Jelly God Kickstarter Looks Ctrl+Alt+Delicious

Cheerful, whimsical, and undeniably adorable, Jelly God promises to turn the god game genre on its ear.

Let’s face it. It’s hard to find a good god game these days.

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This particular subset of the artificial life simulation genre had its heyday in the late 90s/early 00s and has since petered off in the last five years or so… in spite of honorable efforts like Ubisoft’s From Dust and terrible remakes like EA’s money-sucking mobile version of Dungeon Keeper. 

(see Dungeon Keeper Case Study: Free-to-Play Games Are Not Free Games)

Of course, hope still springs eternal – that the act of lording over small autonomous creations will really make a big comeback – especially now when the novelty has worn out of zombies, flying goats, and microtransactions. 

As it stands, the bulk of what keeps the god games coming sits squarely on the shoulders of small indie studios – Reus, Godus, War for the Overworld, etc.

Enter Jelly God

Rebeccah Cox, the one-woman dev team behind the New Zealand-based Bexcellent Games, is not new to the creative process of making her own games. She is slated to speak at the upcoming New Zealand Game Developers Conference to discuss “Juicy Game Design Elements To Promote Player Loyalty” – how to make every aspect of a game interesting and rewarding to the player by creating tactile, interesting feedback to player actions. Later next month, she will also be appearing on an indie showcase and speaker’s panel at Armageddon Expo. 

With three different iOS games under her belt, including solo project Koi Pond Code Breaker, her newest offering, Jelly God, is intended to break into new territory – to be offered on both PC and iOS. 

A charming twist on the usual god formula, Jelly God promises to put the player squarely in a barren, gray expanse of a world. Armed with a small tribe of jelly people, you induce them to expand and develop the emerging landscape into a riot of unlockable colors and combinable resources/items. 

Intentionally open-ended, according to the developer, the game will play like a slightly more structured Minecraft, and is replayable in the same way.

“Land blocks are randomly placed and populated with resources, so each time the player expands into a new area they will discover/unlock something new, and not in the same order as other players either.

By the full release date a game session would last around 1-2 hours, but as it is open-ended, it could last 6-8 hours for the more avid players.

While still running the gauntlet of the Kickstarter processJelly God is looking well on its way to being funded. With a modest goal of $3,000 NZD, as of this writing, the total is less than $50 away from being funded, and stretch goal considerations may well be in order before the final handful of days are up. 

Though there are no current stretch goals posted, both digital and physical reward tiers have appeared on the Kickstarter page for those who want to show off their Jelly God pride

And that won’t be all. Cox already has a few things planned for the upcoming full release for the game sometime in mid-to-late 2015 – namely optional volcano islands with environmental puzzles for big resource loot grabs. 

Puzzles will utilise the different personalities and states of the jellies, like over-feeding a jelly to make it fall asleep on a button and hold a door open. The islands are discovered by unlocking a new land block, and will have a random chance of spawning.

Interested in buying in?

Once through the Kickstarter process, the expected price for the final product will be $15 USD. Since the Kickstarter is being tracked in NZ dollars, even though the $10 early bird tier is now gone, the $15 NZD reward tier that comes with a copy of the game is still lower than what will be offered at retail. 

When that time comes, Jelly God is intended to hit the Greenlight system mid-next year. Cox has also stated that Jelly God will also be available on Desura, and possibly IndieGameStand or as well. 

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Stephanie Tang
Avid PC gamer, long-time console lover. I enjoy shooting things in the face and am dangerously addicted to pretty. I'm also a cat.