The Long Dark Crashes onto Kickstarter
Now that Kickstarter has opened up their crowdfunding platform to projects based in Canada, we’ve seen a massive influx of groups looking for money to make projects real. The one that has piqued my interest is a new game from a new indie studio based out in BC.
Hinterland Studio has brought together a core team that includes developers whose previous work experience includes time at BioWare, Volition, Relic, Riot and more triple-A games and studios to make a first-person survival sim called The Long Dark.
In The Long Dark, you will play as bush pilot William Mackenzie whose DeHavilland Beaver crashes after you mysterious lights on the horizon. You end up stranded in the Pacific Northwest and are pushed to the limit to survive without the aid of technology or so much as a handy survival guide. You have to make your own way through The Long Dark’s sandbox world with only your wit to keep you alive.
Hinterland keep referring to the game as a survival sim because they’re promising that the game will track weather, time of day, temperature, food/water, energy use/consumption and gear condition. Given that the team has a bunch of ex-BioWare devs on it, it shouldn’t surprise you that they’re also promising a mature story, a detailed and explorable open world, memorable characters and moral choices in the game.
Speaking of BioWare people, you’ll get to hear from some BioWare favourites during the game. Mark Meer (AKA Commander Shepard) will be playing the game’s protagonist William Mackenzie. The music will be composed by composing duo of Cris Velasco and Sascha Dikiciyan who you may know from their BioWare work on the Mass Effect franchise or from the God of War franchise, the Borderlands franchise and dozens of other games.
The Long Dark will be funded in part by the Canada Media Fund’s Experimental Stream but still needs funding on Kickstarter to make the game a reality. The funding from the Canadian government is the reason why so many triple-A veterans are able to come together to make an indie game with a reasonable funding goal.
Hinterland is asking for $200,000 to make this game a reality. After four of thirty days in its campaign, The Long Dark is over a quarter of the way to its goal. It crossed the $50,000 mark on Day 3 and KickTraq has it trending towards collecting $427,000 which would unlock stretch goals that allow for Oculus Rift support, an extended soundtrack and the game will be localized in French, German, Italian and Spanish, among other bonuses.
Having taken a look at the early art and considering I’m a bit of a BioWare fan, I’m in on this Kickstarter. I really should stop because I’ve spent far too much money on Kickstarting games already. Still, if Hinterland pulls off what they’re promising, it’ll certainly be worth the $20 they’re asking for a digital copy of the game. But that’s the trick with Kickstarter, isn’t it? You’re pledging to help a company and hoping that they come through on their promises.