About this project
Sundered is a horrifying fight for survival and sanity, a hand-drawn epic from the creators of Jotun (Kickstarter, Steam). It is a replayable metroidvania game where you resist or embrace ancient eldritch powers.
You play Eshe, a wanderer in a ruined world, trapped in ever-changing caverns teeming with eldritch horrors. Harness the power of corrupted relics to defeat gigantic bosses, at the cost of your humanity.
Resist or embrace.
Genre: Action Horror, Replayable Metroidvania
Number of Players: Single Player
Platforms: Windows, Mac & Linux (Steam, Humble, DRM-free GOG) and PlayStation®4
Release Date: July 2017
Average Game Length: 10 hours (expected)
Supported Languages: English, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Japanese, Brazilian Portuguese, Russian, Simplified Chinese
- Beautiful hand-drawn art
- Massive boss fights
- Dynamic encounters against hordes of enemies
- A mix of hand-crafted & procedural levels
- Corruptible abilities
- Multiple endings
We have confirmed that no stretch goals will be added to the Sundered Kickstarter campaign, reiterating the campaign's initial focus on polish and improvements to the core game.
Free DLC for all backers!
However, as a symbol of gratitude for the overwhelming support and trust that our backers have shown for the project, all Sundered Kickstarter backers will receive all future Sundered DLC free of charge! Our DLC plans will be further detailed following the game's launch.
Thanks to all our backers for supporting Sundered!
PayPal support through the Humble Store
We've added limited PayPal support through the Humble Store! There, you can purchase:
- The Sundered Core tier [Sundered Digital Copy + Closed Beta access + Digital Wallpaper]; or
- The Eschaton Cultist tier [Sundered Digital Copy + Closed Alpha + Digital Wallpaper + Digital Soundtrack + Digital Art Book + Appear in the Credits + Digital copy of Jotun]
Check it out: https://www.humblebundle.com/g/sundered
This just in: we're partnering with Limited Run Games to make the Sundered Physical Collector's Box a reality! As a reminder, all Sundered backers at the level of CA$ 100 or more will be receiving a boxed, Kickstarter-exclusive physical copy of Sundered for their shelves, and the popular publisher of limited run physical games will be pulling out all the stops to make the package truly special!
Here are the details we can share so far - note, this is all prelim and subject to change (but only for the better, we promise!):
- PC and PS4 in the same box! That's right - not only are we confirming physical PS4 for the Sundered campaign, but every copy of the Physical Collector's Box will include physical versions for both the PS4 and PC! Reminder: this is in addition to the Digital copy for the system of your choice from the previous reward tiers! [Note: we're unable to change the description of the CA$ 100 Eschaton Elder tier on the campaign page to reflect this - sorry for the confusion!]
- Soundtrack on CD: A physical version of Sundered's haunting soundtrack!
- Physical Art Book: A soft-cover, physical version of the Art Book full of our gorgeous hand-drawn art!
- Kickstarter-exclusive box art: The above image is a placeholder - we're planning something unique and special for the final box!
- Sundered Keychain
- Sundered collectible trading cards
- More to come!
Delve into a procedurally generated dungeon at the heart of a beautiful hand-drawn world. Classic Metroidvania elements such as backtracking, secrets and unlocking new abilities that open new regions are at the core of the exploration experience.
Confront hordes of dynamically spawned eldritch monsters. Put your skills and reflexes to the test through furious melee combat and epic boss fights against uniquely designed enemies. All monster spawns are dynamic, constantly keeping you on your toes.
Designed as a challenging adventure for seasoned gamers, frequent deaths are part of the Sundered experience. But taking our inspiration from our favorite rogue-like games, death in Sundered is only the beginning.
When you die, you respawn in the Hub, where you level up and customize your character. Equip and upgrade a host of unique Perks, stats and special Abilities hidden throughout the world.
We announced the game with our marketing partner, Sony, at the end of September 2016:
The trailer received wide-spread praise and showed that there was definite interest for the game!
Sundered simply wouldn’t be a Thunder Lotus game if we didn’t have larger-than-life boss fights. There are six massive boss fights in the game, each providing epic confrontations that truly test your mastery of the game.
Sundered’s tag line, "Resist or Embrace" is key to the experience. The Metroid-style abilities you find in the Shrines can be corrupted, but at a cost.
After defeating a boss, you receive an Elder Shard. You can choose to bring this special relic to a Skill Shrine on the world to corrupt a specific Ability. A Corrupted Ability is a much more powerful version of the same gameplay mechanic, but it comes at a cost to your humanity.
The tragedy of Eshe's gradual, voluntary corruption is eloquently illustrated in our second trailer, Embrace:
There are seven major abilities in the game, each corruptible into a more powerful eldritch version:
- Double Jump
- Hook Shot
- Wall Run
Ultimately, corrupting your abilities has important gameplay repercussions and even changes the game's ending, as how corrupted you are defines which boss you'll face.
Sundered tells the story of the mysterious Terror, a cataclysmic event that causes the undoing of society and plunges the world into madness. You play Eshe, a scavenger who becomes trapped in a strange sandstorm which drags her into a mysterious cavern. You have stumbled upon the source of power that led to the world’s destruction centuries ago.
The backstory tells the tale of how this strange power attracted the Valkyries, an armed group of scientific revolutionaries, and the Eschaton, mad cultists following the teachings of an obscure god, to this place. As she picks up the pieces, the player uncovers the conflict that sundered the world.
We want the monsters in Sundered to be unpredictable, for you to feel like madness is just around the corner. To achieve this, all the monster spawns are dynamic.
Like in Left 4 Dead, the monsters spawn based on a number of factors (time, difficulty level, current region). This creates hordes of eldritch horrors that lurk within the shadows, waiting for the player to fall into their trap.
When we announced Sundered, many players argued that a Metroidvania could not be procedural. We respectfully disagree. Though the overall structure of the world is set in stone, sub-sections (the green and grey squares on the map below) are procedurally generated every time you die. This allows us to make design choices which are core to a Metroidvania experience, like backtracking and unlocking new abilities that unlock new sub-sections, while keeping the experience fresh.
Sub-sections in action:
This adds a multiplicative layer of uncertainty, since the layer of randomness of the dungeon gets added over the random monster spawns. The final game will have three unique regions, each with a multitude of monsters, secrets and challenges.
Sundered builds on Jotun's foundation and maximizes our team’s visual talent through our signature hand-drawn art style, creative characters and impressive vistas.
As with our previous game, immersion is key to the experience and having an original soundtrack composed by Max LL is essential to the player experience.
For sound design, we'll be working with the amazing Pixel Audio team who worked with us on Jotun.
Back in 2014, with the generous help of many friends, we put together a Kickstarter campaign with very few resources. And thanks to our amazing backers, we were able to make a great game: Jotun.
Jotun was a critical and commercial success. We are proud to say we released Jotun on time and on budget, while still releasing an award-winning game. We learned so much during the process and are already applying it to Sundered!
We’ve come to Kickstarter to put the game in your hands and make it the best it can be. We know how important feedback is and Jotun’s alpha and beta backers transformed the game into something special. We need you to tell us what we can do better. It's about polish, feedback and using Kickstarter funds to make Sundered the best it can be.
Here is a sampling of things we want to improve with your help:
- Overall balancing and pacing
- Special nodes for the Skill Tree
- Different ideas for Perks
- What exactly defines the core gameplay experience and how we can improve it
This also explains why anyone backing at the $15 or higher tier will get an automatic invite to Sundered's Beta. Yes, we want your feedback, but we also need the money for development time to implement that feedback. The July release date reflects this extended timeline.
We've been hard at work on Sundered for just over a year. All the money we raise during Kickstarter will be invested in the game's production, which will allow us to extend the game's production until June, for a July release.
Sundered's total development budget is $700,000 CAD, coming from Jotun revenues and a loan from the Canadian Media Fund (the same entity who helped fund Jotun). Sony is acting as our marketing partner (which explains why we are only releasing on PC and PS4 for now), but is not funding the game.
Here is how we're breaking down the months until release:
Risks and challenges
Delays are one of the biggest issues in game development. Bringing so many different aspects together in an innovative product necessarily brings its own set of challenges. With Sundered, the complexity and amount of systems we're bringing together can cause our heads to spin, requiring a ton of balancing and polish. The amount of feedback we get from you guys can also impact our timeline, as we want to make sure that our backers are happy with the game before we ship it to the masses.
This leads into the other major risk: game quality. Most people making a game are trying their best to make a great game. No one enters this industry while thinking "Let's make some very average games that not too many people will like". There is always the risk that the game doesn't turn out as good as you hoped it would. However, we are 100% focused on delivering an amazing gameplay experience, building on what worked and didn't work with Jotun. We also believe that with your help in alpha and beta, we'll be able to mitigate most design/fun issues and polish the game until it is great.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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