DieselStörmers Do-over: Ravensdale Returns To Kickstarter

Oh, that must be petrolcastleknightpunk.

If at first you don’t succeed, pause and have a good think. Do you really want to make a video game about knights with dirty diesel-powered armour and jetpacks fighting orcs and goblins? You may very well! In that case, put your head down and work, rethink your crowdfunding campaign, then come back with something people can play first. Bish bash bosh, here’s DieselStörmers again.

Having cancelled its first Kickstarter at less than 15% of the $500,000 goal (£300 grand-ish) last August, Black Forest Games have now launched a second campaign for the game formerly known as Project Ravensdale. This time it’s far more sensible, looking for $50,000 (£30 grand) and offering a playable prototype so potential backers can have a bash.

The game’s still the same: a shooty platformer with co-op for up to four, where fancy knights leap around killing green-skinned monsters. They make and customise their own weapons from parts and also have a fancy tool in the ‘Arc Connector,’ a doodad which can catapult them about, convert bullets into enemy-zapping energy, boost weapon damage, and generally encourage teamplay.

Black Forest say they have “spent a lot of our own time and money to get the game up and running” in preparation for this Kickstarter, so the goal’s a lot lower this time. And they now have a prototype we can play, which they stress really is a prototype, a “spruced-up merger of the different testing areas we used to experiment with rendering pipelines and gameplay features.” Still, it has running and jumping and shooting and Arc Connector catapulting with local co-op t’boot.

If they land the Kickstarter cash, Black Forest expect to first release DieselStörmers through Steam Early Access this September. Here, have a gander at the game:


  1. InternetBatman says:

    I wouldn’t necessarily define it as more sensible. It’s easier to obtain, but its very likely that it won’t go that far, especially if their team consists of the 30 developers they say it does.

    • tigerfort says:

      To be fair, they’re pretty explicit about it on the KS page. The explanation they give is that (a) they’ve spent a fair bit of their own money (from Giana Sisters and outside work) in the meantime and (b) 50k is enough extra money to get the game complete-enough to sell through early access, which they hope will bring in the rest of them money. Whether you think that’s a good plan or not is up to you, but they haven’t made any attempt to mislead people about what the plan is. It’s not entirely clear how early their early access would be (the implication is largely feature complete but with most of the content paid for by early access sales), IIRC, but they say “final” release would be in Q2 2015 (and Giana didn’t suffer the huge delays that certain other KS-funded games have).

  2. AngoraFish says:

    Relaunching a Kickstarter campaign with a dramatically lower budget than the budget you originally said was the absolute minimum needed to complete your project is the Kickstarter equivalent of flexible funding, and equally as problematic.

    • Caiman says:

      Go and read tigerfort’s post above, or visit the Kickstarter page, and you’ll discover there’s a sensible reason for the reduced funding goal this time.

  3. Volcanu says:

    Yet another game “inspired” (ahem) by the aesthetic of Games Workshop’s creations.

    It’s a shame that the officially licensed products appear to being given to shovelware type developers these days.

    • Kollega says:

      To be fair, Games Workshop’s creations themselves are “inspired” (ahem) by everything from Tolkien to Catholic Church to World War 2 to Asimov’s Foundation series to Starship Troopers and Aliens. Everything used in them was already used somewhere before, so I don’t see it as a problem that some other people capitalize on those far-from-fresh ideas. Well, if you don’t count a total lack of originality as a problem.

      • Volcanu says:

        Yeah I suppose you have a point. GW have certainly taken inspiration from all of those, and many other places to boot (Gundam, Aliens etc, etc).

        But I suppose it’s the degree to which you put your own spin on it that determines whether it’s a loving homage or an outright rip off – at least in my view.

        For the most part GW do at least put their own spin on the influences they borrow. For example, Orcs are nicked from Tolkien but the GW versions with their lurid green skin, tall stature and over the top musculature – not to mention the cockney/comedy stylings – are all very much a GW take on them, not to be found in Tolkien’s work. Indeed the popular “Orc” is really as much a GW creation as a Tolkien one – his being smaller in stature, with sallow skin and a “debased mongol/turkic” appearance.

        I have a small problem when people just lazily copy the aesthetic design wholesale and pass it off as their own. In this game for instance the Orcs are very much like 40k Orks – with the claw type weapons and mekkboy/ stormboy backpacks and so on.

        • Kollega says:

          Eh, I guess you’re right that while GW were certainly “taking pointers” from other, much more original works, they at least had the decency to mix and match untill their work could pass as “something new”. The orks here are definitely just picked up from Warhammer with nearly no alterations, and are even called “orks”. But on a more positive note, the backdrops seem interesting and not just stolen from somewhere, at least.

  4. reggiep says:

    They started making some comics now too. The first one they released was so horrendously unfunny that I have little hope of any decent humor coming out of this game. I backed Project Ravensdale, but I think I’m going to pass on Dieselstormers.
    link to kickstarter.com

  5. Batzaar says:

    The Artstyle for this did catch my eye. Definitely looks cool. As for originality, I think it’s not so much where the ideas from as it is what they do with them and this does look like a cool take on co-op. Looks like the KS funding is coming along nicely too.

  6. twentysixinch says:

    There is a new dev comment on KS page, it shows that the whole run ‘n’ gun co-op is just the tip of the iceberg. There is a whole RPG/customization/loot angle to it!

    link to kickstarter.com


    Weapons won’t be picked up like in the prototype, but you will be able to craft them from parts that are randomly obtained as loot drops, mission rewards, maybe a slot machine ( :
    Each part has its own properties that can be combined with other parts in many creative ways.
    For those who desire some custom crazy weapons we’ll have legendary weapon parts that do weird and unusual stuff, breaking the “rules” to some extent (e.g. cannons shooting ragdolling goblins as projectiles like there’s no tomorrow!)

    We will have 3 fundamental weapon parts:
    – Frames that essentially define the weapon projectiles (speed, size, type and pattern)
    – Engines that impact damage per second, rate of fire and recoil
    – Barrels that affect range and precision
    There will also be consumable weapon boosters to pick up during missions for ultra-carnage moments ( :


    Regarding the diesel-armors, you’ll be able to equip your character with different armor parts (Helmet, gauntlets, greaves, cuirass, shoulder plates), each of them having passive attributes to combine, e.g. a helmet that slows down enemy projectiles in proximity combined with gauntlets that absorb grazing and hitting projectiles for extra overdrive, cuirass with extra durability and enemy taunt associated with greaves that increase hover time, etc.


    The game will offer a sheer amount of upgrades, unique properties and abilities for your equipment and unlockable features for the Arc Connector, our ultimate team upgrade.

    But as everything is separated in tiers, your character will have to unlock perks in order to use them.
    Equipment will grow in power and special properties. Furthermore, legendary parts will provide more unique properties with stronger impact on your playstyle while generic parts will still help to boost stats, offering new synergies. We really want experimenting with weapon parts being something fun and deep.

    Unlockable Arc Connector features will include an overdrive mode with a huge death beam firing from the Arc Connector and custom upgrades like Arc Lightning, Arc Flame, Arc Goop, Arc Blast, Arc Vortex, etc.
    The Arc Pull as seen in the prototype will also grow to obstacles phase-through, bullets deflection, slam pulls, zappers, burners, goopers or enemy levitation…”