Italian iPhone development house KF Lab is soon to release their stylized run-and-jump title A Skeleton Story, that we first spotted back in October, for the iPhone. The developer long ago posted a lavish cinematic trailer , and has just posted a bit of gameplay footage to give readers a taste of what's to come from this title that's based on a "Burtonesque noir fairy tale" comic of the same name. We've also had a chance to spend a little time with a pre-release build they were kind enough to provide.
A great wind blows from the land of memory, bringing omens and old sensations. The Kingdom of the Dead, where everything seems bound to eternal rest, is troubled by some obscure presence, an intruder…something alive! A loving kitten’s going to make this world up-side-down!
Will Musil, the skeleton detective, is at his desk in his office…he’s deep in a restless sleep, hovering between his dream and the memories of his past life, still unaware of what lies ahead…
A Skeleton Story is a platformer of sorts, highly reminiscent of Canabalt -- but at closer range and with a bit more graphical character. A number of additional gameplay elements are present, as well.
Your overall goal in the game is to send skeleton detective Will Musil leaping from rooftop to rooftop in an effort to retrieve a fleeing, black kitten. Along the way there are coins, boxes to collect, as well as oncoming villains that can be shot or leapt over (if you're quick). Letters that spell out "W-I-L-L" can be collected, as well, granting temporary invisibility when the word is complete.
There are an infinite number of levels in the game, and each time you manage to retrieve the cat, you will be taken to Henry's Pub where various character attribute enhancements can be purchased with accumulated money: increased ammo capacity, more lethal attacks, higher jumps, run faster, and more. But, if you tarry and don't manage to catch the kitten before it flees offscreen, it's one life gone, for you.
Making it from rooftop to rooftop isn't necessarily a simple matter. As the game progresses, more and more roofs are of different heights, and some houses can't take Will's weight and begin to collapse upon contact, Canabalt-style.
The game features a lively spy-capers sort of soundtrack and utilizes an onscreen stick and buttons for negotiating the endless series of rooftops that lay in wait. OpenFeint integration tracks online scores and achievements along the way.
The final version of the game should be arriving in the next few weeks.