The young, Italian devs at Bears in Mind are hoping that their offering of BeardedBear is worth your time. They are currently looking for €6,000 (approx $6400 USD) to fund their arcade shooter with ‘roguelite’ elements. The title currently has a Steam Greenlight page and a 7 level demo to give people a chance to play before donating to their Kickstarter.
The story is your usual absurd tale meant to be as silly as possible. Aliens invade earth but lucking a scientist had performed experiments on a bear, making him our savior. The campaign page literally states:
“I’m sure that if I give him a super powerful beard with time-travel powers and I turn him into a cyborg he will become an awesome weapon against an alien invasion.”
The gameplay is a little more thought out with the ability to match a bunch of different guns with different bullets. There are no restrictions here so you can have a mini-gun shooting bees or a revolver shooting lightning.
The most interesting part of the game is the experience system. If you don’t collect the exp orbs that come out of downed enemies, the aliens can grab it instead and power up their levels. This adds a level of immediacy that will likely make many levels face paced.
BeardedBear will also contain
- 7 entirely balanced and playable levels out of 16 (the remaining ones are already programmed but lack the graphics assets)
- 12 unique weapon types out of *???* (We don’t know how many weapon types the final product will have. The only thing we know about that is that we want to put a lot of them.)
- 14 unique bullet types out of *???* (Same as weapon types)
- 7 different enemy types, each with four evolutive stages
- 3 mid bosses (They lack some animation but are already playable in the demo. Note that they appear always on the 5th 10th and 15th levels but in a random order for each run!)
- 20 different player upgrades out of *???*
- 15 different enemy upgrades out of *???*
- 4 combo bonus power ups
- 7 different beard types, each with their own pros and cons out of 10 (Some of them need a rework because they are pretty unbalanced right now)
- Looping system with Timetempests, timewarps, and timeshifts!
- Gamepad support
- Local coop mode
- Fun/hard mode
- Daily challenge system (yes, it’s already implemented, but it uses our current server and it’s not very stable. We’ll redo it with the Steam Leaderboard API when we’ll be approved on Steam Greenlight)
It seems that wacky arcade style shooters are the new frontier for indie games, especially with roguelike elements tagged on. With games like Enter the Gungeon highlighting this genre, it’s hard to see where BeardedBear stands out. The campaign page even says, ‘miniguns that shoot other miniguns,’ a feature often attributed to the zaniness of Gungeon.
However, even if the minimalist and cutesy style of this shooter is a little uninspired (even the beards seem tacked on), the experience system sounds like it could be a refreshing change of pace. And hey, I always appreciate when devs put out demos with Kickstarters to show what kind of product they can produce.
You have until Feb 23 to back the game. The campaign trailer is available below: