Update - January 18: After quickly surpassing its Kickstarter goal of $80,000, LumenTale: Memories of Trey is already sitting at $100,000 in crowdfunding at the time of writing. Developer Beehive Studios celebrated (opens in new tab) by adding more rewards to pricier backer tiers – like a $1,000 tier that already has four takers – and unveiling more of its stretch goals.
With $100,000 in the bag, LumenTale has already hit the mark for an expanded housing system, console ports for Switch, PlayStation, and Xbox, as well as an intro featuring singer Emi Evans of Nier and Dark Souls gaming fame. The colorful little catch-'em-up still has more than two weeks left in its campaign too, so it may hit more stretch goals yet.
Original story follows...
The year's only just begun but a new Pokemon-inspired creature-collecting RPG has already popped up, and it's quickly found some big love on Kickstarter. At the time of writing, it's very nearly crossed its funding threshold with 20 days left in its campaign.
LumenTale: Memories of Trey (opens in new tab) promises a storm of "mysteries, memories and emotions" between "exciting combat and boss battles." You guessed it: you play as Trey, a monster tamer exploring the land of Talea after regaining his lost memories. Your partners in adventure are the fairly boldly named Animons, which are described as "mystical creatures made of special energy that flows throughout the whole world." They can be friendly or aggressive, but many Animon learned to live together with humans, and "from that moment on, human civilization experienced exponential growth."
"Animon species are incredibly diverse, with some rare variants exhibiting traits of species that are now scarce or extinct," LumenTale's Kickstarter reads. "These are known as Lost Animons, and encountering one is considered an extremely lucky event. Researchers consider it a special and fortunate occasion to spot a Lost Animon, as it is a reminder of the ever-evolving nature of life."
The goal of many Talea citizens – that is, the very best that they want to be – is to become a Lumen and command a squad of Animon. I'm sure plenty of players will follow this career path, but I suspect many will also be content to build the "Anispace" of their dreams – in place of whatever's inside a Pokeball – to give their Animon the ideal home. It is hard not to gush over these things when they're so freakin' cute.
Combat looks like a familiar turn-based affair, but I'm intrigued by the focus on an Animon's speed as it relates to action points. Each skill has a speed stat of its own, I gather, so "the battle system is all about choosing the right order in which to use an Action, picking the best Action to use, and strategizing against your opponents."
LumenTale also splits Animon into emotional energies – joy, gloom, anger, fear, and calm – as well as 13 elements like electric and grass, or more abstract ones like aura and geo (hello, Genshin Impact fans). It's an intriguing little system, and it's even got its own in-game TCG so you can collect even more things. This is all extremely Pokemon-like stuff, but all art builds on art, and clearly Pokemon-like stuff is what a lot of people want.
LumenTale has a Steam demo coming soon, but based on its Kickstarter delivery date, the full game won't be released until the end of 2024. The devs at Beehive Studios are targeting PC for now, but hope to hit Switch, PlayStation, and/or Xbox via stretch goals.
For this year's hottest releases, check out our updated new games 2023 guide.