While the many ends of human civilization are all the rage nowadays, Before has been looking at its beginnings. It’s a singleplayer-focused survival game about your prehistoric tribe exploring, foraging, hunting, surviving wild animals, surviving the elements, and, over time, developing a culture, beliefs, and rituals. It all sounds delightful, but creator Bill Lowe was struggling for money to finish it. Normally this is where I’d link to a Kickstarter campaign, but no need! You see, those moneybags from Rust and Garry’s Mod gang Facepunch Studios have taken Before and its team under their gamewing.
Facepunch bossman Garry Newman explained today:
A while ago I got chatting to Bill. He had found himself in the position that a lot of indies find themselves in. He had this great talent, this great game idea, but he didn’t have time to make it – because he had to put food on the table. A man’s gotta eat. So I proposed that we make it together. Facepunch would hire him and anyone he wanted, and we’d make the game.
What pleasant people. I’m enjoying seeing Facepunch are spending their indie squillions, using it as freedom to play and experiment and hire people to make whatever they please, from arcade tennis to arcade simulators. They probably could’ve bought an island or two instead. They possibly still can.
You might fancy reading Indie Game Enthusiast‘s recent interview with Lowe, touching on stuff like emergent possibilities and not blowing a game’s surprises before it’s even out.