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$2,556 pledged of $20,000 goal
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By Rogue Planet Games
$2,556 pledged of $20,000 goal
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About

Introduction

Exis: Founders is a browser-based web game which you can play from any computer with internet access without the need to download any software.

You assume the role of an alien refugee fleeing from persecution and slavery.  You arrive on the remote world of Exis where you must survive and build a new civilization.  

The Game

Our central philosophy has been to focus on durable character development rather than the acquisition of 'gear' for advancement.  The XP you earn may go directly to your character by raising Attributes, acquiring Skills or developing special abilities.  You may also use XP to modify Skill attempts, raise the quality of crafted items, enhance the loyalty of followers or secure special benefits for members of your community.

  • Forty skills as of Beta, each with several levels of advancement and no limit on the number of skills you can acquire.
  • Teach other PCs or NPCs Skills you know. 
  • Tame wild animals for use as food, labor or mounts.  Breed them for the qualities you need and even train them with special skills to aid you.
  • Gather from a plethora of basic Resources to survive and build.
  • Use those Resources to invent Refinements and open new avenues of discovery along an extensive technology tree.
  • Find rare Machine Remnants or even Alien Artifacts which may provide unique capabilities and possibly some unusual side-effects.
T-Shirt mock-ups.
T-Shirt mock-ups.
  • Enter the game as a guild and be placed with your friends and allies at the start as a preexisting Organization.  
  • Use the robust Organization tool to customize your guild, clan, family or whatever form of community best suits your purposes.  
  • You are already a founder.  Your settlements may become great cities, your community a part of history, and your character, legendary hero or infamous villain?  We can't wait to find out.

Exis: Founders is the first title in a brand of games under the Exis banner head.  These players will ultimately be able to export much of their in-game accomplishments and assets to later titles now in development.

What's done?

  • The controlling business entity is formed, including all of the legal, contractual, financial and policy provisions needed.  
  • Principal art, consisting of over 800 images is complete.
  • Programming, currently 32,000 lines of code and a provisional beta version already began testing.
  • Server, file architecture, databases and controls are in place.
  • Account creation, login, and authentication is complete and was a part of the limited testing.
Example Artifacts, Animals, Tools and Refinements
Example Artifacts, Animals, Tools and Refinements
  • Character generation is also complete, and was a part of the limited testing.
  • Organizations (or guilds) Tool implemented and part of the limited testing.
  • Communication via in-game messaging and chat added to the testing phase, but not fully vetted.
  • Improvements (stuff you can build), withheld from testing pending further development/revision.
  • A version of the Map of the world, but this is one of the items that could use improvement.
  • Robust administrative control tool, which allows us to add and modify content without having to get into the code.  This was not a part of the test proper, but it has been tested and continues to be on an ongoing basis, as it is intended for backend use only and not for the players. 
  • Game/site CSS has been ongoing during development but will require refinement.
  • Promotional materials, ancillary artwork, animation and supporting sites.
Sample map view with Improvements
Sample map view with Improvements

Initial Investment

Over the last two years I have put in over $30,000 of my own money, more if you include work for the business end, the legal framework and the supporting assets such as the website, art and animation in support of the brand.

It bears mentioning that the value of the work done on the game to date far exceeds what was paid for it.  Both my lead programmer and lead artist have demonstrated tremendous commitment to me and this project, working above and beyond what was strictly called for in their contracts.  In short, the value of what I have is far greater than the investment made.

Why do we need backing?

All of the principals have other full-time jobs and careers.  We have been doing this in our spare time, over late nights, weekends or when we would otherwise be taking vacations or holidays.  While doing so, we have had to make some heart-breaking compromises to the original concept due to time and monetary constraints while over time, one or more of us has been called away to other pressing obligations, financial, family or otherwise that has stalled the project just short of the finish line. 

What kind of compromises?

  • We halted advancement along the Technology tree at about midway or lower for most things, like Skills, Refinements and Improvements to keep the population of objects smaller.  The thinking was to give the Players more than enough to get started giving us time to add more later.
  • The original design called for unique architecture for each Race for most of their Improvements (buildings and such).  We decided on a 'neutral' line of Primitive and Basic Improvements on the premise that, if stranded with virtually nothing on a far away world, a leanto is a leanto no matter where you are from.  
  • Redacted the micro-games completely.  These are simple diversions like cards games or chess that you can play with your friends to pass the time while waiting for your Characters to finish a task.

What would we do with the money?

In short, cross that finish line.  With the financial obstacle removed, we could complete the last of the programming and, after some additional testing, release the game, albeit in its abridged form. 

Stretch Goals

At the risk of being optimistic, should we find ourselves over-funded, there are plenty of good uses we can put the money to.  We would love to restore as many of the original design elements as the budget will allow.

  • Content:  By far the largest share of the backing beyond our initial goal would go directly into adding additional game content and restoring the cut features.  This includes custom Race creation with unique portraits from an extensive gallery, longer and more complex branches to the technology trees for Resource development and Improvements, a few graphics 'gimmicks' and the micro-games, 90% of which is simply a matter of creating more art and inputting data.
  • Programming:  Improve what we already have.  What we have works, but it could use streamlining and there are a few close-ended project specialists we could put to good use, freeing up my lead to do more heavy lifting and embellish existing features.
  • Promotion:  Anything above and beyond what we strictly need to restore the game to its intended scope would be used to promote it.

$30,000

This would allow us to put the Player-made Race feature back into the game.  At the outset of the game the Player would have the option of selecting one of the five pre-made Races or create their own.  They wouldn't have the same variety of customized appearances as the pre-mades, but you can select from an extensive gallery of portraits and once chosen, that image would be removed from the options.  Thus, your Race would be unique to you.

$40,000

Restore Race-specific architecture to the player Improvements up to the level of technology we are currently at.  Thus, if you had selected a pre-made Race for your Character, many of the Improvements you construct will have a distinctive appearance that reflects the cultural diversity of the dominant races on Exis.

... More? 

I don't want to get too far ahead of ourselves.  Let's wait and see how we do when the project goes live.  

Promotional Assets 

"Into the Void" is an introductory animation designed and written by me, read by Mira Furlan (Do Not Forget Me Istanbul - 2011, Lost - 2004-2010, Babylon 5 - 1994-1998) and accompanied by a score written by composer Mark Petrie (music for trailers, The Green Lantern, Narnia 3 as well as additional music for television, Burn Notice, Oprah Winfrey). 

Website and background art by Gerardo Surzin (Matte painter for movies and television, Clash of the Titans, Prince of Persia, Australia, Knowing and Tin Man). 

James R. Witmer, II, Owner

Design, development and production.

Adam Alicki, Lead Programmer & Maniac

Self-taught coder-savant.

Jenny Nordenborg, Lead Artist

Award winning 2D artist, previous credits include ...

Rogue Planet Games is committed to providing the same opportunity we are asking for now by Kicking It Forward.

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

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    Game Asset: Large Meeting Hall and seed OXP (Organization Experience Points) for your Community.

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    Game Asset: Special ingame starting terrain graphic, 'Starship Wreckage', which can be used instead of a Shelter and will distinguish you as one of our backers. Available after beta February 2013.

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    Exclusive 'Exis: Founders' T-Shirt featuring the emblem on the front and the game logo on the back. International Backers must add $10 in shipping (sorry).

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    Game Asset: Custom Meeting Hall graphic based on your sketch (one WIP, one revision). You may specify if you wish to keep this image unique to you, just your Community or make it game-wide. Available after beta February 2013.

    Developer forum access with limited posting rights. Available July 2012.

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    Game Asset: Custom graphic of your choosing. It will have to conform to the specifications of the game, but you may choose any player object/graphic to customize (one WIP, one revision). You may specify if you wish to keep this image unique to you, your Community or make it game-wide. Available after beta February 2013.

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    Have a game-wide object named after you. Rename something like the Penrose Object or the Klein Bottle, or select anything you prefer, an Animal, Artifact, Refinement, Tool or even decorative features like Trees. You may combine this reward with the Custom Graphic to influence both what it is called and what it looks like. Available after beta February 2013.

    Named under Special Thanks in the game credits.

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    Game Asset: Custom Character portrait of your own Race (one WIP, one revision), or a custom portrait of one of the preloaded races according to your specifications. Available after beta February of 2013.

    Developer forum access with expanding posting rights. Available July of 2012.

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    Name a world NPC or have the NPC named after you. You can combine this with previous rewards to create your own Race and add a custom portrait of that character. Available after beta February 2013.

    Attend Skype production meetings with Jim and Adam starting July 2012.

    Invitation to the Public Release Party hosted by the developers (you must be able to travel to Massachusetts, US - between April and June of 2013.

    Named under Creative Consultant in the game credits.

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    Lunch with Jim and Adam (and Jenny if she is in the US), at our expense for backers within the continental US between July 2012 and June of 2013, although we highly recommend coming for the Opening Party as the guest of honor.

    Unrestricted developer forums access. Available July 2012.

    Named as Associate Producer in the game credits.

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Funding period

- (30 days)