Kickstarter Kompilation: July 2021 edition
A documentary and an official revival of a retro Japanese series is on deck this month
Bam, 2021 is half-over. Bam, summer is in full-effect. Bam, here's a collection of upcoming crowdfunding projects we think will interest you.
As always, we have no insider information or financial interest in any of these projects, and no one at Retronauts has been compensated for including anything on this page. Also, in light of the ongoing pandemic, we recommend only backing crowdfunding campaigns if you feel comfortable with your own security and stability.
Platform: PC, iOS, Android, with NES & Game Boy stretch goals
Campaign ends: July 7
Estimated delivery time: December 2021
Minimum pledge to receive the game: €12 (about $15 US, digital copy only)
"Skeler Boy is a psychological horror adventure" promises the Kickstarter page, adding "it will be a dark and disturbing video game." It looks like a classic game from the early 90s though, and if the developer exceeds their funding goals they want to port it to the NES and the original Game Boy.
Note that €12 is for a digital copy; physical packages start at the €50 level and include genuine red-and-blue 3D glasses because yes, Skeler Boy also works in 3D.
Platform: Windows, Mac, Linux, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One & Series X/S, PS4 & 5
Campaign ends: July 8
Estimated delivery time: July 2022
Minimum pledge to receive the game: €15 (about $18 US, digital only)
As a throwback to the early days of 3D platformers, Frogun includes "crisp pixels and chunky polygons," a delicious combination that I would enjoy in any video game. Its perspective is more overhead than over-shoulder, but the look of the game is very Mega Man Legends/Tron Bonne in my opinion. However, the gimmick in Frogun is that "your grappling hook is a frog (and your friend)" which looks adorable.
Note that €15 is for a digital copy; physical packages start at the €75 level.
Sweet Dreams Alex
Campaign ends: July 12
Estimated delivery time: March 2022
Minimum pledge to receive the game: €15 (about $18 US)
As the title indicates, this is a game about Alex's dreams. Alex is only five years old, and they have a nightmare problem-literally, as there are monsters trying to join them in bed. In Sweet Dreams Alex, the player creates obstacles to keep the creatures of the night away from Alex as long as possible. I think it's reminiscent of tower defense games but instead of setting up turrets, you manipulate the enemies' paths to prevent them from reaching their goal.
Lights, Camera, Slaughter
Platform: Windows, Mac
Campaign ends: July 16
Estimated delivery time: October 2021
Minimum pledge to receive the game: £6 (about $9 US)
I've been on a real horror kick lately, so this title which marries PlayStation 1 aesthetics with 80's slasher films on VHS appeals to me on multiple levels (the tracking/film grain stuff can be turned off if that's not your speed). The project is a solo-effort and is on target to launch this Halloween, so the funding goal is relatively low.
Campaign ends: July 22
Estimated delivery time: November 2021
Minimum pledge to receive the game: £3 (about $5 US)
Here's another 90's throwback concept, though In case the title doesn't make it obvious, TimeShifters is a first-person shooter in the vein of TimeSplitters (with a significant graphical nod to GoldenEye 007 as well). Besides the usual assortment of guns and humanoid opponents, there are also "challenges" which will feature "pig racing, darts, barrel shooting, blackjack, pint smashing, solving murder cases and much more."
First Person Shooter: The Definitive FPS Documentary
Platform: it's a movie
Campaign ends: July 26
Estimated delivery time: December 2022
Minimum pledge to receive the film: £30 (about $42 US, digital only)
Speaking of first-person shooters, here's a project seeking to document the history of that genre in film form. The list of interviewees certainly covers a lot of well-known developers in that field, including pro-level players who will share their insights in how these games have become hotly competitive in the world of speedruns and eSports.
Note that £30 is for a digital copy of the film; backers looking for a DVD or Blu-ray copy must pledge at least £60 (though shipping to the US is included in that price).
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Campaign ends: July 30
Estimated delivery time: January 2022
Minimum pledge to receive the game: ¥4000 (about $36 US, digital only)
Seven years ago, in Retronauts episode 30, we discussed the long-dormant Valis series and generally lamented how it descended into obscurity. With the 35th anniversary of the original game coming this December, a mobile game company has purchased the rights to Valis and is planning to bring the first three games to the Nintendo Switch (the fourth is already there as part of the Nintendo Switch Online service).
Note that this is not a Kickstarter and the entire campaign is being conducted in Japanese. Also, if I'm not mistaken, there are sets that include physical rewards but not the game itself; all tiers either include a download code or no game at all.