Tag: Interactive story »
Lately, there seems to be a Kickstarter project for everything imaginable. One new exciting project is Underground Kingdom.
The project aims to adapt the work of author Edward Packard, namely his Choose Your Own Adventure books made popular in the 1970s. These books have proved very important to many in the past, myself included, both encouraging literacy and demonstrating how much fun reading can be.
Much like the work of Tin Man Games, Choose Your Own Adventure books are all about taking part in an interactive story and making decisions that lead to many different inclusions.
Underground Kingdom isn't quite under way yet, hence the Kickstarter project. While I for one greatly encourage getting involved with backing the project, we thought it only right to check in with co-founder and project director Felipe Mingo and creator of the Choose Your Own Adventure books Edward Packard and see how they feel about things.
We asked Felipe about the motivation behind bringing back this series of books.
"In (our) search for an app idea," he explained, "we remembered the Choose Your Own Adventure series. We really loved these books as kids, and thought that it would be great to transport the concept of "gamebooks" to digital. When we looked for digital versions, we didn't find any quality apps that would deliver a great experience. We wanted something different, with contemporary artwork, interaction, a map to guide your path... That's when we decided to start working on it and contacted Edward, who was really helpful and licensed us some of his books."
Asking whether the books, starting with Underground Kingdom, will be original conversions or if there will be any adjustments, Felipe explained that "The adaptations of the story are completely original from Edward Packard books. We made some minor changes to the text so it would adapt to today's technology. The artwork is totally new." As you can see from the artwork below, it's pretty glorious to look at and a great re-imagining of the original's style.
Edward Packard explained to us that he believes the "imaginative color art and animations...greatly enrich the adventurous experience" while also stating that he's "delighted, and especially so about delivering them in app form," as well as the "added interactive features [and] sound effects".
While the project is still in the early stages, Visual Baker provided us with some examples of concept art and how the devs there plan to incorporate the feel of Choose Your Own Adventure books into app form. It's looking pretty great, so far.
If you're keen on backing the Kickstarter, check out the Underground Kingdom project page for details of pledge amounts available.
Kickstarter is increasingly being used to help finance the development of apps; the latest attempt at financing an app through the crowdsourced funding site is an interactive story app called The Last Sleeper. This app will feature the work of Halo 4 producer and designer Kendall Davis, Lord of the Rings sound designer (and Oscar winner) Ethan Van Der Wyn, composer Steve Jablonsky (known for Gears of War 3 and Transformers), among other veterans of the gaming industry working on this app. The story is described as a hybrid of science fiction, fantasy, and paranormal romance, featuring characters Adam and Fera, who develop their relationship as they try to restore their planet of Ephos. However, hurdles arise, and an evil entity named The Shadow must be dealt with along with their personal issues. User input will help to guide and direct the story along, which tries to integrate the sound and visual design along with the user interactions. The app is currently in the funding stage, and is planned for release in the summer of 2012. For more details and concept art, check out The Last Sleeper's Kickstarter page.