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STALKER spiritual successor Areal hits Kickstarter

STALKER spiritual successor Areal hits Kickstarter

The world will be populated by mutated creatures programmed with AI that reacts to an individual's play style.

The developers behind harsh post-apocalyptic open world first person shooter STALKER have unveiled Areal, a spiritual successor to the series.

West Games, a studio formed of many of the developers responsible for both the STALKER series and Metro: Last Light, have a pitch live on Kickstarter and are looking for a modest $50,000 and the project launched yesterday, meaning they have 29 days left on the clock. At time of writing, the project has already sailed past the halfway mark.

Described in the pitch video as 'a love letter to fans of the horror and post apocalyptic genre', Areal will be an open world title set in a post apocalyptic setting with survival horror elements. The game will take a non linear approach with players being able to choose how to advance. Choices will affect the world around the player although the pitch does stress that there is no morality system in the game.

The game’s world will feature hostile creatures that have been mutated by ‘Metamorphite’, a mineral that is destroying the world as a result of a meteor strike and Areal boasts an AI system that will make more challenging enemies smarter and more cunning and lead to emergent gameplay that adapts to the player’s style.

Involved in the project are former GSC Game World and 4A Games senior staffers, including the lead animator, developer and designer of the STALKER series. The Kickstarter pitch does however remind backers that Areal will not simply be another STALKER title.

Anyone with a rough idea of just how much video games cost to make will likely raise an eyebrow at the $50,000 target, but West Games explains that the goal is so small because the studio has already invested a lot of time and money into the project. This statement does appear to be supported as a fair amount of in-game footage and world building beyond basic concept art does feature in the Kickstarter pitch video.

West Games also comments that Kickstarter will help them take the project further now that their own funding has run dry and they expect a successful crowdfunding campaign will open up more financial doors for them.

Areal is being developed for Playstation 4, Xbox One, Windows and Linux PC, Mac and Wii U using an in-house proprietary game engine.

6 Comments

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ltlukelt 25th June 2014, 12:47 Quote
I would wait until this is proven legitimate.

See here.
suenstar 25th June 2014, 13:14 Quote
One bit to note on the link that ltlukelt posted is this post that was put up by one of the Vostok Games employees:
Quote:
Oleg Yavorsky - PR Director of Vostok Games (Former GSC Game World PR Director)

So that you understand, over the years of development of the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. and then Metro series, there have been literally hundreds of people involved in working on various bits and pieces, starting from beta-testers up to modellers responsible for certain weapon models. Many people came to the studio to work for a few months just for the sake of adding “S.T.A.L.K.E.R. development” to their portfolio. Frequently they claimed afterwards to be the 'core' developers behind the game - you wouldn't know anyway, right?). Yet, my biggest concern is that West Games are using the footage and assets of S.T.A.L.K.E.R. and representing them as their own, which is not only illegal, but simply just not right. I guess it's all made for the sake of getting extra publicity (which unfortunately works), but guys on Kickstarter should probably pay attention"

Looks like that KickStarter might be stuck in a bit of a legal debate for a while, or even fully taken down if they're in the wrong.
r3loaded 25th June 2014, 14:51 Quote
Interesting that they're named West Games, when another company composed of former GSC developers is called Vostok (East) Games!
Zurechial 25th June 2014, 17:30 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by ltlukelt
I would wait until this is proven legitimate.

See here.

Either your link is broken or the thread's been deleted.
Quote:
Oleg Yavorsky - PR Director of Vostok Games (Former GSC Game World PR Director)

Yet, my biggest concern is that West Games are using the footage and assets of S.T.A.L.K.E.R. and representing them as their own, which is not only illegal, but simply just not right. I guess it's all made for the sake of getting extra publicity (which unfortunately works), but guys on Kickstarter should probably pay attention"

That was what struck me when I watched the promo video. "Wait, these guys have the rights to use that footage?.."

At first I thought "Maybe they do, due to their involvement in STALKER?", but as the video wore on all I saw were clips of non-descript game developers working in an office interspersed with shameless footage of gameplay from the STALKER games attached to descriptions of what that this 'Areal' game would be and do.
They didn't once happen to mention that the footage shown was of STALKER, and not of Areal.

The whole thing stinks of a scam.
ltlukelt 25th June 2014, 17:50 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zurechial
Either your link is broken or the thread's been deleted.

Looks like it was deleted. Their Kickstarter page has been updated:
Quote:
We have contacted Vostok Games about their supposed claim that we are fraudulent. They say that they have no relation to that claim and have since deleted the forum topic (https://forum.survarium.com/en/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=3450#wrap) wherein a moderator accused us of being fake. The Kickstarter comments section has been completely hijacked by a couple of people, and even if we comment there, our posts will be ignored and buried. Misery LTD in particular is developing another post apocalyptic video game and is stirring controversy to attract people to his Kickstarter project. I hope that you, our supporters, can see through this deliberate negativity and help us make an awesome game with Areal. Update 2 is coming later today, and will clarify things even further.

It's so obviously a scam. Just take a look at their website. Hardly professional.
mi1ez 25th June 2014, 23:44 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by ltlukelt
It's so obviously a scam. Just take a look at their website. Hardly professional.
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