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The Funding Crowd 32 (Apr 22nd - May 12th)

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Welcome to The Funding Crowd #100000, or 25 if you're from that one kind of people (out of 10, of course) that don't understand binary. Anyway, after the interview we brought you earlier today, it's now time to our regular crowdfunding column. Please fasten your seatbelts and get ready to discover the hottest projects to back, and the outcome of our previous selections. All of this, and more, is just a few down-scrolls away. Let's go!





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Our first Gem, the open source dungeon simulator KeeperRL, has been covered by this very website several times recently (#1, #2, #3, and #4). So we've actually got very little left to tell you, other than encouraging any open source paladins among our readership who still haven't backed it to go and show their love for the project and thus help it raise the remaining $2k in the final two weeks.






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Controversy! We bring news of Black Forest Games, the development studio behind the lovely looking Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams, looking for pledges for their latest game on Kickstarter! Why is this controversial? Well, because Giana Sisters recently featured on the Humble Bundle 11, back in February/March this year. They put a Windows-only build in that bundle, but crucially promised it for Linux and OSX later in the year.

Well, it's not quite been three months since the end of that Humble Bundle, but still, this author suspects that once development of DIESELSTÖRMERS ramps up, there won't be much in the way of porting going on!

But that said, what a cracking title this is shaping up to be. It's a direct relaunch of Black Forest Games' failed Kickstarter from August last year, Project Ravensdale.

If you've ever played Shoot Many Robots on Windows, or perhaps Awesomenauts for Linux, you'll know what you're buying into here. Basically, it amounts to side-scrolling, multiplayer bullet hell. What helps DIESELSTÖRMERS stand out, perhaps, is the Arc Connector, an entity that links all four players, allowing them to collaborate in the creation of additional abilities as required.

Ironically, if Project Ravensdale had succeeded, we'd probably be just about playing by now, with its estimated May 2014 release date. With that failure, Black Forest Games had to continue to develop it in their free time while working on other things (perhaps porting Giana to Linux and OSX, who knows!), and this, along with a larger scope, has pushed the estimated release of DIESELSTÖRMERS back significantly. You can pledge to it for as little as $14, but unless you pledge higher for the beta release or planned Steam Early Access, you won't be playing it until May next year now.






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The Funding Crowd remembers getting onto the Dreamcast bandwagon pretty late on. In fact, we were clearly too late to save that ailing console, and its demise came only months after that crucial purchase. However, its impact on us was huge. We fired up Jet Set Radio and had to scoop our jaw from the floor at what we were witnessing. Grand Theft Auto III was still a year away at this point, but here we were at the end of the year 2000 (the millenium bug all but forgotten), in a proper 3D open world. The cell shaded graphics. The freedom to move around the city. The interaction with traffic and pedestrians. It was all so incredibly novel back then.

Slide forward fourteen years (and yes, that's as depressing as it sounds) and we have Hover: Revolt of Gamers. The art style immediately invokes Jet Set Radio, but Hover takes it further. The animations, the open city, the rail grinding. This is practically a remake and at the very least an homage to Jet Set Radio's legacy. Sure, Midgar Studio mention both Jet Set Radio and Mirror's Edge as inspiration, but it's impossible to watch the video for Hover without waves of nostalgia for Sega's last console.

Funding for this wonderful looking game is already through the roof. Asking for only just shy of $40k, current funding is well over double with over a week still to run. So far, stretch goals have unlocked additional characters, new sound tracks and a whole new section of the city. The next stretch goal is Wii U support which might explain why funding has levelled out since achieving a massive spike to hit $80k (additional city district). It's probably fair to say that the typical Wii U owner doesn't regularly visit Kickstarter to fund their next game choice.

There's still a year of development ahead for Midgar Studios, but you can get on board with Hover, pardon the pun, for as little as $15 and since they're already Greenlit, you'll have your choice of distribution when April 2015 comes around.






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After Daniel Swiger's previous Shattered Time project failed to pull through, he picked himself up, narrowed the scope and now he's back with this attempt to bring a new 3D RPG game engine to the world. For free.

Yes, you read that right. Every piece of code and every asset in Chronicles of the Rift will be free to use in your own projects, as you see fit. This time around, he's laser-focussed on the engine. You're not specifically funding a game with this pledge, but instead funding Daniel to work on the Chronicles engine so that future devs can use it, free gratis, to easily sculpt their own creations. Read our interview with Daniel for more details on why he believes open source collaboration on gaming frameworks can become a great boon for the Indie game dev industry.

With a beautiful and smooth isometric view, the engine is reminiscent of the Infinty Engine used in Baldur's Gate and Planescape Torment (among others) albeit in gloriously animated 3D. Indeed, Daniel is interested in replicating many of the features from the Infinity Engine should he secure the funding to work on this full time. Daniel is starting with a sound base to work from. His project runs on top of the free version of the Unity 3D toolkit, so this engine will be available to literally anyone who owns a PC.

So get your open source hats on and head over to his Kickstarter. Every dollar helps make this selfless project a better framework for future games and therefore, gamers like ourselves.






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If you like CardHunter, but hated the fact that you had to run it in Chrome because of its ridiculous and infuriating requirement for a minimum Adobe Flash version of 11.5 (one version later than is available for Linux), then keep reading. Here's a strategic, turn-based RPG with an optional co-op element that tries to look like a digital version of a traditional table-top set up. And so now you know why we mentioned Card Hunter!

But where Card Hunter's mechanic was based on a randomised "deck" of abilities, Pop-up Dungeons is aiming more squarely at the traditional RPG. And to emphasise this, the project announced recently the addition of a Dungeon Master mode where a DM can be specified to control the overall pace and direction of a given party's foray into the game.

It's a game with a unique art style. Based on the real-life concept of "Papercraft", you can create literally any character yourself and wrap it into a 3D model for use in the game. This is a big selling point for modders as it means that you can use simple templates to draw up a 2D print and the game will wrap it into 3D automatically.

And it's not just the textures you can craft yourself. In a decidedly Morrowind-like process, you can craft your own spells, abilities or even entire characters. You choose the name of the spell/ability, add instant effects, specify area of effect, duration, size of impact and so on. You even specify experience required to use the creation, and its overall cost. Presumably the game engine will scale its difficulty according to what abilities you bring to the table.

As for the dungeons themselves, they're based on the rogue-like mechanic of infinite design and possibility. The game even take it a step further by adding a feature called "Portals of Fate". Step through these and literally anything can happen -- treasure, monster-zoo, boss fight, or a whole new procedurally generated dungeon.

The studio behind Pop-up Dungeon is Triple.B.Titles who have already brought a Windows-only game to Steam through Kickstarter. This time around, multi-PC platform support (Linux, Windows, OSX) is at the base-level, although there are stretch goals for console support too.

Their Kickstarter now supports a pledge via Paypal. The entry point is $15 with higher pledges securing the usual alpha and beta access, or additional keys. Oddly enough, despite mentioning that the studio brought RingRunner to Steam via Kickstarter previously, they still had to run a Greenlight campaign for this title! The good news is, however, that it's already succeeded.

In fact, the only downside to this wonderful Gem of a game is the release date. With a grand scope and only three developers on their team, they're sensibly scoping this project out to 2016. January, right enough, but it will be a long wait to get your hands on this one, sadly.




Please follow us to page #2 where you can find our customary review of Winners, Losers, and Still in the Running, as well as our new Biggie!



. Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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About the author -
A Linux user for more than 15 years, I've just recently rediscovered the passion for gaming. Couldn't have chosen a better time than now: the [second](http://www.gamingonlinux.com/articles/linux-techdemo-available-for-race-the-sun-.1752#4850) Golden Age of Linux gaming.
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5 comments

stan 12 May, 2014
  • Supporter
Hover looked better when I saw it on greenlight a few months ago. Hopefully they won’t also *** up the music.
scaine 13 May, 2014
View PC info
  • Contributing Editor
  • Mega Supporter
Happy to get added, Liam, but suspect that the curse of Flexible Funding will strike here. You never know though.
Speedster 13 May, 2014
Yeah, the decks are stacked against flexible funding projects, even more so than normal crowdfunding challenges

http://www.gamingonlinux.com/crowdfunding/index.php5/IndieGoGoResults
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