Retro World Lets You Relive Your Gaming Childhood as a Retro Sprite

It's like someone reached into my head and made a game about my dreams.
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Yesterday I highlighted the incredibly awesome Kickstarter game Project Sen. Today I bring you another Kickstarter game that takes awesome to levels I never even knew existed… this is like some kind of trans-dimensional awesome.

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In Retro World, you play as a young boy that has just moved to a new town where video games are just becoming popular. This is how the game’s creator, Francois Grenier, describes how the game plays:

1) The Hype – In anticipation of a release the town folks will talk about the upcoming titles expressing their likes or dislikes. You’ll see prominent billboards advertising each game using various colorful marketing strategies as well as special features in magazines. After properly researching your game you’ll make your choice determining how much cash you’ll need to earn. 

2) Earning some cash – Games don’t come cheap. It’s up to you to gather enough money before the game’s release. For this you’ll do all sorts of chores for your parents, neighbors and even strangers you meet. Cutting the lawn and making deliveries are just typical things you’ll do to earn your money. There’s still always a chance a distant relative will send you a gift through the mail. 

3) Getting the game – Getting the hottest new game can sometimes be difficult. Stores having limited stock was a common occurrence back in the day and in Retro World things are no different. You’ll have to track down your games by calling specialty shops, department stores and then get there before it sells out. In some cases finding a game can be a quest in itself taking you to some of the more seedy parts of Frankton.

4) Playing the game – Now that you’ve got your game it’s time to play it. Finishing games to 100% completion advances the story to the next Hype phase. 

Yes… this is indeed a video game about video games. To see the game in action is quite amazing, here’s their Kickstarter video.

Retro World‘s art style is heavily influenced by the SNES classic Earthbound, but also cleverly uses 3D to create a world with actual depth to it. The developers are even going all-out and implementing day and night cycles, as well as various seasons and weather effects. You’ll also be doing more than just playing video games, as there is a real-time combat system they plan to implement. The scope is also to span across 30 years, and 4 console cycles.

Also working on the sound end of the game is Jesse Harlin, who is a former Staff Composer from LucasArts (instant bonus points). The team is asking for 175,000 CAD (that’s about $166,714 US) and has already put a year of coding into the game. The target platforms for the game are Windows, Max, and Linux only. It should also be noted that they are taking a digital-only approach to the reward tiers… no t-shirts or coffee mugs. 

It feels silly to say… but I had a more hype reaction to seeing this game than I’ve had with any of the next-gen games that have been revealed so far. Maybe I’m just old… or maybe this is just the most awesome thing ever.

Please go donate to their Kickstarter, and keep up with the game’s developer through their blog and website. They have a pretty large goal to meet as a new and previously unknown developer… but considering Nintendo never felt it was worth bringing the sequel to Earthbound out in the US, fans (mostly me) have been dying to get a game like this.

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Ryan Kerns
Lifelong gamer, artist, writer, lurker, occasional troll, and 1994 Blockbuster Game Tournament Store Champion.