Why flexible funding? (and some personal note)
Some people have asked me why I decided to go for flexible funding. I want to assure you that this game IS GOING TO BE RELEASED NO MATTER WHAT! This game is very important to me personally. My mother's death from cancer back in 2012 led me to realize that life is short, and that if I don't accomplish my dreams to make my own games now it may be too late in the future. So I went for the craziest, funniest and simply enjoyable idea I could come up with as a way to cheer myself up after a long and harsh experience. The reason I chose flexible funding is because basically every penny helps a poor indie developer who's trying to build something cool and original for the indie community. Any contribution will go directly to fund software licenses and other development expenses and basically help push this game's release faster (and in return you get a copy of the game when it's released). This is my first time crowd funding and I now realize that it may have been better to choose fixed funding since people are more inclined to help that way. Rookie mistake, but sadly it's too late to change that.
Help this project reach its $7000 goal and it won't matter anyway :)
Sorry for the confusion!
We're planning to release a demo within the next couple of weeks, stay tuned!
In the press:
October 3, 2013 - Rock Paper Shotgun
October 3, 2013 - Gaming On Linux
Kick monsters' butt, collect animal farts and occupy your organizational OCD… Say what?
Worlds of Wanda is a crazy, fun, challenging and incredibly silly action-arcade game. What does that mean? In a nutshell, the game combines simple rock-paper-scissor mechanics in a fun action-packed adventure.
If that didn't make you wet your pants just yet, read along or watch the video above. Hey, why not both?
The game features a new and truly unique kind of game-play experience. Every time Wanda visits a new planet, both their souls connect, thus allowing her to control the planet and move it around. The local animal population can either be accumulated into towers or if dropped in a certain order, scare each other. The scared animals run away while leaving their gassy flatulence behind. Wanda collects that gas and uses it throughout the game and to travel from planet to planet. So basically this is a game about farts.
The order of which animals scare each other is called "the circle of shame". Its mechanics are based on the game rock-paper-scissor. In Worlds of Wanda that means that Elephants scare Lions, Lions scare Dogs, Dogs scare Cats, Cats scare Mice, and eventually Mice scare Elephants. Thus, the circle of shame.
The game lets you dive into it as a new player, but soon enough you can challenge yourself and play it more skillfully. It can really matter how well you build your towers, because the more animals scared on the same move, the more gas you accumulate at one go. While regular players can settle for doing one tower combos, the mechanics we've built support combos on multiple towers together if you do them fast enough. This requires more planning of your moves yet is far more rewarding.
Besides dropping animals Wanda can also release some of the gas she accumulates as a special attack! She can either do it in small bursts or if held long enough, in one super big one! This attack can help her in tight situations in the game, including boss fights!
But that is not all, Solid-Ivan will constantly hinder your efforts by sending his evil robotic minions and attempt stop you from collecting that precious gas. Your second goal as the player is to avoid enemy attacks, defend your towers and even attack the minions back. So basically this is also a game about throwing animals around (we hope PETA doesn’t mind...)
Below is an example from one of the first enemies, the All-Mighty Planet Puncher! Ivan uses it to cause earthquakes that throw your animals from tower and tower while foiling your plans and making it a challenge to do combos. You must use the animals to attack the Planet Puncher and destroy it before it messes your towers too much! Each world comes with its own unique enemies that become more and more challenging!
At the end of each world you will face a monstrous boss! Each boss adds a different kind of gameplay and you will have to find its weakness in order to defeat it. Some in sillier ways than other! They are challenging and fun!
Among these mechanics includes punching the boss directly with the animals, shaking the planet just at the right moment, using boss attacks against themselves and building large towers to attack the boss like a whip! Be sure that there are more cool mechanics in the final game, but we really don't want to spoil you everything, because a big part of the fun is to find that out on your own.
As for final words about the game, we believe a good story is an important key element to a good, memorable game experience. We created a compelling universe with strong interactions between Wanda and the characters she encounters throughout the game. We plan for the characters to be deep, vibrant and to make the player fall in love with them. Maybe, even shed a tear.
Our story begins a long time ago, in planet far far away named Wanda Prime. It was a cold icy planet, with snowy capped mountains and frozen lakes. Its inhabitants, called the Wandas, were rocky and sleepy little creatures caught in an ever lasting hibernation. They were rather hopeless.
As Wanda Prime floated around in space, it got caught in the gravitational pull of one incredibly “hot” sun, which caused some interesting things to happen. Wanda Prime began to heat up, causing its icy mountains to melt, plants to be formed and eventually the Wandas began to evolve from sleepy solids into quirky liquids and finally to their intelligent gassy state.
However not all was fun and dandy for the little Wandas. For their little world was getting too close to its sun! Put on your sunscreen kids, the apocalypse has begun!
So came Chief Wanda, the wise grand master. For he knew the animals of Wanda Prime had a certain trait, they would put off strong wind right after they ate! So a mighty jet engine was built with their gas as its fuel. It saved Wanda Prime, and it looked rather cool!
Wanda Prime was saved from utter destruction! So the Chief finally had time for some warm love and tender. So enters our young and gassy protagonist. The first Wanda to be born directly into a gassy state. Her father the Chief simply named her Wanda as a mark of a new evolved era. As the Chief's daughter she was trained from birth to become her father’s successor as the planet’s protector. It's her job to keep everyone safe by collecting gas from the local animal population and feed it to the planet pusher engine.
However, right before completing her training, she is exiled to the edge of the solar system by the mad and evil Solid-Ivan. He shuts down the planet pusher engine and Wanda Prime is once again in danger! This is where you come in. Your goal is to help Wanda in her mission to get back home and free her gassy friends... All before it’s too late...
Worlds of Wanda’s soundtrack was composed by the very talented Nick Pittsinger (AKA Varien). We are very happy and feel incredibly lucky to work with Nick as he continuously delivers fun, unique tracks that fit perfectly into Worlds of Wanda’s atmosphere.
Here are some samples from the game's soundtrack. There will be more in the final game, each world with completely unique style!
Each perk gives you an extra reward. The more you help the more you get!
- What's the current status of the project?
The lore and gameplay mechanics are currently being polished and there is a working pre-alpha version ready to be made into a full game (a public demo is currently in the making). There is concept art, sketches and documents depicting the entire game from start to finish, some of which were tested in Unity to make sure they're fun to play. The current version (highly dysfunctional mobile version I must say) was tested with random folks we found on the street and responses were very positive! One time a person completely forgot we were there! The neighbor's kids keep coming by asking to play the game and make a sad face when it's over too soon and they can't play the next level. We are sure the game is positively addictive! So you get the picture :)
- Why flexible funding?
Because every penny counts! We've been working on this game for months now testing various version with different mechanics until we found a gameplay formula that we're pleased with. Now we need your help to make this final push and finish the game. We want to complete this project regardless of the campaign's success on Indiegogo because we really believe in it! However, crowd-funding will allow us to be 100% dedicated to this project for the critical months of its development and if super successful, allow us to add more featured we really want to put in. Otherwise we'll be forced to gather funds from other places which might stall the project.
- Why are the next goals so high?
We need the extra money to be able to port and test the game on multiple platforms. Mobile platforms normally require special care due to memory and performance issues and Android specifically is difficult to QA on because there are many different devices out there. We also want to make sure the ported version supports all platform specific features (like Steam / Google Play / iOS leader-boards and achievements). The third goal adds five more platforms than the original goal. We're also considering getting outside help which is expensive.
- Is this an endless runner?
Worlds of Wanda is a full game with multiple levels, each having a start and an end. Progressive gameplay mechanics makes sure you'll always be challenged and there is a back story that is revealed to you as you play through the worlds. So to answer bluntly, no, it is much much more!
- What platform is this game for?
Windows PC at the moment, but since we are using the Unity engine, Mac and Linux releases should come out shortly after. A higher budget will allow to release to more platforms on day one. Budget will have a significant role on this since more platforms mean more OS specific development and beta testing before release (please see Goal Stretching section). We are also planning a mobile version to come out shortly after. We also want to publish on Ouya because we believe in its idea and vision, but we need to purchase the console and learn how to develop to it.
- What about a console release? (3DS, PSVita)
We would LOVE to do a console release, however publishing for console requires a big budget and a lot of work. We will have to make a big buzz before big companies like Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo notice us. The more you help, the better the chances of this becoming a reality.
- How will you distribute the game?
For the PC version we plan to use popular digital distribution services like Steam Greenlight, Desura and Humble Bundle (and others). The mobile version will be released through Google Play, Amazon and Apple App Store. If we're lucky enough, you will also be able to find it on Pirate Bay.
- How will the funding be spent?
Funding will go directly into the process of developing the game, minus taxes and the Indiegogo fee. The first batch of funding will go directly to buying software licenses (specifically Unity pro which costs $1500 and various plugins that will help speed up development). The second batch will go to whatever contractor we're hiring. If we reach the Android / iOS/ Ouya goals we'll also need to purchase some devices for testing. Whatever's left will help with daily costs such as rent and basically help keep us alive.
The amount of features we can put into the game depends on how much funding we get (please see Stretch Goals section). The more you help the better tools we can buy and the more features we can put in the game before we starve.
- When will the game be released?
- Will there be any hidden fees in-game?
None. You get the full game and you never have to pay anything beyond what you helped fund on Indiegogo.
- What does it mean to get development access? (limited perk)
It means you'll be in contact with us through an exclusive forum with more frequent updates than what others will see outside. You may get exclusive playable alpha releases and give direct feedback to influence the game. You will most likely know more about the game and how it works than anybody else too!
- What does it mean to design a boss monster? (limited perk)
It means you will help design a boss monster for one of the worlds including visuals and mechanics. We will have a few meetings about possible ideas that might work and you can send sketches to depict your idea. You don't have to be a professional designer to get this perk and silly / crazy ideas are warmly welcome! However please note that any sexual or otherwise inappropriate ideas will not be accepted. Regardless, this is a game about collecting farts. So common sense is the key.
- I have a question that's not listed here! WHAT DO I DO??
Feedback is important to us! We WANT to hear from you! There are a few ways to contact us:
1. Indiegogo's commenting system
2. Twitter: http://twitter.com/DarkPlan
3. Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/DarkPlanGames
4. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
DarkPlan’s founder, studio director and project manager with professional experience in game development including key work on the game BattleDawn. Yaniv set the spirit and atmosphere of the game, designed the characters, defined the story and developed the core gameplay mechanics. He is responsible for all in-game assets and programming as well as coordinating the project.
- Liron Peer [ LironPeer.com ]
Liron is a professional animator and film maker. She is doing tremendous job in micro defining the game's universe, background stories, in-game story-line, character designs and is mainly responsible for creating cut-scene art. She also helps testing game mechanics and makes sure the cats are well fed.
- Nick Pittsinger ( AKA Varien ) [ VarienOfficial.com ]
Worlds of Wanda’s soundtrack was composed by the very talented Nick Pittsinger (AKA Varien). We are very happy and feel incredibly lucky to work with Nick as he continuously delivers fun, unique tracks that fit perfectly into Worlds of Wanda’s universe.