I’ve spent so many of the the past 70-odd hours between cabins of various Airbuses and the murderously cold floors of airports, that anything promising a breath of fresh air this week is likely to grab my attention.
Enter Eagle Island. With its falconry-based gameplay and modern-pixel aesthetic, you probably remember it from being in its Alpha concept stages circa 2016; at the time you were two years younger, the game didn’t have very much content. and developer Nick Gregory was dreaming of a Kickstarter.
I made a short demo video to loop when my game (Eagle Island) demo is idle at PAX next month. Going to PAX? Pop over to the Screenwave Media booth and say hi!Eagle Island is a procedurally generated platformer all about falconry :DMore: https://twitter.com/pixelnicksDiscord: https://discordapp.com/invite/ddk2kPT
Posted by Nick Gregory on Thursday, March 22, 2018
Making this possible will be young Quill caught in an avian world; Armaura, a frankly massive bird of the eagle kind, has taken the former’s owl Ichiro captive leaving him with only one other – Koji.
In between getting her back, the Koji – Quill duo are further called by a very Professor Oak-like ornithologist to put an end to Armaura’s great conspiracy of capturing three very ancient totems.
— Pixelnicks 🦉 Eagle Island (@pixelnicks) June 1, 2018
The feathers of these totems are said to grant one with elemental powers, proving especially effective in giving Koji an edge in battle, which I’d imagine is a lifesaver seeing how our hero can only run, jump and climb ledges.
My apologies; being a falconer of sorts Quill is also capable of launching attacks with Koji in 8 different directions via D-pad like aiming controls. Successfully doing so in combo unlocks gems to sustain the elemental powers, and gold seeds used in bartering with magpies for a few perks.
All in all, there are about 80 different perks to be had, a limited number of which can be mixed with your choice of elemental power for a gameplay style unique to yourself.
And so here's a quick sample of the areas you'll be exploring on your procedurally generated adventures across #EagleIsland!
— Pixelnicks 🦉 Eagle Island (@pixelnicks) June 15, 2018
You also won’t be seeing any of the 9 environments in the same layout, thanks to full procedural generation that comes with its own set of challenges as per Gregory’s admission.
These involve programming effective pathfinding mechanics for a level’s enemies and ensuring every level boss can be approached from either direction; both of which look to have panned out well in the end and with up to four difficulty settings governing the aggression of each.
Furthermore, as environments come populated with ample challenges, bosses and secrets, one may choose to either speed-run them or explore to build character resilience.
— Pixelnicks 🦉 Eagle Island (@pixelnicks) June 20, 2018
The game’s classic inspirations are obvious, and Gregory confides that Eagle Island has been crafted with the mindset of what Nintendo would do if it were a present day indie game developer.
Beta-tests of the game’s complete feature roster are currently being held among backers, but you can still partake in the game’s pre-release polish/development on Discord.