La-Mulana has long been a favorite of indie gamers. Launched in Japan in 2005 and translated to English in 2006, it was well received by fans of the “Metroidvania” type of 2D side scrolling game. In 2007 it was remade, improving the graphics to “match a more modern 16-bit aesthetic,” and in 2011 this effort was rewarded when Nintendo added La-Mulana to its WiiWare lineup.
Now developer NIGORO, assisted by Playism Games, is on a campaign to create a long-desired sequel – and as of February 16th, their Kickstarter has achieved the necessary minimum backing in order to accomplish this.
With five days still remaining, the Kickstarter has broken $200,000 in pledges from fans who want to see La-Mulana 2 brought to life. With this base goal achieved, it remains to be seen if they can reach their first “stretch goal” of $230,000. NIGORO is emphatic that players will not have to experience the original La-Mulana in order to enjoy the sequel. However, they acknowledge that “a large number of players want to know what happened after the first game ended,” so reaching the $230,000 stretch goal will allow them to include a mode in La-Mulana 2 that reveals more about the story and world of the first game. Reaching further stretch goals will enable the inclusion of an in-game bestiary, character stories, OSX and Linux versions, and more.
The sequel is set five years after the original La-Mulana. The ruins which were uncovered by archaeologist Lemeza Kosugi have collapsed, but no one is certain why. When monsters begin appearing around the old entrance to the caves, the chief of the village who once protected the ruins reaches out to Lemeza’s archaeology society for help. Lumisa Kosugi, a new protagonist from Lemeza’s family, makes the journey to help solve the mystery.
Why Kickstarter? NIGORO addresses this question up front on the campaign’s page. “We’ve always wanted to expand the universe of La-Mulana and improve upon the concepts we introduced in the first game. What we feared is that we wouldn’t have the funds to make the game we wanted to make, and the game our fans deserve,” they explain. “With your help, we can make the sequel we’ve always wanted to make, and play a part in helping Japan regain its position as a fundamental part of the gaming world stage.”
While waiting for the sequel’s completion and release, impatient gamers can treat themselves to the original La-Mulana on Playism or through WiiWare. For more details about La-Mulana 2, visit the official website (available in English and Japanese), and keep tabs on the Kickstarter to see what to expect from this crowdfunded game.