About this project
Thanks so much for your overwhelming support during our campaign!
To learn more about I.C.U. and our current stages in development, find us on our website! We'll be updating it consistently and share new information about the current state of I.C.U. with you there:
To keep with our campaign even after it's done – find us on BackerKit!
I.C.U. is a multiplayer game played between a livestreamer (the contestant) and their viewers (the audience). As the contestant, your goal is to make it out of the episode alive! As the viewer, your role is to customize the surroundings, features, and events of the episode to create the most entertaining experience possible!
The I.C.U. showrunners have gathered an exotic arsenal of freaks and frights to bring their sponsors the most entertaining viewing experience on the planet. What contestant will brave these horrors in the hopes of winning fame and fortune? Find out on the first episode of I.C.U.!
I.C.U. is developed episodically with each episode set in a new environment complete with its own resident monster and arsenal of audience modifiers. In order to release a full season of episodic content, we need to prove the game show has an audience with our first episode: The Forest!
Step into the dark forest, lit only by the glow of the moon and the beacons from our safe-houses... Keep your eyes peeled – and a flashlight handy -- as something might just be right behind you!
For the viewers: remember to look around and take in the breathtaking views and scenes from the episode – never forget to stop and smell the roses! (note: the screenshots you see are from our prototype and don't represent final art assets of the game)
Our contestant's objective is to reach all three shacks hidden throughout the forest! Each will trigger a level modifier voted for by the audience to make the level more interesting! Progressing through shacks brings the contestant one step closer to the exit – and thus their rewards!
It may sound like a tough bargain, but you know what they say – no pain, no fame!
But as you clamber through The Forest, you notice that the trees of these woods seem to whisper as you creep past, leaving you with a strange feeling... Are you being watched?
WELL OF COURSE YOU ARE! You're on a GAME SHOW after all! But it's not just the trees that are doing the watching; what you should really fear is your eager audience!
Welcome to The Forest, viewers! Our contestant has just entered the deep brush and are fumbling their way around to the shacks that lie within. As they make their way, let's vote for the challenge they must overcome first -- will they be Shrunk to the size of a little child? Or will we give them Drunk goggles strong enough that they see double! The choice is yours!
As an audience member, the more you watch and interact with streamers' progress through the world of I.C.U., the more I.C.U. Coins you earn along the way. You can spend these coins to affect the streamer's game with instant Trick events!
Push the player into oncoming danger, spin them around to make them lose their sense of direction, or give them a friendly slap up the bum to instill a sense of urgency! Here are some more examples of Trick effects that we have planned:
See something super scary? Express your feelings IN-GAME with the use of our 'Reaction' effects! The more of you that React – the stronger the game's response! Different Reactions fit different situations so choose your responses wisely!
As a viewer, you'll always be keeping your eye on the streamer – not just from their perspective, but from all angles. Using the I.C.U. web user interface, you get a powerful control panel that lets you both interact with the player and other viewers outside of just the chat-room.
The monster of I.C.U.'s first episode is an organic guardian of our living forest. Composed of the bodies of fallen contestants, this behemoth is a shambling force of vengeance looking to assimilate you into its ecosystem.
Contestants may not be able to stop our force of nature friend, but they can definitely slow him! The ultraviolet flashlight has the ability to slow and even stun the monster when focused on him. There's no hiding from this mossy man; you either face your fear or fall with the others to join the soil.
As the contestant makes their way through the forest, with audience enhancements littering the experience, they will be fighting not only for their survival, but for glory! Our most successful contestants will earn a ranking based on both their in-game performance and the spending efficacy of their viewership, so that both the survival masters and the mass entertainers can attract new audiences of their own! I.C.U. aims to be a content discovery platform for new streamers and established alike so step right up and give it a try!
When it comes to pleasing your audience, the right viewers will always find you; so there's nothing to fear as a contestant – nothing to fear but FEAR ITSELF!
For more samples of gameplay from our demo, you can view the full video of strippin (twitch.tv/strippin) playing on stream! Poor guy didn't know what he was getting into... We have more playtests scheduled with various streamers throughout October, so stay tuned!
Meet the project leads, who have worked on I.C.U. from its conception as a student project and are bringing it to life now, with the support of you, our backers!
The I.C.U. team couldn't have come this far on our own! Our friends and advisers have taught us much about the games industry and building games; we think of them as central to our success. We'd like to thank:
Jordan Weisman, CEO of Harebrained Schemes (Battletech, Shadowrun)
Seth Sivak, CEO of Proletariat, Inc. (Streamline, Streamote.tv)
And countless others that have helped us along the way!
I.C.U.’s sound and music is being produced in collaboration with the talented folks at Hexany Audio and their lead composer Matthew Carl Earl. Hexany is an LA-based game audio production studio that has worked on titles like King’s Quest, the Assassin’s Creed Syndicate trailer campaign, Universal Studio’s Halloween Horror Nights, and many more. Here’s a sample of their work so far on the score:
Why Kickstarter? This answer was clear to us from the start – this is a game that needs the involvement of its users from the very beginning. Because of its experimental nature, there's a lot of iteration that'll be done over development and we believe having a strong backer voice to help us make these directional decisions will be essential!
It's important to note as well, that we're not planning on relying entirely on Kickstarter funding to make this game. In addition to what we raise here – we've self-funded the project up to this point and are in discussions with some external investors that are tracking the success of Kickstarter to determine their interest. The better we can prove people want the game here – the easier it'll be to convince them it's worth making!
Header art created by Jury Podolyak
Monster concepts by Alex Albinaya
Showrunner art by Charlotte Davis
Our campaign would be nothing without you guys! To show our appreciation, we'd like to bring you into the development process with our campaign rewards – here's the various tiers and what they get you:
Risks and challenges
I.C.U. is one of the first games built specifically for an interactive streaming experience. Since this is a new method of play that's still very much in its early years – there's a lot of risk inherently in developing a game built for it from the ground up!
First and foremost, it's absolutely necessary we establish that people out there – you, the viewers – want to play a game like this. Without you, there's no game.
Second, since there's no design methodology established for building a game for 'viewers' there will be a lot of experimentation throughout development as we hone in on what the most entertaining and fun experience is. With that in mind, some of the specific game modifiers or mechanics that we have talked about may be subject to change as we test them out in practice with our backers in our development streams.
Lastly, we're a small team building this project in a way that allows plenty of room for growth. Since we're building our content in short bursts via 'Episodes', this allows us to better address feedback and prioritize the features and mechanics people enjoy. This also means, though, that if our early episodes don't get enough attention and support – it'll be much harder to continue developing future content. Really this game lives and dies by the support of its viewers – so I hope you're with us to take this big leap of faith together!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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