The Weekly Kickstarter: Dinosaurs, Jetpacks and Robots, Oh My!

As the 6-year-old boy in all of us knows, there is nothing better than dinosaurs. Except for robots maybe. Or jetpacks. Oh, and probably videogames. The fact that indie game developer, Spiral Studios, is hard at work at giving us all of those delightful things wrapped up in one tidy package makes them noteworthy. Hence, their upcoming game, Orion: Prelude, taking the spot as this week's featured Kickstarter project.

As the 6-year-old boy in all of us knows, there is nothing better than dinosaurs. Except for robots maybe. Or jetpacks. Oh, and probably videogames. The fact that indie game developer, Spiral Studios, is hard at work at giving us all of those delightful things wrapped up in one tidy package makes them noteworthy. Hence, their upcoming game, Orion: Prelude, taking the spot as this week’s featured Kickstarter project.

Orion: Prelude is a first person shooter that has been in development for more than a decade. Since the late 1990s, its creators have been working hard at creating a unique videogame universe populated with vicious monsters, futuristic soldiers, hyper-advanced vehicles and offbeat weaponry. The game blends vehicle and infantry combat with good, ol’ fashioned dinosaur-fightin’ in both a single-player campaign and multiplayer mode.

Spiral Studios, Orion‘s developer, is made up of industry veterans that have been working on the game as a passion project for years. Culled from companies like Electronic Arts and Sega, Spiral’s team is currently gearing up for launch by refining the game to ensure that it creates a fast-paced and addictive experience able to compete on a level playing field with other multiplayer hits like Counter-Strike and Team Fortress 2.

Spiral Studios, now that it’s finally nearing a “late 2011” release date, wants to ensure that its baby comes into the world in the best possible form and, for this, it requires some help from fans of the project. Orion: Prelude has, thus far, been funded entirely through either the finances or sweat equity of its creators but now, as it nears launch, Spiral requires outside aid in order to fufill its vision.

Donations go toward Spiral’s ability to secure further developers to help continue the finalization and support of the game, creating a multiplayer beta in time for a summer launch and the release of a game build that can be shown to publishers, investors and other developers at this year’s Game Developer Conference. All of these various facets are essential toward Spiral Studios being able to provide players with a polished, stable release that will live up to its (rather enormous) potential.

The Orion project is important, not just just for the impressive ideas presented in the game itself, but also for what the company is attempting to do for indie developers and the videogame industry at large. Unlike the major game studios, Spiral plans to continue its support of Orion: Prelude after release with free downloadable content (DLC) packs and the regular addition of new features. Rather than paying out exoberant amounts for a few new character skins and a handful of maps, Spiral wants to reward buyers with a product that continuously evolves, free of charge, long after its launch.

By supporting Orion: Prelude on Kickstarter, pledgers are able to help demonstrate that the videogame industry’s existing model of expensive DLC and post-release support can be overcome. Spiral Studios is an ambitious independant developer with the talent and dedication to provide a powerful argument for rethinking existing modes of game release — something which benefits both consumers and prospective indie game makers.

To donate to Orion: Prelude (or view the numerous pledging rewards on offer) on Kickstarter click here. Project funding ends on Thursday, February 17th at 12.01am EST.