Posted by Evolve on May 11, 2018 | In: General News
Backbone is an upcoming detective-adventure inspired by noir themes. Currently, on Kickstarter, the title has just over two more weeks to hit its $48,000 goal, which it now sits about $15,000 shy from. The cinematic-adventure combines action elements and stealth mechanics to emulate the world that private investigator Howard Lotor finds himself residing in. Players adopt his role and must solve detective cases, explore the dangerous quarters around you, interrogate various witnesses, all while sneaking your way to safety by utilizing scent-based stealth moves.
Backbone's atmosphere is heavily noir-inspired, using the social contracts often found within the genre. Retro-futuristic technologies, densely dystopian fiction, and anthropomorphic animals are found throughout the world and coin a unique take on an otherwise well-known genre. You'll be residing in a pixelated, other-worldly version of Vancouver, which is filled with dark alleys, paired with powerful storylines that focus on themes revolving around prejudice and power.
Players will be able to stroll through the busy, rainy streets, reciting their favorite film noir quotes. The thematic fusion of film elements with a stylistic art design utilizes a form of pixel art that mimics staunch realism. Although the streets are bustling with various different humanoid animals, you'll be playing as a raccoon, and will feel all the scrawniness that comes with it. You'll notice as you complete more and more investigations that the environment around you starts to shape who you end up being, and can be influenced by your own actions as well. Systemic discrimination, social decay, and the corruption of powers will instigate myriad investigations, meaning how you respond to such matters may go on to mold the outcome of your surroundings.
Regarding gameplay, you'll be expected to collect evidence while interrogating witnesses and be able to connect the dots regarding your leads. The developers over at EggNut specify that you should not expect to have your hand held as you begin to unravel cases, so moving forward with the story will abide by your own roles and pace. Each one of your cases will contain numerous trailers, but it's ultimately up to you to decide which one to follow, and when to nip one in the bud. Since smell is the most powerful sense in the animal world, physically sniffing out evidence will often lead to your biggest breakthroughs. If you're following a suspected criminal, be sure to mask your own scent by rummaging through a couple of garbage bins, and take cover in the multilevel environment.
You'll be granted a special ability called The Artifact, which utilizes ancient technology and contains an unknown origin. You'll learn more about it as your journey continues, such as whether you even want to use it. If you learn how to operate it accordingly, it may change regular order as a whole, or destroy it all together. As if chasing criminals and hiding in the shadows in waiting is't enough to drive you mad, this ancient relic may do the trick.
The story behind Backbone has to do with a planet that begins sprawling an anthropomorphic animal species. The Vancouver streets become suddenly swarmed with overgrown ivy and humongous trees, leaving vines piercing through the asphalt, and small forests residing on rooftops. The city overgrown with life stands as a hauntingly beautiful vista, but also comes accompanied by a new group of founding fathers. The Great Apes are the new moral, supposedly ethical rulers of society. Their newfound control causes citizens to be divided into informal classes that stand according to their species. Vancouver becomes surrounded by high-standing walls that stretch from every side to ensure no one from other areas intrudes this new society. Crossing the walls is strictly forbidden, and those within it are constantly warned of the hostile creatures that wait outside of them. Howard doesn't feel like he belongs in this political state and interrupts his otherwise mundane life after interacting with some bizarre, powerful technology. This sheds newfound light upon the conventional order and becomes a symbol that may change society as a whole.
Backbone has no set release date yet but is planned to be completed sometime in 2019 if the Kickstarter is successfully funded. As of now, Backbone is set to release on Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. Other platform releases will be announced if the campaign raises some extra cash. If this looks interesting, be sure to check out the trailer for it below.