Posts Tagged ‘Jonathan Blow’

Coming to Blow’s: The Witness Interview

Meanwhile, across the Atlantic, Master Jonathan Blow has achieved unexpected fame and fortune through the creation of a logistical contrivance called Braid. Glad of this success, he has travelled far from his native San Francisco to take lodgings in riotous London’s Clerkenwell district, so that he might demonstrate his his newest invention – rudely entitled “The Witness” – to the skeptical souls of the old world, including Mister Griliopoulos, unexpectedly standing in for Professor Rossignol. We join the interview at the point where the auteur is struggling with the thinking device hosting his daemonic design.

Now do read on…

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The Witness: Hands On


In an antiquarian hotel room in London’s historic Clerkenwell, Braid creator Jonathan Blow is shaking his shaven head. His laptop has decided it doesn’t want to run The Witness, his new game and he’s copying all the files over to his spare laptop. (If you want to know what it says about Blow that he’s the sort of man who carries a spare laptop… go hire a haruspex.) The game, he tells me, has just over a year to go now, with the appearance and sound likely to change; the 300 puzzles, though, they’ll stay the same. As he copies, I watch the file-names flick by: …theater… trees… rocket launcher… caves… wait, rocket launcher? It turns out Blow was making a very different game after Braid, before the Witness and some of the files are still hanging around in The Witness.
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Indie Game: The Movie: The Trailer

Levinim Font: The Movie

Indie Game: The Movie has been in the making for a good while now and all the bits we’ve seen so far have been fairly interesting. The filmmakers are into the final stretch of post-production now and to rally the hounds of publicity they’ve released an official trailer, which I should warn you contains footage of some intense-looking young men in thick-rimmed glasses.

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The Witness Debuts To Few Witnesses

I'm hoping The Island is some kind of Prisoner riff.

While Spyparty and Monaco were rocking PAX as hard as their mighty indie thews could manage, Jonathan Blow wanted to do something a little subtler. In a corner of the Spyparty/Monaco booth, with no fanfare or sign-age whatsoever, the Braid-creator set up the Witness and let people come and play. Why unveil his work in such a way? As opposed to the general melee of a show, he “wanted to do something that is subtle, and a surprise — if you notice it, and decide to investigate, you find something unexpected”. Also, let people play as long as they want. Among them was Kotaku’s Stephen Totilo who wrote up some impressions and took some cam-footage…
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Braid Demo


Greenhouse have posted up the PC demo of Jonathan Blow’s time-fiddling, award-winning platformer, Braid. It’s 120mb and contains a sizeable chunk of the game, with an option to unlock the full thing in exchange for $15. And, well, it’s pretty damn good. (It even automagically detects 360 controllers being plugged in mid-game.) Thanks to Aaron for the tip. We’ll be talking at greater length about Braid next week.

Braid Coming To Impulse, Others


[EDIT: Actual price for this is $14.95.] Exquisitely clever time-bending platformer Braid will finally see a PC release on March 31st, and the $15 pre-orders are up on Stardock’s DRM-free digi-delivery system, Impulse. Blow says: “”I’ve signed the game with 3 different online distributors. One of them, Impulse, has already announced. The other two haven’t put out their press releases yet, so I don’t want to jump the gun saying who it is.” (Thanks, Paul.)

The IGF winner is one of the most heavily praised indie games of the past few years, and has caused many people to say “beeeeoooowwwoop!” in earnest. Creator Jonathan Blow gave a memorable keynote at FreePlay in 2007, in which he both talked up Braid and described the reward scheme of World Of Warcraft as “unethical”. Braid trailer after the click.

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Games for 2008: Braid

Level 40 Dungeon Braid.

While they may not be the largest demographic in the world, for a certain group of gamers Braid is going to be the most keenly anticipated and closely watched game of the year. And while it’s a fascinating-looking, both aesthetically and mechanistically, it’s not entirely because of its innate qualities that there is such anticipation. The game was notable enough to win the 2006 IGF Design innovation award, but it’s still not because of that: it’s because Braid is Jonathan Blow’s first full game (Putting aside his glorious prototypes). He’s one of the major driving forces in the experimental end of the indie-field, hosting the Experimental Gameplay Workshop at GDC. Most relevantly, however, he’s the indie-scene’s premier agent-provocateur. Decrying World of Warcraft as unethical and eviscerating Bioshock’s so-called moral choices will do that.

In other words, certain people are paying close attention to Braid for one simple reason: It’s put up or shut up time.
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