By LYNETTE HAALAND, Four Points News
Four Vandegrift High School alumni moved from gaming enthusiast to entrepreneurs as they developed a video game called “Subject X”.
Dylan Locke, Clay Lancashire, Charlotte Calvin and Matt Earp have been squeezing development time in between class work and jobs.
Once they realized the quality of their product matched or surpassed much of what is popular in independent gaming, the got serious about their venture. They formed Ludum Games LLC and are ready to take their game to market.
“Subject X” is a first person cosmic horror video game.
“‘Subject X’ is different from other independent market games because of the very human characters and their interactions” Locke said. “A lot of attention has been given to the storyline and character development.”
The team describes “Subject X” as an immersive story that draws people into the character. The storyline chronicles the growth of the main character rather than focusing on the triumphs at each level of play.
Each team member brings a unique skill to Ludum. Locke is the primary writer, composer and animator. Lancashire, who devised the original concept for the game provides level design and coding. Calvin heads the artwork and designed the look of the characters. Earp, originally one of the voice actors, co-writes the storyline.
Locke and Earp graduated from VHS in 2012 and Lancashire and Calvin in 2013.
The project has been a huge learning curve for Ludum members. They began with no coding experience and relied heavily on YouTube instructional videos uploaded by other game developers. At times these sources didn’t lead to successful outcomes, sending the team in a direction that didn’t fit the overall development of the game.
They hope to produce their own set of instructional videos after “Subject X” becomes a commercial commodity to give back to the gaming community.
The team agrees that the concept, growth and development of this project seems a lot like raising a child that they are now ready to send out into the world.
Ludum is currently fundraising using crowdfunding website RocketHub.com (www.rockethub.com/projects/32441-subject-x) to cover production costs, which will allow them to take it to the next level: marketing the game to the independent market.
“We’re focusing on premiering ‘Subject X’ to the independent market because we really want to offer a satisfying game while we build our company,” Calvin said.
The team has plans for subsequent games which they hope to take mainstream.
Connie Calvin contributed to this article.