Kickstarter Kompilation: June 2023 edition
Not bragging, but I had heard of Gregory Horror Show before today
This month's crowdfunding roundup has something for everyone: A new game for an old console, a new game that looks old, a revival of an old media property, and a good old-fashioned print project. 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.
Quester (ends June 11 estimated reward date June 2023)
Quester, a decidedly old-fashioned RPG, first caught my eye at Tokyo Game Show last year as it combined the sensibilities of an early-80s computer-based dungeon crawler but threw in a modern, appealingly-designed party of characters. I didn't get very far in my hands-on playtime because the game is rather challenging and entirely in Japanese, making it even harder to quickly follow all the moving parts.
Indie developer Thousand Games has already released Quester on Steam but, recognizing the language barrier, has turned to Kickstarter to fund an English localization, offering early access to the translated version to backers willing to pledge at least 5000 yen.
Heterotopias (ends June 13 estimated reward date Q4 2023)
We've featured Lost in Cult in these pages before, but this time the publisher is raising money independently (i.e. forgoing Kickstarter or any other third party) for Heterotopias, an upcoming line of zines. Digital versions of "the world's foremost publication on game spaces and architecture" are already complete and widely available, but these physical editions will feature new material in addition to being tangible.
Emberbane (ends June 15 estimated reward date Feb 2024)
In case you were worried we wouldn't have a pixel-art indie Metroidvania this month, Emberbane is here to check that box. The developer cites Avatar as an inspiration, but not the James Cameron movie—no one is blue here. Instead, the player character's powers are drawn from four different elements, kinda like that cartoon show everyone tells me I should watch.
Kudzu (ends June 24 estimated reward date Dec 2023)
Finally, a Game Boy game that truly embraces the natural green hue of the original handheld's LCD screen: Kudzu is all about gardening but in an action way, as you fight your way through the eponymous plant to rescue your lost mentor in the wilderness. A beta ROM is available on itch.io right now, and the developer pledges that the full release should run on actual hardware and emulators alike.
Gregory Horror Show (ends June 30 estimated reward date June 2024)
Originally an animated program in the late 90s, Gregory Horror Show became a mini-franchise for its creator, Naomi Iwata, as the series spawned toys, manga, and even a video game developed by Capcom (one that never made it to the US). Now Iwata wants to make a new game based on his property, an "action RPG" according to his CampFire page. It's all in Japanese, but English versions of Gregory Horror Show were produced over the years, so there's bound to be some fans out there excited by this announcement. And who knows, maybe this time the game will see North American shores for a change.