About this project
Hi my name is James Arndt. I'm a professional game developer based out of Florida. You can take a look at some of my work, and a list of games I've worked on that shipped to market: http://www.jamesarndt3d.com/about/
I noticed that there was a serious lack of kart racing games to be found in the mobile markets, that focused on a more realistic simulation of kart racing. Some of the titles I downloaded on my Android were pretty underwhelming...no sense of speed, limited customization, no multiplayer. All of the things missing that I think are core to a good racing game!
Seeing this opening in the market, combined with a love for vehicle racing games, led me to start development on Super Kart Racing a few months back.
Screenshots of the game as of March. 2013:
There are currently quite a few main track layouts, with some bonus tracks that are only unlocked once all prior tracks are completed. Each of the track layouts will be run in reverse/alternate configurations as well, creating double the amount of tracks for this game. The game will use an unlock system, in which initially all tracks but the first will be locked. As you progress, competing against (3) other AI opponents, and win races, you will unlock tracks progressively.
I'm also implementing local multi-player via Bluetooth and/or Wifi using the Prime31 Bluetooth/WiFi Mulitplayer plugin for Unity. This will allow players who are near to each other to engage in races against one another. There will be a simple multi-player lobby in the game's menu, you will find any competitors in this lobby to race. I am also looking into Photon server, Smartfox, or similar services to implement the option of internet play over 3G. Also leaderboards will be implemented for saving race times, player names, race positions and keeping save data to allow for competition amongst multiplayer players.
I will be creating (8) variations of Karts to choose from, each will be a unique base model referencing real world counterparts (i.e. similar to the top performing karts today). The AI opponents will consist of (4) variations of model design/paint color and will randomly possess graphics, decals, and markings.
This is a peek at the current Player Kart driver (without markings or design). This is a very early prototype, so nothing too fancy.
I've also started development on a fully driveable demo track to demo the game to the public. I am demoing the game via web streaming using Unity Game Engine's Web Player tech (simple, light browser plugin). I am also using updates to the online web streaming build to gain valuable feedback from users in forums and on official pages. I gain knowledge of bugs that become apparent, features players would like to see implemented, feedback on the vehicle handling and feedback on game design elements. I think this is a valuable step in the development to ensure a high level of quality is reach for the end product.
Visit the Super Kart Racing Official Website
Here is screengrab of the current demo level that is playable via the web:
The funds generated via this KickStarter will allow me to complete this game with an expected release in late August - Mid September 2013. This will allow me to realize this game to it's full potential, as it's always been pushed aside for paying work. This is a Unity Game Engine based project. Funds will be used to acquire an upgrade license to Unity 4.0, to take advantage of new optimizations and bug fixes within the Unity editor environment itself. Important licensing fees will need to be paid as well. I will need to renew my iOS Developer License this April as well as purchase the Android Developer License (Update: Android License has been acquired).
Funds will also be used to acquire needed outsourced level and kart 3d models/textures for future asset needs. I will also use funds to purchase required audio assets from online sources such as StockMusic.net or AudioJungle. I'm already using Freesound.org for some audio, but it doesn't meet all current needs for specific FX and background music.
I will also outsource a bit of programming to a former co-worker who has joined as a consultant. He'll help clean up code, debug compiler errors and help give insights to more efficient code structures for the game. He'll work for a very good rate for consulting as he's a personal friend as well. Lastly funds are needed to acquire the Prime31 plugins for implementing wifi/bluetooth multiplayer, In app purchases and the Facebook integration. The Storekit plugin runs $70 from him. It's a direct Unity plugin and is plug and play. The Social Networking plugin is for Unity too and costs $65. Lastly the multiplayer plugins for GameCenter and Bluetooth/Wifi are $135 together.
After these immediate development needs are met, this funding will allow me to sustain myself during development on Super Kart Racing. Basically it will allow me to keep the lights on where I am working, utilities on, keep the internet on each month and keep this game in production.
If you do have the Unity Web Player plugin installed you can follow this link to an immediately playable demo that plays via web streaming. This demo contains all of the functional controls for iOS and Android in the HUD, but utilizes the keyboard controls for PC/Mac testing. This is a great opportunity for anyone and everyone to provide feedback via comments, towards improving Super Kart Racing's development.
Super Kart Racing (Early Test Build) via Super Kart Racing Official Website **Remember this is a VERY early prototype complete with bugs!
Important Note : All backers $5 and above will receive a full copy of the game for Mac and PC via direct digital download.
Supported Device specs:
Android OS 2.0 or later Device powered by an ARMv7 (Cortex family) CPU GPU support for OpenGLES 2.0 is recommended iOS 4.3 or later ARMv7 (Cortex family) CPU iPhone 3GS and later
Risks and challenges
As with any game development it's important to know the strengths and risks up front. Currently the game is about 25% feature complete.I feel the biggest hurdle to completion might be solving difficult bugs. My strengths as an environment, prop and vehicle artist will allow me to produce the game's needed artwork relatively smoothly. QA and solving hard to find bugs seem to be the largest time killer. I intend to help mitigate this by using frequent TestFlight builds to approved testers, usage of the Unity forums and Unity Answers forums, utilizing an already existing network of professional developer friends, and by my own knowledge of QA and debugging racing games. I will also use APK distribution lists to pre-approved QA players to help with Android device testing.
All programming will be completed in-house, so there will be no issues with outsourced scripting. I am a capable programmer, that can handle most challenges, issues or logic that is required. If I do hit a hurdle, I immediately reach out to programming professionals I am connected to through prior working relationships. I do not anticipate complications with builds or testing to the devices as iOS testing has gone smoothly so far. I have credentials and certificates installed on both an iPad2 and iPhone 3GS, as well as access to an iPhone 4S for testing. Android testing will be done first via emulation in the development environment and then on Samsung Galaxy2 Android hardware. So far Android SDK has been installed, it is connected to Unity and I am able to make builds to the device. I have successfully submitted and was approved to Apple's app store before (Tablet Match game), so I am familiar with their processing/approval time and technical rules for submission with Apple.
The current lack of funding poses the biggest risk to the completion of this project, but hopefully we can solve that as a team!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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