- Retro styled 2D shoot 'em up
- Multiple layers of parallax for that retro vibe
- 18 levels split over 6 sectors
- 3 main player weapons each with multiple power levels
- Multiple types of rockets and missiles
- 4 types of external weapon systems
- Weapons shop between sectors
- Game progress saves
- Epic original music score
- Downloadable Kickstarter demo
Iridium is retro styled 2D shoot 'em up taking inspiration from: Uridium, Xenon 2 Mega Blast and Nemesis / Gradius. Each game in its own right is considered a classic by many people. Each offered some very unique features including massive ships, upgrade shops, in-level upgrades and a multitude of weapons.
The game is a horizontal shoot 'em up where the player is allowed free movement around the level in a similar manner to Uridium. Unlike Uridium there are many weapon and ship upgrades available to purchase during each level. Later in-between levels the player visits the upgrade shop where more powerful weapon blueprints are available.
As the levels can be large a check-point system has been implemented which helps the player to progress. As the player progresses the layout of the level behind the player can be dynamically changed. The free movement and dynamic level setups allow for a multitude of play styles and also helps to push the player in the correct direction.
Each level is made up of three stages which gives the player the opportunity to collect coins and upgrade up their ship before reaching the end of the level and having to deal with the enemy dreadnought. Within each of the three stages making up a level there are a multitude of adversaries. These include simple gun turrets, standard attack patterns, mid to large individual ships as well as some huge single and multi-part enemies.
Iridium will initially be a PC release, Later on we want to port it to other platforms (The Nintendo Switch being the most appealing due to its form factor). There will be a limited physical release to backers of certain pledge levels. Once complete Steam will be the primary (not only) place to get game keys and will also provide global high scores etc.
Windows 7 is the oldest version of Windows supported due to our custom graphics engine requiring DirectX 11. Just about any NVidia or AMD GPU will run Iridium at 60fps, Intel GPU performance is very dependant on CPU and RAM speed due to shared video / system RAM.
In the year 4096 the Earth and its commonwealth of systems has expanded across a large proportion of our home galaxy. The avalanche of human expansion did not begin until 2801 just a few decades after the development of wormhole technology. With no alien contact and the fact that the human race had been at peace for over 1000 years the military had reduced in size to the point where it is little more than a home world defence force. The huge warships of the past were stranded in the system they were produced in due to being to large too travel by wormhole. Most were scrapped, some were sold off and converted into cruise ships.
The Iridium project began in 3496 with the aim of producing a small cheap scout ship. Its initial purpose was to find new planets to colonise without the need for a full-blown wormhole which are very costly and potentially dangerous to open. It was 4083 when an outlying colony reported strange lights in the sky. Then the colony went silent and its wormhole link was unexpectedly severed.
It took 6 months to establish a new wormhole. When it was finally reopened a team was sent through. The devastation discovered was immense, there were no survivors. Since then 142 of a total 209 colonies have been attacked and destroyed. The distances and time between each attack seems to be consistent with an enemy who travels using faster than light (FTL) engines rather than wormholes. Every attack brings them one step closer to Earth. The Commonwealth defence force having limited military options returned to project Iridium as their only hope. The small scout craft has now been transformed into a rapid attack craft. With over 500 years of advancements it has been equipped with inertial dampening for rapid 180° turns, high powered shields which would put all previous ships to shame and a new Iridium alloy hull stronger than any other material ever produced. This coupled with a dynamic and adaptable weapons system is the last hope for the human race. We have an estimated 2 years to turn it around or face extermination!
The funding of Iridium will help to advance the games development at a much greater rate. The additional resources will enable us to pay for translations into other languages, develop extra levels, add more enemies types, plus many other additional features and tools. One of the most essential tools being a Multi-part boss ship editor which will be available to higher pledge levels. It will also bring with it the opportunity to have community input to help refine the overall look and feel of Iridium. Depending on the level of funding further expansions including extra enemies, more levels and other platforms will also be possible.
I've always always played lots of games. Other than the odd arcade machine I starting playing video games with a humble ZX Spectrum in 1983. From that point on I always wanted to make games. This drove me to learn to code on a number of different platforms and to study computing at university. It was after finishing my degree that I had the opportunity to work in the video games industry for Elite Systems who where huge in 1980s, converting classics such as Commando and Ghost 'n Goblins. It was the dawn of hardware accelerated 3D on the PC and the release of the PSX. It was a very interesting time unfortunately some classic game types never made the transition to 3D, classic shoot 'em ups being one such casualty. Due to the overall costs of AAA titles and publishers being unwilling to try anything new / risky we seem to get year upon year of the same repeated games. Kickstarter has brought back originality and helped the rise of Indie game developers who are able to try new things.
Since the early 80's I’ve had a deep interest in creating game graphics with the focus on shoot 'em ups and platform style games. The Amiga platform is where it all started from many pixel art style game concepts to later rendering out various game parts in 3D. I've played many games over the years on various platforms from handheld and consoles to PC, and continue to develop games on both retro and modern systems. I am looking forward to seeing our game become available on a portable system such as the Nintendo Switch. We have a great small team and I'm very excited to see Iridium come to life.
I've been making music since the early 90s when I first got hold of tracker software for my Amiga, and have played live around half the planet with the different music projects I have created since. I am a huge Uridium 2 fan so I couldn't miss the opportunity to help with Iridium! Shoot 'em ups have always been a favourite genre of mine, that's why I am one of the co-owners of shmups.com. Nowadays I make music in my home studio using vintage and modern synthesizers, no computer involved until the recording phase. I basically have a 90s studio setup, perfect for the vibe I wanted to give to Iridium. I hope you enjoy our game as much as we loved making it!
Risks and challenges
Whatever happens with the Kickstarter campaign Iridium will be released! Without funding it will just take longer and miss out on community input.
Since I was a teenager I have been producing games in one form or other including later on working in the industry for Elite Systems (PC / PSX). This has given me enough background and practical knowledge to overcome any potential problems which might arise.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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