Who We Are Now is a game about trying to move on from past trauma, about trying to find yourself in a world you don’t understand anymore, and about finding love even in the most extreme of circumstances. It’s a game about exploring the relationships between characters, each with their own problems, thrown together in this place called Home.
It is, ultimately, a game that embraces the small moments of joy that occur between two people falling for each other.
I’ve had the concept for Who We Are Now in my mind for over a year at this point. While I’ve worked on the outline for it off and on, work really started when I joined forces with Allison in late October of 2016. Since then, we’ve both been hard at work, eventually producing the demo for the game in February. Now, we’re ready to begin development on the full release of the game, but we need your help!
Wes is the main character of Who We Are Now. After wandering the wasteland of what the world has become, he’s stopped at a settlement called Home. There, he meets four men who, like him, are suffering. Wes is haunted by the ghosts of his past, the friends and family that he’ll never see again, and the terrible actions he’s had to take to survive. He’s looking for something in Home, though he’s not sure what. Maybe along the way he’ll find a way to ease his hurt spirit. Perhaps he’ll even fall in love, if such a thing is possible after the apocalypse.
Jesse had it all: fame, money, looks. His future looked bright and full of opportunity. When the bombs fell, that all ended. A few years after the apocalypse, Jesse ran into a group of bandits. They attacked him, shattering his arm and scarring his face. He was found and brought back to Home. With limited medical resources, however, in the end Jesse’s arm had to be amputated to save him. Since that day, Elder Mohra allowed Jesse to live in Home. He mostly keeps to himself, worrying that others will judge or look down on him. Mostly, Jesse mourns what could have been and the life he could have had. Recently, he has been seen less and less, preferring to stay in his house, away from the rest of the town. Mohra worries about him, and hopes that Wes can somehow help Jesse find happiness again.
Xander is the youngest of the love interests; he was only a teenager in high school when the bombs fell. A decade later and he’s been too busy trying to survive to learn how to grow up. Worse yet, since the apocalypse, he’s changed. Whether it was through radiation or something else, Xander can somehow control electricity. Well, “control” is a strong word. At times, he loses control of it and becomes a weapon of incredible destruction. Others fear and ostracize him, and he remains in Home only because of Elder Mohra. He needs someone that will try to understand him, powers and all. Maybe Wes can do that?
Nathan has had a strange rollercoaster of a life, even before the world ended. Married at 18 to his best friend to keep her family out of her hair, they stayed together for two years. They stuck together after the apocalypse, until they came to Home. One morning, he awoke to find she was gone. Instead, there was a note saying she was leaving…and Nathan was not. Since then, he’s realized that he hasn’t had much time to figure out who he really is without a partner. Since then, he’s come out as bi and tried to start relationships with people of all genders. Every time he thinks he’s found someone, though, his mind drifts back to the partner that disappeared without a trace…
Slightly older than the rest, Ray was fresh out of college when the world ended. He was all set to start his career as a game designer when his future was ripped out from under him. He spends most of his time in Home tinkering with odd bits of machinery and electronics he finds. He tries to keep a happy demeanor, but it’s easy to tell that there is something upsetting him, something he isn’t willing to tell anyone. Mohra thinks this secret is eating him up inside, and she hopes Wes can help Ray come to grips with what he’s lost.
The music in the Who We Are Now demo was all pulled from FreeMusicArchive.org, but for the full game, Manny Baltazar will be composing a full-length soundtrack! Please enjoy some pieces that Manny is working on for the full game:
- More Art
At $8,000, we’re going to expand the amount of art we have planned for Who We Are Now, adding more poses and full-screen pieces to the game, as well as drawing new UI elements! This goal may extend the development time of the game so that all of the new elements have time to be created!
- New Love Interest
At $12,000, we’ll introduce a brand new love interest to the game with his own story! This love interest’s story will be released after the game itself. Everyone who backs at a tier that includes a copy of the game will be receiving this new story for free!
When you make a pledge, you can add on additional items for the amounts below! When we send out the Kickstarter surveys after the campaign ends, you can specify what you are adding on.
- $15: A digital copy of Who We Are Now on Itch.io!
- $10: A digital copy of the Who We Are Now soundtrack!
- $10: A digital copy of the Who We Are Now art book!
Bryce Duzan, Programmer & Writer
Bryce is a queer writer and game designer, and he is incredibly excited to be working on Who We Are Now! In the past, he has created the Twine games In Darkness, Dreaming and Summonr, as well as the small tabletop RPG Plight of the Cursed. He has also written in the past for Paste Games and GayGamer.net. You can find him on Twitter at @Spincut.
Allison Paige, Artist
Allison is a queer artist from Edmonton, Canada who makes comics and mistakes with equal enthusiasm. Their recent work includes Whispering Ash: Ophelia, with co-creator Amber Noelle; Slow Black River, with writer Paul Coy and inker Beth Sparks; Work/Life Balance, with writer Steve Foxe; and A Swift Demise: Three Small Horror Stories that are Definitely Not About Taylor Swift. You can follow their work on Twitter at @Rabbitcourage, or at rabbitcourage.com
Manny Baltazar, Composer
Manny has been writing and recording music since 2009. Born and raised in the San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles county, he now lives and works in downtown San Francisco. His music is influenced by Americana, dreamy surrealism and–as a long time gamer–the melody-driven and atmospheric music of Final Fantasy. You can find some of his other music on Bandcamp.
Risks and challenges
This is the first Kickstarter that I (Bryce) am running. I’ve made video games before, but this is the first time working on something of this magnitude. Despite that, I’m committed to finishing this game. I feel like a lot of work has already gone into it and I, along with Allison, are very excited to see the final product (as I’m sure you are as well)!
There are a couple things that could delay the release of the game; the biggest one is the “more art” stretch goal. That could push us over our estimate; however, we have overestimated our budget, both in money and time, so I am feeling confident that we can deliver on time!