A '90s-inspired Metroidvania RPG about a young wizard on her journey to stop a Spirit from consuming her homeland. Read more
This project was successfully funded on May 16, 2014.
About this project
Add-ons: PS4, Wii U, or Vita digital download - $5 | Digital game - $15 | Physical Poster - $25 | Physical Talebook - $50
Pledging through Paypal:
Update 12: PS4/Vita copies are up!
Update 2: Funded! Stretch goals on their way!
Update 1: Stretch Goals and Chucklefish Games!
At Heart Forth, Alicia's core is an ode to the classics. Remember the electrifying gameplay of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, the expansive worlds of the Zelda games, and the rich, engaging story of Xenogears? This game is crafted in the spirit of those great adventures of the '90s.
The story unfolds amidst the repercussions of centuries worth of struggle, strife, and bloodshed between cultures, races and worldviews. But above all else, it's an epic Metroidvania RPG that combines timeless 16- and 32-bit gameplay, modern mechanics, and a set of unique, intertwining stories to take you on a fantastic journey.
- Master devastating and versatile magic spells to annihilate your enemies and solve creative puzzles.
- Engage in fast, agile melee combat with an enchanted wizard's whip, over 20 special attacks and upgrades, and a wide array of mobility skills.
- Adventure through a vast, intricately detailed world filled with hidden wonders and puzzles, dastardly platforming, lethal dungeons, and much, much more.
- Play with powerful RPG elements that include all the gear, loot, sidequests, upgrades, crafting, and gameplay depth that make for a classic RPG experience.
- Discover 5 secret fairy companions to crush, shock, freeze, and burn your enemies, or save you at your most dire moment of need.
- Experience a deep and immersive story that takes place within a much larger history of events and cultures, and starring a cast of fascinating, memorable characters.
There’s an island in the sky named Auster, and on it, there’s a small wizard village with the name of Brenia. Centuries ago, a great star struck the Earth: the mountains crumbled, and land and sea poured into a great Void that now lies hidden beneath the clouds. This island and its sister, Quilth, are the last surviving remnants of the Old World.
Half a century ago, the wizards took the power of the Island for themselves. And so, Elthëlian, the Spirit of Light, cursed them never to have children again.
Today begins the Trial of the last two wizards of the bloodline: Alicia and Höstra.
They are taken to the Hillside to reach the Clearing on their own. But their ceremony to come of age is stopped. One of the wizards has been killed by Elthëlian. That night, the children run away in search for help, but Höstra becomes entranced by the Spirit, and he throws Alicia off the edge of the island.
Alicia awakens in a strange land beneath the clouds: all along, the Old World has remained here, concealed beneath the clouds. Fearing for the safety of her homeland, and for her friend Höstra, Alicia sets off to find a way back and stop the Spirit.
Along with Alicia’s adventure comes another story: that of The Woman. Told through live-action footage, her story will offer you a different perspective of Heart Forth, Alicia. Depending on how you end up interpreting things, the universe of the game might suddenly come to mean something different.
The universe of Heart Forth, Alicia expands though centuries worth of history, hundreds of timeline events, dozens of characters (many of which, while playing an important historical role, might not be seen or mentioned in the game), numerous cultures, and plenty of twists and turns to keep you wondering about what's really happening.
Heart Forth, Alicia remains a Metroidvania, and although the story takes hold and plays out when reaching certain milestones, the game is designed to let the gameplay take the spotlight for the most part, and let the story influence things from the background.
Rather than being a stereotypical spellcaster, Alicia is a warrior-wizard skilled with both weapons and magic similar to Gandalf in the Tolkien universe. Thanks to the Wizard's Lace, her enchanted whip, she doesn't always have to rely on magic to get the job done.
Throughout the game, you'll be able to dramatically improve your abilities with the Lace and deliver progressively more devastating attacks as you acquire upgrades to increase its damage, range, apply further enchantments, unlock mighty special attacks, and more.
Of course, magic is an essential part of any wizard's life, and here it provides Alicia with a potent arsenal of destruction. As she acquires spells over the course of the game, she'll grow in strength from a novice wizard to a master of magic, capable of facing any enemy that stands in her way.
Each spell is distinct, multi-purpose, and can upgraded to become even more powerful (if you can figure out how!). More than that, as with special abilities in any well-crafted Metroidvania, spells are also integral to solving puzzles, discovering secrets, and progressing through obstacles.
Alicia won't be the only one using magic, either. The fairy companions that she acquires throughout the game have their own magical talents to help her through nearly any situation and against any foe. They can dish out damage of any element, temporarily provide an impenetrable shield, help you gather unreachable items, replenish your energy when you need it most, and more.
Whether Metroidvania or RPG, a great game in either of these genres requires a great world. Designed in the interconnective spirit of Super Metroid and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Heart Forth, Alicia is set in the Valley of Éliadin. We've done our utmost to make it an exciting and memorable setting, filled with twisting paths and unforeseen peril.
Within the Valley you'll adventure through 12 vast and different regions, from the great Forests of Verílion to the desolate Áurin Desert, or from the ruins of Elenia to the bustling cities of Blivek or Ynnebluïn, and from the tallest mountains to the most entrenched abysses of the world. This Valley is a land teeming with hidden secrets, long-forgotten dungeons, powerful artifacts, and lethal surprises.
The denizens that populate a world are just as important as the features that define it, and the Valley's inhabitants run the full range of friendly to ferocious. Monsters and beasts like ecleckers, sandmen, golems and skeletons roam the wilderness, and long-forgotten wraths and necromancers have lurked deep in the dungeons.
The human world, however, is often just as dangerous to an outsider like Alicia. She'll have to stop the dark kingdom of Blákatha which seeks to overtake the Valley, and help Oznin overthrow his corrupted uncle Ahriman from the throne of Blivek as she searches for a way to save her homeland. The only person she'd be wise to trust is herself.
Another goal we’ve had with Heart Forth, Alicia has been to make a game with depth that harkens to the great role-playing games of the '90s. Our aim in implementing RPG elements is to give players more customization, control, and flexibility when it comes to their experience with the game.
We've built a number of systems to achieve this goal. The game features a leveling system to maintain a stiff challenge throughout your adventure. You'll have access to a detailed map system to keep your bearings straight and help you better explore the world, and a scheduling screen to keep track of sidequests that happen at different times of the day. And, of course, the game will have a tremendous amount of loot, equipment, and the corresponding stats to keep even the most die-hard RPG fan happy.
Those are the just some of the systems working behind the curtain though, and we want to create a world that brings players back to classic RPGs in a more overt way. That's why we've set our sights on adding in sidequests both tragic and tendering, cute minigames, and exciting challenges to both strengthen yourself and round out the world if you're a completionist.
You'll help bring an oppressed town back to prosperity: help people reopen their family shops and businesses, and you'll reap the rewards. You'll prove that you're the quickest wizard to ever wield a Lace. You'll spark romance between lovers, salvage your old gear to craft shiny new loot, and win prizes while breaking records in timed challenges both custom-built and secretly hidden throughout the world, among the many, many other diversions as you adventure through the Valley. Heart Forth, Alicia will be filled with little details like these waiting for players to discover them and realize the full RPG experience.
The guy behind Heart Forth, Alicia. Alonso has handled developing most of the game thus far. He's done the story, design, graphics, and code, but he could totally use a few helping hands! He also has a passion for film and philosophy, and he's let it spill just a bit into the game.
Jonathan Geer – @j0nmark
Jonathan is Heart Forth, Alicia’s composer. If you’re a fan of the genre you might have heard of him from the work he’s done for Sparkle, Owlboy & Grim Joggers, but he’s also known for his work on major television shows such as American Idol, So You Think You Can Dance, Access Hollywood, to name a few.
Andrew Silverman – @collabozoid
Andrew Silverman is an enigma wrapped in a mystery shrouded in the veil of sworn secrecy, quietly managing the tasks keep everything running smoothly for the rest of the team including business, PR, marketing, community management, writing overly wordy Kickstarter biographies, testing and QA, and every other bit of miscellany that would keep talented people from doing talented things.
Steve Seator – @st0ven
If the project is funded, Steve will be responsible for Heart Forth, Alicia’s environmental art and tilesets. An incredibly talented artist, Steve has established himself in several industries, and has worked on well-established videogaming franchises such as Wizardry, Duke Nukem, Batman/Superman, and many others. Check out some of his his fantastic work at spriteart.com.
Fu Essence - @fuessence
Fran Gonzalez and Miguel Angel Perez Lopez make up the Spanish art and game studio Fu Essence and, if the project is funded, we'll be able to able to enlist their talents for Heart Forth, Alicia's character animations and enemy design. Very few people animate pixel-fingers as well as these two, trust us. Check out their website at fuessence.com
Thomas Hertz Orre
Thomas Hertz Orre a toolmaker from the ringwalls of Gotland, Sweden. Today he's making less medieval tools and programming solutions for games, and will help code enemy and boss behaviour if the project is funded. Thomas is especially focused in the fields of AI, editors, algorithms, animation and has through years of developing gained a matured sense of execution and teamwork. Is he a viking in his spare time? Probably not. But we can't be sure.
NOTE: All tiers include the rewards from all previous/lower tiers.
Add-ons: Digital game - $15 / Physical Poster - $25 / Physical Talebook - $50
$10/15 - The Game, Backer-Exclusive Starbound Item, and a Credits Mention
Set to release on PC in 2015, available both DRM-free or through Steam and have their name appear as a backer in the game's credits. Additionally, all backers at this level and above will receive a backer-exclusive item that we've created in appreciation of the help and support that our friends at Chucklefish have provided and continue to provide us. Will it be "bound" in "stars"? Maybe. Will it have penguins? Most definitely.
$25 - The Digital Original Soundtrack, a Second Backer-Exclusive Accessory, and Steam Early Access
Backers at the $25 level and above will receive a digital copy of Heart Forth, Alicia’s OST, home to all of the game's music, which was been been composed by the incredibly talented Jonathan Geer. These backers will also receive a second backer-exclusive accessory to aid them on their journey, and early access to the game through Steam.
$40 - Digital Talebook and an Extra Game Key
$40 nets backers a digital copy of Heart Forth Alicia's Talebook, a custom-created work containing character and location illustrations, their backstories, the world's mythology and nomenclature, a timeline for different cultures and places, production notes, and more, all compiled in a single unified package. Additionally, pledging $40 or above will earn you an extra game key.
$50 - Alpha Demo Access and an In-game Pet Companion
At some point during the game's development, we'll release a demo containing a couple of segments from the game with the goal of gathering feedback and increasing player input in the final product. Along with access to this alpha demo, pledging $50 earns you a super cute pet companion with its own Kickstarter-exclusive skin. This pet will only be available to normal gamers much later in the game.
$60 - Physical Game and Manual
At $60, we'll produce and ship you a physical copy of the game and its instruction manual, designed and packaged in the style of the PS1 games that Heart Forth, Alicia harkens back to. Add $10 for shipping outside of the US.
$100 - Physical Copy of Heart Forth, Alicia's Talebook
For $100, we'll print and ship you a physical copy of Heart Forth, Alicia’s Talebook to keep on your bedside table and show off to all your friends! Add $10 for shipping outside of the US.
$150 - Custom In-game Statue, 24" x 36" poster, Alpha Access, Private Tester Forum Access, and Elite Backer Credit
Backers who pledge $150 and above will receive access to all of our builds throughout development and will be able to continuously provide feedback through our tester forums to help shape the game. As a token of our appreciation for their help, these backers will receive a custom statue dedicated to their contributions in the game, based off of a design or description provided to us and including a quote of their choice. Additionally, these backers will receive a 24" x 36" limited run poster featuring art from the game, and be thanked in the game's credits as Elite Backers. All design rewards are subject to creative oversight from the development team.
$250 - Master Smith - Design an Item
Pledging $250 or more gets you the opportunity to design an item for the game. Create a your own consumable with strange and wondrous effects! Design a unique piece of equipment that lets the world know you had a hand in creating the game! Put in an utterly useless trinket that leaves players trying to figure out its purpose for decades to come! Custom flavor text included. All design rewards are subject to creative oversight from the development team.
$340 - Foe Demiurge - Design an enemy (EXCLUSIVE)
The Foe Demiurge tier will be at $340 and will enable backers to work with us to design their own enemy to put in one of the available areas of the game. Pledging at this level will get backers all rewards from lower-value tiers EXCEPT for the item/accessory-design component of the Master Smith tier. Higher tiers DO NOT include this reward.
$350 - Crafter of Secrets - Design a Secret or Easter Egg
Supporting the game with $350 or more entitles you to design a secret or Easter egg to put in the game. Want to create your own hidden area? Disguise a reward so deviously that it will only be found by the most diligent player? Create a puzzle so clever that only the brightest players will even recognize it as such? Or maybe you just want to make a room with a guy that says "I am Error". Or, "Hodor". That's fine! This tier is for you! All design rewards are subject to creative oversight from the development team.
$500 - The Demiurge - Design an Enemy or NPC
Backers at $500 and above get to design their own custom NPC or enemy for the game, complete with their own name, design, dialogue, and 24-hour routine. Put yourself in the game! Put your dog in the game! Put your mean boss or annoying neighbor in the game and make them an enemy that dies a wretched death! It's all good! All design rewards are subject to creative oversight from the development team.
$1000 - The Questmaker Megapack - Design a Quest to Tie Your Creations Together, and the Leather-bound Talebook
Pledging $1000 or more allows backers to tie all of their previous creations together with their own quest. Make it tragic, make it epic, make it a story the world will never forget! Or, just make it about the mystery of who stole the cookies from the cookie jar. Whatever works! Backers at $1000 and above also receive a custom-made leather-bound copy of Heart Forth, Alicia's Talebook. All design rewards are subject to creative oversight from the development team.
$2500 - The Great Éliadin King or Queen Tier - Design a secret boss!
Backing at this ultimate tier allows you to design a secret mob boss and the items it drops. Link all of your design tiers together (a unique item, a secret area or puzzle, an NPC, and a quest) and have them culminate in a battle with the ultimate monster! Make it the hardest enemy in the game, or make it a potted plant. The choice is yours. All design rewards are subject to creative oversight from the development team.
You might be wondering why I decided to take the game to Kickstarter. The reason is very simple: developing this game on my own is incredibly slow. I started this game 7 years ago, and though I’ve cumulatively worked on it for more than four (the last two, full-time), I simply don’t see myself finishing this game in a reasonable amount of time without bringing other people into the project.
Fortunately, I’ve been lucky enough to get a bunch of talented people interested in the game and ready to jump in. However, professionals like them will hardly want to jump into the boat with you if you don’t have funds to pay them with.
Aside from the costs of physical rewards, almost all of the money raised in the campaign will exclusively be used to hire the people to help with game development (namely graphics, music and code), aside from getting a small fraction for my own living expenses, and another one for taxes and fees. Any extra money will be used to fund stretch goals such as porting the game to Mac/Linux, getting it to certain consoles, developing extensions to bring more features to the game, and maybe even add extra areas or content to the game.
I would never give the game up even if things don’t work out as planned, but without outside support I'd have to get a part-time job to cover my living costs, and it'd take me a few more years to finish the game. Kickstarter is basically the only viable option, and it's a really good one if we can make it happen.
Any support you can provide to this project will be invaluable to me, and I thank you in advance for helping me finish Heart Forth, Alicia.
Risks and challenges
As with any large undertaking, there are potential problems that could arise during Heart Forth, Alicia's development, but we’ve already done and will continue to do our best to minimize, if not negate, anything that could jeopardize the game's timely completion.
Heart Forth, Alicia has been in full-time development for a long time, and one of the benefits of all of that time is a clear and refined vision for the game. Along with the support of the fantastic group of people at Chucklefish to help us along the way, we're confident that we can live up to our backers' inevitably high expectations not just in quality, but punctuality.
Confidence, however, isn't certainty. We can't promise you a development process with no bumps in the road. Anyone who says otherwise is outright lying, because there isn't a person on this planet who can predict all the twists and turns that life will send your way. What we can promise you, however, is that we've done everything possible to be ready for anything that may come our way. And, if all of our planning and preparation leads to a development cycle as smooth as we expect, then we should all have a great time being part of a community together and have a fantastic game in our hands in the not-so-distant future.
Heart Forth, Alicia is our dream, and we would never let it fail. We do, however, need your help to make it the best it can be. Stick with us, and we'll bring you a game you'll never forget.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
We’re working hard on ports beyond those we’ve already announced. Talks are ongoing with Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo to get the game to as many platforms as possible. Getting authorisation from these companies is something that takes time and that’s not under our control.
We’re in currently in talks with Sony to get confirmation on if/how we can provide PS4 keys to our backers. We will update our page and tiers to reflect this as soon as we know for sure.
Yes! We've recently set up a Paypal option for our backers at:
No, there will only be a physical version of the game for PC. It is beyond our capabilities to release physical versions of the game for consoles.
Will digital rewards such as the Starbound item and pet companion apply to the second keys from the $40 tier?
We would like to apply all of the digital rewards to both keys, but we need to talk to distributors before we can confirm this. Therefore, we can only promise these backer-exclusive digital rewards to a single key for the moment.
We do not yet have a press build for this purpose. We will reach out to you once we’ve put one together. Please send us an email to email@example.com with your name and channel. We’ll love seeing you play HFA :)
What’s the connection between the game and the live action stuff? Is it going to be constant in the game? Will they have subtitles?
Heart Forth, Alicia is primarily a video game, and as such you will experience the main body of its story through the game. The connection between the live-action footage and the game becomes significant at a certain point of the story, but it won’t be central to your experience of Heart Forth, Alicia.
We’re working on adding subtitles, and will know more when we get closer to release.
Translations and localizations are something we will pursue after the initial release of the game.
Heart Forth, Alicia is a single-player experience, and as such no multiplayer modes have been considered.
Yes, both the $10 early bird and $15 regular tiers will come with digital copies of the game’s instruction manual.
The game will run fine on most modern computers, but minimum requirements have not yet been determined.
iOS and Android are not in our immediate plans, though they could be considered after the initial release of the game. PS3 is not an option for us.
Pledge $10 or more
200 backers All gone!
Early Bird Backer - A digital copy of Heart Forth, Alicia for the PC, DRM-free or through Steam when the game is released ● A set of high-resolution backer-exclusive wallpapers. ● A backer-exclusive Starbound-inspired accessory ● Your name in the game's creditsEstimated delivery:
Pledge $15 or more
Backer - A digital copy of Heart Forth, Alicia for the PC, DRM-free or through Steam when the game is released ● A set of high-resolution backer-exclusive wallpapers. ● A backer-exclusive Starbound-inspired accessory ● Your name in the game's creditsEstimated delivery:
Pledge $25 or more
Digital Premium Tier - All of the above rewards ● A digital copy of Heart Forth, Alicia's OST ● Receive the game through Steam Early Access ● A second backer-exclusive accessory to help Alicia on her journeyEstimated delivery:
Pledge $40 or more
Digital Deluxe Tier - All of the above rewards ● A digital copy of Heart Forth Alicia's Talebook, a custom-created work containing character and location illustrations, their backstories, the world's mythology and nomenclature, a timeline for different cultures and places, production notes, and more, all compiled in a single unified package. ● An extra game keyEstimated delivery:
Pledge $50 or more
Alpha Demo + Pet Companion Tier - All of the above rewards ● An in-game pet companion with a Kickstarter-exclusive skin ● Access to a private alpha demo of Heart Forth, Alicia that will be released during the game's development process ● Access to the game's private tester forumsEstimated delivery:
Pledge $60 or more
Physical Game - All of the above rewards ● A physical copy of the game and its instruction manual, designed and boxed in the style of the PS1 games that inspired Heart Forth, Alicia.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $100 or more
The Talebook - All of the above rewards ● A physical copy of Heart Forth Alicia's Talebook, a custom-created work containing character and location illustrations, their backstories, the world's mythology and nomenclature, a timeline for different cultures and places, production notes, and more, all compiled in a single unified package.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $150 or more
Elite Access - All of the above rewards ● Access to ALL of the game's alpha builds to provide feedback and share your ideas with the developers ● As a token of our thanks, you'll collaborate with us to design your own in-game statue dedicated to your contributions, which will display the quote of your choice ● A 24" x 36" poster featuring a piece of the game's artwork ● Your name in the game's credits as an elite backer.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $250 or more
5 backers All gone!
Master Smith - All of the above rewards ● Work with the development team to design an item for the game, including its flavor text and icon, whether it's a consumable item (restorative effects, status effects, special powers, etc.) or a special, custom accessory item.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $340 or more
3 backers Limited (7 left of 10)
The Foe Demiurge - All of the above rewards EXCEPT the item/accessory-design component of the Master Smith tier ● Work with us to design your own enemy to put in an available area in the game!Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $350 or more
5 backers All gone!
Crafter of Secrets - All of the above rewards ● Work with the development team to design a secret or easter egg to hide in the game. Want to leave your mark in the game for everyone to see? Have your own secret room? Create your own secret, quirky event? This is the tier for you.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $500 or more
5 backers All gone!
The Demiurge - All of the above rewards ● Work with us to design your own enemy or NPC for the game. Put yourself in the game! Put your dog in the game! We'll work with you to adapt your request into Heart Forth, Alicia's world!Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $1,000 or more
3 backers Limited (2 left of 5)
Questmaker Megapack - All of the above rewards ● Tie your previous three creations together with a quest! ● Be recognized as a master backer in the credits ● Receive a signed copy of the poster ● Receive a signed, leather-bound version of the Talebook.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $2,500 or more
2 backers All gone!
The Great Éliadin King or Queen Tier - All of the above rewards ● Be recognized in the credits as an Associate Producer ● Work with us to design a secret mob boss enemy and its drops. Tie it in with your previous designs to create the ultimate quest with the ultimate reward!Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $2,800 or more
2 backers Limited (1 left of 3)
The Ancient Áumma Tier - All of the above rewards except the mob boss design component of The Great Éliadin King or Queen Tier
● Work with us to design one of three themed mob bosses that will be found at the end of each Challenge Dungeon and its drops! ● Manami Matsumae will compose a track specifically for this enemy.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
- (30 days)