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$15,062
pledged of $5,000pledged of $5,000 goal
249
backers
12days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Mon, September 30 2019 1:23 PM UTC +00:00.

Rollie: A new game for the Classic Nintendo (NES)

A family friendly platformer for the NES starring Rollie, the rolling raccoon

Rollie: A new game for the Classic Nintendo (NES)

A family friendly platformer for the NES starring Rollie, the rolling raccoon

$15,062
pledged of $5,000pledged of $5,000 goal
249
backers
12days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Mon, September 30 2019 1:23 PM UTC +00:00.

About

Rollie is a video game developed for Nintendo Entertainment System and modern digital platforms. It is 100% finished and the goal of this kickstarter is to raise funds for the physical production of NES cartridges. 

The physical version will consist of a cartridge of Rollie as well as a game box and instruction manual. A digital version is also offered in the form a ROM file of the game that can be played via emulation. All tiers will come with the digital ROM file.

Rollie was developed entirely from scratch by a single developer. It is a side-scrolling platformer in which the player controls an orange raccoon named Rollie. A second player can join and control a purple raccoon friend name Lorrie.

Rollie and Lorrie

STORY

Rollie and Lorrie are on a mission to save their forest, Paradise Gorge. Their goal is to defeat the brats and bullies who have seized power in the midst of an unstable ecosystem precipitated by a sudden overpopulation of snakes. They aim to lead as examples, to show how sharing and sacrifice are rewarding, and that rampant self-serving brutality perpetuates destruction.

A closer look at the cover art for Rollie, illustrated by Daniel Adams.


STAGES

Rollie has 16 huge stages of gameplay. Power-ups and secrets can be found scattered throughout the levels and checkpoints exist along the way. Each stage ends in a boss battle.

Rollie continuously bouncing through a section of forest.

ROLLING AND BOUNCING

Rollie's signature mechanic is his ability to curl up into a bouncy ball. Rolling and bouncing provide the player a unique way to move across levels freely.

TWO PLAYER MODE

The select button can be pushed to switch between players 1 and 2. This tag-team mechanic gives the game a cooperative multiplayer experience and allows players to assist each other in completing levels.

Gameplay from the title screen, featuring the semi-cooperative two player mode.

ITEMS, POWER-UPS, AND SPECIAL ABILITIES

Rollie features a large assortment of power-ups and secondary abilities. This makes the game dynamic by giving the player various options to overcome obstacles and enemies. Many of the power-ups and items are hidden in flowers scattered throughout the stages or can be dropped by enemies. These special abilities include:

  • Jumping on top of enemies
  • Throwing marbles
  • Blowing bubbles that operate as moving platforms
  • A rolling attack
  • Ways to befriend enemies
  • Collecting clovers to help earn extra lives
  • Several power-ups that temporarily aid the player
Among the many wonderful things the player can collect
The lightweight effect of the Fuzz Cola drink, one of the many temporary power-ups in Rollie.

ENEMIES

Enemies patrol subdomains throughout the stages and may attack the player if approached. Each enemy attacks the player in a unique and memorable way.

Lorrie hitches a ride on a duck to reach a domain of paranoid turtles.

BOSSES

Each stage ends with a boss battle.  Once they are defeated, the player advances to the next stage, and is presented with a password for saving progress.

PASSWORD SYSTEM

Due to the lengthy stages of Rollie, the game features a password system. This allows the player to continue their progress at a later time.

Entering a password in Rollie.

SOUNDTRACK

A preview of Rollie's soundtrack can be found here:
Day Theme
Night Theme
Cave Theme

An NSF file can be found here:

NSF File





Rollie on display at 3 different gaming conventions in the Pacific Northwest: from left to right, at Vancouver Retro Gaming Expo 2017 (New Westminster, BC); at Portland Retro Gaming Expo 2018 (Portland, OR); and at Indie Game Con at EuCon 2018 (Eugene, OR).

The most powerful feedback one can get is watching players react and comment on a specific part of the game as it unfolds before them. During the course of its development, Rollie was showcased at 14 public gaming events. People could walk up to the game, grab the controller, and play it as the developer explained the game and observed them playing. The body language and facial expressions on the players at certain moments were key in shaping Rollie into a fun game. 

The mission for Rollie is to prove that the NES is more than a product of its time, but rather a medium for timeless gameplay. The game was crafted to reflect the way 8-bit games were developed back in the 1980s. It was a personal goal for Rollie to be faithful to games from that era, yet stand out on its own.

Like a few other notable NES hombrews (Micro Mages, Nebs and Debs), Rollie was programmed into a 40 kilobyte cartridge. This was the same format used in early NES games such as Super Mario Bros, Excitebike, and Duck Hunt. This requires the programmer to recycle material and compress data in order to save memory. The art of reusing content (code, graphics, object movements -- whatever the feature may be) is to create many objects and ideas that are similar to establish a system of familiarity for the player, but let them be different enough to surprise and challenge him or her. The game thus pushes many limits of the NES, yet still manages to feel deep, vast, and streamlined to perfection.




Rollie was developed from the ground up by Chris Lincoln, an experienced developer who has worked on NES mods for over a decade. 

Chris Lincoln with his creation

Illustrator Daniel Adams created Rollie's cover art, as well as the drawings that will be featured in the game's manual.

The game will be manufactured in conjunction with The 6502 Collective, a team lead by two individuals, E.B.D. Holland and Tim Hartman. They are both very active in the NES homebrew community. In addition to manufacturing cartridges, they will help bring Rollie to modern digital platforms. Rollie runs on GTROM, a board developed by Membler Industries.

Special thanks goes out to three testers who took time out of their lives to help polish the game during its final phase of development. These individuals are Caleb Bafford, James Robuck, and Justin Orenich.

Risks and challenges

The programming of Rollie is 100% finished. However, the physical production of NES cartridges is costly. This Kickstarter campaign serves as a way to raise funds for that goal.

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    DIGITAL COPY

    Get a digital version of Rollie that is playable on NES emulators.

    Includes:
    • Digital ROM file
    • Instruction Manual (PDF Only)
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    CARTRIDGE ONLY

    Get an NES cartridge of Rollie.

    Includes:
    • NES Cartridge
    • Instruction Manual (PDF Only)
    • Digital ROM file
    • Dust Sleeve
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    COMPLETE VERSION

    Get an NES cartridge of Rollie, complete in box.

    Includes:
    • NES Cartridge
    • Box
    • Instruction Manual (PDF and Printed)
    • Digital ROM file
    • Dust Sleeve
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    LIMITED EDITION

    Get the official limited edition NES cartridge of Rollie, complete in box.

    Includes:
    • Yellow NES Cartridge, numbered
    • Yellow Box, numbered
    • Instruction Manual (PDF and Printed)
    • Digital ROM file
    • Dust Sleeve
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