By Eugene . May 23, 2014 . 3:31pm
There’s an indie Kickstarter game joining the Anti-bullying movement, and called Sumoboy,set in the backdrop of a Japanese world.
The titular Sumo boy is Oji, a chubby orphan in the Tohoku Home for Children. Bullied all the time, he discovers that he has an amazing heritage. His mother is Kesa, Princess of the Elements, and his father the greatest sumo wrestler ever, Otokoyama. His task now: to bring balance back to the world of elements and stop the evil Kurai Kama from overtaking the spirit world of Seishin.
Doing so is a case of love or hate. As Oji travels along trying to restore balance, he’ll utilize sumo moves to take down foes or solve puzzles. He also has access to the Blade of Balance, Hitoshii, a mystical sword which embodies both love and hate. Players can either wield it to vanquish foes, or suck out the fear and anger (that presumably leads to hate and suffering…) within to heal the wounds of troubled souls.
These monsters draw from the Japanese myth and folklore, with sky dragons and nymphs and more. Oji will travel through five different realms to heal them and restore the elements to balance. Taking a page from Bastion, the game is looking to feature voice narration. In tanka. Tanka is kinda like haiku, but uses a 5-7-5-7-7 style.
The art is a mix of 2D and 3D, and its pastel, painted style looks absolutely breathtaking. Oji himself looks a little like the Boy scout from the movie Up!. More importantly, however, is its underlying message about having the courage and inner strength to stand up and vanquish fears and stop bullying. We won’t wade into the debate about that here, but the way Sumoboy is tackling the problems and fears seem amazing.
Later stretch goals will add console support, with the game coming out on PC, Mac, Linux and mobile first. You can back Sumoboy here. Most of the team for the game has been drawn from various studios’ talents, who’ve worked on all sorts of titles from Halo to FallOut.
Thanks to Siliconera reader Antonia for pointing the game out to us!