“At first, we planned this project as a performance in the puppet theatre, but then we realized this idea could be much more exciting in a game form,” say the makers of One Eyed Kutkh [official site]. I don’t believe I’ve heard a developer say that before. I am delighted. Games cross over with a lot of mediums but rarely puppetry. As for Kutkh, it’s made by the puppeteering gang behind It’s Spring Again, a charming learn up ’em adaptated from a puppet show. The fun, nice kind of puppet. Not the type that wants to trap your soul.
One Eyed Kutkh is a simple adventure game, inspired by stories from the indigenous people of Russia’s Far North but set in space and starring a one-eyed spacecreature. After Kutkh’s ship crashes, he goes off jaunting through space. Baba Yaga Games explain, “To continue his journey, he’ll have to get to the ninth heaven, deceive the Sun and the Moon and steal their space-boats.” As you do. Along the way, he makes a friend who becomes a second playable character.
You can have a crack yourself in a browser-based demo. It’s clearly made to be friendly to all ages but don’t let children hog all the good stuff. There’s no dialogue, only infographics thought bubbles a bit like in Machinima, which I found a bit confusing when I could see what I was supposed to do but it kept throwing up icons trying to teach me the solution. I’m not sure what happened there. But I’m certainly keen to play more so I can see those other pleasant spacesights.
Baby Yaga Games plan to release One Eyed Kutkh in 2017, before the end of March, on Windows, Mac, and Linux. You can give it a thumbs-up on Greenlight if you’d like to see it on Steam.
Oh, and why did they choose video games over puppetry? Baba Yaga explain, “Video games have little to no limitations of the theater. We could use space as we wish, create more layers of meaning and make new experiences for the players.”
It’s Spring Again, by the way, is half-price in the Steam sale. It’s £0.39 for the game itself but I’d really recommend splashing out £0.89 for the Collector’s Edition, which includes a recording of the puppet show it’s based on.