by Joseph Leray
To continue this morning’s theme of fizz-bang, turbo-intriguing Kickstarter games, I present, without further ado, Zak Ayle’s “Lioness,” a point-and-click adventure about a freelance journalist, the yakuza, time travel, a cigarette-smoking cat, and interdimensional coffee, all rendered in colorful, rotoscoped pixel art.
“Lioness” — also known as “Lionheart Drive” for some reason — promises a non-linear story based on solving puzzles, talking to people, and exploring the game’s brightly-neoned environments. “We are experimenting with unique new ways to approach games as a storytelling medium which haven’t been explored in past adventure games,” reads the game’s Kickstarter page, but there’s not much more specific than that.
We do know, however, that players will control journalist Eggert Kirby during his mission to track down seven mysteriously missing people. The game will also come in seven different “sessions” or episodes that will advance the plot and reveal more about Kirby’s not-quite-normal environment.
Even though Ayles has raised over double his $7,000 funding goal with two weeks left, he’s decided against adding stretch goals to his game, explaining that “’Lioness’ is a project that we’d like to see expand in terms of quality rather than size.”
“When you force a game or film past its own scope and design it just begins to cannibalize its own narrative and vision by stretching it until it breaks,” he writes. “The more money we have, the better we can invest ourselves into pursuing our vision unencumbered.”
If everything goes according to schedule, Ayles will start releasing “Lioness” episodes sometime next year on PC, with Mac and Linux ports being “a huge possibility.”
Also, contributing to the “Lioness” Kickstarter will also give you access to nine other small indie games that were exclusive created as backer rewards — seven games (I’m sensing a pattern, here) in a bundle from the Braingale community, and two from Ayles’ own “Cutthroat” project. You can find details about those on “Lioness”’ Kickstarter page.