Ashen Rift Is A Post Apocalyptic One Man & His Dog

Another one of those cursed apocalypses has taken place. This one caused by a Rift, opened up by pesky scientists, mutating humanity into crazed beasts, and leaving you and your pet dog in something of a pickle. A first-person shooter, which is oddly a genre that you barely hear about any more outside of those annual quadruple-A monstrosities, Ashen Rift is said to be inspired by Quake and Journey. Those are some extremes right there. It’s the sole project of long-time developer Barry Collins, and he’s looking to see if he can Kickstarter the funds to continue working on it for the rest of the year.

Obviously a post-apocalyptic survival shooter would be infinitely better if you were accompanied by a cat, but a pitbull is perhaps more practical. The dog is to be a big part of this game, with commands you can give him, as he accompanies you throughout your attempts to see the Rift closed and Earth become a more hospitable place. There’s an emphasis on scarcity of weapons, using the environment, and shooting at giant ugly things while being a bit scared.

He’s only after $45k CAD, and the prospect certainly looks interesting. The footage shows a game that’s obviously a way on, but of course FPS is about building long, interesting levels, and we’ve no idea how far along that side is. A December 2014 release date looks ambitious, but that’s his aim. $10 will currently bag you a full copy of the game, and early access. There are 3000 of those, and then that level becomes $30. Although just $15 will secure a copy on release. Confusing, yes.

Still, there’s a peculiar paucity of interesting FPS games, and has been for years – let’s hope this one manages to do something about that.


  1. LevelHeaded says:

    Great, another game starring a man.

    • Orija says:

      And his dog.

      • El_Emmental says:

        Why is it that cats never get the chance to show they’re capable of helping their human friend ?

        (Is it because they don’t actually care about us ? :O)

        • The Random One says:

          NetHack, only you understood us cat people.

          (But Dungeon Crawl is better, because you can play as a cat after it’s eaten its former “owner”‘s eyeballs and made off with their tome of necromancy.)

  2. Orija says:

    Just ended up reminding me that there never, ever will be a STALKER 2.

    • Premium User Badge

      Qazinsky says:

      Hey now, sure there will be a STALKER 2. It will be made by Disney and directed by JJ Abrams though.

    • Kein says:

      Don’t worry, Bethesda got your back covered. The Stalker’s Scrolls comes in 2016, with shiny new machine-generated boring flat landscapes, copy&pasted quests and boring gameplay. Yay!

    • CookPassBabtridge says:

      Kickstarter project from some of the Vostock games guys, to find enough cash to buy the STALKER2 licence, and all completed work, off Sergey Grigorovich, then finish it (in an awesome way, obviously). That would make me happy.

  3. alien07 says:

    “The interaction with the enemies and NPCs will be done either to the aim of killing them, or manipulating them, or just avoiding them altogether.”

    Can’t think of a more pretentious way to say, “You can shoot enemies or not shoot them.”

    • CookPassBabtridge says:

      Unfair. Did you ever lure a tiger into a camp in Far Cry 3, and watch it maul everyone on your behalf? Or have a STALKER bloodsucker chase you into a friendly camp, so it can kill the guy with the sniper rifle you want without taking a rep hit? Manipulating enemies could mean many things, so I don’t think its pretentious at all.

  4. DrScuttles says:

    Bonus points for reminding me of A Boy And His Dog.

    • mwoody says:

      You have marvelous judgment, if not particularly good taste.

    • SillyWizard says:

      If this game gives you the option to either force yourself upon or consume young women…well. Kudos to them for bucking the trends, I guess.

  5. Darth Gangrel says:

    Top image: that’s what happens when you don’t exercise all muscles equally. On “leg day”, don’t skip the calves.

  6. CookPassBabtridge says:

    This looks really interesting and is right up my own personal alley. I am surprised the obvious reference to Fallout was not made, especially with a dog that finds you ammo. Personally I would prefer to see this go the way of a STALKER-a-like, being more focused than a 150+ hour Bethesda / Obsidian opus, especially this being a one man operation.

    I would like to see more realistic application of the loot – I love finding a toolbox or rucksack in The Zone, or a sniper rifle hidden away, propped up inside a shed in a real way. The whole loot gathering part of these games is really compelling and important to me, and its off putting to see the spinning guns and backpacks. I appreciate he said its inspired by Quake, but loot is a really big deal for me and game-i-fying it too much takes a lot of the pleasure of discovery away.

    Small criticisms to be made on the combat, though this is early footage, is that the animations could use some work to be made a little weightier. The explosions I am sure will end up with more effects etc, but I really love the sandboxy elements and being able to do whatever you like with whatever you like. Creative kills are awesome fun, and I can’t wait to collapse a rocky outcrop onto an abomination or do an airburst effect by skeet shooting with a gas canister.

    Also would like to know if there will be indoor-type areas to explore, buildings etc, and if there will be more colour. I know its post-apocalytpic, but would be nice to see that grey and brown occasionally broken by some lushness.

  7. Barberetti says:

    Inspired by Quake? Pet fiend instead of dog please.

  8. Echo Black says:

    What engine is this using? It looks familiar for some reason

    I love the art direction…Very id software

  9. WJonathan says:

    I consider it a bad omen that he can’t kickstart his own bike.