Screenwest has officially announced the 13 video games set to receive funding support as part of the newly-established Western Australian Digital Games Production Fund. This government grant is designed to aid developers working on ‘high-quality, diverse, and engaging digital games’ in WA, with applicants able to apply for funding in pre-production, production, and post-production phases of their projects.
The inaugural cohort of games includes a gothic horror title set in Warsaw, an adventure following planetary scientists, an RPG tycoon about managing a local bar, a sports game about surfing, and plenty more besides. Screenwest has spoken of its enthusiasm for these projects, and how they’ll contribute to the creative output of Western Australia.
‘We were blown away by both the quality and quantity of applications – the new fund proved more popular than we anticipated, making the selection process a lengthy but thoroughly enjoyable undertaking,’ Mark Smith, Screenwest Digital Games Manager said of the funding process.
‘The diversity of applications received clearly demonstrates the talent and the sheer number of passionate game developers here in WA. Congratulations to the projects we’re supporting this round and the teams behind them.’
We congratulate the recipients of this first round of funding, and look forward to seeing more of their burgeoning projects. Here’s the full list of Screenwest-supported games, per the Screenwest website.
- Shrinehouse Keepers (Hungry Sky x Milktooth Studios) – ‘ Illuminate all the lanterns in the shrine house network, and enlighten the spirit world. The Head Shrinekeeper is preparing to retire, and has tasked their family with vital errands. Reveal the true nature of the town’s daily routines and connections.’
- Terrors of Warsaw (Hayden Graham, Tomasz Gomoła, Leybl Botwinik, Elizabeth Shulman-Nadolny) – ‘A dark gothic fantasy taking place in the Jewish quarter of Warsaw between the wars which has you fight alongside your friends against a demonic evil in a world of bustling markets, introspective philosophy, hate, joy, love and magic.’
- These Starless Skies (Wayward Astronaut) – ‘In These Starless Skies, a dysfunctional team of planetary scientists must confront their personal demons and unravel the enigma of a mysterious tidally-locked planet, all before their inner chaos takes over in this interstellar sci-fi point and click adventure.’
- Innkeeper: Adventurers’ Rest (Heartfly Studios) – ‘In Innkeeper play as Tippi and Thon, a retired adventuring couple who put down their weapons and picked up a pint and bar rag. Spend your time building relationships with the locals through dialogue, planning your menu, serving customers and decorating your Inn.’
- Boxman (Steven White-Smith) – ‘A small cardboard box character named Box – lost, confused and in search of home will quickly come to learn about a powerful malevolent force known as the “Mundane” that has overthrown this once cheerfully crafted world, turning everything upside-down with an unholy number of robots and one comically undersized evil leader with an affinity for all things grayscale. Luckily Box came with a hero inside!.. and a lot of packing peanuts.’
- Misc. A Tiny Tale (Tinyware Games) – ‘Join Buddy and Bag Boy, two adorable robots made of miscellaneous items, on a heartfelt 3D platforming adventure. Explore a familiar world from a new perspective, lend a hand to robots around you, make a difference by cleaning up trash, and unfold the story of an exciting journey.’
- Barton Lynch Pro Surfing (Bungarra Software) – ‘Barton Lynch Pro Surfing is a sports game that pits you against the world’s best surfers at the most exotic locations on the planet. The expansive world tour features an in-depth leaderboard and sports commentary, or if you prefer to free surf, just cruise the massive locations instead.’
- Finch & Archie (Dickson Hee, Rhys Veale-Chan, Aubrey Vigus, Tom Lorenti, Liz Glass, Harry May) – ‘A story driven co-op mystery game following a weathered detective and his fresh-furred canine companion as they solve a variety of classic noir cases by using their character-exclusive abilities, overcoming the challenge of cross-species communication and working together to sniff out the answers.’
- An Enginer and the Great Machine (Mark Thompson, Cameron Thompson-Dadd, Amy Doherty, Chris Head) – ‘An Engineer and the Great Machine is a bureau-punk engineering puzzle game where the player takes on the role of an engineer starting work on the new company project “The Great Machine”.’
- Monster House Party (Frame Mixed Reality Labs) – ‘Monster House Party is a casual, virtual reality party game for up to four online players. Players take on the roles of cute monster characters who have been invited to the Halloween party of the year, hosted at the mysterious Grindstone Manor.’
- PLONG (Robert Gross) – ‘PLONG is a Roguelite-Breakout hybrid which sees you play as a runaway virus rampaging through computer systems and destroying as many files as possible before being caught.’
- Omi Oh My AI (Jess Watson, Matt Dyet, Pidj Flavell, Chris Head) – ‘Omi Oh My AI is a transmedia puzzle game about an artificial intelligence on the brink of sentience. Players solve puzzles and interact with the friendly AI Omi as they try to unravel the mystery of their past, to understand how they got this way in the present, and help Omi to decide what to do with their future.’
- Nekograms (Hungry Sky) – ‘Nekograms is an adorable puzzle game about helping cats get to sleep. It features original gameplay, art style and music. It comes packed with 120 fun and challenging levels and over 15 different cat breed with plenty of accessories.’