Glorkian Warrior: help James Kochalka (and Pixeljam) make his first game


Cory mentioned this briefly the other day, but I thought I'd give a longer look (not least with the hi-res concept art James passed on) at Glorkian Warrior, a videogame concept Kochalka — best known for his daily American Elf strips, as well as his Monster Mii and Superf*ckers Review comics for Offworld — has had kicking around for several years now. So many years, in fact, that it was originally planned as a homebrew Game Boy Advance release in collaboration with hobbyist coders.

Kochalka's recent performance at NYC's monthly chiptune show Pulsewave (where he performed tracks from his latest Game Boy music album Digital Elf) led to a fortuitous meeting with Mark DeNardo, frequent musical collaborator with web-game powerhouse duo Pixeljam, who mentioned that said indie devs might be interested in working with Kochalka to finally realize his space platformer vision — a vision he's quietly been hinting at with his gallery work, right under your nose (and, more literally, mine).


They were, as it turned out, reciprocal big fans of Kochalka's output. Pixeljam themselves are best known for their apocalyptic doom-surfing game Dino Run, though they've continued to crank out fantastic work for Adult Swim like their awesomely left-field Peggle-meets-backwoods-recluse sim Mountain Maniac and their just-launched Cream Wolf: faux retro games released under an "8-bit Rejects" misnomer, as they show more creative spark and aesthetic purity than most dearly beloved.

But the Glorkian Warrior project is even more valuable for doing precisely what I continually maintain the games industry needs much more of: bringing in an outside artist with fresh ideas on what games can do and how they should work. And Warrior looks like it's going to just that, taking what started as a simple Moon Patrol-esque core and expanding in near limitless directions, rendered both in pixel and Kochalka's own signature style — and will eventually tie in with a long-planned graphic novel where both will aid the other in fleshing out its universe.

To help polish off the game as much as they'd both like, the two have launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise enough funds to keep Pixeljam afloat while they focus purely on Warrior. Donating nets you both in-game credits as well as a number of Kochalka-quality bonuses. Head over there to see the various pricing tiers and support what should hopefully be the first in a series of new digital Elf creations.

James Kochalka + Pixeljam = Glorkian Warrior