Fund This: Unsung Story, a game of tactical combat, intrigue, and fantasy history

This weekend we're testing out a new series called Fund This, where we highlight new or soon-closing crowdfunding campaigns that relate to the iPhone, iPad, Mac or just mobile in general. Many entrepreneurs are learning to use services like Kickstarter and Indiegogo to get early-stage funding from the public, which provides a ton of creative independence compared to traditional models. That said, we've got a role to play in getting the word out about promising products that are coming down the pipe, since it often means that you fine readers can get some pretty cool stuff at a good price (provided that it might take awhile to actually ship). So, let's dig into our first project coming from Kickstarter, called Unsung Story: Tale of the Guardians.

Unsung Story is a project from Playdek, who have pumped out some very successful iOS board game adaptations such as Lords of Waterdeep, Agricola, and Ascension. For Unsung Story, they've managed to wrangle the original designer of Final Fantasy Tactics, Yasumi Matsuno, which sets a high bar as far as expectations go. Unsung Story is described as "tactical war simulation RPG" that pulls players through a series of medieval-style battles peppered throughout the history of a fantasy kingdom called Rasfalia. Your position in these battles shift regularly, so you're not necessarily fighting for the same side every round. Throughout, players have to guide the progression of their troops through various classes, like war mage, polearm knight, dragon tamer, and aerolest, which are nestled beneath broad professions, like clergy, noble, pioneer, and estate. Each hero you play as will have its own storyline with a unique perspective on the broad-spanning Seventy-Seven Years War. At launch, there should be about five episodes, each composed of four to six stages each.

Unsung Story gameplay

Not only are all of the parties involved with this project highly reputable, but there's a dearth of great turn-based fantasy combat games out on iOS. Ravenmark: Mercenaries is taking the claim to fame in that sphere for now, but Unsung Story stands to present a whole lot more in the way of visual and audio polish. I'm also a big fan of how the Mac version is being developed in tandem with mobile. Originally, Unsung Story was meant to be a mobile game, but there was enough demand in a Mac and other platforms for Playdek to warrant a Kickstarter campaign. Despite trying to support multiple platforms, Playdek sounds confident about keeping the quality up to snuff.

"We uphold quality to the fullest and we will not allow the game to suffer due to multiple platforms. If we are successful, the players playing on their iOS device will have the same exact game the PC players have. Also by meeting this campaign goal we will be able to add more to the game such as a deeper story line, more content, and more creative individuals to make this a better game."

For $20, you can secure yourself a digital copy of the game for iOS or Mac when it launches sometime in July 2015. As always, remember that "Kickstarter is not a store," so timelines can be pushed back, or projects cancelled (just look at the sad story of Clang.) Hit up Unsung Story's Kickstarter page for a look at further reward tiers and stretch goals.

Unsung Story concept art

So what do you think of Unsung Story? Compelling enough for you to back it? We'd appreciate your feedback!

Simon Sage

Editor-at-very-large at Mobile Nations, gamer, giant.