Play Moonlighter: Action RPG as Will, shopkeeper and monster hunter. The gates whisper to Will of adventure, but the town shouts gold! Gold! Gold! With just a little careful planning he can have it all – running his shop by day and hunting monsters by night. He can sell the goods he finds in the mine in his shop to garner the gold to gain better armor and better weapons – which he is going to need because there are strange and fearsome things in the depths of those dungeons. To habitual gamers, this scenario will sound familiar; but keep in mind that each game of this nature has its own story; and each time a player runs through a story he or she creates additional options for change. Does Will actually succeed in his nightly forays? Is there a consequence for selling some of this stuff in his shop? Is there sufficient market to gain enough gold to obtain the best weapons and gear? All of these questions and more drive these small games. Players enjoy them for a variety of reasons, including nostalgia (they look a lot like those old Nintendo games), new angles on old themes, and sometimes just to round out their game collection with something a little different
Moonlighter is a top-down action/adventure role play video game. Which is to say that you are looking down on a map/blueprint view of terrain and buildings. Will is the active protagonist – an humble shop keeper who dreams of adventure. He interacts with the villagers and shoppers during the day, but at night he battles monsters in the depths of the dungeons. The deeper he goes, the more dangerous the encounters become. If you have thrilled to the older versions of Final Fantasy, if you enjoyed adventuring as Link in search of the missing princess, then this will be a game for you. It has all the traditional elements – dungeon crawling by night, wheeling and dealing by day, struggling to best foes that are bigger, stronger, but definitely not smarter, and putting them in their place. Moonlighter is created by professional game creators who wanted to build something new – something all their own. As professional game creators, they have experience with creating those alternative story lines that result from players’ choices – the kinds that can keep a game fresh and interesting through successive sessions of replay. They have support from Square Enix and a Steam Greenlight. This isn’t just another knock-off – this is an original game from people who love action adventure gaming and make it their business to create Total Awesomeness.
Digital Sun (digitalsungames.com) is a young company that started out as a gaming outsource company in Valencia, Spain. But the people who worked there decided that they wanted to create their own game. They have been working on Moonlighter for four years, and they’ve developed an excellent adventure and a wonderful world for their potential players. The graphics are excellent, the concept is sound and the adventures are fun. As they themselves point out, there are lots of adventures, heaps of treasures and many, many silly monsters. They are at the point now where help from their fans and others will make the creation process move along much more quickly. With 23 days still to go in their campaign – as of June 9, 2016 – they have already raised $67,115 of their $40,000 goal. They have are the most upvoted game on Square Enix Collective, which they are careful to point out isn’t an award – but is still very nice, and quite encouraging.
Get your copy of Moonlighter by lending your support through the Kickstarter crowdfunding website. All contributions happily accepted; just $12.00 will net for you a DRM-free digital copy of the game, which will be yours to play. For $15.00 a PDF booklet is included, and for $25.00, your order will also include a special in-game weapon that is only available through this order. That’s quite a lot for your serious game collector. But your contribution is doing something more – something you might not have even thought about.
All over the world there are young developers who are creating start-up companies similar to Digital Sun. Each time you, Kickstarter crowdfunding supporter, cast your vote for their expertise by making a contribution you are supporting creativity and entrepreneurship – as well as encouraging the development of more great games of the kind that you like to play. As with anytime that you support a crowdfunding campaign, your contributions not only encourage a particular development, you are indicating the kinds of goods and products that you want to see available in the world.