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LootDrop's Shaker (An Old School RPG) Kickstarter

eksterekster Member Posts: 234
edited October 2012 in Off-Topic
Didn't want to keep talking about other kickstarters in Project Eternity so figured I'd start a new thread about it.

For those that don't know what it is:
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/lootdrop/an-old-school-rpg-by-brenda-brathwaite-and-tom-hal

Brenda Brathwaite and Tom Hal's names aren't too popular, but their team is responsible for some very popular games: Dungeons and Dragons, Anachronox, Wizardry 8, Ultima, Bard's Tale, Jagged Alliance, Ghost Recon, Doom, Quake, Mortal Kombat...

As for the game. I looked it up at first and was not impressed. They kept saying old school RPG, with some small story description and not much else. It was a bit of a bad start that was way too rushed. But they've been releasing more technical and more game related details and I'm in love with it now!

The story is pretty good:
"Shaker: An Old School RPG is a first-person perspective, fantasy/sci-fi game set in a Bridge world between the future and the very distant medieval past. Taking the role of operative James Connelly (you may also customize your lead character), an employee of Shaker Corporation, you are called upon to set right a deadly chain of events that began millennia ago. You and your crew of 3 operatives will be deployed to Antera, a medieval, fantasy world in the distant past. There, under a feudal guise, you must unearth the very beginning of a horrible chain of events and avert it, or the universe we know today will cease to exist in a mere 100 years.
[...]
Shaker's core technology is a device that allows it to see 100 years into the future and as far back as all past human memory allows. A team of analysts goes over the data, and Shakers are deployed into the future or past to straighten out potential disturbances. In its history, Shaker had already averted wars, plagues and countless regional skirmishes..."

Combat will be very similar to Wizardry/Phantasy Star. Here's a neat description of it http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/lootdrop/an-old-school-rpg-by-brenda-brathwaite-and-tom-hal/posts/326172?ref=activity

They will also make a second game (a sequel of sorts) if it reaches 1.9mil. Not sure if that's possible with their unfortunate slow start, but honestly, I am even more interested in it that the James Connelly side. The more I read about this, the more I love Darien Cole's side. I would love to see the future-part of the game. It reminds me a bit of the old Phantasy Star games that I loved to death. I kind of wish that was their main game. Or hopefully, if they don't succeed reaching it, they will start another kickstarter for that.

Anyone else backed it or interested in it? And those who looked it up and didn't like it at first, give it another look! I was very critical of it at first, but they won me over with their updates! The team is very creative.

Post edited by ekster on

Comments

  • oseasweroseaswer Member Posts: 7
    No, I am not interested.

    This is a repost on their kickstarter forum:

    "Okay, I just pledged 1$ just to give me two cents about why I'm not interested in this project.
    1. The people who are making it are not that well known. At least for me, I have never heard of you guys.
    2. Compared to OE, your key personnel have not made significant contributions to the industry in years. And seriously, Romero is in on this? Analogous to Sean Parker's role in The movie The Social Network.
    3. No media coverage. I check major social networks every day like IGN, Destructioid, Gamesradar, just to mention a few.
    4. You're asking for one million dollars. Wow. Given point 1-4 that is enough to make me reserved.
    There are some things you can do like update more as some others suggested. Try to get someone impartial to write about this project like gaming media and social networks. That would help your credibility.
    But again my biggest issue is the asking price of this project."

  • Metal_HurlantMetal_Hurlant Member Posts: 324
    I didn't support this at the start and some of the problems I see with this is:

    - It feels like they put this together in a day. It comes across as amatuerish and they looked at how well other developers were doing and jumped on the bandwagon.
    - No clear defined game on what they wanted to make at the beginning of their campaign. All they kept saying is 'old school rpg'
    - Too many cliches with 'old school rpg' in their pitch video. I was pretty tired of hearing it so many times. I actually struggled to get to the end of the video.
    - Should have used old gameplay videos/screen shots of previous games to show what they were trying to aim for. I didn't know if it was first person or isometric. It was later that they updated it would be First Person.
    - Two crpgs in the one kickstarter? That seems strange. Would prefer they concentrate on one game and make it good than try and make two games in the same time.
    - If they were to get their funding for 2 games, they have a little over 12 months to make 2 games. Seriously? Their due date is 3 months earlier than Project Eternity
    - No creativity with their tiers and tier artwork. Everything seems pulled straight off Project Eternity's Kickstarter.
    - No public forums. Apparently, the forums are coming. You also have to be a backer to get onto their private forums. In a sense, you have to pay to get on their forums. They should be trying to build a community with good and bad criticism. Not get people to buy their way onto their forums to give input.

    They have a CEO (John Romero) who seems strangely absent from the pitch video until the end where he's grinning when they deliver the game on a pillow to the door. if he's the CEO, then he should be trying to pitch this game with Brenda and Tom throughout the video.

    Also one of their updates before they changed it was: "You asked for it, you begged, you pleaded, and YOU GOT IT"

    lol wut? You begged? You pleaded? And because of this, some people left and withdrew their pledges.

    It seems more like a parody than anything else. Nothing comes across as serious. There's no creativity and the artwork is bleah. And their updates are hopeless. Their latest update was about the concept art already on their kickstarter site?

    The game is a mess and comes across as Time Cop set thousands of years in the future who then goes back thousands of years in the past to fight dragons in a fantasy setting to try and 'set things straight' so the future is safe from destruction.

    We already had something like this and the TV show was called Terra Nova. :/

    BrudeSily
  • eksterekster Member Posts: 234
    I completely agree with their start. First time I looked at it, I said no way. It looked like a fast thrown thing without much idea... but it seems like they have a good idea, they're just not very good at the PR part. AndBrenda and Tom are known to make some real good work in the past, and reading their updates makes me want to see the game happening. But yeah, I really wish they were more active in updating, I can understand how that can kill it for a lot of people.

    As for the two games thing, it makes sense as it's not really two games, but more of 'the other half' of the game universe. It's the same game, same engine, same story, just different timeline and area. It wouldn't take too much time or take too much extra effort as all the code will already be there. All they would need to do is write the story, make some new models, skills and areas and that's all.

    Like I said, I completely understand some people not wanting to, but personally, I really want it to be made now that they've released much better details.

  • ginger_hammerginger_hammer Member Posts: 160
    Sadly looks like its a non-starter for me, just feels all over the shop without a clear defined game format. I honestly don't think it will be funded. They may come back with a better design at a later date.

  • Metal_HurlantMetal_Hurlant Member Posts: 324
    This has been cancelled. Doesn't surprise me.

  • typo_tillytypo_tilly Member Posts: 5,702
    edited October 2012
    Huh. I would've been somewhat interested in supporting this.

    Brenda Brathwaite was involved in the Wizardry series from the first or second game -- I think beginning as a game tester. She did at least write the story and dialogue of Wizardry 8 (or most of it anyway). Tom Hall is a big enough name with Commander Keen and Anachronox. Romero would be involved on some level because he's Brenda's partner, as far as I know.

    Thing is, Sir-Tech, the most recent Wizardry team, has been split up for a decade... I even heard that some of the key members have died -_-... and the original creators have long since moved on -- and the license is in Japan now, where spin-offs are being created.

    If more of the original -- or even Wizardry 8 -- team were together, a pitch to create a spiritual successor to the Wizardry series would have gone much better. Or if they would've proposed to make a sequel to Anachronox, which was turn-based, although jRPGish.

    EDIT - changed wording from "old school games" to "the Wizardry series" so as to improve clarity and not cause offense.

    Post edited by typo_tilly on
  • Metal_HurlantMetal_Hurlant Member Posts: 324
    tilly said:

    a pitch to create a spiritual successor to old school games would have gone much better.

    See I don't get this. What defines an 'old school RPG'? Would you say the IE games are 'old school'? The term is meaningless to me since I grew up on the Atari 2600, 130XE, C64 and Amiga.

    If the IE games are 'old school', then you never saw Obsidian use the term when they pitched Project Eternity. Obsidan didn't need to use cliche's. You don't need cliche's to sell a video game.

  • typo_tillytypo_tilly Member Posts: 5,702

    tilly said:

    a pitch to create a spiritual successor to old school games would have gone much better.

    See I don't get this. What defines an 'old school RPG'? Would you say the IE games are 'old school'? The term is meaningless to me since I grew up on the Atari 2600, 130XE, C64 and Amiga.

    If the IE games are 'old school', then you never saw Obsidian use the term when they pitched Project Eternity. Obsidan didn't need to use cliche's. You don't need cliche's to sell a video game.
    Interesting.

    I meant they should have pitched either for a spiritual successor to Wizardry or Anachronox. I was not attempting to offend you by implying what is or is not an old school game. From looking back now, I can see that my sentence on Anachronox was clear, but not on Wizardry.

    The term old school itself is relative to the age and experience of the person speaking anyway. I was using the phrase generally. I could have - and I should have - said "create a spiritual successor to this series" rather than say "old school". I'm glad, at least, that I was clear when referring to Anachronox.

    If you want to discuss your confusion over what defines an 'old school RPG', make a thread for it? :) I won't participate, but if it's on your mind, go for it.

  • Metal_HurlantMetal_Hurlant Member Posts: 324
    tilly said:



    If you want to discuss your confusion over what defines an 'old school RPG', make a thread for it? :) I won't participate, but if it's on your mind, go for it.


    I'm not confused over the term or definition of 'old school rpg'. Nice dig there. It sounds like you're not sure of what 'old school rpg' is.

    It's a cliche at best, and trying to 'look cool' at worst when you're trying to sell something like loot drop did. It comes from the 'retro gaming' way of playing old games. Back in the 90s, everyone I knew referred to it as retrogaming or classic gaming. Now, it's referred to as 'old school'.

  • typo_tillytypo_tilly Member Posts: 5,702
    edited October 2012


    I'm not confused over the term or definition of 'old school rpg'.


    See I don't get this. What defines an 'old school RPG'? Would you say the IE games are 'old school'?

    Based on this previous comment of yours, I thought you were confused over what an 'old school RPG' was. I misinterpreted your text.

    ---


    Nice dig there. It sounds like you're not sure of what 'old school rpg' is.

    *facepalm* -_-
    Listen, I don't care what you think of me. And I'm not out to prove to you what I know or don't know. :|


    It's a cliche at best, and trying to 'look cool' at worst when you're trying to sell something like loot drop did. It comes from the 'retro gaming' way of playing old games. Back in the 90s, everyone I knew referred to it as retrogaming or classic gaming. Now, it's referred to as 'old school'.

    I also don't care about how things were in the 90s for you, how phrasing changed over time where you lived, or what game systems you grew up on.

    I commented in this thread because of Brenda Brathwaite's link to the Wizardry series. You jumped on me over my use of some trivial phrase, which I changed and clarified. What is or is not 'old school' is obviously important to you, and I'm sorry to have triggered this.

  • Metal_HurlantMetal_Hurlant Member Posts: 324
    edited October 2012
    I've said all along and you can see it in my first post in this thread is for loot drop (and for anyone else for that matter) to stop with the cliche's like 'old school'. It doesn't help to sell the game since the term is so vague that it comes across as vague. There are so many different types of rpgs (eg. First person, isometric, etc) from the 90s that to try and sell a game as 'old school' seems like a marketing ploy.

    That's what I've been trying to say all along. Stop with the cliche's. Just sell the game on its own merits instead of resorting to cliche's.

  • ginger_hammerginger_hammer Member Posts: 160
    For me the kickstarter project had far too little information and seemed too much undecided and confused. The mix between the picture of an old fantasy environment then a dorky looking 'future' hero seems a very odd mix. 1m off the bat for a few ideas seemed a bit too steep as well.

    Hopefully they will take time to think about it, get a clear defined spec, develop ideas and then get funding out at kickstarter again.

  • DrugarDrugar Member Posts: 1,566
    It's almost a textbook example of how not to do a kickstarter;

    Cater to the same niche as a massively succesful competitor while they're also doing a kickstarter
    Set a very high base goal
    Try to cash in on names, while vastly overestimating the recognition of those names.
    Try to cash in on little more than a concept thought (in this case, "it's going to be an old-school RPG")
    Only hastily throw together a plot and/or plan after a few days when a lot of people who have already seen your pitch have filed you under "Not interesting" because of lack of content.
    Explain the complex dual-game plan in a very round-about and unclear way, after giving the impression that even managing a kickstarter is already proving too much of a challenge.

    I want to support every RPG kickstarter out there (note 'want to', I'm not a millionaire (yet)) but when I saw the initial posting and the followups, I could do little more than facepalm every time.

    They need to go back to the drawing board, reconsider their priorities and come back looking professional, instead of looking like they just wanted to jump on the bandwagon.

    ginger_hammer
  • eksterekster Member Posts: 234
    I'm disappointed to see them cancel it, but I knew that chances of it happening were pretty high as I glanced over it and said no way the first time. Their beginning was pretty bad and lacking of pretty much everything... but I really started to like it when the details started coming out.

    I loved games that mixed fantasy and scifi (my favourites were Wizardry and Phantasy Star) and this was an excellent opportunity for it. Hopefully they'll give it another shot after better preparing themselves. I'd hate to see this idea get lost.

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