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The latest poster by Joey, The Demon Killing Kimono, a $60 Add-on
"Loved American McGee's Alice... one of the few games I had completed at the time. Can't wait to play this!!!" - Richard Garriott
"Love it -- art direction is awesome, sets a whole new bar for Unity games. The blend of traditionally-inspired and manga themes is awesome. Plays just like you'd expect a solid Action RPG to." - Jon Radoff
“Combine the gorgeous Japanese brush painting style that make Okami so lovely with frenetic arcade action, and you've got Akaneiro: Demon Hunters. I'm looking forward to seeing the latest product from the fertile mind of American McGee." - Ernest W. Adams
Veteran game designer American McGee (Quake, Alice, Grimm) and Spicy Horse (Alice: Madness Returns) are set on delivering players a uniquely enthralling "buy it all" action role-playing experience.
Akaneiro: Demon Hunters will transport you to a world realized in a striking visual style inspired by Japanese ink, watercolor and woodblock illustration. We’ve dug deep into the history and folklore of Japan when designing our scenarios and characters. Mixing this foundation with an original mythology inspired by Red Riding Hood yields a fantastic and inspiring setting for players to explore.
Akaneiro provides players with a unique ARPG of depth, blended seamlessly with the speed and intensity of a pure action title. Combat is fast and unrelenting, but you can sway the tide with careful selection of abilities and equipment. A multitude of character building paths are available, though we've avoided being overly prescriptive, ensuring you can find the best balance of abilities and equipment for your personal play style.
The game world is separated in to Regions, which represent a quadrant of Yomi Island. Each Region contains several Areas, each presenting a different environment style and introducing new enemy and boss types. An area contains several missions, forming a small story arc.
We want to provide players with an ARPG that doesn't ever end, and doesn't have you waiting around for a year on an expansion that you finish in 2 weeks. After release, we'll strive to push the boundaries of our world further with each passing month.
Akaneiro has been in development since mid 2011. Our Closed Beta has been running since November 2012. Our target platforms are Windows, Mac OS X, Android/iOS Tablet, and Linux. Both the dedicated PC client & web version will enter open beta in January 2013, and launch to the public as Free-to-Play or "Buy it All" on January 25 .
Our closed beta has been met with high-praise from players and press, who've greatly enjoyed the level of immersion and captivating environments we've crafted. We've been responding to beta feedback with weekly patches and have added many new features since our beta commenced.
We've been Greenlit! A Steam version will also be available. In celebration, we've added a new $30 Tier with the Spirit Helper Pet, Karakuri Gaben.
We've have managed to take Akaneiro way beyond what we thought originally possible. That has been due to the passion and dedication of a relatively small development team. What's been achieved both artistically and mechanically is fantastic… but it's just not enough to call the game complete, to satisfy our fans or ourselves.
We desperately want the final form of Akaneiro to represent the great amount time and effort that’s gone toward getting it this far. To finish what we've started and present Akaneiro to our players in a truly final state, we need to deliver our promised features to all target platforms.
The problem is it's time to launch to PC/MacOS and we feel some key features are missing as well as important platforms. That’s where you come in…
We need to raise $200,000 to support our current team of developers in realizing the most complete version the game. Listed below you'll find out what we earnestly believe is necessary for Akaneiro to truly become the game we know it can be.
Your backing will guarantee we can include the following:
The Big Important Additions-
- Android and iOS Tablet Version, Linux Version – We've done a lot of groundwork earlier in development; but we don’t have the resources for a full port alongside our other work. Backing will ensure we can deliver Akaneiro as a cross-platform experience.
- Co-op multiplayer – Join with fellow hunters in real-time to take down the Demon Kings of Yomi. Share the reward and tackle more difficult challenges.
- Equipment Crafting System – collect raw materials from fallen enemies and use them to add specific properties to equipment. Apply any properties to any item template, for the perfect blend of stats and aesthetics.
- Improved Community Support – Any game, especially an independently developed online game such as Akaneiro, relies on fostering a strong community. We need to add more dedicated community managers to our team.
Other Smaller But Collectively Awesome Features-
- “Karma Void” Dungeons - use the crystallized hearts of fallen Yokai to access multi-level dungeons where extra-difficult challenges (and greater rewards) await.
- Expanded Narrative elements – more in game dialogue, and special ally characters added to certain missions. Lore items scattered throughout the world that provide further story for each mission and the game overall.
- Lockbox Items & Additional Consumables
- Hand/Fist Weapon Class and Mastery
- Expanded Weapon and Armor varieties.
- Additional Spirit Helper Pet varieties.
- Further training levels for all Abilities and Masteries.
- Mark of Sacrifice – Recover a portion of lost experience by returning to the site of your death. Earn bonuses by finding Marks left by your friends.
- Ghosts of Yomi – New “lost spirit” NPCs added to Yomi Village, providing repeatable quests for special item rewards.
- Leaderboards – track and compare a large array of progression stats.
- Hunting Squads - organize and brand your characters into a single squad unit, sharing profit, items and other benefits.
- Akane Trials – Rank-based achievement system with rewards.
- Improved Chat System with friends list management, room creation and other social features.
If you believe, as we do, that the game needs these things – then demonstrate your support by backing Akaneiro. Beyond the financial support, the vote of confidence will do wonders for our team morale as we push toward the finish line.
Your hunter is a fresh recruit in the Order of Akane. The Order is a Templar like group of demon hunters who fight to maintain the balance between humanity and Yokai (Japanese folk monsters and demons).
The blood of slain Yokai crystallizes, forming glowing red Karma Shards. The power stored within Karma Shards allows hunters to master almost super-human combat techniques necessary when facing Yokai. They also receive a high level of training in tactics, survival and natural magic. Order members are often referred to as “Red Hunters”.
The Order was founded in Japan, 300 years prior to the events of the game, by the legendary demon hunter and martyr known as The Red Girl - or Akaneiro. Akaneiro was aided by her close companions, the Dark Huntsman and the the Forest Mother. Dubbed "The Three", together they exemplified the tenets and disciplines followed by the Order; maintain the balance between human and demon, light and shadow – walk the shifting line between this world and the other.
The setting is late middle 19th century Japan. The game takes place on the fictional Yomi Island, located north of Hokkaido. The island was the site of a great war between Human and Yokai over 300 years ago. Though defeated then, the Yokai have begun to reemerge. This time, they’re more dangerous – organizing into militarized groups under the leadership of the ambitious and powerful “Demon Kings of Yomi”.
Yomi Island serves as a nexus point for the gathering of karmic energies, used in both natural and demonic magic. The hostile Yokai conquer and control Yomi Island, that they might open a greater rift between worlds. Should they succeed, it will – quite literally – be hell on earth.
Along with an ever-growing number of hostile Yokai, Yomi Island is inhabited by a mixture of the indigenous Ainu and Japanese. These human inhabitants primarily occupy Yomi Village - a trade and training hub.
We are pursuing buy it all model because it offers more flexibility in sustaining the game after release. It's also a great way to expose the game to as many players as possible, broadening our community early on and helping us gather more feedback to improve and iterate as we release new content.
Our intended buy it all model allows players to purchase our game currency (Karma). Karma is also earned constantly through regular play, so the option to pay is there for those that have less time to invest in daily play. There is no energy system. No hidden subscription, no paying for power.
We will never apply prohibitive costs to core game play content or character progression. Nothing will be off limits to non-paying players.
Go here for a player-written explanation of our F2P model.
If we’re fortunate enough exceed our goal the game, and our players, will benefit even more. We have a long list of additional features and content we’d love to expand the game with.
Here’s a list of our major Stretch Goals:
- Linux Version - Now part of the stated goals. Estimated Delivery Date, March 2013
- Ouya Version - $233,000 - Estimated Delivery Date, April 2013
- NEW EXPANSION: EYE OF SPITE
Unlock the Devil’s Eye Mountain region - 8 new areas and 24 new missions, new enemies, bosses and increased level cap.
- NEW EXPANSION: THE YASHA WAR
Unlock the Fallen Fen region - 8 new areas and 24 new missions, new enemies, bosses and increased level cap.
- Blackblood PvP Arena – provided by an Order of Akane splinter group. Fight to the death in groups, or duel a single opponent.
- Hunting Chapters - Guild Creation. Earn rewards for topping monthly guild leaderboards.
- Even more new Weapons, Armor, Abilities, Mastery Levels and Spirit Helper Pets…
If we seem likely to reach our initial backing goal, we’ll add more even more detail on our stretch goals, and the exact amount required for each.
Spicy Horse Games has many combined years of experience making console, mobile and online games. We have been developing games as an independently run studio for 6 years. In that time, we've managed to attract great talent due to our offering a work environment that encourages creative involvement at every level.
Akaneiro is just one of several projects that have marked the studio's determination to pivot away from the world of publisher-controlled console games and towards games digitally distributed direct to players. We want to retain the special independence we've built, and with your backing - we can.
You can further tailor your reward with from a selection of Add-Ons. Note - your base pledge must be at the $20 tier or higher for these add-ons. After setting your base pledge, use the “Manage Pledge” button at the top of the Akaneiro Kickstarter page, then add the required info from the list below.
- Dark Horse Comics Akaneiro #1 - $5
- Music of Akaneiro, Part 1 - $5
- Music of Akaneiro, Part 2 - $5
- Digital Art Book - $10
- Alice: Madness Returns Minimate - $12 ($3 intl shipping)
- American McGee's Grimm, 23 Episodes - $14
- Poster Alice: Madness Returns, Mini-Litho Package - $30 ($5 international shipping)
- Poster, Alice: Madness Returns, Tears - $30 ($5 international shipping)
- Poster, Alice: Madness Returns, Gryphon - $30 ($5 international shipping)
- Poster, Alice: Madness Returns, Mysterious East - $30 ($5 intl shipping)
- Poster, Alice: Madness Returns, Queensland Gate - $30 ($5 intl shipping)
- Poster, Alice: Madness Returns, Snail Fight - $30 ($5 intl shipping)
- Poster, Alice: Madness Returns, Streetrats - $30 ($5 intl shipping)
- Poster, Alice: Madness Returns, The Doll House - $30 ($5 intl shipping)
- Poster, Alice: Madness Returns, Vale of Tears - $30 ($5 intl shipping)
- Poster, Alice: Madness Returns, Wake Up Alice - $30 ($5 intl shipping)
- Poster Alice: Madness Returns, Alchemy - $45 ($5 intl shipping)
- Poster, The Demon Killing Kimono - $60 ($10 intl shipping)
- Poster, Alice: Madness Returns, The Vorpal Blade - $60 ($10 intl shipping)
- Physical Art Book, Art of Akaneiro - $60, ($5 intl shipping)
About Backer Rewards:
Here’s some of the great rewards offered at each backer tier. Check the rewards list on the left for more detail. Let us know if you want more info on a reward, and we'll provide it. Remember - all backer levels include any rewards from previous tiers in addition to new items!
Spicy Horse reserves the right to modify bridge names, tombstone epitaphs and armor/weapons as appropriate.
Further Information on Tier Rewards:
In a hopeful nod to our Linux users:
And because we were stingy with our Karma, MOAR Karma!
Note: Karma Packs are not cumulative - larger ones replace the smaller from lower tiers.
Risks and challenges
Because the project is an an advanced development state, the bulk of the risk has been overcome already. Bringing a faithful version to tablets will present some challenges, but with support from technology partners like Nvidia, we expect to clear those without too much pain. The remaining effort will be focused on content development and delivery of well-understood features. That being the case, we feel the overall risks are quite low.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)