Kickstarter Coming Soon!

With the release of The Birth of Maelstrom: Ghosthand‘s demo just around the corner, I have decided that the best way to get the game into people’s hands is with a Kickstarter campaign.

For those of you just hearing about it, Ghosthand is a JRPG-style indie game that I have been developing for some time now. Completion always seemed like a far way off, but now that I have a working demo that gives players a good idea of what the final game will look like, I can now say with confidence that the game will be finished next year. Getting a game out there takes more than just hard work, though. It takes money, and that’s where Kickstarter comes in.

The first part of the dynamic title menu. Dynamic, because it changes into…
… this! Having a title screen that changes and foreshadows the game’s mood is just one of the many unique aspects of this game. The title song, Soldiers of Ghosthand, reflects this change.

One of the challenges in this world of indie publishing, for both games and novels, is distinguishing yourself from a very crowded field. Most of the time I spent getting Ghosthand where it is now was spend on crafting its identity, giving it a different feel than other games of this kind. One place where I put my stamp was with the game’s music, which you can hear down below. Giving the game its personality took work, but the kind of experience you will get will be unlike everything else out there.

One reason it’s different is because it’s not merely a game, but part of a greater world that crosses different media. I’m calling it The World of Farshores.

I’ve been writing successfully for a while now, having won a couple of awards from the Writers of the Future contest and getting three of my short stories published in anthologies alongside amazing authors such as Brandon Sanderson, David Farland, and Todd McCaffrey. So, in addition to The Birth of Maelstrom game series (with Ghosthand as the first installment), I will release The Farshores Saga series of novels alongside it.

While many other worlds like Warcraft, Forgotten Realms, and the like have crossed media in the same way, they often start out as one thing and get translated into something else, usually by a new creator with a different vision.

With The World of Farshores, I’ve taken a different approach. Both the five-game series and the five-book series will be developed together and released in an alternating schedule.

The Kickstarter rewards will reflect this. While the game will be the main focus of the campaign, the first novel in the series, called Shoreseeker, will be one of the backer rewards. By backing the game, you could read the book in ebook or paperback before it’s released anywhere else. In addition to the game’s demo, I will have a sample of the book available.

I will post more updates as the campaign nears. Your support will go a long way to making this a reality, so I hope you will support it when it starts!

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What I’ve Been Up To

It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything, but I wanted to let you know that I have been busy. Shoreseeker, the first book of the Farshores Saga, is looking for a home right now, and while I’ve been searching for an agent, I’ve also been hard at work on Shoreseeker’s younger sibling Drawingpath.

Feedback from my writing groups on the new book has been very promising (and helpful). One of the group’s veterans even told me that it includes the best writing of mine she’s seen yet.

That’s what’s been happening on the writing side. But as I’ve mentioned in an earlier post, I’ve got another project in the works: a video game.

Writing a novel is a very specialized task. While there are many aspects to that task, it is really focused: type words on a page to tell a story. That’s it. If you have that skill, you’ve basically got everything you need to write a novel.

Unlike writing a novel, making a video game requires a whole range of skills, from art to programming to composing music. Traditionally, each of these tasks was assigned a single person or team.

But if you’re completely mad, you might think you can do them all yourself. Such is the life of a solo indie game developer.

Here is a taste of what I’ve developed so far:

One of the skills I’ve learned since starting this project was composing music. That song, called “Soldiers of Ghosthand,” was written by me specifically for the title menu (which is now fully functional, a whole design challenge in itself). Most people when they play this game will probably just hit that start button and not even listen to the song or see the atmosphere changes at all. And that’s fine. But I’m one of those players who likes to find the tiny details that gives a game its character, and I’ve added plenty of details like that in my game for just that kind of player.

A playable demo for The Birth of Maelstrom: Ghosthand is coming soon. For updates as they occur, follow me here:

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