You read that right - amongst our look at all things crowdfunded this week are some actual engineers who actually want to construct piloted robots for the purpose of fighting each other. What a week, what a week.

Header Image from MegaBots

Cartography

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'Claim Territory on a map' isn't exactly a new thing for board games, but this beautifully designed board game sees you building the board itself as you play, charting the map:

Cartography builds on the ancient territory claiming game "Go" by adding a map-making mechanic. The map is made up of interlocking triangular tiles, with walls that divide the map, allowing territory to be defended or captured. Players create and claim territory, and capture opponents, in an effort to control the map. The map changes as you play so you must keep your wits about you. Strategy is key and chance doesn't determine the winner. Cartography is easy to learn and challenging to master!

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$35 nets you the base game, but a $65 pledge gets you a set that's twice as large, bumping it up to four player mapmaking goodness.

Everything's OK: Ten Years After Fracking

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This sci-fi webseries sets itself in a post apocalyptic Manhattan, a decade after ecological catastrophe has laid humanity low. Also, one of the leads is the revived head of Orson Wells. That's the sort of idea you can get behind.

In a world without drinking water, robots patrol what remains of Manhattan for the sole purpose of convincing rich people to remain in the ravaged metropolis. The East River is now the East River Gulch, a poisonous dried up ravine dotted with ramshackle shanty towns for the poor, dying, and exiled. 'Everything's O.K.' is a dark comedy, environmental sci-fi web series chronicling the adventures of Orson Welles' revived head in New York City ten years after fracking has triggered an ecocatastrophe.

This Kickstarter will fund a complete eight episode first season of this show. The episodes are already written and cast, all that's left is to film, edit, and composite. What's unique about this show is the combination of live actors and miniature papercraft backgrounds, like a twisted reverse of "Who Framed Roger Rabbit."

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The series itself will run online for free after release - $10 nets you access to behind the scenes progress updates, while the $50 pledge tier gets you the season before it releases as a HD Download, as well as a T-Shirt and a digital art pack.

Dark Patterns Volume One

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This cool looking comic sees a group of young teenagers formerly united as a supernatural think-tank coming together again to face a new threat from doomsday cultists:

A group of child prodigies are brought together as part of a government think-tank codenamed "Dark Patterns" to investigate and debunk supernatural occurrences.

After gaining notoriety for solving a kidnapping, the group is hired as a last-chance effort to help find a billionaire's kidnapped granddaughter, thought to be abducted by a doomsday cult calling themselves The Parting. During the investigation, things go terribly wrong, causing the Dark Patterns project to disband, and an investigation concluding the kidnapping was a hoax.

On the fifth anniversary of the case, the group is brought back together for a live TV special, and find themselves the targets of a very real threat...

"Dark Patterns Volume I" from Joey Groah and Meredith Moriarty is 44 full-color pages of an original supernatural action comic about second chances and letting go, with a second volume to follow.

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A mere $6 pledge gets you the PDF of the first volume, while $13 gets you a physical book as well as some digital bonuses.

MegaBots: Live-Action Giant Robot Combat

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I promised giant mechs, here are your giant mechs!

This insane looking Kickstarter is looking for 1.8 million dollars to make two giant robots - piloted by two humans - before they're pitched against each other in a live deathmatch (don't worry, they fire paintballs at each instead of actual bullets, so it's slightly less ludicrous than you'd think):

We grew up watching movies and playing games portraying a future filled with giant robots and mechs. Now the world is full of advanced robotic technology, but few of us get to see it in our everyday lives. It's tucked away in research labs, worked on at high-tech companies, or sent into space. We get to see short YouTube videos and read articles about it, but for the most part, the coolest stuff is off-limits to the public. MegaBots, Inc., uses cutting-edge robotics technology to create the giant piloted fighting robots we were promised during our childhoods!

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There's plenty of funding tiers involved - $10 gets you a code to the livestream of MegaBot's robo-tournament, $5,000 lets you pilot one of the Mechs in the tournament itself, and $999,999 gets the MegaBot team to build you a function Mech of your own, because of course it does.


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