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An immersive, story-rich vehicle for introspection and understanding the choices made by others. Get invited to backer only party! Read more

pledged of $8,500 goal
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This project was successfully funded on February 1, 2010.

An immersive, story-rich vehicle for introspection and understanding the choices made by others. Get invited to backer only party!

About this project

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GAH! We're funded! This game is going to be real! THANK YOU ALL BACKERS!

I have decided to invite all the backers to a launch party when the game comes out. It will be in the SF Bay Area. If you want in and aren't backing the game yet, its not too late!

Also I have an amazing artist I want to approach about doing some work for the game. I have no idea what kind of deal I can strike with her, what her rates are or anything. But I am going to email her RIGHT NOW!

About the Game

Before You Close Your Eyes is a Choose Your Own Adventure style game where you create your own personality and the choices you make have real consequences on a game world.

Remember those Choose your own Adventure books you used to love as a kid? The game is a bit like that, if it was the fevered brain child of Carl Jung, Joseph Campbell and H.P Lovecraft. Create your new Self by answering questions that shape your personality. The personality traits you choose for your character affect the choices you have available to you at any given point. Your chosen personality shapes the path of the story, and the decisions you make will change your fate, and the fate of everyone you will meet.

About the Story

A slow rumble rises in the creature's throat, and its cold eyes gleam with malice.

"These woods are dark and twisted. Only I can show you the way out." The beast purrs. The children behind you tremble and whimper. "If you remain after sunset you will ALL become supper. There are unspeakable monsters in this forest, of which I am the least. So choose one tasty morsel amongst your group as payment for my services and let us be on our way."

"Or...." it adds, leveling its unearthly gaze at you "Give yourself up instead and I will guide these small ones to safety, seeing no harm comes to any of them".

The children huddle behind you, their fear like a living force surrounding their small group. Some of them weep while their elders try to hush them gently. The beast picks at its enormous teeth with one man-sized steel talon. All wait for your answer.

What do you do?

Before You Close Your Eyes is about a person who enters a strange world of dreams and is confronted with confusing situations and difficult choices. It is a fantastical world of strange creatures and crumbling cities, where old enemies are willing to do anything – even watch their own people suffer and die – to payback ancient imagined slights.

My inspirations for the story and the world in which it takes place are drawn from HP Lovecraft’s dream stories, Joseph Campbell, and traditional myths and fairy tales.

The game will be text based, and available on the iPhone, Android and Web.

About the Money!
Before You Close Your Eyes is a project I started many many years ago, way back in Graduate School. Only recently has everything come together in such a way that I actually feel enabled to get the game out there to the world. Well, almost.

Here’s the hitch. I currently work as a game design contractor and am the primary breadwinner for my family. I think I could get the game completed if I just had two months to work solidly on it and nothing else. So I need to take a two month vacation from my contracting work to just focus and get this game made! The funds I am asking for will support my family for two months while I pour all my time into making this game a reality. During these two months, I will also be providing daily updates to those who are interested and engaging with the community. I think we'll have a good time working together!

Additional funding would go into upping the production quality of the game. Currently the plan is that it is text based and that I will design the UI, and “cover art”. I would like to hire a UI artist/designer to make the UI be exquisite, and I would like to hire an illustrator to make beautiful illustrations to accompany the text. I also have a nifty idea for sound effects, if I can get the money together to buy the quality sounds I need.

My ultimate hope is that by kickstarting this game, you are actually kickstarting my path to creative independence and my opportunity to focus my life on making games for the greater good. I want this to be only the first in a long line of engaging and thoughtful games that I will make and share with you! I feel that there is a huge need in the world for games that encourage people to reflect on who they are and how they can improve life on the planet by improving their own lives. Games, being an interactive medium, are the perfect place for this sort of work. I have many games in me that will push these objectives. But first I just need a little push myself.

Thanks so much for your time, and please come join our dream!


  • This game has been a longer journey than I anticipated. Much longer. But it is still in progress, and I am steadily making progress. But I can't promise a specific date.

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  • When I started work on this project, I had enough money to work for 3 months straight without taking on any additional work (thanks to my generous backers). However, that time came and went and I still wasn't done. Since then, BYCYE has had to compete with all the craziness that is my life -- including contract work, going back to school for an MFA and having a second baby. Its been busy! But I am now back to work on the game and making progress once again.

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  • Possibly, eventually. I am not ready to consider music and sound needs for the game. But contact me anyway, and I'll keep you in mind for when I need to cross that bridge.

    Last updated:
  • Hioefully I will need help with art! Again, that's a way off but please do contact me with any portfolio link you may have.

    Last updated:


  • You selected
    Pledge $3 or more

    4 backers


    Access to the behind the scenes blog, which will include all kinds of fun stuff, including my thoughts for the game, little bits and pieces of game world lore that won't be available elsewhere, and many lessons learned! Pledging $3 or more also allows you to participate in the game naming contest (see the project description for what that's about.)

  • You selected
    Pledge $5 or more

    2 backers

    Party Ticket!
    I couldn't change the three dollar reward description so I am adding this reward level.
    You are invited to the Before You Close Your Eyes launch party! I have no idea what the parameters of that are yet, but it will be in the SF Bay Area, and will be after the game launches. It may just be at my house. I have to figure out the details still.

  • You selected
    Pledge $7 or more

    37 backers


    Access to the blog, and a copy of the game when it is released. (You will receive both an iPhone copy and an access code to the ads-free web version).

  • You selected
    Pledge $17 or more

    43 backers


    The above, plus a thank you card signed by my family (including my 2 year old daughter) and special thanks in the game credits and printed Game Design Journal.

  • You selected
    Pledge $30 or more

    29 backers

    DREAMS OF INTRIGUE -- You receive the above, plus a digital copy of the Game Design Journal. The journal will be a copy of my actual game design journal, featuring my sketches and blurbs of writing, arcane diagrams and the like.

  • You selected
    Pledge $75 or more

    7 backers


    All of the above, plus a quality print of the game art (will be the splash screen art unless an illustrator makes several pieces – then you have a choice), with a personalized thank you on the front of it -- suitable for framing!

  • You selected
    Pledge $95 or more

    15 backers


    All of the above, plus a copy of the KICKSTARTER EXCLUSIVE game design journal. The journal will be a copy of my actual game design journal, featuring my sketches and blurbs of writing, arcane diagrams and the like. And it will come signed! I keep fairly elaborate journals for the games I am working on, and this will be a book to covet. (I covet it and I'm making it!)

  • You selected
    Pledge $175 or more

    19 backers Limited (11 left of 30)

    COLLABORATION PACKAGE -- All of the above goodies, PLUS you will have the opportunity to suggest, write or design a story that will appear as a playable side quest in the game. You will get access to background materials and sweet sweet spoilers that no one else will have. You can write the whole story or just tell me how you want it to go, and I will work with you to fit it into the game. In addition to your words being added to the game, you will receive a completely legitimate "Additional Design/Writing" credit in the game (and on the game's web-site) that you can use on your resume or just to impress your friends!

  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    3 backers Limited (17 left of 20)

    JOIN OUR FAMILY! -- You receive all of the above plus three free bonus copies (one for each member of the family!) of the game and a LIFETIME bonus copy on every single indie game I ever make. It's a lifetime buy one get one free offer! Additionally, your name and the link of your choice (PG please!) will appear on the project's web-site. You also will have sent to you a plaster handprint from my two year old daughter in appreciation for making her mama a happy camper.

Funding period

- (82 days)