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A science fiction space adventure game where you must rely on your wit, your officers, and your spaceship to survive.
A science fiction space adventure game where you must rely on your wit, your officers, and your spaceship to survive.
A science fiction space adventure game where you must rely on your wit, your officers, and your spaceship to survive.
4,062 backers pledged $97,801 to help bring this project to life.

About

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$97,801

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UPDATE #21 - NEW TIERS ADDED, CHECK 'EM OUT

UPDATE #16 - AWAY MISSIONS EXPLAINED

UPDATE #13 - RANDOMNESS IN ORION TRAIL

Orion Trail is a single player space adventure for Windows, Mac, and Linux. Thanks to the support of the Greenlight community, we'll be releasing the game through Steam!

In the game, you are captain of the Indestructible II, flagship vessel of Galaxy Force. Your mission: to explore and survive the dangerous and enigmatic Orion Trail. With the help of your trusty officers, ship, and crew, your success is ensured.

Probably.

Like what you've seen so far? Keep reading! If words and pretty pictures aren't your thing, you could also play the prototype we made. We're not picky.

Try the game before you back it!
Try the game before you back it!

PC GAMER: "Hey, space is a dangerous place, and never more so than when you're on the Orion Trail."

Pixel Dynamo: "With sharp pixel graphics, a tough learning curve, and a world infused with humor, Orion Trail looks to be an intriguing blend of homage and innovation"

indiemag.fr: "ORION TRAIL, VERS L'INFINI ET AU DELÀ !" (ORION TRAIL TO INFINITY AND BEYOND!)

Pixel Tom: “Orion Trail is fun and fast, with a massive chunk of replayability value and plenty of room for expansion...”

Orion Trail’s gameplay centers around making the tough calls that only you, a starship captain, can make. The galaxy is full of strange, stupid, and terrifying things, and you’ll need to make the decisions that ensure the survival of your crew. Well, most of your crew.

"....aaaaaaaaAAAAAAAAaaaaaaaa....."
"....aaaaaaaaAAAAAAAAaaaaaaaa....."

Each journey, you’ll pick your captain, officers, and equipment. Each pick will give you a leg up when dealing with an encounter in specific ways.

However, you can't apply all strategies to every situation. Sure, you could stock up on guns and aggressive officers to crush your enemies, but you'll be in trouble when you need to host that alien dinner party.

Let's see you weasel your way out of this one.
Let's see you weasel your way out of this one.

Starships don’t run on good intentions alone (not the ones you can afford, anyway). Each decision you make will increase or decrease the resources that keep your ship functioning. Run out of any, and you’ll be in deep (space) trouble.

Before you begin your voyage, it's important to know that bad stuff can (and will) happen. For example, an unexpected Singularity Fissure could open up in the Deck 12 Latrines, making for an unpleasant bathroom break. Maybe someone could accidentally leave an airlock open as you jump to light-speed, making the inside part of the ship the outside part. Or, your Away Team could inadvertently incur the wrath of a Grobulous Rex while exploring an alien jungle. We're not sure what will happen with that last one, but it's probably not good.

The point is, no matter how prepared and vigilant a Captain is, the cosmic chaos of the Orion Trail can end a voyage in the disastrous blink of an eye (or four). 

But that’s okay! Orion Trail, by design, is kinda difficult. We want your successful voyage to mean something, so the universe will be conspiring against you every step of the way. Basically, don’t be surprised to see something like this during your first few playthroughs:

Trust us, you really don't want space dysentery.
Trust us, you really don't want space dysentery.
To keep you on your toes (and to keep things fresh), there’s a healthy dose of the unexpected thrown into each adventure. There are over 50 encounters for you to discover, and each one has a variety of decisions that can change based on your current situation.

Don't count on seeing the same choices every time.
Don't count on seeing the same choices every time.
Likewise, while you may steadfastly order your crew to fire all neutron torpedos at the Bul’war Gigabeast closing in on your ship, things may not play out the way you expect. Actions have a range of outcomes that may pleasantly reward or vehemently punish you. Accrue bonuses from your crew and equipment to increase the chance of a successful die roll.

In the cold heart of space, there are no guarantees.
In the cold heart of space, there are no guarantees.

STILL NOT SURE IF YOU'D LIKE THE GAME?

Click the red button to fulfill your wildest dreams!
Click the red button to fulfill your wildest dreams!

If you had a chance to play the prototype, you may be wondering “Wait, is that it? Do they plan on doing more?” to which we’d reply “Great questions! No, and yes.” in that order.

We think that the prototype is a kernel of something that could be really great, but there are many improvements to make. We’ve done a lot of discussing, late-night thinking, and planning for how we’d improve the game, which we used to arrive at our $90,000 ask to you guys.

To give you a sense of how we plan on expanding the game (before stretch goals), here’s a list of changes and improvements we’ll be making to the game.

More Content
The current prototype has just a fraction of the content we want to have in the game, and we’ve learned a lot about what makes a fun encounter vs. a frustratingly random one.

Dynamic Encounters
We want the encounters to react a little more to your previous choices and current circumstances. Certain encounters may have special, and otherwise hidden, options be revealed if you have the right Captain, Officer, or Technology equipped. This adds some fun (and unexpected) twists to your playthrough.

More Art
If you can’t tell, we love the art style of the game, and we want it to be everywhere. We also want your choices to be visually reflected in more areas of the game, so our current plan is to have the Captains and Officers you pick actually show up on the bridge, along with Away Missions.

Away Missions
Currently in the prototype, we only have encounters that take place in the celestial heavens. In the full game, we plan to have a second type called Away Missions, where you pick an officer and a gaggle of redshirts to beam down to a planet, enemy ship, or other space-thing and embark on a longer set of mini-encounters.

During a foray, your Away Team could suffer mishaps and poor judgement (resulting in a hapless Redshirt biting the dust).  Your redshirts will basically act as the Officer’s health, so it’s up to you whether you want to keep pressing your luck for that ancient alien artifact, or risk losing the entire Away Team (including the Officer)!

"I think this is going pretty well..."
"I think this is going pretty well..."

Better Feedback for Encounter Results
A big part of the game is picking an option and finding out how well you performed at your attempt. Right now, we’re not doing a great job at the latter, so we have plans to better inform you whether that 7 you got was good or bad.

Our soundtrack will feature 12 new songs made by the one and only Rainbow Kitten, an extra-dimensional being of immense power and rhythm. They created the soundtrack for Enemy Mind, and we're excited to go on another space adventure with them. Take a listen to some tracks from our prototype:

The music was made with the SID emulation engine on an Elektron Monomachine. You'll recognize the SID's distinctive sound from your fondest memories of gaming on a C64 back in the day.

(From Left to Right)
(From Left to Right)

Schell Games (@schellgames) is, well, us. We’ve done a lot of game development for clients, and have launched a few of our own internal projects. Orion Trail came out of a week-long game jam that Schell Games hosts every year, and everyone at the studio is excited to see the game become a reality. 

Jesse Schell (@jesseschell) is our fearless leader and the head honcho of Schell Games. You may recognize his name from some awesome game design books, or perhaps some talks. When we brought Jesse this idea, he shook his head in despair. We took that as a yes!

Dave Bennett (@davebbennett) is the designer who came up with the general concept of the game. He was one of the writers for Puzzle Clubhouse, and likes space games a little too much. You can blame him whenever you feel like your inevitable death was unfair.

Evan Brown (@etb342) was the artist who laid down the proto-pixels of the earliest concepts of the game. He worked on one of our other internal projects, Enemy Mind, which has a whole bunch of awesome pixel art. Basically, he’s responsible for setting the style and tone of all of the art in the game.

Without your help, we won’t have enough funding to make Orion Trail the game we hope it could become. Kickstarter also gives you, our backers, a platform to help steer the course of development in a meaningful way.

The money raised by this Kickstarter will be used to fund the rest of the team. We'll staff up with additional programmers, artists, writers, QA, a sound person, and a producer to make sure we make the game in a reasonable amount of time.

Here's a breakdown of where the money will be put to use:

Risks and challenges

Video game development is fraught with the unexpected, and things can often take longer than planned. However, we are incredibly passionate about this project, and a lot of effort has gone into researching, planning and budgeting.

If any problems begin to crop up, we will be as honest and transparent as we can with you, and let you know what the problems are and how we’re addressing them.

If you have questions for us, let us know through Twitter or e-mail!

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    THE GAME + NAME IN CREDITS

    Get a DRM-Free download, a Steam Key, and your name in the credits.

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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    EARLY ACCESS + SOUNDTRACK

    Upgrade to an Early Access Steam Key and get a download of the game's Soundtrack!

    Also includes everything in the $10 tier.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    BONUS EARLY ACCESS COPY + ENEMY MIND + INNERCUBE

    You can't repel value of this magnitude! At this tier, we'll give you a second early access key, along with Steam Keys for two of our other games: Enemy Mind and Innercube!

    Also includes everything in the $20 tier.

    (All tiers above this also receive these rewards!)

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    NAME A REDSHIRT CHARACTER

    Redshirts are the (in)dispensable crew that serve on the ship. Add your name (within reason, of course) to the pool of randomly generated characters, and serve proudly!

    Also includes everything in the $20 tier.

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    ACTUAL RED SHIRT

    We'll send you a red shirt with the Galaxy Force logo on it. Wear it with pride!

    Also includes everything in the $50 tier.

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    Pledge $125 or more About $125

    GRAVE WARNING

    Put yourself in the Orbit-uaries! You’ll be able to leave your name and a quick message on a passing gravesteroid to let others know what fate befell you, what your favorite food is, or whatever you feel like! Within reason, of course.

    Also includes all rewards from the $10 through $75 tiers.

    (All tiers above this also receive this reward!)

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    BECOME AN OFFICER + OFFICER SHIRT
    (PORTRAIT + NAME)

    Leave your mark on the game! Send us a portrait, give us a name, and we'll make you one of the Officers you can recruit in Orion Trail! (Within reason!)

    We'll also send you a special, limited Officer's Shirt, too! (Spoiler warning: it's blue)

    Also includes everything in the $75 tier.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    BECOME A CAPTAIN + ALL SHIRTS
    (PORTRAIT + NAME)

    Captain on the bridge! Send us a name and photo and we'll immortalize you as one of brave captains of Galaxy Force!

    Plus, you'll also get a super-limited Captain's shirt (it's gold!!), along with the also-limited Officer's shirt.

    Also includes everything in the $75 tier.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    BECOME A VILLAIN + ALL SHIRTS
    (PORTRAIT)

    Become the face of space evil! Send us your picture and we’ll work your likeness into one of our random Encounters. Dastardly!

    Plus, you'll also get a super-limited Captain's shirt (it's gold!!), along with the also-limited Officer's shirt.

    Also includes all the rewards from the $10 through $125 tiers.

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    Pledge $750 or more About $750

    CROSS-STITCH CHARACTER + BECOME A VILLAIN + ALL SHIRTS

    They're adorable! They're made of floss! At this tier, we'll give you a selection of characters to choose from, hand-stitch one, and frame it for you! Ship sweet ship! We'll also list you as "Not to be Crossed With."

    Includes everything in the $500 "Become a Villain" Tier.

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    Pledge $750 or more About $750

    CROCHET WARP WEASEL + BECOME A VILLAIN + ALL SHIRTS

    Everyone loves them. Everyone wants them. But they're really hard to catch. However, we've done it. At this tier, we'll send you your very own crochet Warp Weasel, along with a handwritten thank you note professing our space-love for you.

    Includes everything in the $500 "Become a Villain" Tier.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    CREATE AN ENCOUNTER + A CAPTAIN + ALL SHIRTS

    Help create an encounter! We'll work with you to write, art up, and balance the encounter (within reason). We'll also add your name as a writing credit!

    Also includes everything in the $500 tier.

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    BECOME AN ADMIRAL (LITERALLY EVERYTHING)

    Oh, jeez. Okay. Besides our eternal space gratitude, you'll be named "Space Admiral" in the credits, and you'll receive EVERY REWARD we've offered so far, including the new ones! An Encounter! Weasels! Cross-stitches! Captain! Villain! Officer! Shirts! You name it. No hard choices here, just go with "All."

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Funding period

- (37 days)