About this project
The shaman pupil Teku begins his journey after his village is attacked by the rival tribe of the Atipax. During his adventures to rescue the survivors he will unveil the long forgotten truth about his past.
Candle is a dynamic graphic adventure. It inherits the spirit of classic cinematic adventures like Out of This World or Flashback, and the gameplay mechanics of classic platformer adventures like Abe's Oddysee and Abe's Exoddus, or Heart of Darkness. However, we want it to go one step forward, and so we have brought together all the key features in those games to create a unique title focused on calm puzzle resolution but with a modern and dynamic control over the character.
The most important feature of the gameplay comes from a very specific ability of Teku, the main character: instead of a hand, he carries a candle that can be lit at certain spots, and he must do whatever he can to prevent it from being extinguished. The flame of the candle is key to solving many of the puzzles, as well as uncovering lots of secrets and clues.
But we didn't want the gameplay to drive the entire design of Candle. We love games that have a personal touch, games that do not only deliver a fresh and polished gameplay, but a different and interesting art style. This is why we came up with a risky and difficult idea: to create the entire graphics of the game in a traditional handmade way - not just faking it using the most common digital painting tools.
We paint the entire graphics of the game with watercolors and ink, and then we scan all that stuff in order to build the sprites of the environments, items, menus, etc. Also, the animations of every character and animal in the game are not digital, instead we draw and paint them frame-by-frame, then we scan every single image and build the spritesheets for the animations. Once we have all this working in Unity 4, we set up each level, each scene and each character and so we get a nice handmade look for the visuals. And so, everything lives within the game.
It wasn't easy to achieve this result. We knew since the early development stages that we wanted this to be our own art direction. There are, however, few-to-zero references out there on how to deal with such a process, and that's why we believe that our method can truly give a personal and unique feeling to our games. If there's one feature that we would be glad if people talked about, that's the one.
To support this art style, we are building the narrative in a different and distinctive way. We want it to have mature contents told as a child story, shrouded in innocence and ingenuity. We call it an “adult tale”, and we hope that all of you enjoy this vision.
Also, we have recently been approved as official Wii U developers, so we are designing exclusive features for Candle on that platform. We love Nintendo platforms since our childhood has been full of them, so it was natural for us to go for it. We are already thinking about dedicated gameplay on Wii U - we are not doing any kind of quick port. We will design specific gameplay features for its gamepad: all the menus, inventory and minigames will be tactile-controled on the touchscreen, as well as other unique actions concerning Teku's candle.
And finally, check out a bunch of Candle's OST themes!
So, what do we have to say in gaming? As an independent studio, we can take certain creative risks that many others can't. Indie games have proved that it is still possible to deliver creative, unique and fresh experiences that can truly be loved throughout the world, despite their minimal budgets. We want to make the kind of games we would love to play. We want the player to feel part of the story, to enjoy not just playing, but experiencing the game in the way the world looks and how the animations play. To sum it up, our goals as an indie team are: art, experimentation and innovative gameplay mechanics. With your help, we can achieve our wildest dreams!
If we meet our initial goal soon enough we may be able to consider some new stretch goals. We would love to localize the game into more languages (for now, we have confirmed the game to be available in both English & Spanish), and of course we would love to add more content to the game such as new worlds, characters and puzzles. Also, the guys at CINEMASENS, who helped us with the pitch video for the campaign, asked us to shoot an exclusive in-depth look at the development. If we could fund it, we would add it as an unlockable making-of video inside the game. If somehow you guys make this the most successful crowdfunding campaign ever we would even consider taking Candle to other platforms (even consoles). You know, the sky is the limit!
You can also track our game on IndieDB.
Teku Studios is (for now!) a 7-people team. We are Miguel, Jose, Pascu, Elena, Iker, Gelo & Juan Diego. Most of us met some years ago at the University of Zaragoza, and we soon found out that we shared a common passion: we loved videogames. We knew that, one way or another, we needed to do something about it, and so our adventure began.
At first, the "team" was just Jose and Miguel making stuff in their rooms. We started out with very early concepts for our first game (it wasn't even similar to Candle!), and in a few months Elena and Pascu joined the crew to help us make our ideas grow. Then, everything started to change into a more serious, professional game and we even earned some prizes for that very early vision. That's when we decided to go professional: we founded Teku Studios, got ourselves a little studio to work at, licensed Unity 4, and began the full development cycle for Candle (it was Summer 2012).
Again, we worked as hard as we could to make it happen. We coded, painted, animated and debugged 24/7, and invested the prize's money to have the best equipment we could get. Candle grew very quickly and it soon became a very serious game with lots of potential. In early 2013, Juan Diego and Iker read some news about Teku Studios in the local media and reached to us to see if they could help our development. We saw their CV's and got SHOCKED with their experience and credentials, and so they joined the team that very month.
The last member of our crew is Gelo, a writer who met us via a mutual friend and was willing to help us with the English version of the narrator dialogs. Of course, he joined us immediately.
And that's our story (so far). We are a growing indie team, dedicated to our passion and working countless hours without any kind of pay just to see Candle become a full game. And of course, we thank you for your help. With it, we will be able to make this our job for many, many years!
- Miguel and Juan Diego are Software Engineers. In fact, they're just the crazy and nerdy side of Teku Studios.
- Jose, Elena and Iker have an Arts Degree. They're the triple passion trifecta of Teku Studios.
- Gelo is our Wordmaster. When a character needs a voice, we turn to him. He helps us with the campaign as well.
- And Pascu... We love Pascu! As the composer, he brings joy and warmth to our hearts in times of need.
If you still wish to know more about us, feel free to visit our website and check out our bios. 100% true stories!
Risks and challenges
We are fully committed to this development. We want to have it done this January 2014, but if the final money raised exceeds our expectations, we may have to delay the scheduled release date a few months in order to keep our promises (e.g. adding more contents).
Also, since this game is our precious baby, we want it to be more than perfect. If somehow a slippery bug manages to slip through our ruthless watchfulness, it could affect the quality of the final game. To prevent this from ever happening, we may ask some of the backers to become our beta testers. More details soon.
We promise to keep you in the loop and up to date on the whole development process through blog updates, new trailers, dev diaries, AMAs... Stay tuned!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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