The project involves creating “The Ballad Singer,” a unique role-playing videogame developed by a group of Italian designers, which has elements of a visual novel. It provides players with opportunities to play according to multiple (about 1700) paths or stories that have 40 endings. This videogame primarily depends on the players’ choices that influence the development of the whole story (the Domino System). This approach to creating visual novels is innovative for the video-gaming industry. The videogame is almost completed, and only a few steps are required to finish the project. This proposal requests for funding two final phases of this project (€25,000).
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“The Ballad Singer” is a unique role-playing videogame presented in the form of a visual novel that allows a player to experience about 1700 paths or stories with 40 endings. The story takes place in the fantasy world of Hesperia, where a person can choose to play as one of such main characters as Daragast, Ancora, Leon, and Ancalimo (The Ballad Singer, 2017). This videogame completely depends on a player’s choice and decisions, and each decision influences the development of the story as a reaction to a player’s choice. As a result, the story develops for all main characters, and it ends when each character of this visual novel is dead.
This project is necessary because “The Ballad Singer” proposes a unique experience for a player to create his or her own story in a fantasy world that depends on all personal choices, decisions, and actions, as it is in the real world. The key principle of the game is that a player cannot go back and change a decision, choose another action, and correct his or her mistakes. Furthermore, decisions made for one of the characters also influence the whole universe of the game and the lives of other characters according to the principles of the Domino System. The exclusiveness of this game is also in providing the concept of a rather realistic universe where the laws of science are important, and magic can be used only to a certain extent. Therefore, this videogame is necessary to be realized because it will provide a potentially new experience for players who will make decisions in the game depending on their strategy, ethics, wisdom, and knowledge.
“The Ballad Singer” is developed by Curtel Games, a group of game creators from Italy. The partners of Curtel Games will work in the United States. The project realization is divided into four phases. The first phase includes the idea development, planning, the development of characters and story plots, and the development of the first draft of “The Ballad Singer.” This phase has been completed. The second phase includes the development of details regarding the story plot, characters, the improvement of graphics, and the development of the second draft of “The Ballad Singer.” This stage has also been completed, and funding is not required for these two stages.
Currently, the project is in the third phase. Graphics are improved, and the pre-final draft of the game has been prepared and tested. Funding is required to cover expenses associated with the realization of this phase. Furthermore, funding is needed to support the fourth phase associated with adding extra features to the game, producing the final version, and marketing. The project is planned to be completed in November 2018.
The development of a videogame is a prolonged and complex process that requires a lot of time and resources. We have faced and overcome the following barriers: the discussion of graphics, the development of a perfectly illustrated visual novel with a range of paths for characters, and the creation of music to support the narration. At the current stage, tasks include further work on narrating the story, the development of additional graphic elements, translation, and the development of more paths to achieve the target of 1700 alternative stories (“The Ballad Singer videogame,” 2017). The key barrier is the lack of financial resources at this phase that can cause the prolongation of the project development.
|Taxes and fees||2,250|
*costs associated with graphic design
**including servers, computers, scanners, back-up devices, discs
Key developers of the project are Riccardo Bandera, the CEO of Curtel Games, Edoardo Bandera, a project web designer, Alberto De Stefano, a writer, Federico Musetti, an illustrator, and Francesca Cassani, a graphic designer. The team also includes a professional social media manager, a sound designer, and two composers Michael Firmont and Gianluca Ferro (“Kickstarter project,” 2017). In addition, an Italian narrator and an English translator also work on the project as part of this team.
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“The Ballad Singer” is a unique videogame based on the visual novel concept that allows players to experience up to 1700 alternative stories with 40 possible endings. As a result, this project differs from other games associated with gamebooks. The realization of the Domino System in the game, impressive graphics, and an exclusive soundtrack add reasons for supporting and funding this project because of its potential attractiveness to players.
The Ballad Singer. (2017). About the game. Web.
The Ballad Singer videogame. (2017). Web.