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Gamereactor UK

Insomnia: "we want to make the RPG of our dreams"

We talk to Studio Mono about having a second crack at Kickstarter.

If you don't have a clear recollection of it, Insomnia is an RPG that was first announced last year when it hit Kickstarter. That first campaign never really got off the ground, but Studio Mono are back for another bite at the crowdfunding apple.

At the time of writing, the game is about $5k short of its Kickstarter goal. Last time they tried to go through this route they pulled the plug after getting just over $5k in total. We asked lead developer Anatoliy Guyduk what had changed this time around?

"The main thing that changed is that we now have a much more clear overview of the project when compared to the first KS campaign. We have a presentation scene and tech demo proving that we're really making our own game engine and showing that the game is more than just vapourware. They don't look too bad, so I think this is a good way for us to prove that we can deal with complicated tasks and of course, that we're capable of building the game of our dreams. Our first campaign had many problems, like the bad start date and really bad copywriting and explanation of what InSomnia should be. We gathered all of our feedback from the previous campaign and we realised our mistakes and decided to work on them more, improve our campaign's message, get some playable concepts together and re-launch."


When it comes to Kickstarter, Guyduk says that it's "not a place of miracles, if you are not a well known in the media." He also suggested that once the crowdfunding part of the game is done, we could see the game make the leap from PC to console: "There is a possibility and we have even had some interest from publishers who are analysing the game and would help us to bring the game to consoles in the future. Right now though, we are solely concentrated on making PC version of the game and MAC\Linux support as soon, as possible. Our priority is PC development, we want to make the RPG of our dreams."

There's a demo for the game (you can find links to it here), but apparently it's "just a tech demo". While it'll show off "interactions with environment, the game's aesthetics and the actual dynamics", it's more just a proof of concept at this stage, Guyduk explains that "of course everything will be rebuilt redesigned multiple times before the final release; GUI, animations, sounds, some 3d models that we need to add and a lot of small graphical improvements and optimisations. It's best to look at the demo as tech demo, more like an early alpha build."

We also asked for a few details on story, which "takes place on a gargantuan, half-deserted space station known as "The Ark" that is slowly making its way toward an elusive planet known only as the "Evacuation Point"."

"The Ark is inhabited by the descendants of the Nomans, a race of people who escaped their home planet several centuries earlier when it had become uninhabitable due to a cataclysmic conflict between the "Republic of Noma" and the "SORG Regime". You play as a character who awakens from cryogenic sleep who unknowingly holds the future of humanity in their hands."


The game's ‘dieselpunk' stylings were also discussed: "It wasn't a snap decision," Guyduk explained, "we worked a lot to achieve a real unique look and feel and we still need to do a lot to really achieve the look we envision."

"We analysed many prototypes make different experiments with visual material too mix up the Noir, Dieselpunk, Atompunk, Teslapunk, ArtDeco elements, Ideas of Retro-Futurism of Soviet Union and USA as well as many prototypes of historic characters & events. These were taken from documentaries of 1st and 2nd World Wars. The only thing I knew when I started working on this project was that the direction would be somewhere between Steampunk and Modern Sci - Fi. You can see the result but again, there's a ton of work to be done before we're fully finalised on the over all look."

Finally, who can play with whom: When it was first announced there was confusion surrounding whether the game was an RPG or an MMO. This has now been clarified (it's an RPG with co-op features), but we still wanted to know whether there were any other ways to play the game:

"58 is the capacity of players that we have right now in our testing of the server side of the game, but we don't have scenarios in design that allow for more than for 2-6 players. There is a possibility of PVP scenarios and PVP content, but to tell the truth we are not working on them right now. Maybe we will make same test scenarios for co-op and PVP in upcoming months, to share with gaming community and get feedback and depending on the findings, it'll decide on whether we go public with the mode, or not. Right now we busy working on a full playable demo, a prologue chapter with most systems implemented, with around 3-4 hours of game play to show to the public, and get feedback to correct the development."

Insomnia is still chasing its latest Kickstarter goal of $70k, and it has 9 days left to do it. Head this way for more details.