About two years ago, artist and designer Dick Hogg saw a GIF of a banana through an MRI machine. Seeing the different layers of the fruit was fascinating. It inspired him. Not long after that, Hogg called his game design partner Ricky Haggett and said simply, “I really want to make a game that works This. ”
Now the couple are ready to show off the result: I’m dead, a cute and colorful game that will be released on the Nintendo Switch and PC later this year. It’s essentially a puzzle game. You play as Morris Lupton, the recently deceased curator of a museum on a small British island who uses his ghostly powers to look inside objects and learn more about their owners. (He also gets help from his dog, who is obviously a ghost too.)
Lupton can hover around the island and peer into the minds of various residents to learn about objects that are important to them. He then has to find the said objects by pulling back layers of things; In one case, during a brief demo, I saw the developers plunge into an old armchair, find a remote control and some coins underneath, and later venture into a beehive full of humming creatures.
Hogg and Haggett previously went on the quirky musical adventure Hohokum as well as Wilmot’s warehousebeing a game about being very well organized. Hogg says the inspiration for I’m dead came not only out of the desire to guide everyday objects through an MRI scanner, but also out of the urge to put worldbuilding and storytelling in the foreground. Games like Hohokum had colorful characters and intriguing worlds, but players raced through them quickly as they played. I’m deadOn the flip side, it goes much slower, asking players to carefully analyze objects and learn more about the island and its people over time.
“We felt we’d put a lot of love into building the world of Hohokum“Says Hogg.” But because Hohokum It contains neither text nor voice-over. It’s all just implied. A certain type of very observant person sees it and gets pleasure from it. But a lot of people just whiz through this game and don’t really notice the funny little jokes. We’ve talked a lot about making a game where the kind of storytelling and worldbuilding we were doing pushed forward and was closer to the player. “
In the little piece that I saw I’m deadThe small island town is definitely worth exploring. On the one hand, it’s a quintessentially English coastal town, a former fishing village that has since turned to tourism and the arts, with a ferry that brings visitors daily. But it’s also pretty strange. There are bird and fruit people; The budding art scene includes a sculptor who is an apple and a critic who is a pipe smoking pear. One of the most popular restaurants only serves toast, because there is a breed of fish people who love the novelty of dry food.
It’s all very quirky and charming, the kind of place you want to spend some time browsing which is good as that is the whole premise of the game. I’m dead may have a threatening title and premise, but there’s nothing dark or uncomfortable about it. It’s almost comforting – which is a trend for the developers. In many ways I’m dead is very different from the games Haggett and Hogg have made in the past, but the couple believe there is a common thread running through all of their creations.
“There’s definitely a sensitivity in all of our games,” says Hogg. “We really focus on making games that are not stressful and very relaxing. We’ve had people say they find our games therapeutic and that’s something I really strive for. Every time we talk about creating a game, we like to try to do something completely different from what we did before. At the same time, you can’t help being who you are, and hopefully a lot of our personality and enthusiasm will be reflected in the game. “