Thomas Brush, the creator of Skinny and Coma—both available and very well-regarded on Newgrounds—went to Kickstarter last year in search of $28,000 to fund his next project, Pinstripe, a 2D adventure about an ex-minister who journeys to Hell in search of his daughter. He ended up with more than $106,000, which enabled him to expand its scope considerably, adding voice acting, an "adventure+" mode, and a bonus level set in Heaven. Today, just a hair over a year after the campaign concluded, he announced that work is almost complete, and the game will be out on April 25.
Pinstripe promises to tell a "chillingly somber and darkly comical" tale set in an underworld realm of "captivating beauty, strange characters, and lost secrets." Teddy, the former minister at the heart of the adventure, must "use his wits, tools and intrepid dog to solve intriguing puzzles and fend off fearsome creatures in a desperate quest to uncover the mysteries of his past and confront his shadowy nemesis, Mr. Pinstripe."
It's a legitimately interesting premise, and the screens and trailer are lovely. But what makes Pinstripe particularly interesting is that the entire thing, minus the voice acting, was created by Brush alone. The purpose of his solo act, he said, was to create a game that is "100 percent cohesive" in every aspect.
"Creating a uniform and cohesive project with a team is obviously possible, but it’s especially challenging as an indie creator. When money is tight, talent is remote and scarce, and commitment is shaky, artistically cohesive games are tough to pull off," he explained. "Working solo on a project is not the smartest move, since the lack of a support system can make it easy to get demotivated and bored. But my confidence level in this project was holding steady, so I stuck with it, and I’m so glad I did."
"I’ve lived in South Carolina my entire life, where religious themes permeate the entire culture. The topics of Hell, salvation, and morality are pretty much in my blood, for better or for worse," he continued. "Honestly, I made this game for me, simply as a way to artistically explore a topic that fascinates me. I like to think most people are interested in exploring the concept of the afterlife as well, and would be intrigued to play an indie title about it."
Brush said he's not sure what he'll get up to once Pinstripe is complete, although he said he's going to continue writing music, illustrating, designing, and telling stories. "I’m more than happy handing off a project’s development work, since that’s not my strong suit, and why Pinstripe took so long to make. But players seem to really enjoy the idea that a project in its entirety was created by a single person," he said. "I also want to encourage other devs who might think it’s impossible to make a quality game solo. It’s possible! It just takes diligence, hard-work... and an unhealthy obsession doesn’t hurt either."
Find out more about Pinstripe at pinstripegame.com.
Update: The article originally stated that Pinstripe will be out on April 18. It's actually coming on April 25.