$1,682
pledged of $20,000pledged of $20,000 goal
36
backers
0seconds to go
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Sun, April 29 2012 11:01 PM UTC +00:00
SemiFormal StudiosBy SemiFormal Studios
First created
SemiFormal StudiosBy SemiFormal Studios
First created
$1,682
pledged of $20,000pledged of $20,000 goal
36
backers
0seconds to go
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Sun, April 29 2012 11:01 PM UTC +00:00

About

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What is Ensemble Online?

Ensemble Online is an open world, sandbox MMORTS with RPG elements in which you to tactically control territory, harvest resources, and build buildings anywhere on an expansive, real-time, persistent map. No limiting where you build, no text-based battles, no losing your progress when you log off. This is RTS in the MMO-iest sense of the acronym.

Ensemble is a free-to-play, browser-based game, making it accessible to both the casual and hardcore player and allowing it to be played on PC, Mac, Linux, and a large number of smartphones and tablets.

Expansive Map

Ensemble has a gigantic 1,600,000,000 tile map. That means you can go find the most sought after resource hotspots and fight for control, or you can quietly build a farm in a remote grove, only seeing the occasional passerby. 

Go exploring! You never know what you'll find. We scatter interesting artifacts and outposts throughout the map that you may be the first to discover! Build a town and invite all your friends to come bask in its glory. One endless map offers endless possibilities.

Building and Farming

What RTS would be complete without farms? Create a plantation to start your economic stronghold and defend your turf with powerful guard-towers.

RPG, Too!

Not much for the strategic elements? The beauty of Ensemble is it can be played any number of different ways. If you want to farm, you can farm. If you want to battle, you can battle. And if you just prefer classic leveling, skill-unlocking, and weapon / armor upgrading, [insert Morgan Freeman voice here] well that's just fine with us too.

Take control of your hero, learn spells, become proficient with different weapons, and defeat stronger and stronger enemies. A powerful enough hero can topple even the most formidable stronghold.

Diplomacy

One of Ensemble's most interesting features is diplomacy. Allies can harvest your farms for you, but your towers will only attack enemies. This creates interesting gameplay by allowing friends to use your base as a safe-haven, and letting players create towns together with allies. Their towers will protect your buildings and yours towers will protect theirs.

Some of the most interesting ways we've seen this play out are players paying high-level gatherers to harvest their farms or bribing powerful heroes to guard their base. We've also seen groups of players work together to build awesome superfortresses.

Unique World

Cidona, the mythical world in which Ensemble takes place has a rich backstory; it's a fantasy world unlike any other. Part sci-fi, part fantasy, part nature/survivalist, and part steam punk, Ensemble's elements range from shotguns and pistols to swords and axes, to spells and crystals, to giant robots and aggressive wolves.

To find out more about Cidona and the Ensemble backstory, check this out:

http://playensemble.com/the-game/backstory-full/ 

or take a peak at the first novel in our backstory at:

http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/detail/2241706 

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We also pride Ensemble on being the most sophisticated browser-based game to date. Everything in Ensemble has been built from scratch, from the isometric rendering engine, to the server-side game code, to the communications layer.

Who are we?

We're an indie studio of industry veterans who thought an idea like this should exist. We're gamers like you. We think Ensemble is awesome and If the idea piques your interest, we invite you to help us shape the game into something truly innovative and fun. 

If you have the money to help us, please do. It could mean the difference between success and failure. If you don't have the money, help us spread the word! Tell your friends to tell their friends! And last but not least, if you have any ideas for the game, send them our way! We try to respond to all inquiries and we take all your ideas and critiques seriously. Send us an email (info@playensemble.com), post a question here, or visit us on our forums at http://forum.playensemble.com

How will your money help?

We're currently in the last stretches of Alpha, preparing to launch Beta. Up to this point our costs have been negligible, but the seemingly small leap from here to success can be near-impossible without some money.

Help us, Kickstarter, you're our only hope!

Being free-to-play, our primary income will come from our cash shop, but before we can release the cash shop, we need legal work (user agreements, etc.) and in order to get the word out we're going to need a few bucks to do some advertising.

$20,000 will allow us to make the necessary legal arrangements and perform a decent advertising push to get the word out. We believe this is the critical number we need to kickstart us (see what I did there?) from our current state to somewhere where we can see success.

With $50,000 or more,things get interesting. One of the big features we want to see is obviously buildings that produce micro-able units. What kind of RTS would we be if we didn't let you produce and micromanage units?! Trouble is, with the current team, it will take us about a year to see cool features like that. This extra money would allow us to hire on another developer and rush out RTS awesomeness to you. Imagine a game like Starcraft or Age of Empires, with the full excitement of 100s of controllable units, but all in the browser and on one, gigantic, persistent map.

With more than $100,000 we would truly be able to make this the innovative title we want it to be. This would allow us to put a little more towards advertising and hire on even more developers/artists to get out features as quickly as we'd like. Don't get me wrong, we love knowing we got this far and created so much with nothing more than grit and passion, but having two or four more hands on the project means we get to push more cool features out to you like:

  • Tech Tree: Build a University to research and unlock various techs (defensive bonuses, economic bonuses, new units, and more!)
  • Awesome buildings! Portal gates to send troops between your towns, barracks to train your troops, capitol buildings to let you Sim City it up and tax your citizens, and more!
  • Dungeons! We gotta make room for a bit of RPG don't we?

More than that and the game only gets better. The more resources at our disposal, the more we can really perfect the gameplay that makes us so unique. More money would open the doors for us to commission a soundtrack, improve the quality of our graphics, animations, and effects, even upgrade to more sophisticated servers for added performance and stability.

Bonus: If we receive $100,000+ we will implement mounts and ALL Kickstarter supporters will unlock an exclusive golden dragon mount.

International Supporters

It looks like some international supporters have issues with Amazon Payments through Kickstarter. Luckily, Double Fine has a thread up on the matter that should help (http://www.doublefine.com/forums/viewthread/5981), I've also read elsewhere that Prepaid Amazon cards work well (though you need to make sure it has at least $1 extra on top of the amount you're pledging).

Conclusion

We think what we've created here is pretty awesome. If you agree, or if you think an MMORTS would be fun, or if you're just all for indie developers and innovation, help us make it past this final stage! It's not often a game developer can take a unique idea and guide it to market with full creative control. Money usually comes from publishers and they usually only give it at the cost of creative license. Together, with the support of awesome people like you, we can make something truly great.

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Example of Ensemble Promotional T-Shirt

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    A closed beta account and special forum access to discuss your ideas directly with the developers. You'll be able to play before the masses and have unprecedented contact with the developers to shape the game.

    In addition, you will receive Golden Platemail, in-game armor that is only available here on Kickstarter.

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    All previous reward tiers plus: We'll send out a personalized tweet thanking you to our 1000+ followers on twitter (@ensembleonline).

    You'll receive an exclusive showboat-worthy in-game panda suit, available only here on Kickstarter. To match your panda digs, you will also receive an exclusive weapon: the "Bamboo Staff." And because you're awesome, we'll throw in $25 worth of Cash-shop currency.

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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    All previous reward tiers plus:

    A special town will be created in the game and only Kickstarters who pledge this amount or higher will have access. The town will include an exclusive shop, farming grounds, and mob spawns. You will also receive $50 in Cash-shop currency ($75 total including previous tier).

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    All previous reward tiers plus: A concept art print signed by the entire team, "The Golden Axe," an epic in-game battleaxe available only here on Kickstarter, $100 in Cash-shop currency ($175 total including previous tiers), and an Ensemble Online promotional t-shirt (See the bottom of the page for an example).

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    All previous reward tiers plus: a shrine will be created in-game with plaques memorializing the names of everyone who pledged this tier or higher. Additionally, your name will show up in shiny gold! Gold will be a name color never again offered. You will have exclusive access to our restricted patch staging server. This means 1 - 2 weeks before patches are released to the other beta testers, you will have a chance to toy around with the new features and give your advance input. Finally, you will receive a copy of "The Legend of Cidona," the back story to Ensemble's unique world, in hardcover, signed by the author. See the book at: http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/detail/2241706

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    All previous reward tiers plus: An Ensemble-ized version of you will be custom designed by our art team and placed in the game as an NPC. You will be able to customize your NPC's name and what they say to players. We'll send you a high-resolution, signed, print version of your character as well as digital images. You'll also receive 50 Beta keys you can give out to your closest friends or distribute on your favorite forum to look generally badass.

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  7. Select this reward

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

    All previous reward tiers plus: Our writers will collaborate with you to create an epic backstory for your character (the one from the previous tier, yo) who will be forever immortalized into Ensemble canon. He or she will be featured in Ensemble's next novel, "The Legend of Cidona Volume II: Bragus." When published, you will receive 5 signed copies of the book to do with what you'd like. And the cherry on top: you'll receive a large canvas print of promotional artwork signed by the entire team (12" x 24")

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  8. Select this reward

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

    All previous reward tiers plus:

    You will get YOUR OWN TOWN, complete with houses, farms, NPCS, guard towers and YOUR OWN PERSONAL SHOP! No more walking back to the main town like commonfolk.

    Our design team will work with you to customize the town to your liking and decide how near or remote you want to build it.

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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $10,000 About $10,000

    All previous reward tiers plus: Your name will be featured on the login screen of the game FOREVER. We will fly you out to meet the Ensemble team in an all expenses paid trip to discuss your ideas for the game. We'll collaborate with you to design future skills, buildings, units, features, weapons, and plot points. While on site, our artists will work with you to design your own custom mount.

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Funding period

- (30 days)