Watcher Island is an exciting action/adventure RPG that combines several modes of gameplay into an educational ecological experience!
In the game’s world, cities in every country have been plagued by mysterious and violent attacks. Videos circulate on the Internet showing people of all backgrounds and ages in a fit of rage, destroying the property and people around them without any visible weapons. These attackers are also able to withstand over 1,000 rounds before succumbing to these injuries. Theories circulate online speculating the attackers are a new breed of supersoldier, supernatural entities, extraterrestrial invaders, or the beginning of the Rapture. The main character is caught in the aftermath of an incredibly violent attack. The same day, they receive an acceptance letter from Raritan University on “Watcher Island," a region of New Jersey the character has never heard of.
In its beta stage, Watcher Island is an on-rail shooter designed in Unity. Lost in a surreal forest and guiding a group of similarly lost humans, the player comes across a car made out of a tree. The car is armed with a futuristic laser gun, and the player must use this weapon to defend your fellow humans from the many monsters in the woods.
The demo features path finding, path following, flocking, steering, on-rail shooter gameplay, a variety of animations and movement scripts, and a scoring system that tracks the number of monsters disintegrated and the number of humans saved. The tree car follows the player as they man its light laser, and the humans follow the player on the tree car while monsters are triggered to seek out and attack your human party, effectively making the line of humans following the player their health bar. If all the humans die, the game ends.
The fully developed game will feature a first-person campaign mode, an app-based geocaching feature, and an accompanying digital novel. The gameplay centers on cooperative discovery and growth for the virtual and ultimately real-life players. The group works as a team of friends setting out to discover the fruits of big-city living, travelling from destination to destination on the map to mark off undiscovered areas via their choice of dice roll and player actions. The ultimate goal is for the players to achieve self- fulfillment. This goal overshadows all others, as the players must strive to attain and retain their spiritual purity by collecting truth in the form of spirit points and resisting
fear which deducts from their spirit points and leads the players to their downfall. This is handled through the drawing of Truth Cards and partaking in the interactive Social Card events, which primarily benefit the player’s spirit points, as opposed to Fear Cards which detract from them. This goal propagates the importance of striving to achieve your maximum potential as a person, straying from the depths of debilitating fear and inspiring the user to seek similar spiritual fulfillment as well as solace in others.
Key element of the gameplay came from a brief partnership between Hypostatic and the New Jersey 4-H Co-Operative Extension, a youth service organization run by the federal Department of Agriculture through Rutgers University. The goal of this program is to make STEM education accessible to students and families. Naturally, Hypostatic's response was to make an exciting desktop and mobile game that also aggregates data to improve environmental research and awareness. Exploring the outdoors, collecting and analyzing samples, working collaboratively based on fufillment and progress, and making scientifically accurate deductions about the environment are just some of the educational features of Watcher Island.