Surreal Puzzler Pavilion Coming To PC This Year

A couple of years ago, I wrote about an isometric puzzle game called Pavilion [official site]. “That’s rather lovely”, I observed, having posted a trailer. Later, news arrived that the game would be heading to PlayStation 4 and Vita, leading me to believe dreams of a PC version might be futile. Not so – the game will be released in two parts, with the first due this year and the next in 2016. It’ll be coming to Windows, Mac and Linux, and there’s a Steam Greenlight page with a new trailer.

Is that “rather lovely”, as I thought back in 2013? My previous self might have swooned but I’m just looking at that block sliding around the place and tensing my brain in anticipation of plodding puzzles. That’s not to say I’m retracting the “rather lovely” entirely but I am tempted to downgrade it to a “mildly intriguing”. I prefer the description of the game to the images.

“The fourth-person puzzling adventure from Visiontrick Media, throws you directly into its mysterious world without any text tutorials or beginning explanations. It is a puzzle game portrayed through exploration and audio-visual imagery. By interacting and observing you gradually, bit by bit, learn things about both the puzzling gameplay and the world itself.

“Pavilion takes place in a world unknown to both the player and the main character. A surreal dream-like place where reality clash with fantasy. Fully realised in beautiful hand-painted 2d graphics and dreamy ambient music that makes for an unforgettable audio-visual experience.”

Good. I enjoy learning about mysterious worlds as I explore them rather than through the dubious medium of tie-in novels and audio logs. Hopefully Pavilion is more mystery than MYST-ery.

11 Comments

  1. Lars Westergren says:

    Level designs reminds me of Monument Valley, but realistic rather than stylized art. Great looking stuff.

    I also approve of trying new gameplay mechanics, lets just hope it doesn’t feel like an endless escort quest.

  2. ExPostNinja says:

    “Surreal ruins” has really become the Omaha Beach of puzzle games, it seems.

  3. mukuste says:

    “Fourth-person”? Wazzat?

    It looks fantastically beautiful, at any rate.

    • Lars Westergren says:

      You control the environment, not the character.

      • MrBehemoth says:

        Language abuse! Language abuse! Please allow me to correct the internet.

        The 4th person is already a thing: the indefinite plural, or everyone in general. So:
        1st person = I do;
        2nd person = you do;
        3rd person = s/he does/they do;
        4th person = one does.

        So, it’s a plain old 3rd person narrative/view. If one wants to be too clever for one’s own good, one could say it was 2nd person gameplay, as you the player are the one interacting with the world without the medium of an avatar. 4th person gameplay and viewpoint doesn’t really mean anything, unless it was somekind of abstract puzzle game played over twitch or something.

        Glad we cleared that up. Don’t even get me started on “2.5D”.

        • Haldurson says:

          Thank you for explaining that. No wonder that phrase in the article sounded like nonsense. It really is nonsense.

          The perspective depends on where the camera is focused. If it looks like the camera is sticking out of your head, so you can only see forward, that’s first person. If the camera always points from the perspective of a person looking at your avatar, that your avatar is addressing (which would be a dumb design decision), you MIGHT call that second person (and I not only would you not likely put that into a game, you almost certainly could not design a game that took place entirely from that perspective). Third person means that the camera is not showing the POV of any particular avatar (egs. top-down, over the shoulder, etc.)

          Now if the camera is in the same universe as your avatar, and not tied to the pov to any given avatar, then it’s, by definition, third person. The only thing that leaves then, by process of elimination, is that POV of 4th person is not even in the gaming universe. It would be like trying to play a game, while your computer screen was completely blank.

          • oyog says:

            “…you almost certainly could not design a game that took place entirely from [the second] perspective.”

            Ludum Dare Nightmare Round! GO!

          • oyog says:

            …second person perspective*

  4. fenghuang says:

    There are technically only 2 points of views.
    First person and Second person.
    First person is self-explanatory.
    Second person is any pov that does not show you through the eyes of the first person.

    It’s that binary to me. I have no idea why a literary convention of first person writing (I think, therefore I am), second person writing (You think, therefore you are) and third person writing (He thinks, therefore he is) has to translate over to videogaming.

    • Haldurson says:

      “I have no idea why a literary convention of first person writing (I think, therefore I am), second person writing (You think, therefore you are) and third person writing (He thinks, therefore he is) has to translate over to videogaming.”

      It’s a simple explanation. Before there were computer games, there were plays and movies and books and stories. The key thing that links them all is that they can be used to tell a story. It’s ALL storytelling. When computer games do NOT tell stories, that’s when point of view does not matter (eg. there are abstract games where point of view is irrelevent, like tic-tac-toe).

      Since the game is telling a story, point of view is very relevant, and storytelling has that convention, that first person is your point of view, third person is another person’s or sometimes an omniscient or semi-omniscient narrator’s point of view, second person (which is rarely used in storytelling, but I have seen it on rare occasions) is telling a story about you from their point of view (you did or do this then you said or say that).

      Of course computer games use literary conventions when they tell a story because IT’S TELLING A STORY.

  5. alms says:

    Still looks fantastic and intriguing is plenty for me to upvote.