If you are convincing yourself that the reason why you can’t create what you want is because of time, money, or lack of resources David Board’s story might change your way of thinking. With the help of Blender, Unity, and KickStarter David was able to ship something worthy of any game developers attention. I’m a big fan of Blender3D, and Unity’s Game Engine both can be accessed for free and both tools are very powerful in helping indie developers and small dev shops get a playable game in hand as fast as possible. Combine these tools with KickStarter and you could have a winning combination. David has this to say about the tools we have available:
“There’s no way small indie studios like mine could exist without the amazing set of tools and technology available to game developers today, or without the backing of active, engaged communities of people. This is a revolutionary age, and I don’t use that phrase lightly.”
The big missing ingredient in all of this however is TALENT. As in indie developer you have to great design skills, programming skills, marketing relationships with the press all on top of knowing what makes a game fun to continually play; and that is just naming a few of the qualities that go into making a great game. The only other indie developer I’m aware of (I know there are more hiding away head down creating) that has this level of work load still under way is Thomas Brush’s Pinstripe. Another KickStarter success story.
David Board is from Seattle Washington and created Lifeless Planet while he lived in Alaska. A 3D adventure game about seeking life on a distant planet when an astronaut discovers an abandoned Russian town. An abandoned Russian town on a distant planet… strange and intriguing starting point for sure. Lifeless Planet is a third-person action-adventure game that holds on to the spirit of classic action-adventures. Here is a quote from the storyline.
“A STRANGE DISCOVERY…
After a hard landing on the planet, the astronaut discovers the planet that was reported to be rich with life is instead a barren wasteland. When he goes searching for his crew, he makes a more startling discovery: evidence that humans have already been to this planet years ago! When he comes upon a deserted Soviet-era Russian town, he struggles to make sense of his mission. Did his light-speed travel to the planet send him back in time? Or is this all some strange Cold War hoax?”
Almost making this game completely alone for most of the project he still managed to pull off an amazing feat most AAA studios would have difficulty doing. While his KickStarter campaign pulled in 641 backers that pledged $17,236.00 to help fund the project. There is very little information about David anywhere but you can find more about him under the “About the Creator” section on this page. The game is available for PC, Mac, and thanks to Alaska-based programmer and game developer Jazon Burnell (yes, Jazon spelled with a “z”) it is playable on Xbox One. To get a sense of what a massive under taking this is for even four people let alone mostly one person most of the time the trailer for Lifeless Planet should show you the achievement made possible today.
As of August 17th, 2016 the European and Australia/New Zealand release of Lifeless Planet on PS4 became available for play for those of you waiting patiently to get a hold of this game. It was a long time coming. Think of David and what he was able to accomplish rounding up people, resources, utilities, and talent the next time you are feeling burned out going at it alone. Congratulations to David for such a big and inspiring accomplishment.