About this project
If you missed us on Kickstarter, you can still pre-order on our website at sabertron.com
LASER TAG. WITH SWORDS.
An idea so overdue for production, it’s ridiculous that you aren't already battling in a sun-dappled field of fresh buckwheat.
With Sabertron, swordsmen & swordswomen will be able to have sword fights with swords that keep score electronically, without any additional equipment. A series of LED strips integrated into the front and back of the handle keep track of player health. A sword-to-sword hit doesn't decrement health. A hit to the body of an opponent results in a loss of health until a fighter wins the duel.
This is accomplished through extraordinarily complicated scientific engineering type stuff. For more on that, read the section labeled ‘extraordinarily complicated scientific engineering type stuff.’
$200,000 STRETCH GOAL - SHEATHS
We’re halfway through our campaign, Internet. And if we reach our new stretch goal of $200,000, every sword-level backer will receive the ultimate in foam sword fighting apparel.
You heard right. A sheath for every sword.
So get the word out, and help us hit $200,000!
Leave no Sabertron unsheathed, fellow foam sword enthusiasts!
$100,000 STRETCH GOAL - BONUS BLADES (REACHED)We did it. We reached $100,000! Every sword-level backer will now get a bonus replaceable foam blade in their choice of color (red, green, blue, or Medieval steel-grey). If you're a Grandmaster or Blackout level backer, you'll have the choice of a bonus foam color blade or a bonus neutral blade for dynamic color changes.
FIVE WAYS TO SLAY
Sabertron swords feature five types of gameplay.
ONE HIT TO WIN IT
Self explanatory. Land one successful body hit, and you win.
Land three hits to win.
The stronger the blow, the more damage your opponent takes.
Identical to Countdown, only you can earn health back over the passage of time, or by blocking several blows.
The name says it all. Identical to Eternal Struggle, only you can earn health back more quickly, and with even fewer blocks. Also, the lower your health gets, the less damage you'll take.
LARP LIKE YOU’VE ALWAYS WANTED TO LARP
While the current swords support one-on-one duels, Sabertronic technology will soon be implemented in multiplayer based games. Health meters worn on the chest and back are scheduled to be available in late 2014, allowing anyone to join the fray in multiplayer Melee Mode. Additional equipment like active shields, helmets, and body armor are right around the corner. Those of you in the LARPing community are doubtlessly blinking back tears of joy.
EXTRAORDINARILY COMPLICATED SCIENTIFIC ENGINEERING TYPE STUFF
Sabertron employs an accelerometer to detect when the sword has impacted another object. Wireless communication allows the swords to distinguish between the impact of another sword, versus another player. It’s similar to the technology inside your smart phone. Only, inside a foam sword. Which is better than a smart phone. Because it's a sword.
LED light strips on the front and back of the handle indicate a player’s health. Each valid hit decrements health, and the first player to run out of health loses. An LCD touchscreen in the handle is included with the Grandmaster and Blackout editions.
FORGED FROM NEARLY INDESTRUCTIBLE MATERIALS
Three tiers of Sabertron Foam Swords are available to backers, all of which will be delivered this year in time for the holidays.
THE SABERTRON APPRENTICE SERIES
Available in Medieval and Lightsword configurations, Apprentice-level Sabertron swords feature everything you need to start battling. Both models come with five game modes and an integrated health meter. With the Lightsword, you can choose between red, green, and blue foam blades (these are very similar to the swords seen in our video). With the Medieval Sword, a steel-grey foam blade is paired with a period-appropriate handle, pommel, and grip.
THE SABERTRON MASTER SERIES
A step above the Apprentice Series. Lightswords in the Master Series feature illuminating blades in your choice of color (red, green, or blue) and a rechargeable battery, while Medieval Swords come with a steel-grey foam illuminating blade, wrapped grip, metallic-finish pommel & handle, and a rechargeable battery. Master models also include the five game modes and integrated health meter of the Apprentice level swords.
THE SABERTRON GRANDMASTER SERIES
The pinnacle of foam combat. Both models in the Grandmaster Series feature an LCD touchscreen and your own name inscribed on the handle. Swords in this tier utilize Bluetooth connectivity to communicate with a smartphone app, allowing you to track your fighting stats over time and update with new game modes as they're developed. Grandmaster models come with a neutral illuminating blade enabling dynamic color changes (controlled via the LCD touchscreen) plus an additional blade in your choice of color (red, green, or blue). Grandmaster models also come with all of the features of the Master level swords, including a rechargeable battery.
BLACKOUT COLLECTOR'S EDITION SABERTRON SET
The evil twin of the Grandmaster Series. It's got a black handle with low-key accents and a special purple color profile for the health meter and illuminated blade, intended to emulate a black light. Each sword is individually numbered with a certificate of authenticity only available to backers at this Kickstarter reward level. That's in addition to everything featured in the Grandmaster Series. Be afraid.
SABERTRON ADD-ON PAIRS
Add $139 to your MASTER QUAD PACK PLEDGE to add an additional pair of Sabertron Master swords in Lightsword or Medieval styles. Or $278 for two additional pairs, etc. (not available for shipments outside the US)
Add $199 to your GRANSMASTER QUAD PACK PLEDGE to add an additional pair of Sabertron Grandmaster swords in Lightsword or Medieval styles. Or $398 for two additional pairs, etc. (not available for shipments outside the US)
MIX AND MATCH STYLES FOR ANY SWORD SET
You can mix and match Lightsword/Medieval styles on any sword-level reward! We'll just ask for your selections in the survey that we send at the end of the campaign.
THE OFFICIAL SABERTRON KICKSTARTER POSTER
This limited-edition signed masterpiece shows the defeated duo of Tim Reichard and Joe Mandy, underfoot a very victorious-looking David Lynch. Mount it above your fireplace for added victoriousness.
SUMMER GLAU SIGNED PHOTO GIVEAWAY
We met the gorgeous Summer Glau on May 18, 2014 at Dallas Comic Con and she was sweet enough to sign this awesome photo for us. Now we want one of you to have it.
Visit http://sabertron.com/summer-glau/ to enter for a chance to win. You'll get one entry for signing up and more entries the more you share/like/follow Sabertron stuff. So good luck and GO SABERTRON!
ABOUT THE LEVELUP TEAM
David Lynch has 16 years of experience as a computer engineer. If Sabertron were a movie, these 16 years would be the inspirational training sequence wherein David discovers and masters the technology behind wireless electronic swordplay.
The idea to create Sabertron arose out of a simple desire to get his kids off the couch. He figured he could build something as fun as a video game and make it infinitely more active.
With LevelUp Inc., David aims to bring interactive gaming into the real world. Products like Sabertron are only the beginning. Ultimately, LevelUp will offer a full line of connected games and experiences – none of which require you to stare at a screen for hours on end.
Tim Reichard is an electrical engineer with specialized experience in design validation and test automation. He is a fierce practitioner of the controversial Screaming Lotus style of sword fighting.
Joe Mandy is a computer engineer with over 10 years of experience testing highly complex computer assemblies for manufacturing facilities. He is also pursuing an MBA in Business Management. His additional skills include stabbing, parrying, and the overhead-torso-smash.
Look for the Sabertron team at the following events. See the swords for yourself, meet the Saberetron team, and experience a general sense of glory.
May 16-18, 2014: Dallas Comic Con
November 2014: Sabertron ships in time for the holidays
Risks and challenges
After four generations of prototypes, we understand how to make Sabertron tick and have proven the design a few times over. Some scheduling risks still exist, but our schedule already includes time to deal with unexpected issues. We aim to beat our target dates and deliver in plenty of time for the 2014 holiday season.
While we have relevant experience in product manufacturing, it’s always a challenge. We have partnered with design firms we know and trust. With them, we’re confident that Sabertron will be capably manufactured according to our specifications and our consumer’s needs.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
The prototyping of these swords has been limited to the lightsword model because rapid prototyping of foam is not really possible. We were able to custom "3D print" the plastic handles, but the complex blade shape of the medieval version, while easy in production, is difficult to achieve in the prototype stage. So all we can offer for now is drawings of what that sword type will look like.
The core construction is the same for all versions. We will apply a different "skin" on top of the core design for each different model. We will re-use the engineering of the core construction and all of the electronics and software. We have carefully built the core to accommodate both designs.
The foam that we are using for these prototypes are essentially pool noodles and are NOT the same foam quality that we will use in production. The pool noodles look the best for the pictures and video, but are too stiff for fun sword play. We will experiment with the proper foam formula on the way to production. Joe is going to take quite the beating!
We will work to demonstrate the illuminated blade in the next week or so. Our 3rd generation prototype had an illuminated blade--we know how to do it. The problem was once again the limitation of foam supplies during prototyping. We have some ideas of how to get around this in the short term. We can't wait to film those. It's always fun to film an illuminated blade!
We hope you will wail all day on these swords with no issues. That is the kind of product we are aiming to produce. That is why we have polycarbonite blade cores, which are billed as "indestructible" and in our testing so far they are quite incredible. They are super light too, which is a big priority as well. We want to produce the toughest, lightest and safest foam sword possible. At well under a pound, they are amazingly light.
The sword blades bend a little when full force is applied, but it actually feels quite right. [Edit: Tim disagrees with me and thinks we should make them slightly more stiff, more like our 3rd-gen prototypes. But we were limited to the rods that we had on hand at the time. So we will work on that and find the perfect core. They will still bend at the tip, but not too much.] The foam formulation will primarily be set to best soften the blow, while also light and tough, but easily replaceable in case they ever get snagged on sharp objects.
Support this project
- (30 days)