So the trailer for 3 Minutes to Midnight looks really good. It looks like another awesome example of illustration come to life. There’s a mix of stylized drawing, brilliant color, and almost painterly texture moving across the screen. The music and visuals in the trailer also supercharge the game with a vintage, rock ‘n’ roll energy. It’s no wonder that it’s already been funded, though there’s still time left to add extra content with some stretch goals.
An Explosive Conspiracy
Developed by Barcelona-based Scarecrow Studio, 3 Minutes to Midnight is a 2D point-and-click comedy adventure that kicks off in the ‘40s with a mysterious explosion and an amnesiac teen named Betty Anderson. Along with mayor Eliza Barret, Betty will investigate a small town conspiracy in New Mexico. The trailer hints at a bizarre rogues gallery featuring the criminal underground, the occult, and literal monsters. It sounds like a tantalizing promise for a genre-busting tale. The spotlight on female playable characters also makes 3 Minutes to Midnight even more appealing.
Fulfilling additional stretch goals for Scarecrow Studio’s campaign can unlock new content. This includes a new digital comic book, behind-the-scenes commentary, and support for the inclusion of more languages, like Portuguese.
Revisiting the Point-and-Click Genre
On the game’s website, Scarecrow Studio says that while 3 Minutes to Midnight draws inspiration from fellow point-and-click games; Day of the Tentacle, Sam & Max Hit the Road, and The Secret of Monkey Island, they also seek to update the genre with new features like an “intuitive interface” and “high-def cartoon art.”
The Kickstarter page also talks about branching paths in 3 Minutes to Midnight, claiming that actions will have consequences, puzzles can be solved in different ways, and players can reach significantly different conclusions. They can also discover secret events, characters, and pieces of dialogue. Scarecrow Studio emphasized one definite consequence of this — replayability.
Awards and Rewards
Now funded, 3 Minutes to Midnight is clearly making progress. The game’s already won awards, like Best Indie Game at the 2018 Gamnesia E3 Awards and Best Art in Game Access 2019. Samples of its soundtrack — created by award-winning composer Guy Jones — are already available on SoundCloud. Scarecrow Studio has shown demos of 3 Minutes to Midnight at PAX East, Gamescom, and E3.
In a 2018 interview with OC Weekly during E3, Pavlína Kačerová (quality assurance and marketing on 3 Minutes to Midnight) said that the team “wanted to bring back the feeling of solving the puzzles in those old LucasArts games.”
Players can back the game and help it progress further. Their rewards for that could go beyond the full release of the game or any fulfilled stretch goals. Scarecrow Studio is offering a wide variety of digital and physical goodies, including a PC-DVD case edition, a digital art collection, getting a criminal record in the game, and literally wearing Betty’s pink letterman jacket for all your cosplay needs.
3 Minutes to Midnight is currently scheduled for a spring/summer 2020 release, and it’s already available to wishlist on Steam. Scarecrow Studio aims to also have it on Nintendo Switch, PS4, and Xbox One.