Jonathan Blow’s taken his time to openly discuss what he’s up to in the wake of Braid being a runaway hit (some of which’s profits he’s funneled into the Indie Fund, gentleman that he is), but now he’s allowing the world a little peek down his trousers of tomorrow.
While real details remain scarcer than understanding of variable connectivity at Ubisoft HQ, Blow’s followed up his cryptic earlier statement “an exploration-puzzle game on an uninhabited island” with an ongoing development diary intended reveal important things as and when they happen. So far, there’s something slightly confusing but promising-sounding about global illumination rather than dynamic lighting, his own reasoning behind joining The Indie Fund and, AND! a raft of concept art.
The selection of building interiors and Lost-eqsue outdoor locations may not reveal how the game plays (though do play close attention to their captions for a few bonus insights), but they do very strongly imply this isn’t going to be another Mario-twisting platformer as Braid was.
Inter-RPS discussion on this – while the trend for retro-like indie platformers took off because the largely American creators responsible for it grew up with the NES/SNES, coupled with a then-sentiment that the mainstream had abandoned the genre, it was Braid’s break-out success that really opened the floodgates to what arguably became an overdone movement. It was, as Kieron observes, the Sex Pistols of neo-platforming. (Gillen in punk-rock analogy shocker!) That a chap as famously unlikely to rest on his laurels as Blow would want to buck this trend he’s perhaps responsible for is hardly surprising.
The post about the new, and cutting edge-sounding lighting system includes some WIP, mock-up shots (but not to be considered screenshots of the game) that reveal this will be a full 3D environment and the tiny tidbit “areas that have doors or windows that open and close.” It’s safe to say you’ll be doing a lot more than jumping on crying monsters. Whether there’s anything as clever/oddball as the time powers, or if it’s a more direct, but clearly atmospheric, experience remains to be seen. There’s a terrified part of my brain screaming ‘MYST! NO! MYST! NOOOO!’ but I rather suspect that’s an entirely unfounded concern.
One thing’s for sure – it’s a blog to follow closely. Even though the image galleries don’t work in Chrome.