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A threesome of the best kind

by Han Cilliers (Lola)  Posted Tuesday, December 04, 2012 2:00:20 PM

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OK, maybe not the best kind, but a close second if you are a gamer ; ) I want to introduce you to three games currently in development. All three touched my sweet spot just right, they’re unusual, have a hint of darkness and exhibit intelligent game play…

Whore of the Orient

Whore Of The Orient.jpg  

From the creators of LA Noire, comes Whore of the Orient, a “Narrative action adventure, similar in genre to LA Noire”. Whore of the Orient uses the same facial MotionScan technology used to create the superb character animation that made LA Noire such an incredibly believable experience.

Source: Kotaku

I am extremely excited about this game, mainly because most of the Team Bondi crew who worked on LA Noire will be involved with this. They are now part of KKM Interactive Production, which also includes God of War II writer and director Cory Barlog who serves as Creative Director of the studio. LA Noire falls under my top 10 video games of all time. It’s strong narrative, intelligence and outstanding character animations make it one of the best adventure games I have ever played. If Whore of the Orient can deliver the same quality then this will be an awesome game, not to be missed!

All we know so far about Whore of the Orient is it plays off in 1936 Shanghai, “The most corrupt and decadent city on the planet, where anything can be had or done for the right price.” It also involves corrupt police, West and East exploiting the Chinese masses, communist control and the influence of the Kuomintang (Chinese Nationalist Party). Whore of the Orient promises to be a game rich in history and "one of the great untold stories of the 20th Century" as stated by Brendan McNamara, writer and director of LA Noire. (From an interview on IGN)

Reports suggest the game will be released in 2015 and will therefore be aimed at next gen consoles and PC’s. It’s going to be a long wait, but one definitely worth it!

The Franz Kafka Videogame

I say Kafka you say? Okay never mind, the next game is from one mif2000, and no I am not kidding, that’s all I know about the developer of The Franz Kafka Videogame.

  theFranzKafkaVideogame_01.jpg

Franz Kafa was a German writer, regarded by some as one of the most influential authors of the 20th century. Kafa was known for his obsession with sexuality, his fear of public opinions about his mental state and his dry sense of humour. A game about his life will be odd if nothing else.The game will be “a classic adventure game based on twisted Franz Kafka's novels.” It will feature puzzles and exploration of some kind.

mif2000 already has one good game under his or her belt, the puzzle adventure game, Hamlet. It is also a point-and-click adventure game and based on “the twisted William Shakespeare's Hamlet”. mif2000 surely has a fancy for twisted minds, as do I. Hamlet received fairly good reviews, is available on Steam and, I have to say, looks remarkably well done.

I think The Franz Kafka Videogame will be extremely intriguing, given the subject matter, and we also know the game will feature decent graphics and will present a real cognitive challenge. Sounds good to me!

It will be released on PC and Mac, although no date has yet been confirmed.

Source: mif2000

Gone Home

Our third partner for this threesome is from the Fullbright Company (former BiosSock devs), more specifically Steve Gaynor, Johnnemann Nordhagen and Karla Zimonja. The combined creative genius of Fullbright came up with Gone Home, a game about a house, and that’s pretty much it.

gonehome.jpg

Gone Home is an exploration game, much like I think Dear Esther, which is one of most touching games I have ever played. Fullbright released a 2.30 minute gameplay trailer; it reveals a beautiful old house with the player exploring it to unravel the mysteries of its inhabitants. There are audio logs, inventory items and clues scattered throughout the manor. The absence of guns, fighting and over the wall action sequences is clearly evident.

What excites me the most about this game is the potential it has and the challenge it faces to immersive the player in the game world with unfamiliar gameplay elements. We are so used to having our interaction with a game spoon fed to us. We are forced into immersion by confrontations; our reaction to actions (like returning gun fire to avoid death) ensures our continued game time. Not so with Gone Home, it seems to me Fullbright is attempting to lay down a new form of game immersion, and I cannot wait to explore it.

Gone Home is being developed for PC, Mac & Linux, for release in mid-2013.

Source: The Fullbright Company

Games like Whore of the Orient, The Franz Kafka Videogame and Gone Home keep me excited about the medium of video games. As long as there are developers who have the guts to break away from the mould and follow their imaginations, there will be quirky, fascinating games to play.

Han’s Twitter | Blog / MWEB Gamezone Twitter | Facebook

 



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Gone Home artwork.JPG 

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