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Project Aella© by InnerSanctum Games
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My name is Mr Oluwafemi Shonibare, and I am the Project Lead and Designer of an independent video game project currently in it's early stages of development. As of now, the title is tentatively named "Project Aella", however closer to release, a final name will be decided upon. I am excited to present this unique opportunity to everyone around the world, because I fully believe this project has what it takes to make a positive impact on the gaming community.
What is Project Aella©?
Project Aella tells the story of a young female protagonist who has to deal with the pain and loneliness of loss at an early age. Her experiences through life drive her to seek the truth, the reality of the cold world she lives in.
Throughout the game, the protagonist will come across various interesting, distinct and memorable characters who will contribute to the story in one way or another. Some of these characters will be usable at certain parts of the game due to their different abilities (e.g. some characters are better at CQC than others.CQC = Close Quarters Combat).
The game is pencilled to be predominantly a Crime Scene Investigation game. However what we intend to achieve is an amalgamation of different genres into one unique experience (varied gameplay styles from adventure, driving, fact finding, exploration, stealth, undercover work, fighting, high speed chases e.t.c). Different missions will dictate what skills take precedent over the others. Some missions might require a combination of your different "skills" that you hone throughout the progression of the game. Skills are upgraded via a "skill point system". Think of it as a sort of upgrade system for skills and weapons.
While the game has an underlying theme running beneath it, each mission you successfully complete will be considered a piece of a much bigger puzzle. You will also have a "competence score" that grades how well you solve missions or accomplish tasks within the game (Finding all the evidence in relation to a particular crime e.t.c.).
In the end, we intend to achieve an immersive interactive entertainment experience, which can be enjoyed across multiple gaming devices.
When did it all begin ?
The idea to commence with this project was conceived on the 15th March 2011. At that stage, the idea to create this game was a vague concept in my mind. As time progressed, I continually had this irresistible impulse compelling me to "Do it! Do it". I was confused as I couldn't understand why this urge was so strong.
Ever since then, I have dedicated my life and time to solidifying the concept, and prepping the project for the next stage of production.
How are the characters created ?
My Philosophy regarding facial appearances:
"Your face is a very vital part of your overall unique Identity"
I believe this is true because, people see your face and instantly recognize it is you. In some cases others might see your face and slowly remember you. In a lot of cases, having a distinct voice complements a distinct face definition.
With this in mind, I decided to adopt the technique of using real people (model and actors) as a basis for character creation. What this means is that all the main characters in the game will retain a unique identity. I also believe it gives substance to each concept, thereby reducing the time it takes to complete and realize them.
The photograph at the top of this page depicts a professional actor known as Carl Wharton. I am glad to be working with Carl as he forms the basis for a very defining character in the game. Just by looking at the photograph, you can guess what sort of character he forms the basis for.
What is done:
- Stage themed photo shoots for a day with different models and actors attending in different specified outfits.
- I handle the photography, and capture a series of photographs of these models according to a pre-defined guideline (s).
- I hand over these images to the Lead Artist for the Project. His name is Sam Denmark, and I am excited to be working with him.
The photograph at the top of this page demonstrates how he was able to create a concept from an existing image from a photo shoot. Sam did this in four hours, and this was only a low resolution test edit. Please view Sam Denmark's webpage at
Luckily, Sam has a couple of Colleagues who will be helping with the 3D Character modelling and world creation aspect of the game.
Digital art is a very important part of this project, and it ties in with the perks too (you will see how shortly).
For more about Carl Wharton, please visit
This project intends to accomplish the following:
Have distinct voice actors for each main character in the game (Including PC and NPC's.PC = Playable Characters.NPC = Non Playable Character).
- Have distinct backing themes for each character along with a prevalent theme.
- Have themes for different situations (danger, discovery, reconciliation e.t.c.). This will really set the mood for each mission.
- Release a digitally downloadable music album with all the tracks from the game
- As of now, I am yet to hire a composer. However work is already underway to fill this position.
The audio is a very important part of this project, and it ties in with the perks too (you will see how shortly).
Development and targeted platforms
After much deliberation and consideration, I have decided to develop this title on the OUYA gaming console as the main platform, and through the use of the UNITY 4.0 game engine, publish the game on various other platforms. This will be a download only game.
The reasons behind this decision include:
- The OUYA is a new console released off an extremely successful Kickstarter project. It runs android 4.1 Jelly Bean, and costs only £99.00 (extremely cheap).
- The console is also the development kit and contains the UNITY 4.0 for game creation. Lets put it this way: The £99.00 console and your PC is all you need.
Publishing a game & Licenses:It is completely FREE to publish your game once it is completed (No Licensing fees either). Those of you familiar with the entertainment industry know that publishing is something that can really eat into you if you are independent. This console is designed for independent development.
- Porting the game to other consoles:The UNITY 4.0 is versatile in publishing your game to just about any console. Do you realize that by the OUYA already having a full version of UNITY 4.0 in it, Publishing the game to other platforms is dramatically simplified ?
This is a huge bonus to the development team because the aim is to have an OUYA unit for every developer and artist on this project.
And the UNITY 4.0:
1) The engine:http://unity3d.com/unity/
DESKTOP:WINDOWS, MAC and LINUX (UBUNTU)
CONSOLE: PS4 (PSN), XBOX ONE
The proposed game world ? When and where is it set ?
This proposed game world is set to relatively modern day and most events take place in a city (name undecided) that draws it's inspiration from famous American cities like Los Angeles, New York e.t.c.(Think L.A.P.D. and N.Y.P.D scenarios)
Sources of Inspiration to the Project
The following inspire this project:
My Lovely Daughter:Hopefully she will grow up to realise the hard work Daddy has invested in this project.
Quantic Dream:I have a high amount of respect for these guys as their work on Heavy Rain and Fahrenheit were truly defining gaming experiences.
Naughty Dog:These guys are sending shock waves throughout the gaming industry and I truly admire all their work.
Santa Monica Studios:Each time these guys release a new game, it is as though they surpass their last effort by a great margin. GOW: Ascension was a technical marvel in my eyes. It is obvious a alot of hard work went into that game.
How has the Project been funded so far ?
So far, the project has been privately funded (from my pockets). However I have got to the realistic stage in it's development where expansion and achievements are growing rapidly. This exceeds my financial ability. Two photo shoots have been successfully completed.
What will make Project Aella stand out ?
The overall experience. From a game design perspective, here are our goals that we hope to achieve as a team:
Create a unique story and mission driven experience with a variation of gameplay styles to augment that experience.
- Present unique, convincing, memorable and unforgettable characters (Using real people as a basis).
RPG elements:Some areas in the game will require using an alternate character to the protagonist. You will also have the choice to upgrade skills and equipment.
Unique gameplay mechanics: Crowd negotiation, stealth/undercover photography, Lucid dreaming e.t.c. are only a few of the exciting gameplay mechanics that will be implemented. I wouldn't go into this too much, as i risk spoiling the juicy surprises. Ok, I give in. *Spoiler: The use of Smart Phones is a big part of this game.*. You use it to view and store information, as well as communicate with other characters in the game (and online during missions).
Dowloadable episodic content:Imagine being able to download episodic missions even after the game has been completed ? Exactly. There are plans for this project to have pretty strong developer support. Downloadable episodic content will depend on console manufacturer at times.
Online Multiplayer:We have established that by default, different characters will excel at different things. The plans for online multiplayer include solving missions with your friends online, engaging in training and sparring excercises, exchange of information, clues e.t.c., and various exploration options. Most downloadable episodic content can be played with your friends or alone, and you will receive a "competence score" after each mission has been completed. Remember: Your choice of character is important for harder more specialized missions. Online Multiplayer will depend on console manufacturer at times.
Choices:What we will have is characters. Characters driven to make different choices. Your choices will genuinely affect the outcome of many situations throughout the game (as well as your competence score). Some of these choices will be subject to character histories and confronting the "skeletons in your closet" scenarios.
A Digital illustration:There will be a digital illustration book showing off different exclusive artworks.
- Behind the Scenes Content:There will be digital content looking at the process of making the game and all that it entailed.
These are only but a few on what we have planned for this project.
At what stage of development is the Project at ?
At this stage, I have privately funded and organized the completion of two full day photo shoots, and I am prepping the content for the Lead artist to begin working on. I also have 3-5 more shoots to complete. In effect, the project is still in it's conception stages.
I am presently in the process of negotiating with the Lead Artist's colleagues, who have a vast experience with the UNITY 4.0 Engine and will be working on this project as well. I intend to begin work on the 3D model immediately.
What help is needed ?
Your financial support (donations) and feedback are needed to bring this project to life (It will be a very healthy start). There has been an enormous amount of time, effort and dedication invested into this, that I fully believe your help will go a long way to ensuring this reaches a release stage and is published on all target platforms successfully. Every member of this team is passionate about this project and I am lucky to have such a wonderful team of people on board.
Your donations will go towards:
- Completing all shoots and successfully capturing all content required for Concept art work as well as the digital illustrations. The cost of this include the photo shoots and all that it entails (e.g. Paying Models and Actors).
- Further work on the concept art and Story-boarding.
- Securing a composer that will begin working on the games soundtrack.
- Securing the Dev kits (OUYA consoles) for every programmer and artist working on the project (as time progresses, there will be more of these skills on board). Your donations will also go towards paying these talents.
- Securing voice actors for the various characters in the game.
- Releasing the game on platforms that require a publishing fees.
- Creation of downloadable online content and a robust and fun multiplayer experience.
I fully believe with your help, this project will be off to a very good start, and development will rapidly commence. Think about it, we have reached this stage with little to no funding ? The passion is there.
There will be perks for each tier of donor, however,every single donor will be acknowledged in one way or another. Please view the perks below for more details.
Once again, thank you for your time, and look forward to all your support and interests.
Mr Oluwafemi Shonibare
Project Lead and Designer
Feel free to send me messages!
I'm not sure if these links will show up properly, but I'd like to introduce you to the team so far!
This is my Cloud Storage drive link with Viewing Permissions:
PROJECT AELLA: THE TEAM SO FAR
Once again, Thanks from the whole team!!!!