For this week’s Indie Roundup, we have a bevy of Kickstarters for you to consider backing (just try to resist if you can!). After you read our descriptions of the games, be sure to check out the links to their respective Kickstarter campaigns and their websites, Twitter, and Facebook accounts and give these excellent projects your support.

This week we take a look at the board game-inspired Posthuman SanctuaryLudoria, where you train colorful and unique pets to do your work for you in a Minecraft-like voxel world; and Failure, a complex, genre-blending RTS set in a technologically-advanced, cyberpunk world.

Posthuman Sanctuary (Mighty Box)

Kickstarter / Website / Twitter / Facebook

Touting itself as “one part rogue-like, one part interactive fiction,” Posthuman Sanctuary is an ambitious project that invokes the feeling of a post-apocalyptic nightmare world in a very new way.

You are a survivor in a near-future Europe that has collapsed under the weight of its own political errors, in the chilling wake of a bloody class war fueled by genetic modifications and radical technology. If you can only reach the sanctuary of the Fortress, you may learn more — and ensure your own survival. But to forge across a crumbled land where resources are spare and mutants roam the ruined mansions and markets alike, you’ll need a team behind you.

You start Posthuman: Sanctuary with only one follower, and more join along the way. It’s up to you to keep them together and ensure their survival — and get them to help you ensure yours. Each has their own complex blend of traits: Some are violent, others humane; some are adventurous, others fearful. Your choices in the situations you encounter will affect their morale, their loyalty and more.

Posthuman Sanctuary is created by the popular Posthuman board game and is even created by the same folks, but it’s more than just a direct port of the board game. “We wanted to go a few steps beyond just porting the board game onto digital platforms and really bring the Posthuman world to life,” one of the game’s creators, Gordon Calleja said.

At its core, Posthuman Sanctuary is a game about choice and consequence. Everything you do affects not only your potential to survive in the harsh wastes but also how your followers view, trust and…well, follow you. And since the game is heavily influenced by board game-style play (which is where the game’s rogue-like qualities come into play), no two playthroughs will ever be the same between the game’s robust and randomized character-creation system and the tile-based map-creation system, which you also create at random as you trek across the desolate wilderness on your way to Sanctuary.

There is no official trailer for Posthuman Sanctuary, but you can check out Calleja detailing the game’s systems below.

Ludoria (Eminent Games LLC)

Kickstarter / Website / Twitter / Facebook

Described by our friends over at Cliqist as “Dragon Quest meets Minecraft,” Ludoria aims to capitalize on the seemingly endless Minecraft craze by adding tameable creatures into the mix. In that way, it’s a little bit like Ark: Survival Evolved but with more fantastical creatures in a more cartoony world.

We always felt that sandbox, survival, and RPG games were missing the connection between the players and the creatures around them. So we decided to create a game where we combined the freedom of sandbox game building with creatures that you can tam and train to help you out along your journey.

As you traverse the world of Ludoria, carving out your existence one block at a time, you will come across the game’s varied creatures called Lodoroms, which you can capture and control. Like in Ark, not all of your creatures are simply for combat either, and the game promises that you’ll be able to “use their abilities to accomplish several tasks that are deemed difficult without them.”

Each Ludorom is individually controllable as a character, with it’s unique skills set, stats, and abilities. You can level up your Ludorom to unlock more advanced skills. Some ground type Ludoroms will allow you to collect resources by breaking stones, chopping trees, digging into ground, and breaking things basically. Others will give you the ability to fly around the world freely, and some will open teleportation portals for you to instantly teleport to your village or house.

Besides the Lodoroms, which are obviously the stars of the show, the game features a dynamic world with massive biomes, changing seasons, and procedurally-generated villages. The game looks quite pretty too with colorful characters and impressive landscapes.

Failure (Dream Harvest Games)

Kickstarter / Website / Twitter / Facebook

Last up, we have Failure, an RTS in which you don’t actually control your units.

Yup, you heard me right.

At it’s core, the gameplay revolves around reforming the terrain by raising, lowering, removing and adding hexes in real time. But there’s a lot more to the gameplay in Failure. It’s fast, its tactical and its a fresh experience that feels somewhere between a god game and a tower defence game with a high level of customization.

Drawing inspiration from numerous sources – including books like William Gibson’s Neuromancer and Neal Stephenson’s Snow Crash, films such as Tron, Lawnmower Man and The Matrix, and, of course, games like Starcraft 2 and even Hearthstone – Failure blends a number of genres and features including traditional strategy, tower defense, and collectible card game mechanics (remember when I mentioned Hearthstone?). In the game, you play as a hacker. You align yourself to a faction, each motivated to “control the MetaNet and the data within.”

You’ll battle against Slicers, hackers from other Factions and the MetaNet’s AI in a struggle for domination. To do this you’ll use your customised Library of Scripts to manipulate the MetaNet and gain victory. 

The game takes place in an entirely digital world. Like any true hacker, you use “functions,” which manipulate the world of the game to your favor. These functions will also change the way your units and “constructs” – stationary structures that provide you with defense in your bid to control sectors of the MetaNet – as well as the units and constructs of the enemy. Functions and constructs form the game’s “scripts,” which is where the card game aspects of the gameplay come in. You’ll pick your favorite cards – be they function or construct – to form a deck before going into battle. And that’s to say nothing of the several different types of units, which each have a different function, from offense to defense to support.

It’s a really complex system and it’s best to checkout the Kickstarter page and watch the video below to learn more.

With a story penned by acclaimed graphic novel author Anthony Johnston, Failure looks to provide a unique spin on the tried and true RTS genre.

Brienne Gacke
Writer, journalist, teacher, pedant. Brienne's done just about anything and everything involving words and now she's hoping to use them for something she's passionate about: video games. She's been gaming since the onset of the NES era and has never looked back.

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