Deeply embedded in H.P. Lovecraft's mythology, U55 – END OF THE LINE is an innovative horror game set in modern-day Berlin. Read more
This project's funding goal was not reached on September 19, 2013.
About this project
With the help of our fans, we have achieved so much more than we ever dreamed of. Coming out of nowhere, with no popular video game franchise behind us, we collected a huge sum of money on Kickstarter, we made it to the world's biggest gaming media and beyond and we even got retweeted by Richard Garriott! It is only fair that all our credits go back to our fans and they deserve our unlimited respect.
What will happen next?
Here is the gist of the matter:
The development of U55 will continue. With our massive media presence, we have plenty of options to choose from and all of them will bei aimed at getting the game funded whatever the cost.
How to stay in touch?
Feel free to subscribe to our newsletter so we can supply you in a timely manner with further infos on pretty much everything you need to directly come in touch with the team you have come to know better during the campaign: Malte, Alex, Patrik, Ulrika, Felix and (...)
Here are our online contact points:
If there's something you have on your mind – let us know! We are always looking forward to receive feedback and hear from our fans!
Sticking to the tried and true lore created by H.P. LOVECRAFT, we aim for an immersive urban horror experience on an unprecedented scale.
There is no escape!
U55 – END OF THE LINE is a first-person survival horror adventure set in the subway system of modern-day Berlin. The game will be developed for Windows. Sticking to the tried and true lore created by H.P. LOVECRAFT, we aim for an immersive urban horror experience on an unprecedented scale. We want to recreate the classic “cosmic horror” setting of diabolical entities breaking into reality and bring it to life with the help of subliminal sounds. What humanity believes to be regulated by the laws of nature is only true until nameless forces start swaying over the world.
Here’s the gist of it:
U55 – END OF THE LINE is a groundbreaking first-person horror adventure inspired by classic horror games such as Amnesia, Dead Space, Silent Hill and, of course, Call of Cthulhu - Dark Corners of the Earth.
The game features binaural sound effects especially intended for stereo headsets. These are designed to support the disturbing, adrenaline-driven atmosphere and enhance your perception.
The game faithfully recreates Berlin’s original sites, such as subway stations, parts of the government district, and the central station.
In the story-driven game, you play as David, an American student living in Berlin. While he is on his way to the central station to meet his girlfriend, his subway train crashes. In order to find a way out, he has to navigate through the dark with the smartphone display as his only source of light.
As one of our stretch goals, U55 – END OF THE LINE will come with full support for Oculus Rift, which we consider to be one of the most exciting advancements in gaming technology these days. Why would we decline the opportunity to create an even more memorable and immersive gaming experience?
You are in Berlin
Despite being extremely popular among international artists and movie makers, BERLIN has never been properly shown in a video game and has far too many interesting and scary locations to be left unexplored by a video game.
You make the decisions
Your choices make the difference between life and death. Throughout the entire game you will make decisions that will influence not only the game’s progression, but also its final outcome.
You are only human
Just like in the pen-and-paper RPG "Call of Cthulhu" you will always stay vulnerable! There will be some first-person-based combat but bear in mind that you are exactly the opposite of a soldier, commando or superhero - and what kind of weapons do you expect to find in a subway tunnel anyway?
That means that U55 - END OF THE LINE does not feature common character progression known from RPGs.
Instead, your catalyst for character progression is the smartphone, your most important tool for survival. You will be able to upgrade it over time by downloading apps and collecting enhancements for it. (i.e. bigger battery pack, translation app, flashlight app, navigation app. animal noises app, etc.)
You are not alone
Focusing on player interaction, U55 - END OF THE LINE features three- dimensional characters, each with a detailed background story.
Whenever the player interacts with his environment and other characters, he cannot be sure about their true intentions. You can never be sure that words like "honesty", "trust" and even "love" mean as much to others as they mean to you, and punishment for blindly putting faith in others can be cruel...
You are carrying the legacy
We follow the classic Lovecraftian premise: when meddling with forces as old as the universe itself, you cannot simply fight your way through – the approach is up to you, but it’s brains, not brawn that will help you overcome these terrors.
With that being said, you might ask: H.P. Lovecraft envisioned the most sinister cults in the history of literature involving the almighty CTHULHU and the Great Old Ones. So, where are they?
Few things are as detrimental to creating a mystery as knowing exactly what you're up against. So we'll leave you with this: The forces at work are mightily sinister and very old.
This document was found in the city archives by Lena Kronblatt and is called "The Sokolov Dispatch". You may get a glimpse of what you are in for with U55 - END OF THE LINE by reading this and other information that Lena Kronblatt collected on her blog. Lena is a student from Berlin and her hobbies are urban legends and unsolved paranormal mysteries.
U55 - END OF THE LINE features a mystery bigger and greater than Berlin ...
You are going to improvise
Your primary tool for surviving in the darkness is your smartphone display. That’s it – no assault rifles, rocket launchers, magnum revolvers, or grenades. What good would those be against entities from realms beyond our understanding anyway?
But this does not mean you have to stand your ground bare-handed. You have a variety of tools at your disposal to counter every threat there is. Most of them may seem underpowered, so use them wisely...
You are not going to trust your ears
The sound effects are among the most important features in a horror game. This is where U55 - END OF THE LINE is truly innovating.
The acoustic background is centered around the use of subliminal messages. The most important aspect are the BINAURAL BEATS.
This acoustic phenomenon was discovered in 1839 by Doctor Heinrich W. Dove and is commonly used for meditating and in psychotheraphy. It influences brainwaves by applying soundwaves that run on the same frequency as your brain in a specific emotional state. For instance, you can calm someone down when he's upset by adding frequencies the brain has in sleep mode. But, of course, the effect works both ways.
Binaural SFX only works with a headset because it requires two slighty different low-frequency-tones, one for each ear. The frequency in between is where the magic happens.
Some people suffer from headaches when listening to specific frequencies. On top of that, binaural sounds have a much larger impact on the minds of children and minors.
In the game, binaural beats are always OPTIONAL and can be turned off in the menu. We strongly advise NOT to play the game under the age of 18! This is NO JOKE, you can harm yourself!
This technique is pretty new to gaming. Until now, only one game had a binaural soundtrack at one point (Pokemon - Green Edition) with severe consequences. You surely know the urban legend of the
Of course the suicide rumours are plain crap, but, interestingly enough, they are what most people come up with when they hear about binaural beats. After receiving numerous questions doubting our own sanity since we were posting info from creepypasta, we decided to correct this one for good. Poe's law has hit us hard and we will try to redeem our faith in humanity by apologizing for any misunderstanding we have evoked with that one.
Now, listen to THIS with your headphones on and bear up against it. Imagine, a horror game having a soundtrack that creepy... Perfect for the Lovecraftverse!
NO CREDIT CARD? NO PROBLEM!
PLEASE NOTE: You can also pledge by using PayPal but you should always choose Kickstarter over PayPal! Please only use PayPal if you don't have a credit card or any other reason that prevents you from pledging via Amazon Payments / Credit Card.
More goals will be revealed over time.
We have great plans for the game, including a second character with a completely new storyline (Tina), a meaningful multiplayer mode, Nazi and Soviet facilities, cultist haven, a news show reporting directly from outside the subway as it's been shut down, enhanced storylines on all main characters and much more....
At one point, we will even be able to produce U55 - END OF THE LINE completely without any further funding.
All copys for U55 - END OF THE LINE on Kickstarter will be shipped DRM FREE!
EXCLUSIVE BACKER INGAME APP AVAILABLE ONLY ON KICKSTARTER
You support us first - you deserve the best! We have decided to give you, our precious backers, an exclusive in-game item for every copy you purchased on Kickstarter. You will receive a unique app for your in-game smartphone only available on Kickstarter for your DRM-free version of U55 – END OF THE LINE.
Aim for high goals!
By now you might have the impression that we are going to push the envelope with several features in U55 - END OF THE LINE, and that is true.
Everyone working on U55 - END OF THE LINE is completely dedicated to quality and thinking about what makes a good horror game GREAT!
We all remember classic titles like Resident Evil or Silent Hill and what we love about them. They were ground-breaking for their time.
This is the goal we have for U55 - END OF THE LINE.
Even moderate games have decent graphics nowadays, so we won't set any new standards in that department. However, with tools like OCULUS RIFT entering the market, we can now truly "enhance" the perception of a game itself, not only pump up the graphics.
So U55 - END OF THE LINE breaks out in that direction and enhances your gameplay experience. Binaural sounds are sending cold chills down your spine, while the 3D sound environment and Oculus Rift put you right in the middle of the action.
The danger feels real. The horror feels real. The characters feel real.
So far we have developed U55 - END OF THE LINE paying out of our own pockets.
All founders of Effective Evolutions had their own businesses or were part of a start-up before, so up to now, we had money for development.
Unfortunately, we are now at a point at which our reserves are running short, and praying to the Great Old Ones won't help us anymore. Setting up a new office and hiring staff costs money, but is necessary to finish U55 - END OF THE LINE with the quality it deserves. We need additional funding to make our (and hopefully your) dream project come true...
This is why we are on Kickstarter. Plain and simple, we either raise enough money to produce the game to its full extent or at least have the leverage when it comes to negotiating for money.
The timeframe is also important. Gamescom is the second-largest trade-fair for video games worldwide and takes place in Cologne from August 21st to August 25th.
Want to meet us in person?
We will be featured at Gamescom's most frequented entertainment stage by our partner Sound of Games. In addition to that, we've planned some cool guerilla-marketing gigs to draw attention from the press and the crowd.
This will give us momentum. Momentum we need to get U55 - END OF THE LINE going.
"I never ask a man what his business is, for it never interests me. What I ask him about are his thoughts and dreams."
- H.P. Lovecraft
Here is a list of all of our sites on the internet. Don't pretend you don't know what comes next: Ph'nglui Mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn! Bless the Old Ones and Like us and Share us! Ia! Ia!
HERE you will find the official STEAM Greenlight Page for U55 - END OF THE LINE
HERE you will find the official Website for U55 - END OF THE LINE
HERE you will find the official Twitter for U55 - END OF THE LINE
HERE you will find the official YouTube Channel for U55 - END OF THE LINE
HERE you will find the official Facebook Page for U55 - END OF THE LINE
Like Us! Share Us! Do all the good stuff!
We don't believe in "black box" development.
This is why we want to always keep our processes as open and transparent as possible and always keep a good relationship to the players and the media. We see our fans as part of our development. Although we won't share every detail with you (some horrors, the main story arc and how it all comes together in the greater lore will still be a secret... thanks for your understanding), we will let you become a vital part of our development cycle.
Backers will get access to the development forum where we will gather your feedback for development and set up polls on important design decisions.
Here, we will keep you updated on the press that U55 - END OF THE LINE gets.
games.de is one of the biggest games-news-sites in Germany. Read their article on U55 - END OF THE LINE HERE (in German).
Here, we collected some statements and feedback we got for U55 - END OF THE LINE.
Regarding production, we've partnered up with the best of the best:
CTHULHU'S RUF is your first choice for Lovecraftian news in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Founded by the fans FOR THE FANS - just like the spirit of U55!
Click HERE if you dare!
Sound of Games - #1 in Premium Game Music - will perform daily live at gamescom & gamescom festival 2013 in Cologne. More info: HERE
MEET US @GAMESCOM
U55-Special (Signing hour U55-autographs): Meet Sound of Games & the U55-Team at gamescom, Sat. August 24 at 11am, Computec booth in hall 9 - and ask all your questions about U55's game music and the game itself.
MEET US @GAMESCOM
U55 - END OF THE LINE will be co-hosting a Networking Dinner prior to Gamescom 2013 on Tuesday, August-20th, starting 6pm
Get location an tickets HERE
FaTeR - Sprayer, Stret Artist and DJ
FaTeR is one of Berlin's most respected Street Artist that provided original Berlin Sprayer Tags and Street Art for U55 - END OF THE LINE
Get in touch HERE
Rene Fraissenet Photography
Excellent Fashion and Environment Photographer with a faible for Indie Filmmaking.
Get in touch HERE
U55 - END OF THE LINE takes, until completion, about 20-22 months of development time.
So far we have worked about four months on U55 - END OF THE LINE and we have come a long way. Our team currently consists of 20 people directly involved in the development process.
Nobody got any compensation for their work up to this point. All costs were covered by the founders (Malte, Patrik, Sebastian & Marc Trinkhaus).
Right now our crew members work on U55 - END OF THE LINE because they love the game. They share the vision and they want to make this project happen. But now, after four months, we've got to the point where we either abandon our dream or continue as a development studio.
We decided in favour of the second option.
But let us be clear. For your money, we will:
• hire the necessary staff we need to continue
• buy hardware and software to equip for particular tasks
• pay for mo-cap and professional voice acting
• find a place where we can work together
We have to be brutally honest with you:
Kickstarter might not be enough for a project as large as U55 - END OF THE LINE, so there may come a future point where we might need additional funding. Depending on how much we raise here, we might need to go to a publisher. Shall this day ever come, we will stay faithful to the things we have promised and take the leverage when it comes to negotiations.
So every dollar we raise through Kickstarter gives us more freedom on making a true GAMER- and NOT a market-oriented product.
If we raise enough money to fund the production completely, we won't even need a publisher.
Risks and challenges
Every project bears some risks and no project runs without any errors. It doesn't matter if you are planning on constructing an airport or making a small student game project. The typical sources of failure are misplanning, over-estimating your own abilities and lack of communication. These causes remain the same, no matter what size and how many people you have.
The only way to successfully avoid missteps is honesty and an open culture of talking to each other. This may sound ridiculous when it comes to constructing something but it's true. If you do things right, the people working for you won't hestitate to come to you if there is any problem in sight. This may sound easy, but in reality, it is hard. Nobody wants to be the person that doesn't fullfil his promises.
So before he tells you about a delay in his work, the employee will do everything to mask his delay. This is natural human behavior and needs to be adressed properly. Luckily, our team has more than 70 years of experience combined when it comes to making IT-projects, movies and, of course, games. Patrik and Malte have both built successful IT start-up companies and have a degree in Project Management.
Despite other Kickstarter campaigns, there is one specific risk to U55 - END OF THE LINE. It is the risk of running-out-of-money. In the Costs section we already told you that we may need additional funding.
The best guarantee to avoid running out of money is you (the fans). With a large, strong and vocal fanbase having our back, publishers cannot refuse. On top of that, NOW is the best time for establishing new IPs, with the new console generation falling into place.
But it is possible that we might get too little too late or even nothing from a publisher. We prepare for this event in two ways:
1) We sell a share of the company itself to an e-commerce investor. This would give us plenty of money, but we might end up "losing" our own company. Malte M. Boettcher and Patrik Müller have already run e-commerce start-ups, so we know the right strings to pull here.
2) We scale the project down to a bare minimum. The second option is not preferrable because it is not the game Malte envisioned. Hence, to begin with, we will attempt the first option.
We know crowd-funding money is not free!
You put a lot of faith in us and our vision and we are grateful for that! There is nothing more heart-warming than finding people who believe in you!
In order to handle our promise with all due amount of respect for your contribution, we are aware of the threats and worst-case scenarios to U55 - END OF THE LINE. We are constantly searching and identifying risks, so we are prepared for everything to come.
Thank you for your trust in us, Lovecraft, and great gaming!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
- (30 days)