In The Matter King you play as Tallis. After awakening to find herself outside of a shuttle in the landing bay of a ship, surrounded by dead members of her crew. She must navigate the maze of an unknown alien spaceship, solving the puzzles inside and outside the ship, whilst attempting to escape the ship’s horde of drones.

Tallis must activate a distress beacon on the ship, summoning a rescue attempt 1,000 years away. To stay alive she must seek out the ship’s cryogenic various bays and sleep until rescue arrives. Whilst she does this she must also ensure the ship stays powered, she finds food to stay alive and that she stays sane during her years of isolation.

In September 2016 we launched a KickStarter and GreenLight campaign to fund the release of our first game, The Matter King, which was an atmospheric thriller platformer which took place in a maze like game world. Whilst the KickStarter did okay (it failed hard man) we unfortunately didn’t meet our funding goal, although our game was Greenlit by the steam community (back in the day when that was a thing).

Sci-fi thriller survival.

Who is Tallis? What happened to her crew? Who is coming to rescue her? Why is the ship so damaged? Just a few of the questions you’ll seek answers to in this entry to the AG universe.

Everytime the game is played a new ship layout is procedurally generated, meaning no two playthroughs will ever be the same. The ship will always spawn with several unique rooms, including a hydroponics bay (for food), armoury, drone production bay, generator rooms and so on. These rooms will be key to surviving the 1,000 years, but will always spawn in random locations.

Whilst there are 10 zones in The Requiem Network, the game operates as one gigantic puzzle.

In The Matter King death is just the beginning. If Tallis is killed and the ship’s regenerated is active, she will respawn at the regeneration bay, in real time. The level does not reset. Certain puzzles will require Tallis to destroy herself in order to remove an obstacle in his way, and after doing this Alpha will be able to proceed through the puzzle upon next encountering on it. If you cannot respawn at the regenerator and you , the game ends.

The longer Tallis stays awake, the more the isolation of the ship begins to creep up her, decreasing her sanity levels. The lower these levels are, the more hallucinations she’ll see, imagining enemies that aren’t there, rooms that don’t exist… Keep her sane by sleeping and reactivating her ENP, MX-01.

The Drones pursue the damaged ship, their AI damaged, seeking out any life forms in the ship. The game starts with only one drone searching the ship, but as the clock ticks on, more and more are created in the ship’s drone production bay. Sleeping is necessary for rescue to arrive, but the longer Tallis stays in cryo sleep, the more drones will seed the ship.

The ship is extremely damaged, with parts exposed to space. In contained and undamaged areas controlling Alpha works just like any normal platform game, but in areas exposed to the vacuum of space gravity disappears, allowing you to interact with Alpha within zero g. You can access the outside of the ship if you find an airlock, but keep a close eye on your oxygen levels.

We recognise the importance of lighting in a suspense based game and use this as a feature of The Matter King. Despite being a 2D platformer that utilises sprite based assets The Matter King utilises dynamic lighting shaders, allowing sprites to be lit with 3D like effects. This also means that if part of the ship isn’t lit, you can’t see it. There are various ways to navigate through the darkness.

Experience epic story telling

What happened after the Kickstarter?

With a failed KickStarter on our hands we went back to Aura Games HQ and did a bit of a post-mortem of the feedback and savage burns the Steam community had given to The Matter King, and ultimately decided that we needed to take some time to improve the artwork and functionality of the game. Whilst it was our first game, we realised we weren’t happy with the quality at this stage. Eventually we decided we needed to focus on our original game, The Requiem Network, and shelve The Matter King for the time being.

So is The Matter King dead? Absolutely not (although if you knew the story, kinda, yes).. In fact, it’s the next game in our production que (before the Requiem Network DLC). But it will look very different to the product we floated in our KickStarter campaign. Instead of being a maze platformer, we have shifted the genre to a survival game, and subbed out the story and protagonist - in the Matter King you’ll now take control of Romona Tallis, who awakens on an alien ship to find her crew mates murdered and with no memory of arriving on the ship. Rescue is 1,000 years away, so Tallis will need to locate cryogenic pods throughout the ship and sleep through to the arrival of her rescue. But it’s not that simple, oxygen is scarce, Tallis needs food to live, the ship’s power supply is failing and she’s not alone on the ship… Each play through will generate a new layout of the ship, so no two run throughs will be the same.

We’re very excited for this game. Stay tuned!