Kickstarter Shout-out: Shiness: The Lightning Kingdom

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Since the Kickstarter scene has boomed with a lot of interesting projects, you have to really impress potential backers to get their attention. This usually comes down to either an excellent-looking trailer with some polished up gameplay or a solid description that really nails the idea that will make your game amazing. I have seen a lot of different Kickstarter videos that didn’t impress me because they spent too long talking about how the game designer has always wanted to make a game like this, how the big publishers have been disinterested with their idea, or the gameplay shown isn’t all that impressive. If you want us to invest in your idea, you have to bring it! For example of a proposal done right, I found out about this Kickstarter a few days ago and I have to say, this is one of the most impressive looking indie games I've seen on the crowd funding site. Let's check out Shiness: The Lightning Kingdom!

 photo shiness01.jpg On the Kickstarter page, they have a setup for the story. The entire game takes place on a planet called Mahera, where different races once lived in harmony, linked together by a spiritual energy called Shi. As time went on, the Shi energy started to deplete, causing the races of Mahera to go into an all-out war. In the end, the planet basically split into different floating islands and separated the races from each other. You will start the game off as a member of the Waki named Chado, who, along with his fellow Waki friend Poky, live on the floating Kimpao Island—until they accidentally land on Adom Island. You must find your friend Poky, and, of course, a deeper plot unfolds and you meet many allies as the story progresses.

 photo shiness02.jpg Shiness is an action RPG where you will travel across a multitude of islands, solve puzzles, and fight enemies in the overworld. One of the more interesting points of this RPG is that traversal across the game’s world and fighting will take place in the same area, like in Xenoblade Chronicles or The Last Story, with no cutaway to a static battlefield like in Ni No Kuni or The Last Remnant. It actually reminds me of BioWare's Jade Empire quite a lot. The fighting combat has been described as something you would see in something like Dragon Ball Z or Naruto.

 photo shiness03.jpg If you watch the Kickstarter trailer, the combat looks to me like something out of Cyber Connect 2’s Naruto fighting games or their other game, Asura’s Wrath, utilizing both martial arts and magical attacks. Outside of combat you will be solving puzzles using the different abilities you and your allies have. For example, Chado can summon a rock that can be used to keep buttons or panels pressed down, and if you level up enough, you can throw the rock and stun enemies with it before heading into battle. You can find out more about the combat system on their Kickstarter page; I don’t want to spoil too much.

 photo shiness04.jpg The game looks beautiful. Sure, it might look like if Don Bluth made an anime series, but it has an art style that separates itself from most of the Kickstarter RPGs being made. I also like the voice work within the game. The game will have its own made up language, and, from what the trailer has shown, the actors they got do a good job with said language. The game's music sounds pretty nice as well, with a very beautiful sounding main theme that reminds me of something from Nobuo Uematsu’s discography or from Joe Hisaishi.

 photo shiness05.jpg This looks like a promising RPG. Sure, the actual build that they are showing off might have been made over a span of three years, but hey, it’s an impressive showing. I also worry that the combat system might have some of more obnoxious parts of those Naruto fighting engines it was compared to, where enemies can be unfair and get very block-happy, but I'm going to try to remain hopeful about that being absent. The Kickstarter is asking for $100K, and, even with almost a month remaining, as of the writing of this article it already holds an impressive 70% of that. If you are interested in this game, I would check out the tiers they have to offer and maybe support them. While the game is only for PC as of right now, they just recently added a stretch goal as an effort to get it on the Playstation 4. What do you all think of this game? Looks like something you would enjoy?

(If you want to support this Kickstarter, check it out here!)