Factsheet

Developer:
MGP Studios
Based in Warsaw, Poland

Release date:
1st quarter 2017

Platforms:
Steam: Win, Mac, Linux
iOS- NA
Android- NA

Website:
mgp-studios.com

Description

Sand is the Soul is a no handheld journey into the decaying TownShip of CrossHill. Mixing elements of RPG and 90's scrolling beatemup, along with many branching paths to acheive your goal.

The player is given freedom from the start and the game will change along with the players actions. The game includes a few invisible moral point systems which act accordingly to taken choices and will reflect itslef in various ways. Certain npc's might grant you with some vital info, other times they might ignore you, lie to you, grant you a rare item, reveal a shortcut and so on. This also include optional routes. So it is important to read with understnading and be wary of your actions:where you go, who you attack, how you answer etc)

An example. From the start of the game, we have the option to read the entrusted letter. Of course this is not the moral thing to do, however it's the players choice and the game won't give any hint to do the right thing. IF we choose to read the letter, we will learn the true nature of our mission: To deliver an ultimatum, war is most likely coming. This will however automatically block the player from acheiving 3 of 10 posiible endings. It will also influence and change NPC chat options.

Another example. If you have low moral points, NPC's of questionable ethics will have a positive attitude towards you, some might grant you a cool upgrade (for an extremely low moral, the Biker Gang teaches the expensive Brawler style for free) or corrupt Watcher who will lead you in the right direction instead of a trap. The flip side is that the extremely strong Town Hunters and other NPC's of noble values will attack you on sight. So will it be worth it?

SitS will also feature NPC's with questlines which will also develop according to your actions.

Combat will be a vital element of the game, however it will be possible to avoid most of it, if the player does some out of the box thinking. For example if the players eavesdrop and listens in on a recorded chat, they will learn of a specific adress in CrossHill and password. This door will have no interaction display, but the player will be granted access if they follow the instructions from aforementioned chat. This will open a massive shortcut and special item.

Enemies will differ in size, speed and skill, reach and so on. The starting weapon deals moderate damage but is on the slow side. Pretty soon the player will learn that the later enemies have a speed advantage so using the reach/distance advantage is crucial and button mashing a recipe for a quick death. Fighting in close quarters is always a risk, due to the fact that if an enemy strikes shortly after the player does, he will most likely connect first.

Combat is visceral, both the player and enemies (of similar levels) will deal significant damage to each other, so rushing in is not the way to go (but still possible). Example of the no handholding is the following combat tutorial: upon encountering Yosip, the NPC we meet at the Crossing. He will present us a firearm which enables devastating counters. He will describe at which point of body shift momentum the player is required to attack during a slip.

Speaking of slipping, this is crucial to combat: a regular slip deducts stamina and is a quick backwards dodge. However if timed perfectly, a counter window will open up. This can be acheived by doing a slip just after the enemy has perfomered a windup and intiated a strike. The player will recognise this by a different slip animation(switch of body weight from one side to another to evade the attack instead of the out-in dash) during a slomo/zoom sequence. The player has two options: strike with a flying knee (no risk, stronger than a regular strike. However the enemy might be able to move out of the way before it connects), or pointblank shot. The latter not only does massive damage (sometimes possible to oneshot bosses)but also has large AOE. What's the catch? Even during slomotion the window is small. Pulling the trigger at the exact moment bodyweight has shifted grants the counter. Failing to do so leave you open to attack and most likely getting hit.

There will be an additonal combat style: the brawler. Much faster and costs less stamina per attack but weaker and requires closer combat. Both will have new moves with leveling up as well as possible uprgrade purchases and so on. The game will also feature a gatling gun-it won't be easy to aquire, but once the player does....it might not be God mode, but the tides will significantly rise in your favour. Downside: hinders movement.

Besides the main plot and several subplots, the game will explain the genesis of the Sand, the golden mean of the lore: in raw form generates electricity(the exlusive export product of CorssHill which always plays a big role in the plot). In processed form it is the any the golden solution to any ills known to man, ranging from a simple headache, through the flu or any other disease... even death. But somehow, depite somewhat being the equivalent of XIX century morphine in the CrossHill lore, the locals have been succumbing to madness. This also affects the player. Each death not only costs Sand, but also lowers the playrs sanity. This might result in some NPC's presenting themselves in a different, distored form which will affect the dialouge options.

Graphical and musical style have been made to supplement each other, to form the desired mood. Be it with a dynamic tune kicking in during a zoomout and sun rising, or dynamically changing weather or night falling when the mood would get darker. The game is targeted at players who are not in a hurry and like soaking in the mood and atmosphere.

MAP

The map is divided into two main areas. The Frontier and CrossHill. Both consists of many subregions and districts. Currently there are more than 80 scenes to travel through in the game and it is most likely more will come in the dev process.

Respect. A very important value in SitS. First off: nobody will talk with the player unless they first bow. Other times, showing respects to the greatness of nature or other place where due (if the player follows closely, they will recognise the cues) will have a positive efect on our moral system. Befriending a sincere, kind and gentle Female-a rare sight in these lands consumed by darkness and madness- will be only one of the very few options of raising your sanity to default. Make the wrong choices, you'll end her questline locking the player out from this feature.

History

You have arrived at the Frontier, the border between familiar Lands and the neighbouring autonomy of CrossHill. You have been entrusted with a depeche of utmost importance, that must be delivered to the local authorites with haste!

Sand is the Soul: (Work in Progress) A dark and atmospheric 2.5D RPG action adventure, set in a brooding victorian postpunk setting of the decaying Township of Croshill. With multiple branching pathways and storyline, an immersive environment with a moody, dynamic soundtrack we pray the Watcher of the Sand shines her blessing upon your soul as you embark on your journey…

Features

  • mutliple paths to reach your goal
  • branching storyline
  • immersive audiovisual composition
  • unique moral systems, be wary of your actions and choices
  • multiple endings and outcomes
  • thousands of frames of handcrafted animations
  • multiple combat styles, gatling gun included
  • find and solve puzzles(out of the box thinking required), to reveal shortcuts, avoid combat or other opportunities
  • dynamic Original Soundtrack on tier with the Sinless OST

Videos

Nothing here yet:( Gameplay movie coming soon. In the meantime check out Twitter and Facebook for regular Gameplay gifs and updates YouTube


Images

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Awards & Recognition

  • "Zestawienie: Najwazniejsze polskie premiery 2017" http://gamerweb.pl/2016/12/08/zestawienie-najwazniejsze-polskie-premiery-2017-roku/3/
  • "Najdorodniejsze indyki PGA 2016, Polygamia" http://polygamia.pl/najdorodniejsze-indyki-pga/
  • "5 kapitalnie zapowiadajacych sie indykow, Gamezilla" http://www.gamezilla.pl/publicystyka/2016/11/wyprodukowano-w-polsce-polskie-dark-souls-wizyta-w-piekle-gra-o-depresji-czyli-5-kapitalnie-zapowiadajacych-sie-indykow-prosto-z-polski

Selected Articles

  • "Jeśli jesteście wielbicielami gier takich jak Dark Souls, Nightmare Creatures, Bloodborne, Castlevania i lubicie wyzwania, koniecznie musicie zainteresować się produkcją polskiego studia MGP Studios."
    - Damian Stefanski, Gamerweb
  • "Polak mierzy sie z Bloodborne"
    - Wojciech Gruszczyk, PPE
  • "Najdorodniejsze indyki PGA 2016"
    - Patryk Fijalkowski, Polygamia
  • "Polskie Dark Souls(..) czyli 5 kapitalnie zapowiadajacych sie indykow"
    - Tatiana Kowalczyk, Gamezilla
  • "'Cztery słowa: Sand is the Souls. Dodaję do mojej listy must have.'"
    - post PGA gameplay impression, MGP on facebook

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About MGP Studios

Boilerplate
2012-2015:We are a small indie studio from Poland -1 Creative and 2 Programmers- and have spent the last two years working very hard realising our dream to create and release a game of our own: Our debut game Sinless is a hybrid of a visual novel and a classic 2D point and click adventure set in an original cyberpunk reality. We put a lot of effort and attention to the lore and story as well as the general vibe- that the graphics and soundtrack complement themselves to create the desired tone. And this is the goal we wish to acheive with our upcoming projects: to create memorable, unique experiences. Hopefully our love and enthusiasm for games shows in Sinless, as well as in our upcoming projects. We have just released our second game: Roll'd: the endless runner with a twist and have 2 more projects underway and will be announcing one of them soon. Thanks for tuning in.

2016:Gamedev is a rough business. So right now unfortunately I am unable to afford continuing work with G+P. Hopefully, this will change in the future, because finding a team with a good workflow is not easy to come by. So, as of 3rd quarter of 2015 the Dev team dropped down to one person and Sand is the Soul is a solo project from scratch.

More information
More information on MGP Studios, our logo & relevant media are available here.


Sand is the Soul Credits

Charlton


presskit() by Rami Ismail (Vlambeer) - also thanks to these fine folks