Coral Island Is Already Smashing Kickstarter Goals
The tropical farming simulation game by Stairway Games, has been a runaway success since its debut on Kickstarter this month. Three-quarters of the way through its funding period, Coral Island has already made fifteen times its goal and is still going strong.
The original goal of $70,000 was funded in three days, and now there are over a million dollars pledged, with eight days left to go. This level of funding has unlocked several intriguing stretch goals, with at least one more left to be unlocked if the Kickstarter continues to fund at the current rate.
What Is Coral Island?
Coral Island is a farming simulation game in the tradition of games like Stardew Valley, Farmville, My Time at Portia, and the eponymous, Farming Simulator series. These games often offer colorful scenery, social interaction, and an emphasis on building rather than conflict.
Coral Island’s innovations are in environment and diversity. The game’s South Pacific look and feel give it a distinctive sense of place which makes for a memorably immersive experience. But the game’s concept of environment extends beyond the borders of the island itself. The coral reefs surrounding the island are also part of the environment. The player will have options to explore and revitalize the reef as well as the land.
Coral Island’s innovations are in environment and diversity.
The game’s 50+ NPCs (sixteen of them dateable!) do a pretty good job of covering much of the world’s diversity. The wide range of looks and names give the game an excitingly international feel, and it looks like the dialogue options will allow the characters to talk about their various home cultures. The diversity is impressive and intriguing - and that’s before they add the Merfolk Village!
Coral Island Gameplay
Coral Island promises to build on the comfortably familiar mechanics of farming sims like Stardew Valley, updating and improving them while maintaining their classic feel. Characters will explore the island, collect resources, grow and harvest crops, nurture animals, and make friends with their neighbours. Along the way, they can also build and customize their homes, improve the village, participate in festivals, keep pets, and even go on quests.
When it comes to the farming action, the innovation is less in gameplay - which aims to preserve a familiar feel - than in variety. Coral Island features over 75 plants to farm. Many of them will already be well known to farm sim players, while others are Asian plants such as the dragon fruit and durian. Similarly, the animals available include cows, pigs, and chickens, but also peafowl, llamas, and luwaks.
Characters will explore the island, collect resources, grow and harvest crops, nurture animals, and make friends with their neighbours.
The coral reefs add a new element to the farming simulation genre. Players will be able to dive and explore an aquatic environment. By cleaning up the seabed, they can revitalize the reefs, which will allow for increasingly more exotic species of fish to live there - which can then be caught with the game’s fishing mechanic. Players can also harvest kelp, which can be used back on the island to upgrade the quality of crops and livestock.
[Coral Island] also incorporates what looks like a decent-sized dating sim, and elements of adventure games as well.
Since Coral Island has so far outpaced its original funding request, thirteen stretch goals have been unlocked. These include:
- Minigames- Multiplayer
- Console and Switch ports
- NPC seasonal, beach, and festival outfits
- The ability to have children and watch them grow up
- 4 more dateable NPCs in the village (for 20 total)
- The Merfolk Kingdom underwater, featuring another 20 NPCs (2 of them dateable)
If the Coral Island Kickstarter reaches $1.25 million (which it’s on pace to do), it will unlock a final stretch goal: the ability to build a ship and visit other islands with their own biomes and storylines.
A Farming Sim With a Promising Future
Coral Island is a Kickstarter for a new PC farming sim with a distinctive, colorful South Pacific setting. It looks like it will also double as a delightful, diverse dating sim. If you’re a fan of either genre - or of charming, immersive games in general - this one is worth checking out.
We look forward to seeing Coral Island in Early Access in October 2021!