Thief's Roulette is a Choice Driven Puzzle game inspired by the Danganronpa and Zero Escape game series. The game is being developed for Nintendo Switch and PC. Thief's Roulette takes the narrative heavy design of Visual Novels and combines it with immersive, first person Puzzle gameplay to create a unique gaming experience. With Thief's Roulette I hope to take the player on a journey through betrayal, deception, and trust. Player freedom through choices, building alliances or creating rivals will be the driving force of the game.
Thief's Roulette takes place in a far off future Earth, where people are no strangers to android life, body augmentation or any of the other concepts of a high-tech society. Our characters live with it every day, to them its the way things have always been. That is simply the world they inhabit, and it all takes a back seat to the terrible events that the characters must face.
You awake in a strange place surrounded by unfamiliar faces. You have all been kidnapped and forced to compete for your lives in a series of challenges, hosted by a mysterious woman calling herself Lady Luck. She claims you have all been taken to her Casino. When the group is split into 3 Teams you learn the horrible truth of this game. To win means to sentence your opponents to death.
All 15 Strangers were chosen for a reason. Lady Luck proclaims them to all be thieves, liars and con men. All things she despises. For her, they will perform in a game of both trust and deception. To win you must deceive yet you must also work together. But in a room full of liars, who can you trust?
LADY LUCK’S GAME
Before the games can begin, the 15 Contestants are randomly assigned to 3 Teams of 5. From there, they will enter their respective challenge rooms and attempt to complete the task the fastest. The catch, is that both 2nd and 3rd Place Teams will have to take part in the Marking Roulette. Members of the 2 teams are randomly Marked for Death. If you are ever Marked twice, you will be Executed.
This means that if you are Marked and your Team gets 2nd Place, being Marked again means you die, if you are lucky and are not chosen, you live. However, for the 3rd Place Team, the Marking Roulette Spins Twice. Being in Third Place doubles your chance of being Marked and Killed.
After every Round in the Challenge Rooms, the Teams are randomly scrambled once more. So you will not always be with the same teammates. All Marks will remain even after changing teams. You must complete all 7 of Lady Luck's Challenges. Whoever remains in the End may leave this place alive.
One last thing! When a Team gets 1st Place, one Player from that team is randomly selected to receive the Trade Token. The 3rd Place Team will have one Player randomly selected to receive the Reroll Token.
The Trade Token can only be used right after the Teams have been scrambled. With this Token you may swap places with anyone else on any Team.
The Reroll Token can only be used right after the Marking Roulette. With it, you may choose to Reroll the Marking process. Perhaps for a more ideal result.
These Tokens can only be used once. You are allowed to give, trade or steal Tokens. You are also not obligated to ever use them. That choice is yours. At certain points in the game You (the Player) will receive these Tokens. How, when, or if at all you choose to use them will have a major effect on the game’s story.
In Thief's Roulette there is heavy emphasis on exploration and discovery when it comes to the Challenges. In the Challenge Rooms you have full control of your character in a first person view. You can run, crouch and interact with things in your environment. These mechanics and more intend to make exploring the Challenge rooms as engaging as possible.
These are your means of communicating and interacting with the world. My imaginary QA Testers calls it the HEM system, for Hand, Eye, and Mouth. Upon activation, you are given the ability to perform one of these 3 commands. This system is how all of the game’s puzzles and mysteries are solved. They also allow for more common interactions.
- Hand: Use to touch things in the environment. You can pull levers, open doors, grab items or tap a character on the shoulder to get their attention.
- Eye: Use to focus on points of interest in the environment. Upon usage, your character gives an analysis of what they are seeing.
- Mouth: Use to talk or make noise.This is mainly for speaking with characters, but there are more clever uses for this option as well. I won't spoil what those are, so you’ll just have to trust me!
Every one of the HEM options have additional uses that players will discover over the course of the game.
Along with the HEM System, and not only in the Challenge Rooms, you have ITEMS. Items are used to solve the various Puzzles of the game. They can be examined, some items can be combined together to form a new item, and some only have use outside of Challenge Rooms. During the moments you spend outside of Challenges, you will come across unique items that can be put to use in special ways.
Each of the game's 7 Challenges have a Room that is unique visually, and in regard to their objectives. You will be required to carefully examine your environment, use items and tools found in the room, and solve logic puzzles.The 3 Teams are competing to complete these Challenges before the others.
It is worth noting that as the Player, your Team’s placement is determined by choices you make, rather than a proficiency for puzzle solving. I don’t want the story to be led by how fast you can rush through the gameplay!
There is a Routine to Lady Luck’s Game. On the First Day, the Contestants perform in 2 Challenges with short breaks in between. After both Challenges, the Players are given the rest of the day off. During these breaks, the Player is free from Challenges for the time being. Each Contestant has an assigned Room in the Living Quarters and are allowed to freely explore The Casino.
After Break Time is done, the contestants will awake to a new set of Challenges. 2 More for the Day and it's back to Break. After every day of Challenges, The Casino expands and new locations become accessible
During Break Times you can investigate the Facility using your full range of skills (the HEM system). You can gather bits of backstory and clues about Lady Luck’s Game and the outside World.
You may also speak with any of the living contestants. After all, they will be taking part in the Break as well. Gather more information about the characters you’re stuck with, or simply call it a Day and get some sleep.
Special events can happen during the Break, as your choices can lead to unique encounters with the other Characters.
- A gripping story of deception. Who you choose to align with may either lead to your death or your survival.
- Heavy Player Choices that can alter the path of the Story.
- Multiple Endings
- Immersive and Intricate Puzzles to Solve.
- A Natural approach to Difficulty: Any time during a Puzzle, you may ask your teammates for help. Players who want to take on the challenge with no clues can simply not ask for assistance.
- Fully explorable 3D Environments and VN Style Artwork.
- A cast of unique characters with their own goals and personalities. Some are only out for themselves, others may have your back when the time comes.
I will be Showcasing the rest of the Cast as the Campaign goes on!
“Is this a visual novel?”
I don’t know. Maybe?
"What do you know?"
Thief's Roulette is a game that I've wanted to do for years. Its inspired by some of my all time favorite games so I hope to do them justice. I believe Thief's Roulette is my chance to show my skills as a game designer and story teller. The game has gone through numerous revisions along this journey, but the 2 main themes have always stayed the same: Strangers forced to perform in a deadly game, and puzzle solving through exploration and discovery.
"Where is the demo?"
Currently, the game is in its very early stages! A demo is not quite ready, but the majority of the game's gameplay features are in place, and functional (you can see this much in the Trailer). Still, some of the core features require more attention, so releasing it right now would likely hurt me more than it would help. My optimism made me think it'd be done by the time the Kickstarter launched, but it's not. Because of that, this first Demo will be released to all backers regardless of Tier.
This Demo will consist of the Cast waking up in Lady Luck's facility and learning about the Game they will take part in. You'll be taken through one full Challenge Room, and the Demo will end after a Marking Roulette. You'll get to meet every character and get a feel for the game. The demo will be out 1-2 months after the Campaign. This gives me the time to use those funds to polish what I have now, and make sure your first time in Thief's Roulette is as memorable as possible.
"Who are you?"
My name is Malik Brown, I tend to go by hiromu656 on the internet. I am an Artist and Animator from Chicago. As an animator my primary focus was short, hand drawn stories, but I also enjoy working in 3D. I have a passion for art and I've been playing video games my whole life. For some years now, I've been creating small scale games, and I think I'm finally ready for something big. I’m the sole member of the Thief's Roulette team, so I am currently handling the Art, Story, and Development on my own. Music on the other hand, I am having made by my friends. They’re working for free as of now and that never sat right with me. Hopefully with Kickstarter we can change that.
"How will the money be used?"
Well first, I know that a percentage of funds will go to Kickstarter. With the remainder, I will finally get to paying my sound friends. Since I’m doing this solo at the moment, hiring a Programmer is the main priority. I’m confident in my ability to create the Art and Assets, but handling code on top of that makes this process longer than it needs to be. A successful Campaign means I get to focus my attention on the Art, and we can get the game out much sooner. Although I am happy with the current character art, I want to have a chance to take them all under the knife once more. A full upgrade to all art assets, and especially the environment, is what I'd love to do. Success here, means that I can afford to.
That’s about it. If you have any questions at all, ask away! Thank you for reading this far, and I hope you choose to support the project!
Risks and challenges
Can't think of many risks, but challenges will surely pop up. As I've said on the main page, the Project's main hurdle is how I can balance the game's coding and all of the game's art as the sole developer. With enough funding I can hire a Programmer for the team so that I'm not wearing myself thin. The project is about 90% written out, characters sketched and all that good stuff. The hard part will be transferring all of that to the game world. I'm very well prepared on that front, but I know firsthand that things never go as smooth as you would hope. With your support I will get this thing done and into your hands.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)