Earlier this week, developers Moebial Studios launched a Kickstarter campaign for their first release – a psychedelic sci-fi survival game titled Aquamarine.
Visually, Aquamarine is inspired by underground art and animation from the 70s. This includes comics by the French artist Moebius, who the studio cites as a primary influence on the hand-drawn style of their first title (and who very well may be the inspiration for the studio’s name.)
The premise of Aquamarine is that a space explorer, simply named The Seeker, has crashed onto an alien planet after coming into contact with a malevolent interplanetary signal. Players will help The Seeker explore the planet, which is largely covered in water, in her amphibious survival pod. Along the way, players will both find out more about the planet on which the story takes place as well as the forces that led The Seeker to the planet.
The gameplay features both point-and-click adventure elements and intricate survival mechanics. While map exploration functions similarly to classic PC releases from previous decades, players will have differing effects on the game world depending on their play style. Alien life can be preserved, befriended or destroyed, and progression is influenced by numerous distinct systems that effect and alter that alien life. Movement is turn-based, and each move progressively advances the game clock, meaning that the world will change only relative to player movement, but unalterably after any given move.
In addition to the art of Moebius, Moebial Studios also cites as influences the French animated filmmaker René Laloux (and in particular his films Fantastic Planet and Time Masters); the Hayao Miyazaki films Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind and Princess Mononoke; the classic adult comic book art magazine Heavy Metal; and the games Myst, Riven, Don’t Starve, Hollow Knight and Hyper Light Drifter.
Moebial Studios is asking for $12,540 to fund its first project, and already received more than a third of that in the first couple days since the Kickstarter campaign was launched. The campaign will end on February 25th, 2020. Then, assuming the campaign meets its goal, Aquamarine will be released for PC, Mac and Linux in the fourth quarter of 2020.
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