Saturday, September 10, 2011

Why Yes, I Do Want To Caress Things In A Forest

Thanks to Joystiq, I have become interested in something I never even would have considered as a thing to exist, and now I can't help but wait until it comes out, or at least to find out what it's even -about-.  A co-developed project between Sony Santa Monica (yes, -that- SSM, God of War SSM) and Plastic, developers of what was likely everyone's first Trophy Game, Linger in Shadows.  If you'll remember, Linger in Shadows wasn't so much a game as it was an interactive, er, experience, but it was one of the first trophy-enabled games out there and it was rather cheap.  Featuring flying/floating cats, strange masks and all sorts of swirling things, it was a sight to see and still is.

Before I go on, I'll go ahead and embed the video to give you a way to get a look into the project as it is.  At 1:07, as will be pointed out to you by comments and the article itself, you'll see the pink ball of a Move wand in the lower right corner for...some reason.

Between Sony Santa Monica and Plastic, it's hard to tell what this is going to be (given SSM being a game developer and Plastic more a, the word they use is, "Demoscene" group) but I'm hoping for something more than a neat little game where you traverse the woods and caress things.  I could really see this turning into a near-old school adventure-style game, looking for keys and hints and such here and there.  Just think, around the 1:01 point where you see the urn, perhaps reaching inside, fishing for a key or the like.  Or maybe at an earlier point, running the hand along the tree reveals a break-away piece of bark or something.  Doing something with a Move Wand and the Nav Wand would make it really really open and could certainly have this be a really innovative puzzle game.

I don't know what it is about this type of thing, but I just....I get excited over it.  I guess because, if nothing else, this is steps towards innovation, and if you remember when I talked about Motion Gaming, one of the things I liked the most about Motion Gaming being a thing, is that it actually opens the doors for real, new creativity and innovation that isn't, well, a tagline but is in fact the real thing.  Sure, you can argue that controlling an arm for puzzles has been done, but how many times have you seen it done?  Not very.  And it's an actual thing that is more or less new ground because of it.  It could be something really cool that spurns a bunch of other developers into trying something new.  I mean, if Sony Santa Monica is involved with -this-, imagine what else could happen.

Then again, this could end up being something completely different than this tech demo.  But I would suggest by just this being a thing that is out there and that caught at least some attention, some people will catch on to the idea that things like this are possible and are really, really cool.  Hopefully, the general market would agree, as well.  I mean, everyone loves Portal, right?  Proof that a pure puzzle game where you don't actually shoot anything could theoretically survive and succeed.  We just need more examples of it to make sure people understand this.

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