Posts Tagged sci-fi
One of the consistently most positive things about the rise of the App Store is the ability for one-person developers to get somewhere and release their own titles, under their own steam and hard work. Sacrifices might need to be made but it’s encouraging to see so many creative spirits work so hard at achieving their dreams.
One such person is John Stricker, developer of Captain Casual, a title that he’s declared to be an ‘epic science fiction action adventure comedy’. Its Kickstarter campaign has just launched so we had a word with John about how the project came to be.
148apps: How did the idea for Captain Casual come about?
John Stricker (JS): I was doing some pretty intensive work as a software consultant, and at the end of the day it would be difficult to take my mind off of the projects I was working on and get some sleep. I found that imagining stories helped me relax as I was trying to sleep. Maybe this was part of me trying to take my own mind off work, but I liked to create characters that were very relaxed, take-it-easy kinds of people and then imagine them being put into situations where they had to play the role of a hero. Captain Casual started with the idea of putting a laid-back person into the role of a starship captain, so instead of someone like Patrick Stewart playing the role of the captain it was someone more like Jeff Bridges in The Big Lebowski.
148apps: Why the name Captain Casual?
JS: Because it’s awesome! I mean, why has no one created a game character named this yet? It’s also fun to take the word “Casual” and use it for a character name in a mobile game since in the gaming community there’s a stereotype of mobile games being too “casual” for “serious” gamers.
148apps: Have any other games or other forms of media influence your idea?
JS: A lot of the backstory for Captain Casual takes cues from Iain M. Bank‘s fantastic Culture novels, and the comic tone of the game can’t help but be influenced by Douglas Adam’s Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy books (which I have read countless times). In terms of gaming influences, Bioware‘s RPGs (e.g. the Baldur’s Gate Series, Knights of the Old Republic) have probably influenced me more than any other games. They do such a great job of storytelling, dialog, and gameplay, and while Captain Casual isn’t an RPG, I hope to convey something of the same sense of being part of an epic adventure while playing the game. And, of course, Star Trek in all its incarnations is a big influence.
148apps: How big a game will Captain Casual be?
JS: It’s going to be bigger than The Beatles! We’re talking blockbuster, here. You’re probably looking for more of an answer about the game’s length though. In terms of game length, Captain Casual is designed to be a relatively short game, with a full playthrough lasting a couple of hours. The main reason for this is that the story in the game unfolds more like a movie where there is a minimum of repetitive action. Every mission is going to have the player doing something that they haven’t done before. To add challenge and extend the life of the game, there will also be a hardcore mode where if a player fails a level they have to start the game from the beginning.
148apps: Are there any plans for in-app purchases or will Captain Casual be a one-off payment kind of game?
JS: There are no plans for in-app purchases as I feel that would ruin the tone of the game. Its hard to keep a sense of atmosphere and engagement when you’re also periodically asking the player for more money. Also, I don’t want the game to be a different experience for different players depending upon how much money they put into the game.
148apps: How hard has it been to juggle your work life and this project?
JS: Since April of this year I’ve been working full time on Captain Casual. I am fortunate enough to have a time-limited period (my wife and I have agreed on a one-year limit) to do this, but this is why I really need the extra support from Kickstarter as I have no income at this point. I’ve taken my hobby and made it my work, so in some ways now I feel like I’m working all of the time. Still, it feels great to be able to put so much effort into something I love. Hopefully the Kickstarter will go well and I’ll be able to continue working on Captain Casual full time!
Captain Casual’s Kickstarter has just under a month to go, with John asking for a fairly low $5,000 to complete the game. With only a $5 pledge needed in order to have some input in terms of what ship models and color schemes to use, as well as a free copy of the game upon release, that’s a pretty tempting offer if you ask me. Higher pledges offer more benefits, too, with t-shirts, beta invites, and even custom digital images up for grabs.
The campaign is live now, so do consider contributing. We’ll be sure to keep an eye on Captain Casual‘s progress.
This is it – the first ever look at Industrial Toys’ upcoming sci-fi shooter, Morning Star, a core gaming experience made just for the iPad by industry vets Alex Seropian (Bungie, Disney) and Tim Harris (Denuo, Alley Cat Comics), as well as a superstar team of music, art, and story, including comic artist Mike Choi (Marvel/DC) and author John Scalzi (Old Man’s War, Redshirts).
The trailer shows us a maddeningly brief look at the universe of Morning Star, including the depths of space, the skip ship Joplin, and some scary-ass aliens that we seriously just want to shoot in their toothy faces.
“With Morning Star, we’re looking to change expectations for what kind of experience core gamers get from their mobile devices,” said Industrial Toys CEO Alex Seropian. “We’re breaking new ground on everything from the visuals to the story to the ongoing support we’ll provide in the way of content, events and player involvement. It’s gonna be nuts.”
The development team promises a reimagining of the sci-fi shooter, a no-brainer considering that Seropian was one of the co-founders of Bungie, responsible for Marathon and Halo. They’ve made it their mission to create an exciting, action-packed game with controls, community and competitive multiplayer features designed directly for mobile platforms like the iPad. It also uses the Unreal Engine to make it look super amazing and badass gorgeous.
Set 120 years into our future, Morning Star takes players aboard the MSRV-Joplin, a research vessel newly outfitted with military weaponry to explore a mysterious signal coming from within our Solar System. When inevitable disaster strikes, they’re transported across the cosmos to take part in an epic war that is not their own to undo a bunch of awfulness that goes down.
For more info, check out the official website of the game, which is expected to release sometime in Spring 2013. Hit the jump for even more screens and concept art.
Source: Morning Star Game Website
A sequel to popular tower defense game, Star Defense Mission, has been released by Yezh Studio. Star Defense Mission 2 is also a tower defense with a sci-fi space theme.
This time, the games boasts three basic towers with six different evolutionary routes for those towers to go via upgrades. The ten different enemies in this challenging sequel can use seven different skills, making the defense in each level challenging and unique based on which enemies are coming. The game also includes five different items and 25 battle maps.
The story for Star Defense Mission takes place in Lightsource year 9-2. Some humans have escaped the rule of a tyrant, Sinu, with a large amount of energy crystals. The humans must use their rebel force to defend the crystals against the hordes of enemies Sinu sends against them.
The original game was featured on Apple’s New & Noteworthy page. Star Defense Mission 2 is available for $2.99 and is an iPad only game.