Will to Survive is a true real-time survival game with base building elements and a few twists.
You control Will, a resourceful survivor living in a world inhabited by deadly alien invaders. The objective of the game is to keep Will alive for as long as you possibly can.
Will to Survive's persistent and perpetual world means even while you are away from the game events are simulated, so make sure you have enough supplies to last and that your safe-house is suitably fortified or you may well return to find your Will has been destroyed.
Death means death in Will to Survive. Permadeath means that if Will dies, you start from scratch at the beginning along with any of the unlock-able perks that you may have collected.
I'm aiming to release Will to Survive on as many platforms as possible including desktop, mobile and tablet devices. To help you keep your Will alive it will also feature the ability to synchronise your save between devices. That way you can check up on your Will, any-time, anywhere.
How long can your Will survive?
Unlike many other games Will to Survive is a constant 24/7 simulation. There is no escape! No pausing - even while you are away the struggle continues! Will to Survive simulates events while you are away, to keep you on your toes.
Accurate survival estimations help you plan ahead so you can make sure your Will has enough food, water and defences to survive while you are away.
Real-world based water and food levels constantly drain over time requiring the need to replenish.
The Aliens NEVER stop hunting you, building solid defences help your Will to stay alive.
Mobile and tablet support means you can help your Will survive any time, anywhere.
The web based Will checker helps you keep track of things should you not have access to your mobile or desktop version of the game.
Will to Survive will have several modes to help those with less time on their hands. You can swap between these at any point.
Survivor Mode – For the standard survivor, Will eats and drinks while you are away but won't mess with your defences leaving you in control of their uptake.
Automatic Mode – Great if you need a few weeks off or if you have a busy life and can't put in that many hours. Will eats and drinks while you are away but he will also top up defences to make sure you are secure. All you need to do is go out there, find supplies and return in one piece.
Hardcore Mode – For people with lots of time on their hands who like things to run exactly as they want. Will only eats, drinks and places defences when you tell him to.
The world is now a deadly and hostile environment. It will adapt around you as you play. The longer you survive the deadlier it gets.
The world will feature zones of differing levels of danger.
A dynamic overall enemy threat level that will rise and fall based on your actions.
Finite supplies will mean adventuring into deadlier territories.
As the threat level increases, new enemies will appear.
The game is targeted for desktops, mobiles, tablets and the OUYA console.
Desktop PC - Linux, Mac OSX & Windows
Mobile - Android, iPhone, Windows Phone 7 & 8
Tablet - Android & iPad, Windows 8 Metro
Possible Playstation Vita and GameStick support.
Transfer your save between all supported devices.
Survive on the move!
Will to Survive will offer you the ability to synchronise your save between devices making it that little bit easier to survive. This means you can check on the condition of your Will any time of the day! Even while on the move.
There will be a free web based Will checker to help you keep track of things should you not have access to your mobile or desktop version of the game.
If funding goes beyond the target I will also look into making a free status checker app for mobiles and tablets.
There are many features planned for the game which are not yet implemented. These are just a few.
Scavenging - Search the world and buildings for supplies to survive and protect yourself.
Safe-house Defence – Choose where to place barricades, traps and automatic sentry guns to protect yourself from attack.
Fighting & Stealth - Pick a fight if you are feeling cocky or be stealthy and attempt to sneak by unnoticed.
Deadly Aliens - Aliens will patrol, react to noises and attempt to track you.
Crafting – Build or upgrade weapons, defences and meals. Find recipes and blueprints in the world to get bonuses.
Dehydration & Hunger Effects – Being low on food and water will affect you mentally and physically.
Other Survivors – Non-playable characters will be dotted around the world for you to interact, perform missions for and trade with.
Missions – Other survivors need your help and the aliens are up to something. Missions will allow you to perform tasks for other survivors for rewards, alien based missions will help lower the overall threat level. All while delving deeper into the alien's nefarious plans.
Skills & Experience – Unlock special abilities and skills to help you survive. Gain experience as you play to improve your Will.
Perks & Bonuses – Various unlockable perks let you improve your Will. Some perks persist after death, so your Will's hard work is not lost. Allowing you to start your adventure again with certain advantages.
Challenges – Perform these to earn perks and other rewards.
Clever William - When exiting Will decides whether to hide until your return or start walking home via the sewer system. If you exit mid fight Will is clever and throws a flash bang to make sure he evades safely.
The base goal is merely the beginning, acquiring extra funding will help look into developing further features such as.
The ability to have multiple and temporary safe houses.
Day/Night Cycle. A real-time sequence which affects your Will and the world around you.
Temperature Cycle. Where the world will change based on the time of year, as will your survival chances and tactics.
Illness simulation, so make sure that water is suitable for drinking!
Water catching and gardening facilities.
Automatic syncing, leader-boards, stats and anti-cheating measures. Compare your stats between friends and see where you rank on the leader-boards.
New modes and added story elements.
Console support and Playstation Vita support.
Larger Map, more enemies and items, more explosions, improved walk cycles.
High resolution support (above 1080p)
Will to Survive is being developed using the XNA and MonoGame Frameworks. I've so far built a few handy libraries to push the project forwards. The libraries are intended to work with all versions of MonoGame and XNA and be modular in design.
I would like to help other budding indie developers by making these freely available once the project is complete so that anyone can use them.
So far these libraries include:
An event driven user interface library.
A panel based cinematic library animating via curve which loads from exported XML.
A sprite management library.
An input library.
A tile map rendering library which currently read TMX maps.
My name is Alex Dawson and I've been working as an artist in the games industry now for over 5 years. Gaming and making games has been a passion of mine for as long as I can remember. Working for someone else was good fun and taught me a lot but I didn't feel like I could be truly creative so I eventually left to become a freelance artist and work on my own indie projects. Will to Survive is my first project, I've been funding and working on it alone in-between freelance contracts for the past year creating the art, code and design.
I'm not a well known industry name, I have no nostalgia to build on, I'm simply just a guy who absolutely adores making games. At my previous employer, Zoë Mode, I worked on various console titles; most notably I was instrumental in the re-design of Chime Super Deluxe on the PS3 and I was one of the primary artists responsible for Haunt on XBLA.
Making a game takes a lot of time. So far the game has been entirely self funded and developed part-time. Funding the project on Kickstarter gives me the ability to work on the game full time rather than working on it in-between freelance contracts. This will mean the project will get finished sooner and at a higher quality.
Kickstarter is great, it's a great community that gives people like myself the ability to make the kind of games we want to play, it also gives us the ability to fund the ideas we want to play and give feedback about the game while it's being made.
Kickstarter also lends the ability to fund more than the proposed target amount, if this happens I can further develop the project after it has ended via updates. I can also look into drafting in extra support from some of my industry friends in order to improve and build the game into something really special.
You have the power to make this all happen.
£20,000 may sound like a lot of money to some. As well as going towards making sure that I can survive the year (no pun intended) the cash will also be going towards Kickstarter fees, software licenses for Xamarin and other crucial programs, taxes, server costs, possible code support, audio and fulfilling reward tiers for you lovely backer folk!
Being able to meet my initial funding goal will enable me to complete the project by myself to it's proposed feature set and vision. However if I am fortunate enough to be able to obtain more funds than the current target then all of these funds will go back into developing the project and building an improved game.
I have so many ideas that I would like to get round to doing, obtaining extra funds will greatly improve the chances of these making it in by allowing me to hire extra code and art support. The project is very scalable and can be adapted to the final budget.
The first stretch goal will allow me to hire a programmer part-time. This will lead to creating a larger map, more enemies and items. It will also mean the game will be more polished.
Risks and challenges
QA (Quality Assurance) is always an important aspect when factoring in risks and challenges. This is something that is important even for AAA projects. I'm confident that I will be able to tackle the bug fixing side of development but it does represent something that could delay the final release date.
The other challenge is time-scale, while I've done my best to predict an estimated development time-scale there is the possibility to overrun. I'm hopeful this won't happen.
Other than that there is the risk that aliens invade and kill us all ;)
I promise to keep you in the loop and up to date on all matters for the final production through the development blog and backer updates.
Be a dead corpse in the game and write your own story to be told via diary entries found near to the corpse. These will be used as collectable entries for an in-game perk/reward. Diary entry is subject to review and approval by the developer.
Also includes the ULTIMATE SURVIVOR tier. (Approximately $384 USD)
Appear in the game as a live in-game NPC survivor with your own story, items to trade and missions to complete. You can also choose your name. All NPC details are subject to review and approval by the developer.
Also includes the ULTIMATE SURVIVOR tier. (Approximately $768 USD)
Appear in the game as the Mayor, help choose the way you appear, what you say and write your back story. You will also receive a hand painted version of your final in game character and will get a monthly Skype call from the developer to chat about the project. All Mayor data is subject to review and approval by the developer.
Also includes ULTIMATE SCAVENGER and ULTIMATE SURVIVOR tiers. (Approximately $7,682 USD)