerous universe. One where anything can and will happen.
We are targeting a very specific demographic of gamers. We feel that there are a significant number of individuals who--like us--want more out of their games, and have no place to truly call 'home' in the modern gaming world. They are always in search of a game company that "gets it". We believe that the missing ingredient in modern games is player ownership over the world around them. The ability to directly alter the universe and shape it as they see fit.
These gamers want:
- More freedom and less watered down, roller-coaster-styled content;
- A brutal and unflinching franchise which allows them to be not just go-fers for NPCs, but instead offers the possibility of becoming rulers of their own galactic empires;
- To work together with their friends and guild-mates to dominate vast regions of space in a way never before seen in gaming.
These gamers are:
- Tired of limited game mechanics that do not allow the player's character to effect the world around them, and being told "No, you can't do that" in a video game;
- Fed up with crafting systems that amount to farming a pattern, grinding the materials and clicking the craft button, only to end up with an object that is nothing more than a step between quest/dungeon loot and raid loot;
- Uninterested in grinding XP and farming color-coded loot that only serves to pad numeric stats but seemingly do not effect game play in any meaningful way, and become redundant at the next update;
- Ready for a game that is designed around PVP from Day One.
1. While PVP is a core concept, players will be able to do more than kill each other. Praetoria will be a full-featured empire simulation. Players will create and manage empires, and the many organizations found within them. Praetoria will include a robust set of tools to create government contracts and jobs (allowing for, in effect, player-created quests). Players will be able to engage in espionage and cyber-warfare, introduce the creation of galactic markets (and subsequently engage in economic warfare), and even engage in a political theater with tools for diplomacy.
2. Characters will not simply be immortal space captains who take turns blowing each other up until someone gets bored. Characters will be more realistic, having the ability to reproduce and age. This makes the entire universe dynamic, on a level that you won't find anywhere else. Each action taken will have a lasting impact on the universe. Players will also be able to create unique species: Will you create a race that is biologically radical, relying heavily on mutation? A species reliant on advanced technology? A transgenic species of bio-mechanoids? A completely synthetic Artificial Intelligence species? Your imagination is the only barrier...
3. Using an advanced logic-based voxel architecture and crafting system, players will not have just a simple system of pre-designed buildings and vehicles, but rather direct control over the appearance of an entire civilization, from planets down to basic structures.
We believe that voxels are the way of the future. Over the course of the series we will apply this technology in every way we can. We hope to release the game as a fully 64 bit product. With your help we can realize this goal.
Careful research has shown that our idea is very much attainable with today's technology. It is merely a matter of approaching the design from a perspective which embraces it and utilizes it to it's fullest. Our focus is developing player content creation tools. This is very different than frivolously spending our time and resources creating one shot content such as long quest chains and level restricted game worlds.
We will deliver Real Time Subsurface Scattering, FXAA, HDR, Bloom, God Rays (Sun Shafts), Depth Blurring Post FX & Multi-Monitor Support.
We will be using advanced point caching (morph target)-based species creation techniques, giving players the ability to customize their characters--down to how they stand and the animations they use.
Each planet will be a spherical world with true solar system and galactic relationships. With our procedural generation systems and the use of a 64 bit voxel engine seasons will change based on solar calendars. Planets will have realistic day/night cycles. Digging into the ground will reduce it's mass. This may yield rare minerals and ores or create a new water well.
Depending on which tier we eventually reach, we will add new members to our team, acquire the licenses needed for vital technology, and immediately get to work executing the relative design. We feel that saying to a backer, "Hey, give us your money and we will see you in 5 years" is unacceptable.
Because of this, we have a plan to release a game in the series every year after the first for either mobile, PC/Mac/Linux or TV-based platforms.
Along the way, we will deliver games which cross several genres as we incorporate key features needed by the franchise. These games will range from single player to lobby-based multiplayer, and finally to the MMO type architecture.
We are taking a very pragmatic and realistic approach to development. If we initially reach only our lower tier goals, we will work on a high quality 3-D flight simulator/action RTS for the PC & mobile platforms. This will be a scaled down version of the overall idea being presented for the MMORPS. A direct example of this game is what is seen in the main video for the campaign.
This will only cover our basic investment thus far into the project such as software licenses we've obtained. At this tier we will release the game as a 32 bit product using the Unity 3d engine. We will use this product as a starting point for the company and work toward raising additional money through it's sales to begin working on the MMORPS. This game is scheduled for release in the first quarter of 2015.
Action RTS / Flight Simulator features will include:
- Pre-generated planets & systems in a single galaxy;
- RTS style command interface with the ability to swap in real time to any unit in your fleet to assume control over it;
- Flight simulator controls for each ship in your fleet;
- Planet to space transitions allowing even orbital bombardments;
- A polygon-based ship editor, where players can chose from assorted pre-built components to customize their ships and fleets;
- Joystick/keyboard and mouse controls for the PC & Tilt / Touch based controls for Mobile platform;
- Planets will be at around 5%-25% of a realistic scale due to 32-bit limitations;
- Basic species creator system;
- "Chose and place" system for building structures like a standard RTS;
- Story Mode (Combat campaign generator);
- Free Flight Simulation Mode (Non-combat space exploration mode);
- Ability to carry saved game data over to the next game in the series.
If we reach the highest tier goals we will begin immediately working toward the MMORPS. We will release several iterative installments in the series leading up to the release of the MMORPS starting with the first game early in 2015. This is the long term goal for the company. If immediately we reach this level of backing we aim to have a fully developed MMORPS product ready for release approximately three years.
Here's a very short and simplified list of some of the core features planned for the MMORPS:
- Players can create family dynasties, not just a single character and a few 'alts'. They will have realistic families and even children within the game environment.
- Players will forge their legacies by participating in an evolving galactic history that will be effected by time and every player.
- They will create empires (individually or cooperatively) that will include both human and AI citizens, countless player-run organizations, and span an unlimited number of procedurally-generated planets.
- They will terraform the surface of planets to fit their whims.
- They will create unique architecture to build their cities anywhere.
- They will deploy orbital factories, space stations, satellites and armadas with ships as large as a moon or as small as an un-manned drone.
- They will annihilate their enemies' planets with orbital bombardments from space.
- They will board each others' ships, to fight for possession...or steal its contents.
- They will become renowned bureaucrats, contract killers, bounty hunters, merchants, spies, artists, musicians, entertainers, arena athletes, bar owners, corporate moguls, bankers, tradesmen, freighter captains, career military men and women, TV anchors, reporters, owners of a galactic news network...the possibilities are boundless.
- They will create their own unique brands of products and artistic works, not just pick from a list of premade items.
- They will create blueprints that can be mass produced in a factory, sold, or even stolen.
The whole of what Praetoria will be is far too much to include in just one small bulleted list. Check out our website and media links, as well as the Game Director Newsletters at the very bottom of this page, for a more in-depth look at what we have planned and watch for more videos and blogs in the coming days.
A few reasons. First, we are a new development company attempting to create an entirely new franchise in the sci-fi genre. This is not something we take lightly. We will build our reputation and fan base by releasing stable software in a variety of platforms.
Secondly, there is a lot of technology required to pull off this kind of experience in MMO form. To do this right, we cannot rush development. We want to be sure each system is tightly integrated and thoroughly tested. We will not make the mistake of releasing the MMO before it is ready. Releasing various games in the series during the MMO's development will allow us to test ideas, develop our lore and keep the series fresh and progressing each year--until we know it is truly ready to be released.
Additionally, this will also allow us to let players experience our story line before setting them loose on an entirely player- and event-driven MMO experience. Unlike existing franchises based on movies, television shows and novels, there are no limitations on what a player should and should not be capable of doing because it conflicts with the 'canon lore'. Our story has been written from day one with player run factions in mind, and yet we will deliver an epic tale in the process that will span the centuries leading up to the MMOs release.
Below is a chart which outlines what each tier represents in terms of development possibilities. Before we began work on this campaign we created design documentation for several iterative titles and are ready to start working on them immediately. Depending on the success of this campaign we will execute the proper plan for that tier.
People who contribute before a stretch goal tier is completed will get a special reward we have yet to announce. What these rewards are going to be will be determined by the campaigns success.
We've decided to embrace crowd funding even further with Tier rewards. Here is how this will work: For each tier of our stretch goals that is met, all personal rewards will be boosted by one level. That means if you spent $5 in Tier 1, and we hit Tier 2, you will get a $10 reward. Why, you ask? Because we want word of mouth to matter. Not everyone is made of money, after all. You may only be able to afford $5, but you have 15 friends who can also spend $5 (or more), and they have friends...and so on.
We have 7 Tiers, so a Tier 1 contribution can possibly become a Tier 7 reward valued over 10 times the amount contributed if we can reach our Tier 7 goal. Only you can make this possible. We will be adding new rewards for each top tier that is reached by a lower tier. So someone who spends 10,000$ will not feel cheated out of what they spent.
This is our way of giving the truly devoted fans access to the heart and soul of what will become the Praetoria continuum. Backers who become Round Table Members will be required to sign an NDA. They will be provided pre-alpha versions of the game to test and give feedback on. They will participate in private discussions with the developers regarding various systems being designed at that point in time. They will have a direct relationship with the developers and help to ultimately shape the course of the game series.
We want to thank you for taking this journey with us, and let you know we cannot do this without you. We've taken this as far as we can ourselves. The only way this game can be produced without executive-influenced creative compromise is through crowd funding...and only you can make it a reality.
Invisionary, llc., is a proud supporter of Kicking it forward. We believe that Kickstarter represents an empowerment of artists and inventors to bypass the processes which often inhibits creativity. We applaud inXile entertainment for their idea and look forward to the opportunity to help others get their Kick Start in the future.
Two new rewards added:
Risks and challenges
When we sat down to design a new game series we agreed that it should be something completely different than anything else on the market. We started by listing out all of the best parts of our favorite games we played over the last few decades. Each genre has certain qualities that are treated as exclusive features. We disagreed with this principal and worked out a plan on how to blend them together into something that exemplified player decision making and freedom.
We realize our project is massive in scope, and ambitious by any definition of the word. Due to countless hours of research we know it is completely realistic with today's technology. We hope that gamers will rally behind us, because the only way a game like this can be made is by taking it one step at a time. We know trying to go directly for the MMORPS without a solid reputation backing us will doom it to fail, even if it were the greatest game ever made. This is why we will deliver this game in stages; always building momentum toward the final release of the MMORPS. We can only hope that by that day, it will be considered one of the most anticipated games of all time.
Invisionary is comprised of life long gamers who are also artists and programmers. Each of us has years of experience in our respective fields and have united to produce games that exemplify the highest quality production achievable.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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