Most everyone has been struck by that one class, that without fail bores them beyond reason; inevitability a page of notes also becomes a page filled with doodles. A small start-up out of Syracuse, N.Y. plans to bring those sketches to life to do battle on the Internet.
Eric Cleckner and David Chenell are the creators of graFighters. They came up with the game idea while attending college and, after months of work, got the game as far developed as they could with the funds they had. This was around 1% complete. They tried to go the Kickstarter route, but they failed to get any support from potential donators. Instead they finally had some luck thanks to a friend and a European venture capitalist who helped them foot the bill.
The game is currently only in the beta stages. The beta is open to the public because Cleckner and Chenell hope to allow potential future users to get used to the game and the Cornelius algorithm that makes it work. This algorithm looks at a character that has been uploaded and examines the drawing, then determines the strengths and weaknesses of the character and they way by which it will attack.
The game is currently free to play for anyone who wants to give it a try. The current model of revenue generating for graFighter is the freemuim model; in this model the basic game is free, but extra services and items such as an ad-free version and extra character slots cost more money. This model is something that works well for games such as this in which much of the game play occurs on mobile devices.
There are rumors that a new version of the game will be hitting the web soon. Users can expect to see a revamped iPhone app and a new android marketplace app to come out shortly after. This also means that there are going to be new mechanics for the game to make it easier for new players to enjoy.
GraFighers is an inspired and inventive new game form, one that allows users to truly create and design their own character without being constrained by the options available in game. This new game style could be one that we see repeated by other games in the future. As the technology becomes more avaible it will be interesting to see if major games will begin to incorporate such an idea into their game design.