Francis Ford Coppola is continuing his experimentation with new forms of storytelling with a Kickstarter campaign for an “Apocalypse Now” role-playing video game. The game is being developed by the team behind such games as “Gears Of War,” “Fallout,” and “Battlefield.” As Coppola’s company American Zoetrope stated, the game, described as a “psychological horror,” is “a cinematic narrative with roleplaying game mechanics set in the midst of the Vietnam War. As in the film, players will take on the role of Captain Willard, on a secret mission to assassinate renegade Colonel Kurtz. Throughout the course of the game, players will have the ability to make their own decisions independent of the original narrative.”
Some of the perks for early backers willing to drop a decent amount of money on the project include a surfboard from the film, the opportunity to give feedback to the developers, and even a stay at one of Coppola’s resorts. If you only want to give a little bit, though, you still can get a digital copy of the game for $35. The goal of the campaign is $900,000 and it already has over $50,000 with 29 days to go. In a statement, Coppola noted, “Forty years ago, I set out to make a personal art picture that could hopefully influence generations of viewers for years to come … I’ve been watching video games grow into a meaningful way to tell stories, and I’m excited to explore the possibilities for ‘Apocalypse Now‘ for a new platform and a new generation.”
Coppola has, of recent, been trying out different approaches to cinema. His last release, “Twixt,” was notable for his live re-editing of the film during screenings, while last year he worked on his “live cinema” project “Distant Visions“ at UCLA. While I’m not sure the world needs an “Apocalypse Now“ video game, I’m interested to see what input, if any, Coppola has on the project and what directions he continues to take as a storyteller. And this isn’t the first time a Coppola film has been turned into a video game: In 2006, “The Godfather” hit various platforms, featuring voice acting from some key cast members (James Caan and Robert Duvall), though there are differing accounts as to how much support Coppola lent the game.