It got announced a little while ago but now at last the Crowdfunding Campaign for The Good Life is now running until October 13. The game is an RPG from Deadly Premonition and D4 creator SWERY featuring a bankrupt New York Photographer moving to a quiet English village where every evening everyone turns into cats.
The Good Life will tell the story of photographer Naomi, who is forced to leave New York because of crippling debt and takes a story in the happy English village of Rainy Woods. There's been a bizarre murder in "the happiest town in the world" and Naomi is determined to solve it, plus there's the odd matter of the townsfolk, including Naomi, turning into cats every evening. The developer says the feel of the game will be like Twin Peaks meets Downton Abbey and Poirot, with the humour and style of Hot Fuzz. All of which sounds awesome.
Turning into a cat will unlock special items connected to story events, and give Naomi complete free run of the town, including rooftops and areas otherwise inaccessible to her in human form. She'll also be able to catch mice, bugs and fish, because of course. Villagers who refused to speak to her as a human might be more approachable as a cat, especially if you give them gifts like, er, dead mice. Naomi will be customisable and many items of clothing will also come with bonuses, such as increased stamina, but most importantly her cat version will be customisable too.
Villagers will have a 24 hour schedule, with unique personalities and unique lives and events changing depending on the time, weather and season. Aside from attempting to find the murderer, Naomi will also need to worry about her health and debt problems. Taking photographs will be a huge part of the game, with quality and variety important although Naomi will receive special photography missions too such as taking a picture of a dog every day. The camera will be customisable too. To pay off her debt or just earn extra cash Naomi will be able to do odd jobs as well, such as bartending, sheep herding and delivering milk. Naomi will also need to sleep and eat, and not taking care of herself could put her in the hospital.
While by no means final quality, as the trailer warns, The Good Life is employing a simple graphics style with basic polygonal models that give the game a stylish Papier-mâché look, although it will boast effects such as fog and lighting in order to heighten the atmosphere.
One of the more interesting about The Good Life is that developer SWERY, aka Hidetaka Suehiro, and his studio White Owls will be helped by two developers - Yukio Futatsugi and his staff at G-rounding, best known as the creators of Phantom Dust, and Ryan Payton of Camouflaj, the developer behind excellent Kickstarter hit République.
The downside of all this is one of money. Usually what happens with crowdfunding is that there is a low pledge level, one that gets the digital game, and then a good few before the $100 level. The Good Life starts at $29 for the base game, and then leaps to $69 and a huge $129, all of which are just for digital rewards. The cheapest physical copy of the game, along with many other miscellaneous items, is $269 plus shipping. Furthermore the minimum pledge goal is a rather high $1,500,000, which by comparison is $400,000 higher than fellow Fig RPG Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire. That's a proven property from a proven crowdfunding developer and they only asked for $1,100,000 - which admittedly they smashed.
Will The Good Life reach its funding goal of $1,500,000 before October 13? It currently stands at $160,306, which is 10%, after only being up for a day, so it certainly has a good chance. We'll keep you apprised.