Quench: a narrative puzzle game by Axon Interactive

Quench is a story-driven puzzle game set in a colourful, lo-fi world. You play as Shepherd, an avatar of nature, and you have the power to control the weather to guide herds of animals on a perilous journey. 

You must protect your flock, tend the land, and unravel the mystery of the strange smokebeasts that have invaded the world. 

Using your divine powers over the weather, you will provide for your herds, help them as they take up their great pilgrimage, and ultimately restore the world. 

Summon rain to bring life to withered plants, quench fires and calm enraged spirits. 

Create gusts of wind to hurry your animals along, confuse attackers, and shift great dunes of sand.

Quake the earth to break open chasms and fountains, stun smokebeasts, and clear boulders blocking the way. 

Strike lightning to start fires, revive fallen animals and obliterate foes. But don't forget to take a moment to appreciate the beauty of nature!

Quench is planned to have 28 gorgeous, handmade levels. Every level has unique objectives, such as keeping your herds safe from harm, allowing them to meet each other, restoring a natural feature or calming an enraged spirit. Levels also have special challenges that can be undertaken, like avoiding the use of certain powers or keeping every creature alive. Play through the story and then go back and see if you can beat every challenge!

The Shepherd objective requires you to assist one or more animal herds as they make their way to a safe zone. To complete the level, each herd must have at least one remaining animal and reach the destination. Use Weather Powers to clear obstacles for, provide for, and secure the safety of the animal herds as they travel. 

The Shelter objective requires you to keep herds alive in stationary locations while they are battered by dangers such as fire or spirits outside the player’s control. To complete the level, at least one animal from each herd must survive until the threat is contained. Use Weather Powers to divert flood waters, subdue spirits, fight fires and otherwise avert disaster.

The Restore objective requires you to restore a natural feature, like an Elder Tree, or even an entire region. To complete the level, you must increase the life in the level over a certain threshold. Use Weather Powers to crack open fountains, blow away sand and revive groves and make the land beautiful and green.

The Force of Nature objective requires you to suppress all danger or survive for a fixed amount of time, but circumstances allow you to wield limitless power to do so. This happens only rarely, when your herds or the Elder Trees face dire threats.

The animal tribes encountered in Quench all have different personalities and abilities. Some herds brave danger while others shy away; some are adept at dealing with certain terrain or weather or have weaknesses that must be taken into account.

Elephants are wise and spiritual creatures with long memories. They travel in small herds, keeping each other close to protect the group. They listen to nature’s omens and tell stories of their ancestors. Because elephants stand very tall, they can walk through deep water without swimming, but are vulnerable to lightning for the same reason.

Springbok are quick, excitable and easily spooked, charging headfirst into danger and learning quickly from their mistakes. When threatened, Springbok fan out and take flight to escape, making them hard to catch. However, they are easily exhausted by the forces of weather and hunger if not provided for regularly.

Wildebeest are stoic and stubborn. When in trouble, they would rather charge through a known danger than face an unknown path. When smokebeasts threaten the herd, Wildebeest will stubbornly ignore them and continue onward. They travel in large herds and are able to brave the worst of weather with their thick hides and seemingly endless endurance.

Baboons are smart, dexterous primates that use tools to achieve their goals. They are ambitious and enamored by the magic of fire, using it to stun and repel enemies that threaten them. By using the power of fire they have built great things, but at great cost.

Lions are strong and proud animals that value family before all other things. Lions are deadly fighters, and will attack any enemy that threatens the family group. Unfortunately, they are poor swimmers that become panicked by deep water.

Smokebeasts are mysterious spirits, shrouded in ash and embers, encountered by the animal tribes as they make their way to the Eastern Elder Tree.

You can use your powers to affect different smokebeasts in different ways. Although all smokebeasts can be eliminated with a Lightning strike or two, there are many ways to deal with their presence when a herd gets too close. You could Quake a landslide to block their view, calm their anger with soothing Rain, or steer them away with Wind. But watch out -- not all of your powers will work on every smokebeast.

Stags are the first smokebeasts to be encountered by the player. Although calm when left alone, when your animals get too close they become aggressive. If left unchecked, they will charge through other herds, causing panic and injury as your animals try to flee.

"Once every generation, the Elephant Tribe makes a grand pilgrimage. They set forth from the Western Elder Tree, and gather the other animal tribes: Springbok, Wildebeest, Zebra, Baboon, and Lion, to make the long journey to the Eastern Elder Tree.  

As they always have, each Tribe brings offerings to honour the mighty Trees. But for one generation, the journey was different. The land became dry and hot, with murmurs of dark spirits in the East. To make matters worse, the Western Elder Tree bore only a single fruit.

On the eve of their departure, the young leader of the Elephant Tribe kept vigil, waiting for an omen from the Elder Tree..."

You are Shepherd, an avatar of the Western Elder Tree, and you control the weather. Your first friend is Shaman, the new leader of the Elephant Tribe. 

Shaman has an enormous task ahead of her: gathering all the scattered tribes of animals and bringing them to the Eastern Elder Tree on the other side of the world. You must help her and the others -- but you soon discover that the land is dying, and strange smoky spirits are appearing everywhere.

The story of Quench is a framed as an illustrated fable about overcoming differences to restore the world. The game explores the ways in which kindness, compassion and forgiveness are powers unto themselves, both through the game mechanics, which focus on nurturing/protecting as the primary means of action, and through the way the characters interact and grow in the course of the game.

Shepherd is the player character, and is a silent protagonist within the story of Quench. Shepherd is a crane that emerges from the last fruit of the Western Elder Tree at the start of the game.

Shaman is a young, spiritual elephant who has the power to commune with the natural world. She recently became the matriarch of the Elephant Tribe after the premature death of her grandmother.This is Shaman’s first pilgrimage, and she must prove to her tribe, and to herself, that she can lead the other animals with Shepherd’s help.

Headlong is the impulsive but kind leader of the Springbok Tribe. He is just as likely to jump in and help his friends as he is to jump to conclusions about those he doesn’t trust. He believes wholeheartedly in Shaman’s words and vows to help in any way on the pilgrimage. 

Grizzle is the elderly and sardonic leader of the Wildebeest Tribe. Although he agrees to participate in the pilgrimage, Grizzle is protective of his tribe, and distrustful of the Lions and Baboons, whom he considers a threat to the group’s stability. 

Switchback is the leader of the Zebra Tribe. The Zebra and Wildebeest have had a longstanding alliance, and Grizzle and Switchback are close friends.  

Flint usurped his sister Fern as the leader of the Baboons after proving his worth by bringing the power of fire to his tribe. Flint is cunning and sly, and although he seems eager to join the other animals, he does nothing to mitigate the unease that the other leaders feel around him.

Hunter is the proud matriarch of the Lion Tribe. She cares deeply for her family and is very resistant to the idea of putting them in danger for the sake of the other animals. Her stubborn self-reliance makes it difficult for her to ask for help, even in times of dire need.  

If we are fortunate enough to surpass our funding goal, we have some exciting stretch goals planned! Most of our stretch goals are things that we've always wanted to see happen for Quench but that had to be left out for budgetary reasons. Meeting our stretch goals will help add polish to the game and bring Quench to more players.

We'll add voice-acted narration to bring the cinematic sequences to life. 

We will port Quench to the WiiU. The touchscreen controller + TV is the ideal way to share the experience of Quench, whether it be with a friend, child or partner.

We will add Zen Garden, a new game mode that allows you to revisit any level you have unlocked and use your powers to restore it to its natural beauty. As a bonus, the World Map will be upgraded to show additional information about your progress.

Create a short comic about Scout, a Springbok in Quench who has an adventure of her own. The comic will be included in the Artbook & Guide but made available as a digital reward to all backers. 

After that, it's a secret! We have more stretch goals in the works, and we'll unveil them in backer updates as they are unlocked.

We have been working on Quench for more than a year. Thanks to the support of a grant from the Ontario Media Development Corporation and the hard work of our team, Quench is well into development: the core game is functionally close to completion, and we’re in the process of integrating new levels and story into the game now. We’re on our way to successfully releasing Quench near the end of 2016. But with 90% of our funding received and paid out (and the final 10% allocated to post-production costs), we have been developing Quench on our own time and expense since the beginning of 2016. 

In order to release Quench on schedule with all of the planned levels and story, we felt that turning to our audience via Kickstarter would be the best way to raise enough funds to see the project through its last few months of development. Having the security of additional funding will allow the team to continue making Quench our primary focus so that we don't have to take on additional work to supplement our incomes.

Of the $26,000 we hope to raise, we intend to use 55% of the budget for art and programming toward the completion of levels, playtesting and polish. 20% will go toward an expanded musical score and improved audio in the game which will allow the story to have greater emotional impact. The remaining 25% of the budget is reserved for reward fulfilment, Kickstarter fees and payment processing, so that the expenses of this campaign are covered.

We believe that what makes Quench stand out best is its unique aesthetic, hopeful story and impactful sound. Our rewards showcase the art, story and music of Quench so that in addition to the game, backers can get an exclusive look into our process and learn about the world of Quench and its creatures.

We knew that in order for our story to be told properly we would need a great soundtrack to accompany it. Taking musical cues from some of the game's influences (particularly The Lion King and Avatar: The Last Airbender), Adam has been working closely with the narrative team to produce the sounds of Quench. Grab the OST at the $25 tier or higher.

Listen to a few of the tracks below:

The Artbook & Guide will be 50+ full colour pages of concept and production artwork, accompanied by background about every character, location, and enemy. We plan to include both lore and backstory that you won't get in the game as well as "director's commentary" about our artistic and gameplay choices. You can grab a digital copy at the $35 tier and a beautifully-printed physical book at the $75 tier.

For those who are as in love with the style of Quench as we are, at the $275 tier we will create a custom animal portrait for you, similar to the ones created for the characters in Quench. Whether your animal is real (like a cherished pet) or mythical (like your RP character), we'll work with you to recreate it faithfully in Hexels and send you a sweet 12" x 18" signed poster. 

If you like things to put on your walls or give to your friends, we're making the full set of 5" x 6" character portraits and your choice of a beautiful 18" x 12" Quench poster available at the $275 level, in addition to all the previous rewards.

We're offering an extremely small run of 3D-printed and hand-painted statuettes to backers at the $1,000 tier. Choose one animal from the game to bring to life! 

[Note: Those of you who have seen us at events know that we created a batch of small 3D-printed elephants back in 2015. This statuette will be larger (approx. 6" - 8" tall) and higher-quality.]

Axon Interactive, founded by Tabby and Jeff Rose in 2014, is an interactive media company based in Toronto, Canada. We specialize in websites and apps for healthcare and education, but also love making art and games. Visit us online at and follow us on Twitter @AxonInteractive.

Tabby Rose is a Producer and Narrative Designer. She has been designing interactive media experiences for more than five years and telling stories for longer than she can remember. She also loves cats, probably to a concerning degree.

Jeff Rose is a Game Designer, Programmer and Purveyor of Deadpan Office Humour. He quit his job working on fighter jets to learn how to make games because fighter jets weren't cool. 

Albert Fung is a 3D Animator and is responsible for the creatures in Quench. When he's not crafting low-poly animals, Albert creates educational animations for surgical trainees. He is the weirdest/coolest person we know. 

Kristina Neuman is a 2D Artist & Animator with experience as a designer and illustrator, and has worked on everything from websites to comics to eBooks to scientific papers. She also sings! She's super awesome. 

James Zinger is a Programmer, Shader Genie and Fixer of Things. He's basically a wizard is what we're saying. 

The Axon team is also supported by the following amazing people who have contributed their time and love to Quench.

Alex Bethke (Golden Gear Games) is the team's Project Manager and Mentor. He has worked on almost 100 games including Fate Tectonics and LongStory so we're pretty sure he knows what's up.

Randy Orenstein is a 3D Artist and created the environment art for Quench. When he's not making games, he helps run a ton of events in the indie community, and he's fantastic 100% of the time.

Chantal Parent is a Concept and Motion Graphics Artist and is responsible for the smokebeast concepts in Quench. The rest of the time, she works in children's TV, and also is the best.

Adam Sakiyama is the Composer and Sound Designer for Quench. He is also a music producer for Skyship Entertainment. Adam is currently composing an original score for “Exterminating Angel”, a new contemporary dance work by Alysa Pires Dance Projects to be performed in the 2016 Toronto Fringe Festival. We <3 him.

Quench is proudly made in Hexels and Unity®.

Quench is made possible with the support of the Ontario Media Development Corporation.

Thank you so much for checking out our campaign. We’re so grateful to have so many people around us that have supported our choice to make this game. We couldn’t do it without you.

Please share our campaign with your friends and keep up with Quench news on social media!

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