The article did a great job outlining some of the most pertinent titles to check out, that are pushing this emerging genre forward (some of which I’ve already talked about on this blog). And through this list I discovered the gem that is Thirty Flights of Loving.
Its hard to describe how awesome this “game” is to me without ruining the surprise for you. Trust me, if narrative mechanics is something you are interested in, spend the 5$ and take the ride. TFOL is brilliant, breakthrough, and perhaps defines an entirely new genre for games, one that is no longer based on its mechanics alone.
*I may spoil it for you if you keep reading without playing it first, fair warning.*
To put it simply, I’ve never seen a game borrow from the idea of “cutting” together entire scenes the way a film does. While perhaps jarring the first time it happens, once you understand what is going on, the technique is extremely engrossing and I found it really pulled me into the narrative further. Partly because this is show not tell storytelling at its extreme, and partly because the technique is so new and thusly novel.
I also greatly enjoyed the minimal aesthetic of the experience which was done by design to accommodate the extremely lean dev resources – 1 person. Yup, the entire experience was designed and built by one guy. We’ve seen examples in the past of how a single creator can have a much more successful – if not challenging – outcome when all aspects of the project are under their creative control. I would like to think that Another World wouldn’t have been so breakthrough if design, art, and programming had been done by 3 different people.
Hats off to Brendan Cheung. I hope to see more things like this emerge from the world of games.