$9,337
pledged of $120,000pledged of $120,000 goal
224
backers
0seconds to go
Funding Canceled
Funding for this project was canceled by the project creator on Jul 15 2015
SyncBuildRun LLCBy SyncBuildRun LLC
First created
SyncBuildRun LLCBy SyncBuildRun LLC
First created
$9,337
pledged of $120,000pledged of $120,000 goal
224
backers
0seconds to go
Funding Canceled
Funding for this project was canceled by the project creator on Jul 15 2015

About

In a darkly futuristic Seattle, technology has run amuck. Powerful corporations and seedy criminal organizations covertly control the public with the most powerful weapon at their disposal: personal data. Our modern Internet has been extended into a 3D virtual world known as cyberspace, where information can be manipulated, traded, and stolen. The best of the Hackers build their own computer hardware to gain the edge online. They craft their own intrusion software, artificial weapons with the equivalent power of a rocket launcher in cyberspace, to break into the most secure servers in the world.

Back in reality, life is harshly divided between the have-everythings and the have-nothings. Protected by their vast wealth and power, CEOs and criminal masterminds manipulate the working class and unappreciated: families, artists, the poor, and those fighting for a better world. The hope for a better life seems to be a desperate and distant goal.

Vivienne Denue is a hacker with no past. Captured by the police and forced to work at an electronics factory, her memory was erased as punishment for her crimes. Returned to the streets of Seattle, Vivienne must relearn her skills as a hacker, and understand who she was, how and why she was captured, and what she’s truly capable of. Street-smart and tech savvy, she’ll relearn her mastery of hardware and software in order to right the wrongs in society, and foil a complicated collusion between powerful executives, scheming Artificial Intelligence programs, and shadowy gangs of cyborgs.

V.Next is a tale of growth, discovery, and agency. In a world where technology and society can be overwhelming, Vivienne is a beacon of hope, and a force for good. Players join and shape her journey of adventure and action over 18 weekly episodes, in a thrilling mash-up of a sci-fi television series and an interactive video game.

Welcome to the world of V.Next, where only one woman can save a future society from itself.

V.Next was Greenlit on Steam on June 30th at 12:45PM PST!

V.Next is a 2D game combining adventure, stealth, and puzzles, released in multiple chapters, with a story that advances every week.

In V.Next, you are Vivienne Denue, a recently imprisoned computer hacker set free on the streets of a darkly futuristic Seattle. V.Next is a story about what it takes to become the best, and how one person can make a huge positive impact on the world around them. You'll take revenge on corrupt corporations and fight for the underclass by manipulating circuitry, coding up new infiltration software, hacking servers, and sneaking past surveillance systems. You'll collude with Artificial Intelligence and rip through the city on your tricked out café racer, all before recharging the batteries on your cyberspace deck. 

With a gritty retro visual style, V.Next will take you on an epic journey across nearly 20 episodes of adventure. Harkening back to the written works of William Gibson, Neal Stephenson, and Bruce Sterling, with visual references to Blade Runner, Max Headroom, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, and The Matrix, and a soundtrack by well known electronic bands (including an original score by musician Tom Shear of electronic band Assemblage 23), V.Next is a thrilling tale of electronic warfare, discovery, justice, and adventure that brings the best of 1990's cyberpunk to modern screens.

Here is an example of some of the environmental music written for V.Next by musician Tom Shear:

Why Episodic?

We know that stories that are told over time take full advantage of the power of anticipation. We're delivering an episode every week for nearly 20 weeks, just like a full season of a television show. Each episode should feature 30-60 minutes of story and gameplay, and episodes are playable over and over so that you can try different approaches and experience different stories.

Yes, this is an amazing challenge, but we've seen what happens when fans of a project get a frequent, regular dose of real entertainment. We're not delivering cookie-cutter DLC (Downloadable Content) or weak power-ups. This is the real deal: A new plot, a new setting, new characters, a multi-episode story arc. We have real writers who have written for games, television, and film, and we're committed to delivering nearly half a year of ongoing entertainment to our players.

Game Modes

V.Next features four major game modes:

World Mode - Explore Seattle, infiltrate corporate HQs, evade security forces, and collaborate with allies in this side-scrolling platform experience.

Circuit Mode - Build or modify hardware with chips and components obtained on missions or via the black market. Use your new creations to spy on the unsuspecting, crack passwords, or overload circuitry and bring down an entire datacenter.

Code Hacking Mode - Craft thousands of programs from dozens of subroutines, each with their own unique characteristics (like Parallel Processing for multiple simultaneous attacks, Loop for a damage multiplier, or Null to wipe out system memory). Then use these programs to hack into servers and gain access to forbidden files, or maybe just add a few zeroes to your Bitcoin wallet.

Vehicle Mode - Zip around Seattle on your café racer motorcycle, but watch out for those drones! They'll steal your data and cost you valuable resale credits at the local hacker's dive bar. Multiple different vehicle types will be available depending on the episode setting.

We have several other minor game screens planned (Code Crafting, Inventory Management, etc.) but we'll reveal those as we move forward with development.

Characters

These are just some of the many recurring characters developed by our team and realized by our concept artist.

We can deliver a great game to you if we hit our main Kickstarter goal. But for just a little bit more... 

Target: $160K - Enhanced Soundtrack!

We're negotiating with several big name electronic, retro-90's, and synthpop bands to license their music for specific episodes. We don't want to spoil the surprise, but trust us, if you've attended a show at PAX, overheard samples of Leonard Nimoy, or ever danced to percussionists banging on oil drums, you've heard of these bands.

Target: $200K - Live Voice Acting!

We can bring you dialog recorded by real voice actors, including the talented Heather Mingo, who voices Vivienne in our trailer. We're speaking with several Hollywood actors and actresses who have appeared in movies such as Argo, the Saw series, and television shows like CSI:NY about bringing our characters to life.

Target: $250K - Procedural Interstitial Gameplay!

Those sound like a lot of big, lofty words, but what it means is that we can build a game mode that creates random missions for you to play in-between episodes. This means the fun never stops! It's like Spelunky or FTL, but in our cyberpunk Seattle.

Target: $300K - New Game Mode: Opcode Assembler!

We'll add an additional, more challenging game mode that allows players to build their own software in-game using a limited set of low level opcodes, and use these to hack into computer and server systems in game. It will be the closest to real-world hacking of any cyberpunk game ever! Like programing your own C64 or Timex Sinclair computer in 1984!

Target: $400K - Simultaneous Launch on iOS and Android devices

We can hire a crack development team to simultaneously build our mobile device versions of V.Next. Don't want to play on PC/Mac? Hit this goal, and you can take V.Next with you, wherever you are.

Our team consists of game industry veterans and professionals, with dozens of shipped and acclaimed titles behind us.

GeekWire: Geek of the Week: Former Amazon manager Paul Furio envisions games as weekly episodes

IndieGamesHack Through the Grim Future of V.Next

IndieGamesMagazineScreenshot Weekly – On the (V)Next Flite 2 Heaven

Gamasutra: Featured Blog Posts

Qais Fulton is an experienced writer and narrative designer with a diverse portfolio of cross-platform content spanning over five years in the game industry. His list of shipped titles includes Forza Motorsport 4, Microsoft Flight, Dance Central, and Age Of Empires Online.

Paul Furio has shipped over two dozen games in his nearly 20 year career as a software professional. With platforms spanning PC to Xbox to Xbox 360 to Web/Social, Paul contributed to Harry Potter & The Sorcerer's Stone, Forza Motorsport, 1 vs. 100, and Social City. Most recently, Paul was a Software Development Manager for the Amazon Fire Phone, where he built and lead the teams responsible for the Gaming SDK, On-Device Games, and Gaming Launch Portfolio.

Dan Hickey is a writer, filmmaker and content guru based in Seattle. He spent over a decade as a producer and writer for all of Microsoft's gaming platforms including Xbox, Games for Windows and MSN Games (where he crossed paths with a dapper young Paul Furio). He's scripted interactive game shows featuring the likes of J.Lo and Beyonce, channeled his inner Ash by writing Evil Dead game dialogue for the amazing Bruce Campbell and has written hundreds and hundreds of trivia questions over the years. His many short films include the quirky feature indie film Love in the Age of Fishsticks.

Marcy Holland is a writer whose films include Last Hours in Suburbia, Status: Unknown and Christmas on the Bayou. In 2008, her spec script McKeller Hall was a finalist for the Fox Comedy Pilot Search and Humanitas Prize. Her latest feature Caught (starring Anna Camp and Stefanie Scott) recently premiered at the LA Film Festival. Marcy has an MFA in Screenwriting from Boston University. She currently resides in Boston and occasionally tweets at @hollandnotes.

Tom Shear brings over two decades of musical experience to our team, composing and performing the original soundtrack for our first title. Tom is best known as the founder of electronic act Assemblage 23, but is also the creative force behind the bands Surveillance and Nerve Filter. This will be his second effort as a soundtrack musician, and his fourth contribution to professional video game audio.

Sebastien Vakerics is an experienced pixel artist, with credit as the visual content creator for the indie game Disorder.

Artist and Illustrator Ian Llanas, a major contributor to artwork for the Shadowrun game, developed our concept art. Our Title Video Sequence was created by Matthew Gamlen, a veteran of multiple advertising and promotional agencies.

In addition, our advisory team consists of CEOs, CTOs, and VPs from major entertainment, technology, and media companies.

Risks and challenges

Every software development and entertainment project experiences challenges. An episodic game, especially one as ambitious as V.Next, combines all the risk of building high quality code with all the challenge of on-schedule delivery of weekly original content. If it were easy, everyone else would be doing it.

Our team has shipped literally dozens of high quality video games, across a multitude of platforms, including Xbox, Xbox 360, PC, Web, and mobile devices. We wouldn't embark on an endeavor of this nature without having cut our teeth and experienced the perils and challenges of game development. We're following mature software development practices: We use Subversion for our version control software; We automate our builds and test passes with Jenkins; We have backups of all our code, designs, and assets in the Cloud; We run an Agile Development process with regular sprints and daily scrums; Our collaboration takes place on internal Wikis, Trello boards, and Slack; and so on. SyncBuildRun is legally registered as an LLC in the State of Washington to protect our intellectual property, technology, and our core business.

As with all projects, our largest risks are around externalities: things we can't control. This includes delays from our online distribution partners, an unexpected personal crisis, legal and compliance issues, etc. We have a great legal team to help us through the latter, and mitigation plans that are written down and available to the entire team for everything else. At worst, we delay slightly, but we promise to ship.

In the end, every challenge is around our commitment to deliver the highest quality experience to you, the players. Our reputation as a team and company is riding on our ability to delight and amaze you. We've taken a huge risk so far to get where we are today, and it has paid off handsomely. We want you to come along for the ride, and we know you'll love what we deliver next.

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    HACKER-BACKER:
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    EXTRA-BANDWIDTH:
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    NON-VOLATILE MEDIA:
    Get the game, the full First Season of V.Next, digitally delivered at launch, with the original soundtrack, plus a limited run physical printed copy of "The Making of V.Next" book (along with the PDF) delivered at the end of the First Season (to avoid spoilers, of course). Blank Reg would be proud!

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    MIRRORSHADES:
    Get the game, the full First Season of V.Next, digitally delivered at launch, with the original soundtrack, plus a limited-edition V.Next T-Shirt in the size of your choosing. All you need are razor-fingernails, and no one will mess with you!

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    DIGITAL MATERIALIST:
    Get the game, the full First Season of V.Next, digitally delivered at launch, with the original soundtrack, plus both the limited run physical printed copy of "The Making of V.Next" book (along with the PDF) delivered at the end of the First Season AND the limited-edition V.Next T-Shirt in the size of your choosing. You're holding on to the physical, and you're not ashamed to show it!

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    THE ALEPH:
    Get the game, the full First Season of V.Next, digitally delivered at launch, with the original soundtrack. Plus, send us a photo of yourself and (subject to artistic approval, AKA nothing obscene) we'll get your image in the game somewhere (like on a wanted poster or as part of an ad in the scenery). You'll be in like Flynn!

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    THE FEED:
    Get the game, the full First Season of V.Next, digitally delivered at launch, with the original soundtrack. Plus, send us a photo of yourself and (subject to artistic approval) we'll make a custom digital painting featuring you interacting with the main characters in the game. We'll ship you a 24" x 36" poster of your painting, suitable for framing and display above the cyberspace deck of your choice. We'll throw in the limited run printed book and the T-Shirt, because we're swell.

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    THE LOA:
    Get the game, the full First Season of V.Next, digitally delivered at launch, with the original soundtrack. Plus, send us a photo of yourself (again, subject to artistic approval) and participate in a 30 minute phone or Skype Audio conversation with a V.Next team member so we can turn you into an interactive character in a First Season Episode of the game. We'll throw in the limited run printed book and the T-Shirt, because we're swell.

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Funding period

- (31 days)