Flower Dev's New Project: "Something We've Never Seen Before"
We loved Flower. It was a unique, beautiful, calming experience, and it was the appropriate follow-up to flOw. Well, thatgamecompany is now working on the next innovative title that will capture both our hearts and our imaginations (sorry, but artistic games make me all melodramatic).
According to Eurogamer, thatgamecompany co-founder Jenova Chen dropped hints about their third project, which is "a totally different game," although it still "feels like a natural progression for the company." Chen was speaking at the Brighton Develop Conference and our favorite quote was when he said that this new game is "definitely something you've never experienced before." ...you know, if it was another studio, we'd have to be suspicious. But considering that both titles they've produced thus far have been "something we never experienced before," we're inclined to believe him. He also said something he told me in a reply e-mail when I sent him our review of Flower; that gamers have "grown up" and therefore, games should "appeal to a wider variety of emotions." He brought up a good point at the Develop Conference, saying that "critics use words like 'magical,' 'passionate,' and 'captivating' to describe films," but you don't normally hear such adjectives applied to video games. Well, how might we describe Flower? ...close, right? Chen simply says that "variety is a sign of a mature medium." As for Sony supporting thatgamecompany at every turn, he added:
"I really really appreciate what Sony has done for us. They still keep funding our project, and that's really, really nice. It's a really pleasant experience. They have this appreciation of games that are more interesting to adults. They prefer adult entertainment and the games we make are a good match for them."
These days, there are very few development studios that entice me to buy every one of their games. But when it comes to thatgamecompany, I can guarantee you I'll pick up whatever this third project will be, and I get the distinct feeling that I'm gonna love it. And even if I don't, I'll still likely agree that it's something I've "never seen before." Gotta applaud that.
7/15/2009 Ben Dutka