As reported earlier, Shining Empire is a Shining Force inspired online MMO strategy title- originally titled Shining Force Online but Sega stopped that. Arcade County, the developer behind Shining Empire, has brought Shining Empire back to Kickstarter for one final attempt at funding the project.
Arcade County cites the first Kickstarter failure was due to lack of gameplay videos and visual material along with a confusing explanation of the game. It was pretty bad folks- worse than our first Kickstarter.
“I got a lot of emails from people begging me to not make it an MMO. It wasn’t, but people got confused. They knew that I’ve pretty much just been making MMO’s for the past decade so they assume this would also be. We really needed some gameplay footage, so I grinded away for a few weeks and came up with some pretty detailed videos which should better explain what kind of game this is.”
While there are now gameplay videos availble on the Kickstarter page, none are combat related. There are videos for farming, animal training and the like but none showing the actual nature of combat in Shining Empire. That is the video that people probably wanted to see more than anything else.
“It’s single player! I promise! It’s funny how much people seem to dislike MMO’s. I’m with them. I wanted to do something different with Shining Force Online but you get stuck in these traps where you just end up doing what everyone else did. There are some serious design flaws with MMO’s that we can’t escape. The only way to break the taboos is to stop making these games. So this is a complete 180 from where we were with Shining Force Online. it begins with building your own fantasy city. That’s what these videos really cover. It’s sort of a mash-up of Viva Pinata, Sim City 2000, and Roller Coaster Tycoon. The difference with our game is you can leave your land and explore the same as you can in any adventure game. It’s not JUST a city builder.”
“As it starts -“, Mulvany explains, “Your uncle was the subordinate of the king. An insurrection of knights took power and he was killed in a battle. The game opens up with you visiting him on his deathbed. He explains the situation and gives you his plot of land but urges you to not take revenge against the newly formed empire. This is a real decision you can make. You don’t have to get involved. You can literally just build on your land and not worry about it. You can however seek revenge, and that’s going to take a lot of work. You’ve got to weaken the empire as best you can. Sabotage their supplies, assassinate their leaders – create doubt amongst their ranks. Even recruit some of them into your army. Battles are going to be massive. Hundreds of warriors on both sides. We’ve had to work in an auto-save system during combat because some of these might last hours. We’ve got a screenshot that shows a very busy screen but even that’s only around 40. Imagine when there’s 10 times that many. We want this game to last a long time. It’s going to be $15 but I don’t want anyone finishing this game until they’ve put 100 hours into it. A lot of games talk big about having hundreds of hours of gameplay but then you see these speed runs where someone finishes it in 15 minutes. That’s going to be impossible. I want to see a speed run on youtube that takes 90 hours. That’s my dream with this game.”
“We’re hoping to ship this title in November on Steam (Mac and PC) as well as iPad/iPhone. This all depends on the Kickstarter. There won’t be a third try. If it doesn’t work out we’ll probably just open source what we’ve got and move on. That being said, once the game is completed I would probably open source it in a year or two anyway. All of my old games are open source so why not keep the trend going?”
Check out their Kickstarter, currently well below minimum funding but still has time to go, and see if this is something you want to support or not.