Last night saw a Kickstarter launch for a new title called Areal, which developer West Games is claiming as the spiritual successor to S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Since it’s launch potential backers and Survarium developers Vostok Games have not exactly been happy about the claims and were quick to respond.
The Kickstarter for Areal described the game as follows:
Areal is a new video game that’s being developed by the people behind S.T.A.L.K.E.R. It features a massive and intricately detailed open world environment that is extremely varied and colorful, even though it’s set in a post-apocalyptic setting. Areal depicts a future where civilization has fallen apart due to an unearthly material called Metamorphite, which eventually spreads, corrupts and infects the whole world. The source of Metamorphite comes from a meteor that impacted the earth long ago, and it is the site of constant conflict and bloodshed.
After the Kickstarter was posted on the Survarium forums, Vostok posted a response which has since been removed from the website.
“We have contacted GSC’s lawyers regarding this fraudulent claim of being the developers of Stalker and Metro Last Light. Please do all you can do ensure people know these claims are false.”
The story doesn’t end there though as West Games responded in the Kickstarter comments with the following:
” We have contacted Vostok Games about their supposed claim that we are fraudulent. They say that they have no relation to that claim and have since deleted the forum topic () wherein a moderator accused us of being fake. The Kickstarter comments section has been completely hijacked by a couple of people, and even if we comment there, our posts will be ignored and buried. Misery LTD in particular is developing another post apocalyptic video game and is stirring controversy to attract people to his Kickstarter project. I hope that you, our supporters, can see through this deliberate negativity and help us make an awesome game with Areal. Update 2 is coming later today, and will clarify things even further.
Once again a launched Kickstarter has not exactly been fully transparent and failed to provide evidence that the project is actually a real “thing”. The low funding goal of $50,000 has also raised a few eyebrows.
In response West Games posted another update this afternoon to reassure backers that more information was coming.
“We are going to make a video with our team and post it in the updates section tomorrow or late night today/early morning tomorrow if you are in the U.S. Also check out the updates we’ve already posted. Thanks!”
The real issue with this Kickstarter is the use of S.T.A.L.K.E.R art assets on the Kickstarter page and a video which appears to gave been cobbled together from a Unity3D tech demo as spotted by S.T.A.L.K.E.R fans. It’s not that surprising there’s some scepticism. No doubt more information on what West Games has planned will surface in the next day or so.