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Kickstarter Weekly: The Interactive Canvas and Antilia

An Artsy Kickstarter Weekly

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Welcome back to the sixth Kickstarter Weekly. While we’ve consistently covered upcoming games, we feel like we should branch out and include all things related to gaming. That’s why in addition to an artistically beautiful game, Antilia, we’ll also include a book in today’s list about the artistic merits of gaming. But don’t go thinking that this is the games as art special of the Kickstarter Weekly, because it’s not! Unless you want to think of it as games as art special of the Kickstarter Weekly; we would appreciate it if you did.

The Interactive Canvas

Project by: Matt Sainsbury

Goal: $60,000 (AUD)

Current Funds: $2,487 (AUD)

End: February 6, 2014

One of the ongoing debates is whether or not video games are art. While many journalists will argue for games being art, some critics, such as the late Roger Ebert, will argue otherwise. Matt Sainsbury falls into the former category. Sainsbury, along with several acclaimed game developers, argues in The Interactive Canvas that games are art and should be equally respected as any other creative medium.

Sainsbury designed The Interactive Canvas to be a deluxe hardcover coffee book. Sainsbury has plans for a variety of content such as interviews and articles. While he can’t obviously list all of the names attached, Sainsbury has mentioned that acclaimed developers such as  Mike Bithell (Thomas Was Alone), Ed Key (Proteus), SWERY65 (Deadly Premonition) and others will be the in first book. Sainsbury wants to show how game developers feel inspired to create their work, and he wants to show us how gaming has and continues to evolve as an artistic medium.

Sainsbury turned to Kickstarter because producing a book of high quality costs serious coin. The money will go to factors such as editing, printing, designing, and the other not-so-fun aspects of production. That said, Sainsbury wants to turn The Interactive Canvasinto an annual book.  If you’ve ever researched your favorite game developers, or you care about gaming as an artistic medium, then you should consider checking out The Interactive Canvas’s Kickstarter page.

Antilia: A Majestic 3D MMO

Project by: Right Brain Games Inc.

Goal: $120,000

Current Funds: $29,782

End: January 28, 2014

While this article is definitely not the games as art special—feel free to think otherwise—Antilia certainly looks like a work of art. If you look at the screenshots of Antilia, you’ll see a stunningly colorful game, which must have required many artists to sacrifice their time. Do yourself a favor and watch the video above before you move on to the rest of the text.

Antilia is an MMORPG that strives to take the best from the creators’ personal tastes in Western RPGs and fantasy novels. If I were make an educated guess, I would imagine they took some inspiration from the Red Wall series of fantasy novels, because the races all look like fantasy versions of the characters from Star Fox. Currently, the developers are allowing players to play as the canine-like Taipii. In future expanisions, the developers wants to let players take control of the Sakii, dragon like creatures, and Reisuii, rodent-like creatures. Don’t let this fool you into thinking you are limited to the Taipii, as they are split into 5 different bloodlines.

On first viewing, I didn’t think the game looked so unique, despite it being incredibly beautiful to watch. That said, the lead developer said a couple of things that peaked my interest. First, the world is built from thousands of generations of furry creatures, which means that the developers probably put a lot of time into creating the lore. Second, the developers want players to be a part of the world and not just another vagrant. This means players can take up skills such as cooking, mining, crafting, fishing and other similar activities. You can even–get this–become an innkeeper. Of course, there will be magic and combat if you’re more interested in destroying cute, furry creatures.

It seems like they’ve made some significant progress, as they’ve been communicating with their community. They still have plenty of expenses to cover before they can release the game, so check out their Kickstarter campaign if you’re interested. Otherwise, Nintendo might step in to publish it, and then they’ll notice that the characters look like foxes; you don’t want another Starfox Adventures, do you?

Other projects?

Have you seen any interesting projects on Kickstarter that you think deserve mention? Are you a developer who is currently running a Kickstarter campaign? Let us know in the comments section, or send an email to garrett@thekoalition.com.

About The Author
Garrett Glass Senior Editor
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