The Square Enix Collective is a platform that aims to provide indie titles with marketing support. Only featuring the most promising of upcoming games, Children of Zodiarcs is one of the Collective’s latest picks, with the tactical JRPG currently being developed by Cardboard Utopia. Cardboard Utopia, it’s worth mentioning, is made up of games industry veterans who’ve worked on Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood, Far Cry 3 and more.
Being developed for PC and already having passed through Steam Greenlight, Children of Zodiarcs recently kicked off its Kickstarter campaign. Having impressed gamers with its promises of deck-building, dice crafting and turn-based combat, the game has successfully hit its crowdfunding goal in under two days.
Introducing Tactical JRPG Children of Zodiarcs
Inspired by the likes of Final Fantasy Tactics and Dragon Quest, Children of Zodiarcs follows a young girl of colour named Nahmi as she and her trusted companions aim to defeat a corrupt empire. The Toran Empire has “harnessed the power” of the Zodiarcs (“arcane machines that allowed the user’s will to manifest as reality”), leaving the poorest people of the city of Torus (the “heart of the Empire”) struggling to survive.
While the game is “story-driven”, Cardboard Utopia recognises that combat will be a big part of Children of Zodiarcs which is why Nahmi, along with an orphan girl named Brice and a criminal mastermind called Zirchoff have their own individual combat strengths and weaknesses. Nahmi is described as “quick and deft”, Brice is “reckless and deadly”, and Zirchoff is able to take on “a dozen opponents single-handedly”.
In order to make use of their combat knowledge, however, you’ll have to collect cards. Every action, including “attacks, curses, or even special abilities like stealth”, is decided via randomly drawn cards taken from custom decks (cards are unlocked for heroes as they level up; Cardboard Utopia stresses there are no microtransactions or booster packs). And players can also craft dice, allowing you to bolster your specific playstyle (e.g better defense or stronger attacks).
Cardoboard Utopia has said that they already had the funding to complete development, but their $50,000 Kickstarter goal would help them extend the length of the game and add more playable characters, cards and abilities. With Children of Zodiarcs now having passed that base goal, the first stretch goal is to bring the game to PS4. Cardboard Utopia hit their target so fast that a number hasn’t been attached to the PS4 stretch goal yet, but you can contribute to the Children of Zodiarcs Kickstarter campaign here.
Children of Zodiarcs will be released in 2016 on PC.