A new Genesis/Mega-Drive shmup, ZPF, begins crowdfunding on Kickstarter; already achieves its goal nearly 5x over

Are you guys ready for an especially wonderful new Sega Genesis/Mega-Drive experience? Apparently a lot of people were. A Kickstarter has been recently opened up for an incredible new shooter by the developer of indie Genesis darling Tänzer and its publisher Mega Cat Studios. ZPF is a game that aims to push the beloved 16-bit console like few modern indie hits have before, and it’s already gone way past it’s initial modest goal of $15,000 USD in less than half an hour after going live on July 1st, 2024. In fact, it is already over $100,000 raised. I think people might be a bit impressed so far.

ZPF is a horizontal scrolling shmup, much like Genesis classics such as the Thunder Force games, Steel Empire (1992), Arrow Flash (1991), and another hotly anticipated indie hit which was also a smashing success on Kickstarter, Irena: Genesis Metal Fury. ZPF aims to set itself apart with some incredibly detailed and imaginative artwork, three playable characters with their own unique attacks, and many secrets, including hidden stages and endings. ZPF aims to go hard or go home.

Suffice it to say, this game’s coming out with or without your support, but there’s still all of July to put a couple of bucks down and earn yourself some rewards. For a rundown of what you can get, as well as more of the game itself, scroll on past the break and be ready to contain your excitement.

If those two trailers didn’t have you on the edge of your seat, then I don’t know what would. ZPF aims to push the envelope of visual effects and hardcore sound with the Genesis to show once and for all that there is life in the 35-year old console yet.

If you can’t spare much money, but still wanna leave your mark, a modest, but highly appreciated, $5 USD gets you a special thanks from Quibley and the ZPF dev team. All rewards from that amount onward earn you a digital soundtrack, poster, and PDF manual. $50 gets you that, plus a physical cartridge. $60 gets you the cartridge with a physical printed manual in a box. $80 gets you all that, plus a physical poster, sticker sheet, postcards, and pin. $90 gets you the cartridge, manual, and box, plus a vinyl record soundtrack, but none of the earlier mentioned physical rewards. From there, you get a wide variety of other physical rewards with your game, including Mega Cat Studios pins and keychains, an artbook, a diorama, and more. Sadly, all the discounted Early Bird rewards, as well as all the $460 Knight of Legend reward set, the highest costing reward available, have been claimed to capacity already. You can get a full rundown of everything on the actual Kickstarter page.

Once again, however, I must warn everyone that this game is still knee-deep in development, and anything can go wrong during development. As always, Kickstarter is not to be thought of as a store, even if you are putting a deposit down on special rewards, including the game itself. Rather, you are pledging money to fund the game’s development, but this does not always guarantee the game will come out as planned or that it will release in the exact form they say it will on Kickstarter. You also may have to wait several years for the game to release, as some Kickstarter games like Phantom Gear and the aforementioned Irena: Genesis Metal Fury, were successfully funded years ago and still have yet to even announce a release date as of this writing (Although development of both games is, so far, going smoothly) Before you pledge to ZPF, make sure you’re at peace with the usual uncertainties of game development and be prepared to let your money go forever, as refunds are never a guarantee with crowdfunding. Several games have been successfully released after their Kickstarter campaigns, including some that Mega Cat Studios was involved with, so I think chances are good that ZPF will come out just fine one day.

With all that said, go check out the ZPF Kickstarter page and decide for yourself if this game is worth funding and for how much. The Kickstarter closes on July 31st, 2024 at 9 AM EST, so you have plenty of time to make your choice, but don’t put it off too long if you’re thinking of pledging. You can also get there by clicking the graphic below. Even if you can’t spare a dime, they have also set up a contest you can enter with Gleam to potentially win a prototype copy of ZPF, which you can enter here for free.

Will you be funding ZPF on Kickstarter? Tell us all about your perspective in the comments below. Finally, we at SegaBits wish the ZPF team the best of luck with development.


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