News: Beautiful Desolation - A New Game By The Stasis Developers - Is On Kickstarter
The Brotherhood is developing a new game for adventure fans set in a post-apocalyptic Africa with an Eighties sensibility. The project is on Kickstarter now - you have less than a month to help out and only one day to take advantage of Early Bird tiers.
is a post-apocalyptic point-and-click adventure set in a future Africa after the world has been turned into a wasteland. It's currently in development by The Brotherhood, the two-person team of Chris Bischoff (art) and Nicolas Bischoff (programming), that created the horror themed futuristic point-and-click adventure Stasis
, which was made possible due to a successful Kickstarter project in 2014 and went on to win awards all over the world.
video is a great introduction to the game.
The game begins in the 1980s in Cape Town and highlights how a mysterious and impossible technological object, the Penrose, appeared in the sky above the city. Scientists reverse engineered it and used the resulting knowledge to "advance civilisation on all frontiers" and eradicate hunger and disease, which ushered in a brief era of peace before war broke out and decimated the planet.
The game features mutated beasts and planets based on the fauna and flora of sub-Saharan Africa, as well as a robotic companion named POOCH and the ability to play as multiple characters, including brothers Mark and Don Leslie.
is in its very early stages - with three or more years to go to completion - but I must point out one caveat and that is the possibility of fetishism of black bodies. The main protagonists (and the game's developers) are both white males but one of the selling points of this game is that it's set in post apocalyptic Africa. We see hints of the evolution of tribal culture in the released artwork and footage but it's too soon to gauge how the culture and characters are represented. I am just pointing out my concern early as it's easy to fall into this trap of exoticism of the Other (in the context of "whiteness" usually being seen as the default), which effects real people in the real world who experience this gaze every day of their lives. On the other hand, as white South Africans in particular, we tread a fine line (and often fall off it) as we try to be inclusive and multicultural without being offensive. It's clear that this is what The Brotherhood is attempting to do and I hope that they make the right decisions to achieve it.
Back to the development and the crowdfunding. The developers have upped their game and moved from 2D isometric art to a 3D isometric world. The game uses a technology called "Photogrammetry" in which real world objects and miniatures are photographed from all angles and then, using specialised software, are turned into 3D models and textures for use in the game. You can learn more about the fascinating process in the following video:
The framework has already been tested in Cayne
, another horror adventure set in the world of Stasis
, which was recently launched for free on Steam
, so you can play that to get a feel for what Beautiful Desolation
will look like and how the gameplay interaction will work.
Above: An example of gameplay.
The project is hoping to raise US$130 000 and in the past 15 hours it has already raised over US$35 000 and drawn over 1100 backers, many of whom are fans of Stasis
. It is running until 19:59 (SAST) / 17:59 (GMT) / 12:59 (EST) / 09:59 (PST) on 18 February 2017 but the next day is crucial if you want to back the game but save some money. A number of tiers are running at a discount
, many with no restrictions on backers, until
19:59 (SAST) / 17:59 (GMT) / 12:59 (EST) / 09:59 (PST) on 26 January 2017
. After that those tiers will close and you'll have to pay more.
Backers can get Steam and DRM-free copies of the game, copies of Stasis
, copies of the digital art book and copies of the digital soundtrack. Higher tiers also offer beta access to the game and the opportunity to have your name or a photo of yourself featured in the game. There are also tiers with physical rewards, including boxed editions and the chance to own one of the game's destroyed-car miniatures that will be used for the Photogrammery.
was a superb game and a magnificent achievement for such a small team and I have no doubt that Beautiful Desolation
will surpass expectations. People have been burnt by Kickstarter projects (myself included) but this is a reliable development team that has proven its ability to deliver. Back the game now
and join in on the behind-the-scenes content and surprises as the team brings Beautiful Desolation
to life over the next three years.