About the project
An enormous « merci » to everybody!!!
An Ulule campaign full of suspense... Once the first goal was achieved, we had already decided to add two additional levels to thank you! But let's say that we have "maintained the pressure"... But you’ll have a 2Dark with 10 levels and 10 monstrous Serial Killers! ;-)
We will contact you shortly by e-mail. But already, do not forget to complete your Ulule profile (name and address) to quickly receive the rewards already available.
See you soon on www.2Dark.cc!
New goal: 35.000 €
Two additional levels and Serial Killers!
Since the beginning of this campaign, we have created more and more monsters ... And finally, eight levels, it’s not enough!
So what about two additional levels? It would give us ten levels in total... ;-)
Frederick would gladly add a "trainer" who organizes dog and children fights, Thierry would like a vampire so Erzsébet Báthory…
Do you want to help us a little bit more? For even better game!
- The new Survival Horror from Frederick Raynal: a return to the source of the genre, highlighting the psychological tension in the midst of the action!
- A unique gameplay mixing adventure, action, infiltration and looking after children.
- A scenario inspired by clichés from horror movies and cop shows: the children must be rescued from the clutches of Serial Killers!
- Innovative technology mixes 2.5D views and voxel-based characters with a unique animation system.
- Eight levels to play with a shudder... An unrelenting gaming experience, with some serious challenges!
2Dark is a video game from the Survival Horror genre, based on an explosive mix of several gameplays: infiltration, action, adventure and team management.
You play as Mr Smith, a profiler, whose goal is to save as many children as possible from the grip of various Serial Killers. The challenge is huge, as you have to confront each one of these psychopaths, one after another, in their own lairs, find the exit, save and look after the frightened and not exactly orderly children, confront beings who are thirsty for blood, avoid the traps... and through these different levels, you will discover what is truly terrifying the town of Gloomywood!
- You won't be surprised to learn that we want to remain independent and as autonomous as possible. In the almost 30 years we have been making video games, we have been involved in many different adventures. This time, we want to see things through to the end, with your help! This financing on Ulule will make all the difference, and we will also be taking you with us to defend the integrity of the project.
- Unlike the AAAs and the major players of the video games "industry", our dream is to create a video game for the people who will play it... So we're offering our Gloomywood Citizens the chance to contribute to the early versions of the game, to help us make 2Dark even more horrible, to perfect and fine-tune it by participating in the Design Forum. In other words, we're relying on your collaboration!
- And finally, just because we are true geeks, Ulule gives us the opportunity to make sure we have a physical copy, a unique collector's edition!
But please keep reading... to learn about 2Dark in more detail. And do come and join us!
Smith's story is truly horrific, beginning with a short clip when you see him discovering his wife decapitated and his children kidnapped...
We then find him 17 years later, alone and still tortured by the tragedy that tore his family apart. His objectives are clear: finding his children, his wife's murderer and freeing the world of all these serial killers, all these psychopaths who kidnap children!
Smith tracks down each of his adversaries to the darkest depths of their lairs and tries to save the children. Gradually, from killer to killer, from one level to the next, you begin to realize why these psychopaths are taking all these children... But you'll understand why we can't really say much more... On our blog (www.2Dark.cc) and in our teaser trailer, you can see Delicatessen Lewis, a cannibal psychopath who wears a pig mask. And this is just a starting point, Lewis might not even be in the final game! It will also be up to you to decide...
But the way Smith goes about finding the children and their kidnapper... That will be our little secret until the Beta version is released!
In the video, Frederick talks about the first level of gameplay, immediately understandable by everyone, quite a typical scenario.
Going through the levels, Smith comes across weapons, not necessarily all useful ones: knife, pistol, axe, baseball bat, truncheons, etc. The weapons and other objects he discovers are stored in an inventory. The long-distance weapons use ammunition, so you need to keep an eye on your ammo supplies and keep reloading your weapon...
When Smith can no longer avoid his enemies, he has to fight them. In terms of ergonomics, you take aim (character orientation) and make an attack by pressing a button. In fact, it's highly intuitive! Like most of the other actions in the adventure (opening a safe, pulling a lever, pressing a button, reading a poster, etc.) which are semi-automated: Smith just needs to be placed opposite the object he wants to interact with.
Throughout the adventure, you will also find various newspaper clippings, photos, books, notes, etc. They are all clues to the terrible secrets and motivations of these psychopaths...
On each level, a certain number of children are in hiding. When Smith approaches a captive child, the child will automatically follow him. Before reaching the exit, he may then have gathered a dozen children or more, all following him.
And the troop is not so easy to manage! Each child behaves differently, calm or restless, and moves at different speeds. In a group, they move along in a disorderly fashion and the smallest event can disturb the progress of the little troop: a strange noise, a dog growling, etc.
If Smith stops, the children stop as well and start chatting or snivelling. To manage the troop of children, there are two simple commands: "Sssh!" and "Follow me!" The first one is to stop the children and get them to be quiet. But they don't stay quiet for more than ten seconds before making a noise again. The second command is to get the group moving again.
In any case, it's very important to protect the children, your final score depends on it!
In 2Dark, there are no tricks: the darkness is total! And playing with the brightness controls on your monitor won't help you to see anything more...
The dark zones allow Smith and the children to hide and to avoid dangers. But there are also hidden traps! So you'll find various things to help light up the darkness, from candles to a petrol lamp to a powerful torchlight...
The candle only lights up a tiny part of the view, around the hero. So you need to quickly find other more powerful sources of light and the consumables (petrol, batteries, etc.) they use. And you need to make sure you recharge them regularly so that you don't end up in the dark!
All the moving characters and objects make a noise when they move, which of course you can hear, but you can also see it on the screen, displayed as blue concentric circles representing sound waves. The louder a noise is, the bigger the waves. You can locate your enemies more easily like this... but also be located by them! Each character has both a field of vision and a hearing zone.
The goal of the game is to find the exit for each level, having saved as many children as possible in the best state of health they can be in. But each level can conceal rooms or secret places where new children may be hidden... the lair of each serial killer should therefore be carefully inspected, even though you can find the exit and complete a level having saved just one child, or none at all. If so, you'll get a negative score, and probably a new nickname as well, like "pussy" or "coward"!
To get the maximum score, you need to save all the children, in perfect health, without getting a scratch on you, and without killing any innocents! And yes, that's how it is, we like horror games, but with a respect for certain values...
From the start of the game, you'll have access to the profiler's office, a unique place with various pieces of equipment and sources of information: files, computers, DNA sequencer, radio... as well as the sofa bed, the TV, the kitchen full of pizza boxes, and a bathroom with flickering lights... in other words, all the everyday belongings of this character are also to be discovered.
By using them and analysing certain objects related to the levels explored, you will identify new serial killers and you can access new levels. Likewise, using certain documents or clues, you can discover new areas, probably hiding more children, in the levels you have already visited... so you can improve your score! Ha ha ha…
With a mouse, keyboard or joystick, the 2Dark interface is fairly uncluttered: one command to access the menu, another one to show the inventory and two commands for the children: "Sssh!" and "Follow me!"
The inventory has unlimited capacity, and objects are added as and when you find them. You are free to group them as you see fit and you can reduce the inventory so that just a few objects are immediately to hand: weapons and ammo, lamps and consumables, etc. The left side of the screen will therefore act as a quick inventory.
When the inventory, or the quick inventory, is on the screen, you just need to select an object to examine it, combine it with another object, or use it. Only two objects can be used at the same time (left hand and right hand), usually a lamp and a weapon...
In the introductory video, Frederick was already emphasising the need for innovation in gameplay as well as in technology! If you're not really interested in the technical details or you're scared off by technical terms and long words, feel free to skip this bit...
The old school display of 2Dark comes from a mixture of two traditional techniques, pixel tiles and voxels, updated for today's taste and modernized using the hardware power of current 3D cards.
The views are displayed in 2.5D with a system of tiles like in the console games of previous generations. But our tiles use shaders with normal maps for the lighting. In 2Dark, each tile will have its classic bitmap definition and a relief texture, so we can have bumped tiles with dynamic lighting and relief, depending on the real-time lighting of the game. We keep the retro look but with complex volumetric lighting...
The characters and objects are modelised in voxels, in 3D, but rendered as 2D pixels using an in-house technique. In 2Dark, each mobile object of the game, which would be a sprite in a classic 2D game, is rendered by a dedicated voxel shader, which use the same volumetric lighting as the backgrounds!
To edit the characters in voxels and see them immediately rendered in pixels, Frederick created the Gloomy Voxel Editor! And we're offering to share it with all the Gloomywood Artists (see Rewards), to imagine and sculpt horrible serial killers, monsters and everything that haunts your nightmares...
What are the funds for?
There are two reasons behind this Ulule campaign: to find a source of funds in order to remain independent, but also to create a community that will help us to refine and create the best game possible!
Gloomywood is a very new company and to finance our game we have a number of mechanisms in place: bank loans, private investors, institutional support, etc. The budget is almost complete. But all this takes a long time to set up, and as our financial associate says: "we have a budget problem!" So should we, like in the past, turn to an publisher or a distributor? Or try to remain independent? Allowing us to work on 2Darkwith total freedom and autonomy...
As you can imagine, we prefer the second option. This crowdsourcing campaign will probably make all the difference! And then we can work "comfortably", entirely dedicated to the game, instead of having to chase after "high-risk" funding.
This crowdsourcing campaign, if it's successful, should bring together over 1000 people who have put their faith in us and who will support us to make it the best game possible!
So that you can follow the progress of the development, our Gloomywood citizens (see Rewards) will have access to the Alphaversions of 2Dark, then the Beta version… Around one release per month. After that, your feedback will be very important to make sure the game goes in the right direction!
We'll set up a Design Forum, directly accessible from the Alpha versions and on the web. As well as a voting system to like or dislike an idea or a new game feature, you can also express yourself freely: criticising our choice, but also helping us to find alternatives; submitting your ideas for improvements, for the gameplay as well as the scenario; to report bugs or spelling erors; to tell us terrible tales of serial killers; and many other things to be invented together...
Finally, we will make some of our tools available to the community so that you can create or customize certain parts of the game.
About the project owner
Frederick Raynal has been interested in gameplay mechanics ever since he was a kid. And it's still his favourite mode of communication; fascinated by electronics and programming, he created his first games when he was 14, and has never stopped since. When he developed Alone in the Dark for Infogrames, he created one of the first Survival Horror games. In 1993, he created Adeline Software International (Little Big Adventure 1 and 2, Time Commando) with other former Infogrames programmers. Taken over by Sega, ASI became No Cliché (Toy Commander, Toy Racer). In 2006, Frederick was awarded the title of Chevalier in the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and became an independent author (Soul Bubbles, Battle Tag,bOxOn, etc.). Frederick is the Game Designer, as well as the Lead Programmer of 2Dark.
A former theatre actor and director, then an author of sci-fi novels and comic books, Thierry Platon first joined Infogrames as a project manager, responsible for the "comic book" collection (Les Passagers du vent, etc.). In 1989, he created his first video game, Ranx, published by Ubisoft. Then in 1990, he created an independent development studio, which made several creations for the Ministry of Education. This was followed by a long career as an independent multimedia author, leading to the creation of BiP media in 2004, where he is the Creative Director. Thierry is the Production Director at Gloomywood, and will also be in charge of the 2Darkscenario.
A graduate of the Emile Cohl design college, Yael Barroz began her career as a graphic designer at Infogrames, for the title Alone in the Dark. She followed Frederick to Adeline Software International, then to No Cliché, contributing to Little Big Adventure 1 and 2, and Toy Commander. After this, Yael naturally became the lead graphic designer for Frederick's other games. Yael is the Artistic Director for 2Dark, and she also contributes to the graphic design.
Sophie-Anne Bled has a DEA in physiology from the Paris VII University. After publishing several articles on the popularization of science, she managed the technical and editorial teams as chief editor for several magazines. At the same time, Sophie-Anne began her career as an independent author, giving rise to several multimedia products. She met Thierry in 1996 and their collaboration resulted in the creation of BiP media, where she has been Managing Director ever since. On her Gloomywood business card, it says that Sophie-Anne is the head of "Business & Marketing".
Didier Chanfray joined Infogrames in 1987 as a graphic designer. He soon became interested in game design and for 6 years, he was the graphic designer/animator/game designer for the production of many games such as Fantasia, Tintin sur la lune, Bobo, Nord&Sud, Alone in the dark, etc. After this, he spent ten years working with Frederick Raynal as Artistic Director, and participated in the creation of Little Big Adventure 1&2, Time Commando, etc. In 2004, he co-founded the Little Worlds studio (Lea Passion, Color Cross, etc.), then the independent studio DC SARL in 2001. Didier is in charge of the Level Design at 2Dark.
|A self-taught musician, Samuel Safa then studied Musicology at Aix-en-Provence, the CNR in Marseilles and the Ecole Normale de Musique in Paris, where he obtained a diploma in film music composition. Since then, Samuel has worked on a dozen films, including "Soudain ses mains" by Emmanuel Gras and "La Chambre du Nord" by Mathilde Bayle. His musical comedies and shows are performed in front of thousands of people each year, in France and abroad (Beauty & the Beast in the 60's, l'Âme des Poètes, etc.). Finally, he has composed many scores for video games (Viking Invasion, Tiny Token Empires, Kill the Bad Guy, etc.) on various platforms. Yes, you've got it, Samuel will be composing the Music for 2Dark!|
After 7 years' experience in animation (Cyrus Production, 2d3d animations and a spell at Millimages), Rudy Wilde, illustrator and comic book author, made his video game début with Old Skull Games in 2012. Rudy inspired the visuals for the teaser trailer, and is working on the Graphic Design of the characters and the views of 2Dark.
The team is still looking for a gameplay programmer, pixel art designers, and more!
Follow us on our blog: www.2Dark.cc
What date will the game be released and when will we receive the Alpha and the Beta versions?
The final game should be released in September or October 2015 at the latest.
For the other question, we need to clarify a few terms: Alpha versions are development versions of the game, to which new features, levels and gameplay will gradually be added; the Beta version is a complete but not final version, which still needs to be tested, fine-tuned and debugged.
This Beta version will be ready before summer 2015 and may be provided through Early Access on Steam. In which case, you will also have access to it if you have supported us on Ulule!
We will begin to deliver Alpha versions to the Gloomywood Citizens (see Rewards) from February onwards, releasing one version a month to download. So you should receive 4 or 5 Alpha versions before receiving the Beta version!
What platform will the game be for?
We are currently creating a version of 2Dark forPC, Mac and Linux. We may also create a version for console or tablet, but we can't make any promises about that right now.
On what date will the other rewards be available?
The postcards, stickers, HD poster and badgeswill be sent to you in December. Details of how to access the Design Forum will be sent at the same time.
The Gloomy Voxel Editor will be available to download in February, with the first Alpha version.
Of course, all the dedicated or personalized collector versions will not be available until after the game has been released, in September/October 2015. However, we will start to work on personalising these versions will start in June.
What will you do if you exceedyour initial objective?
Wow, of course, that's our dream! More levels, new Serial Killers... in fact, we could even have a system of self-generated levels! As fans of Gloomywood, we could commit ourselves to working in a multi-player, collaborative mode, with two profilers to save as many kids as possible! But maybe that's getting carried away...
Which DRM will be used for 2Dark?
2Dark will be distributed through Steam, but also on other platforms (GOG, Desura, etc.) which don't use DRM. Which means the version you get won't have DRM...
How does the Design Forum work?
Well, for those who are short of time, there will just be a few boxes to tick on a monthly form to give your opinion! On the other hand, those who want to get a bit more involved can join in a proper forum, in the Latin sense of the word, even if it is on the Internet! ;-)
Each person will be free to express their opinion or share ideas. Of course, we can't take everyone's opinion on board, but the most popular ideas will be adopted or put to a vote!
Is it true that Frederick does his coding at night? How will you manage things?
Now, that's a trick question... In principle, all the programmers will work at night and the graphic designers during the day! That way, there will always be a light on in the studio and you can come and see us whenever you like! ;-)
Were you inspired by real Serial Killers?
No! We don't really want to glorify this kind of individual. Unfortunately whenever we imagine something truly horrific, a quick web search reveals that some psychopath had the same idea, but with ten times more gore! Butany resemblance is coincidental.
After that, our subconscious also plays a role: news programmes, TV series, etc. We are constantly surrounded by a flow of sordid stories.
And what about Cthulhu in all that?
Do you think Frederick's going to do a remake of Alone in the Dark ? No, that's another universe, this time it's more modern, although that won't stop us from slipping into fantasy mode! ;-)
If you still have an unanswered question, feel free to ask the project owner directly.