Leave it to the combo of Kickstarter and indie developers to bring gamers another original, interesting, if not polarizing game concept in Romancelvania. Coined “Dracula meets the Bachelor”, this gaming convection of genres coming from a slew of industry veterans aims to fill a void that Metroidvania and RPG fans were unaware existed. Developer The Deep End Games has made pretty good progress in meeting their $200k funding goal over the last month and with only 3 days left in the campaign, this is crunch time for fans of quirky Metroidvania titles and just creative game design in general to consider helping put a stake through the heart of the remaining $70k.
The first thing that stands out about the game, besides the outrageous premise, is that graphics and gameplay already look well polished. Attack animations and movement look quite kinetic and definitely shows that the development team understands that getting this element nailed down is the most important part for building a solid foundation. Hopefully exploration follows suit.
What really makes Romancelvania rise from the crowd is the central plot of the Grim Reaper attempting to setup our protagonist Drac with the love of his life via a dating show of sorts. From sexually explicit conversations, side quests, and massage sessions, many of Romancelvania’s core mechanics revolve around courting various male and female horror inspired contestants. It should be interesting to see how all of these elements play out, but suffice it to say, we probably haven’t seen anything yet. The developers have stated that players can ignore this aspect of the game to some extent if it isn’t their cup of tea, but it seems like so many portions of the game revolve around the concept that I can’t grasp how that would be possible at this point. I am glad that its an option though. I believe there are people out there that won’t appreciate the crude and un-muted dialog between characters, but keep in mind that the game is very self aware. For me that’s the biggest reason that I think the whole game could actually work.
Romancelvania will also include castle building and customization. From the campaign details, this looks like a skill tree/perk system that revolves around Drac’s relationship with contestants and what “friendly” benefits you desire. So far this looks like stat boosts and access to special moves/abilities, but the complexity is sure to expand throughout the course of the adventure. There is also weapon crafting known as “weapon mating”. Drac’s trusty spear will be used in this ritual and there are various recipes and augments to play around with. So far I recall seeing gameplay of a sword, spear, and whip alongside a variety of special moves and tools. Variety is king and that’s a good thing.
Romancelvania looks very promising so far and I can’t wait to play it, assuming the campaign’s funding goals are met. So if your interest is peaked, please take some time to review the Kickstarter below and consider showing support by backing the project or simply spreading the word. The developers could definitely use our help in these last few days. Developers should be applauded for dreaming big and crafting something that shatters the mold. The Deep End Games have delivered on that with Romancelvania.