Animal Album is trying out the tried and tested method of taking a winning formula and tweaking it for something else. In this case, it’s for a good cause by swapping around identifying Pokémon for real world animals. You can try a quick (but meaty) demo right now on the game’s main site here.
The game is basing itself on the premise that people—and we’re talking more than just kids here—are interested in the new. And there’s plenty of animals in the world you probably don’t know about that you might remember if you, well, knew about them. Animals that are in the very real danger of going extinct.
Dev Sjors Jansen made the link between video game and reality when he read an article noting how the young were more likely to remember Pokemon names than the names of real animals. Boiling it down, therefore, he’s making the game an educational one filled with real animals There won’t be very much of a story, with a player-programmed robot sent out to catalog and observe the world’s wildlife.
When you encounter animals, or get in “fights” with foes, what happens isn’t a fight in the traditional sense. Instead, you’ll be given a picture or a world map, and tasked to find where exactly or what exactly you’re up against. Or perhaps a list of clues to identify the creature. Doing so successfully will add them to your growing animal album.
While there’s a Kickstarter running, the game will be released regardless of whether it gets funded or not—it just might not be as big or reach as many platforms. Dev Jansen certainly seems to have the chops, having done work on titles including Tomb Raider.
Animal Album will be available on PC, with more platforms possibly available if he gets enough funding.