The art of I Was a Teenage Exocolonist, Coming to Steam and Playstation on August 25th, 2022!

Grow up to be a xenofauna rancher, a roboticist, or a rebel with a cause in I Was a Teenage Exocolonist, a card-battling narrative RPG where you live (and die, and re-live) your torrid teenage years in humanity’s first extrasolar colony.

Coming to Windows, Mac, Linux, PS4 and PS5 on August 25th, 2022!

One of the themes of I Was a Teenage Exocolonist is exploration and discovery. Both exploring the possibilities of your own life and identity as you grow up and decide who you will be, and exploring a lush and wild alien planet. So I knew from early on in development that the art should be beautiful, and that we needed a strong palette color-coded to the planet Vertumna’s changing seasons.

I met concept artist Sarah Webb at an arts festival where she was showing her comic Kochab, inspired by the beauty of nature in her home of Alaska. Her watercolor style perfectly fit the feel I wanted, to tell the story of people leaving an industrialized Earth behind to return to nature. Artists Meilee Chao, Eduardo Vargas and others deftly picked up this style and brought it to life in the game.

Running through regions and seasons of the planet Vertumna

As the narrative expanded and writer Lindsay Ishihiro joined the team (they also drew the creatures!), it was clear that the character art would be key. Romance was an option after all, so these needed to be characters you could imagine like-liking and eventually falling in love with. Mei knocked the character design out of the park, creating an entire culture for the exocolony with clothing that is a mix of space-age and homespun materials.

I want to own all of their outfits so badly in real life!

The Kids
The kids are up to some light mischief

Since the game takes place over 10 years, your childhood friends needed to age up with you. Although there is a plenty of innocent fun in the early years, Vertumna is a dangerous place, and the colony’s adults can only shield you from that fact for so long. As you get older, difficult and sometimes traumatic events will change both your friends’ personalities and their appearances.

Anemone age 10-13, 14-16, and 17-19
Anemone age 10-13, 14-16, and 17-19

As you decide what to study or where to work, who to befriend, and whether to help the colony, rebel, or find your own way, your memories take the form of cards in the deckbuilding part of the game. Everything from taking a biology test to battling monstrous xenofauna (or running the heck away from them!) is resolved by choosing up to 5 cards to place in order, with bonuses for adjacent matching colors or numbers.

I’m a big fan of the art in collectible card games like Magic the Gathering, so to add variety we worked with 100 different artists to illustrate over 250 cards. It’s been a ton of fun to see our world and characters through the eyes of all these different artists in their own styles.

Exocolonist card game
The cards feature art from over 100 different artists

Exocolonist’s massive dynamic narrative means you won’t see everything in one life, or even in four or five. And every playthrough will change a little, as memories from past lives trickle in to help or hinder you. Mei has endeavored to illustrate many of the major scenes that could play out, and all the different endings you can reach.

Strife between Rex and Vace

No matter where you end up in the game, we hope you have fun! I Was a Teenage Exocolonist is coming to Steam (and Itch, and other stores), PS4 and PS5 on August 25th, 2022. Wishlist it today!

Final round of #100exocards

We’ve come to the final round of #100exocards, guest card illustrations for I Was a Teenage Exocolonist by 100 different artists.

This group includes a few bonus cards as well! Exocolonist has 276 cards, and art for the others are a combination of cards by two of the team artists Mei and Eduardo, and from reused in-game assets (mostly drawn by Mei and Ed as well).

Working with all these diverse artists has been an amazing experience, and I need to thank Lindsay Ishihiro again for organizing it all.

Final round of guest illustrated cards – credits below.
A Grand Feast by Louis Chen
Vriki III by Blue
Unisaur II by Erica Doyle
A Mysterious Stranger by Ooorangy
Compromising by Mhuyo
Putting on your Scary Face by Tash-Fia Constant
Milking the Squeedger by JayJay
Losing your Temper by Rin
Getting Lost in the Fog by QuinncySama
Dishing the Dirt by Makorie
Telling a Gentle Tale by Rachel Harvey
Helping an Animal by Haveafreakday

Round nine of #100exocards

Pets pets pets! They can be equipped to follow you around and grant some pretty meaty bonuses. I can’t shake the idea that the beautiful Unisaur III is dancing.

Ninth round of guest illustrated cards – credits below.
Delusions by Donovan
Writing an Essay by Josh Cornillon
Vriki II by Lindsay Peltz
Use Your Words by JulieJubz
Unisaur III by Grave Omens
Acing a Test by Joanna Yu
Learning About the Past by anqi
Hopeye III by Beth Sparks
Gut Feeling by Kenby L.
Dizzy Weed by Darcy Dee

Round eight of #100exocards

I love the range of styles for Marz in this set of cards 70-80. I wonder if players will try to make an ‘all marz’ deck and whether that would be playable at all…

Eighth round of guest illustrated cards – credits below.
Dissecting a Sugarbug by denimbxy
Telling a Violent Tale by Marina Rubio
Talent Show Champion by
Science Fair Champion by Onsta
The Shimmer Cure by Oenomene
Standing Up for Something by Sophie Calhoun
Multitasking by Emily Yates
Investigation by Michelle Siddiqui
Under the Hot Hot Sun by Fruzsina Pittner
Facing the Eyebeasts by Daniel Joel Newman

Round seven of #100exocards

Spoilers this time – I don’t usually warn but these happen to be mainly late game cards with too obvious names.

It’s unlikely you’d see more than a couple of these in one playthrough, because you’d need to focus most of your teen years on one area: geoponics, exploration, engineering, or garrison. You won’t have time to do all of them in one playthrough.













Seventh round of guest illustrated cards – credits below.
A Stressful Event by cupidbeaux
The Vertumna Group by Tan Juan Gee
Winning the Championship by Karagna
Playing Shovelball with Cal by PyrokidSosa
Passing the Final Exam by Mhuyo
Harvesting the Fastest by navasketch
Advancing to Black Belt by Ian Garces
Ending the Trippet Revolts by Mattibee
Tracking the Airsquid by Collin Wilhelm
Engineered Plague by koloquials