Update: The Kickstarter has gone live! You can find it here.
Here I am, minding my own business on Twitter, when an intriguing gameplay video catches my eye. A shining, pixelated knight makes his way across a blustery landscape, guarding himself against harsh winds with his trusty shield. Landscape interaction and a throwback to 2d pixelated adventures of old trigger strong feelings of nostalgia and I have to know more. Welcome to Tower of Samsara:
Being the curious individual that I am, I needed to know more about this project. I got in touch with Danilo Ganzella, who then connected me with the creator of the Tower of Samsara universe: Guilherme Gaspar. They comprise half of the 4-man team collectively known as “Martelo Nero”, and they are the creative minds behind the upcoming video game project Tower of Samsara.
From the limited information we currently have, Tower of Samsara follows a protagonist that is actually a digital representation of yourself, an “Avatar”. This avatar is on a journey through various realms of existence in an attempt to achieve Nirvana and escape the endless cycle of death and rebirth. Its stylization is very much in the metroidvania category, featuring impressive pixel art and interactive landscapes. It also features a unique mechanic in which your avatar enters a meditative state and utilizes a lamp to reveal hidden paths/items, defeat enemies and solve puzzles.
Thoroughly intrigued, I asked Danilo if he and Guilherme would be interested in an interview, and they agreed! We discussed their motivations for the project and the challenge in creating a Kickstarter project when Brazil has no access for creators to do so. Take a listen to our conversation (transcript to be posted shortly):
(You can also find this interview on Soundcloud)
My main concern with Tower of Samsara was the focus on spirituality – could the heavy-handedness of Buddhist teachings drive people away? No. The way the game is designed, at least according to Guilherme, you shouldn’t feel pressured one way or another. Leaving “breadcrumbs” for those engaging in his art is plenty, and those who are curious will likely explore Buddhist teachings in their own way and on their own time.
Besides, there’s a lot more to be excited about than concerned when it comes to Tower of Samsara. The pixelated landscapes, the limited ones we’ve seen at least, look amazing. The combat seems to be a fusion of Dark Souls and Castlevania, a combination that is sure to attract a broad swath of gamers. With spectacular art, solid sprites and animation, an engaging and clean 2-d combat system, and an intriguing storyline that is sure to pique the curiosity of many, Tower of Samsara is shaping up to be an exciting and promising Kickstarter project. If the previous success of Axiom Verge or Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night are to be any indication, this project could see some tremendous success in the coming months. We’re just happy to be along for the ride!
For more on Tower of Samsara, you can visit their website or follow them on Twitter: @TowerofSamsara