A Visit From The Goonie Squad: Crossing Souls

Did you know? In the past, things were not quite the same as the present. The music was different! The clothes were different! Tellies were a different shape! Children were only ever to be found either on bicycles or at the local arcade! Cartoons were good-natured romps full of ultimately harmless monsters and unabashed toy promotion, in which no-one ever got hurt and everyone had a nice laugh at the end! Everything was better in the past, even though we didn’t have MP3s or the ability to inject microchips into our pets.

Crossing Souls wants to be one of those cheerful, colourful cartoons, in which kids from an everyday American town are transported away to fantastic adventures, presented as a Zeldalike, as is now Indie Law.

It’s nothing like so straightforward as Hyrule reskinned with Goonie-town, however. It features a switching perspective between its cast of five teen protagonists, and thematically appropriate setpiece minigames, such as the bicycle chase featured in every kids’ movie from the 80s.

It’s a fine balance between evoking a certain aesthetic and a nostalgia overload which denies a game its own personality, but the trailer suggests Crossing Souls has the former more in mind, at least (and with a Drive-inspired soundtrack too). Definitely appealing to an 80s kid such as I, who still tends towards reading Wikipedia pages about Visionairies or Boglins come a sleepless night.

It’s a pretty wee thing too, though I’m faintly distraught that the game proper doesn’t look like the Saturday morning cartoon-aping cutscenes.

Crossing Souls is on Kickstarter, of course, currently at $7000/$45,000, with just under a month to go. Dev Fourattic also has an arrangement with Hotline Miami publisher Devolver Digital, who seem to remain very much fans an 80s aesthetic.

8 Comments

  1. DarkMalice says:

    Visionaries! Knights of the magical light!

  2. Vast_Girth says:

    The cutscenes look awesome. The game itself..not so much.

    • hamilcarp says:

      I had the opposite impression. Seems the cutscenes were laying on the 80s nostalgia vibe a little to thick.

  3. BooleanBob says:

    Indies finally got done remaking Mario, huh?

    • Ross Angus says:

      It’s like Mario, but with a twist.

    • AXAXAXAS MLO II: MLO HARDER says:

      Indies have moved on to Zelda aaaaaaages ago, grandpa.

    • Tacroy says:

      Indies finally got done remaking Mario, huh?

      All snark aside, there’s actually an interesting idea to explore there – namely, that although indies are doing some innovation, there seems to be a sort of natural “flow” of video game genres, with some being flat out easier to create than others. Thus, when the industry starts exploring a new space (such as the current nostalgic, lower budget indie space) they’ll start out with platformers, followed by Zelda-likes, followed by, I dunno, metroidvanias or maybe spawning a new genre, like first person shooters or single button endless runners.

      You could probably construct a similar argument around the shareware movement during the nascent days of the Internet, talking about how they went from Commander Keen to Albion or Exile.

      Kinda makes me wish writing papers for school was still a thing I did

  4. theodacourt says:

    Oh my. This is the first time I’ve seen or heard anyone mention Visionaries outside of me searching for it on Google or mentioning it myself. Such a great cartoon! Also this game looks pretty cool but I don’t know how much of that is just the soundtrack to me.