Just a few days ago I posted about how I would like to live in Broken Sword’s depiction of Paris and now it turns out I get to visit Paris again in a new Broken Sword game, assuming that $400,000 in backing can be found through a Kickstarter campaign.
Kickstarter is a great way for projects to get funding for creative outlets (such as games). I love kickstarter primarily because it allows people to generate money without relying on a lot of fat cats who make decisions based upon what will make them even more money (the reason why there are so many big budget generic low risk FPS games), and focusses more on making stuff that is innovative and cool. I was first tempted to invest in a Kickstarter project when I heard about hackable android based console the Ouya, but after some consideration I decided not to invest in that one. I would like to see the Ouya flourish and they certainly have enough backers, but to date my experience with the Android marketplace makes me think that the completely open model is somewhat flawed. I hope I’m wrong though. Anyway, I’m being distracted. That’s not what this post is about!
Backing Broken Sword is a different story to backing the Ouya. The company behind Broken Sword – Revolution – is very well established. They made games that I can remember playing on my first Windows PC all those years ago. I’ve always found the Broken Sword games very rewarding and extremely charming, and they give a nice change of pace from a lot of my other console based games. I’ve never really thought that point and click games have very much replayability, but it turns out they do. Especially if you wait ten or so years between play throughs, then the nostalgia factor gives a lot of added value. I feel like Revolution are a safe bet for my money.
Anyway, judging from the video on the kickstarter site the new game seems to use some cell shading-esque techniques to give a 3D feel whilst still keeping true to the established and successful 2D style (either that or the animation is simply amazing!). I think it looks really great in the wide shots. However, I’m not 100% convinced that the close up face shots. For me the small movements or the flat eyes push George (our hero) over the edge into Miro’s uncanny valley – but that’s certainly not going to put me, or the rest of Broken Sword’s dedicated fan base off what I am hoping will be an exciting and sentimental experience. I’m also really looking forward to seeing design documents for this, and previous games that I’ll get with the silver package!
If you want to join me in backing this project the you should follow this link to the serpent’s curse kickstarter site. They are sure to make their $400,000 target as one quarter of the way in to the month long campaign they’ve already attracted three quarters of the cash.
Aside from its astonishing longevity I have another interest in Revolution, which is that it was founded in Hull and has a lot of connections to the city, the University and the surrounding area. Unfortunately the studio moved to York some time ago but it’s still fairly local, and co-founder Charles Cecil MBE gave a talk at Hull’s Platform Expo earlier this year. If anyone from revolution ever feels like getting involved with some of our bright young programming students by coming to give a presentation or judging a competition then please, please get in touch. The department, and me especially, would love for you guys to be involved.