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Jun 04

Jun 04

Monstrous Puzzle Game GNOG Launching on PS4 and Morpheus in 2016

Saleem Dabbous's Avatar Posted by Studio Director, KO-OP

We’re proud to announce that GNOG is launching on PS4 and Project Morpheus next year.

GNOG is a (we like to think) special kind of puzzle-adventure game with a focus on discovery and wonder in a universe made up of monster heads. Each monster has its own personality, and a micro-world on its opposite side — you flip back and forth between these two sides, interacting with both and watching how they react.

The heads are totally unique, with different puzzles and soundscapes in each, to really emphasise that aspect of playful discovery. We’ve taken a lot of inspiration from games like Windosill and FEZ — which are great little sandboxes of exploration and wonder — as well as toys like Polly Pocket & Mighty Max, which encourage you to look at everyday objects a little differently (like when you see faces in a cloud, a park bench, a street sign…).

It’s something we’re incredibly excited to be able to realize thanks to the Sony Pub Fund program, and we think it’s a game that you’ll really lose yourself in if you’re a fan of puzzles, adventures, cool art, and chill music. We’re also super honoured to be part of the Double Fine Presents label, and to have the good folks at DF helping us with production support and design feedback. Double Fine’s history of strong art direction and whimsical worlds has been hugely influential for all of us here at KO-OP, and we’re working hard to bring that style and energy to GNOG.

GNOGGNOG

We’re a four-person team based out of Montreal and we started work on GNOG just over a year ago. There was, of course, a lot of experimentation before we found the perfect formula — the game actually started as a 2D platformer (Don’t they all…)! Once we decided to work in 3D and focus on bringing the monster heads to life, though, we knew we were on to something special and intriguing.

We’re going to dig into the meat of the game design and the art direction in future blog posts but if you have any questions about GNOG we’d love to hear them!

Add Your Own

paulogy said:

June 4th, 8:04 am

This looks VERY cool. I’ve long thought it would be interesting to have a puzzle game where you can flip it over and manipulate it. VR seems like a perfect application for that, too :-)

BahumatIsBack said:

June 4th, 8:06 am

If this is par for the course for VR then it’s going to be a pass for me

TheJohnDrake said:

June 4th, 8:08 am

So pumped for this

Questworld12 said:

June 4th, 8:08 am

Sounds fun! The art style is great!

Amnalehu said:

June 4th, 8:21 am

I can already see what this is going to look like on Morpheus. Very Exciting! Gnog looks so fresh. I am glad to see some innovation. I can’t wait to play your game; especially using the Morpheus. Great job and congrats! More info at E3 perhaps?

    Saleem Dabbous's Avatar

    Saleem Dabbous said:

    June 4th, 9:49 am

    Thanks! We’re going to have a playable demo at E3 so you should hear more about the gameplay around then :)

BrianMcGuinness said:

June 4th, 8:24 am

@2, yes every single game is going to be just like this. Such a tool…

Looks fun and interesting, guys.

xDigitalTaco said:

June 4th, 8:31 am

played this at pax east 2015, super fun, can’t wait for the full release! n_n

FrankDaPronStar said:

June 4th, 8:56 am

I’m not sure if I could immerse myself in that kind of art style with VR and not have some side effects. I’m just afraid that it will hurt my brain. Maybe I’m just paranoid. I want fun games for the Morpheus but I don’t want to get sick from playing a game.

    Saleem Dabbous's Avatar

    Saleem Dabbous said:

    June 4th, 9:46 am

    This is a fair concern! To be honest though the game is actually very relaxed (unlike the trailer) and we’re being careful to design something that feels really good in VR. The colourful art style itself hasn’t made us feel sick or caused any eyestrain in testing so far (and we’re all fairly sensitive) but we’ll make sure that our effects and everything are carefully considered :)

Hayades said:

June 4th, 9:03 am

Love these types of games. I will be buying this not only because it looks good but because I want to help a fellow Montreal-er and also because you brought me back to the past by making me remember about Mighty Max lol

Roaming_Ryu said:

June 4th, 9:03 am

I can appreciate the 3D, but isn’t that what 3D TV’s are for?
What’s the incentive of looking around (turning my head) with Project Morpheus if everything is in front of you?

    Saleem Dabbous's Avatar

    Saleem Dabbous said:

    June 4th, 9:48 am

    We’re pretty excited about a fixed camera viewpoint in VR – it gets rid of any motion sickness worries and we know exactly what you’ll be looking at most of the time so we can carefully consider the design and framing. + who’s to say you’re always going to have just something in front of you? ;)

    We’re going to do our best to design something that feels fresh and unique both to players with Morpheus and for those without. We’ll get into VR design in a blog post since it seems to interest a ton of folk!

mockduck said:

June 4th, 9:06 am

Looks great! Congrats.

PurpleMoustache1 said:

June 4th, 9:08 am

These guys were next to me at the first Green Mountain Games Festival, and I’m still kicking myself that I didn’t take a break from manning the booth and checking this out. Excited to play when it arrives!

Saleem Dabbous's Avatar

Saleem Dabbous said:

June 4th, 9:48 am

Thanks for all the kind comments everyone, can’t wait to show you all more!

Bellalara said:

June 4th, 9:59 am

Can’t wait for Morpheus

Bloody_Marcel said:

June 4th, 12:47 pm

Hi Saleem,

could you please elaborate a little bit more on “fixed camera viewpoint” with regards to motion sickness? Wouldn’t a fixed camera *not* react to head position changes, hence causing vestibular mismatch (main reason for motion sickness)?

Thanks!

Looking forward to learning more about GNOG!

    Saleem Dabbous's Avatar

    Saleem Dabbous said:

    June 4th, 1:10 pm

    Sure thing! In the game players don’t control the camera position, so it’s fixed in place. In VR though you can still look around and peek around the edges of the GNOG heads, but the camera starting point doesn’t change. Since there’s no situation where the player is controlling the camera in one direction, and moving their heads in another (like in a FPS) it greatly reduces the risk of motion sickness.

    We’ve been experimenting with fixed viewpoints in VR with some other prototypes and find that it feels the most natural and immersive because there’s no risk of breaking the fiction through camera movements that don’t correspond to what your brain thinks is happening. The key is to design interesting and novel experiences that take advantage of that constraint for us.

    Hope that makes sense!

TesseractE said:

June 4th, 1:29 pm

So… If you get a puzzle wrong, does it right a GONG?

BahumatIsBack said:

June 4th, 9:47 pm

+ BrianMcGuinness on June 4th, 2015 at 8:24 am said:

@2, yes every single game is going to be just like this. Such a tool…

Apparently you don’t know what VR stands for. This is hardly ‘reality’. It is just too cartoony and not even cartoony in a good way. This is basically one of the first titles they’ve shown off for Morpheus to the public. They’re going to need to have better offerings at launch if they expect Morpheus to do well. Otherwise it’s going to end up being just like The Vita + PS Move that aren’t supported at all anymore.

….but I’m the tool……riiiiight

Bloody_Marcel said:

June 4th, 10:01 pm

H Saleem,

thanks for taking the time to explain the fixed viewpoint thing. That makes perfect sense. :)

All the best

BrianMcGuinness said:

June 5th, 5:59 am

@17 OMG THIS IS THE FIRST GAME THEY SHOWED FOR VR SO THAT MEANS EVERY SINGLE GAME FROM HERE ON OUT WILL LOOK EXACLY LIKE THIS AND THEY WILL NEVER EVER CHANGE!!! THAT’S WHY Q-BERT LOOKS EXACTLY LIKE UNCHARTED 3!!! EVERY GAME IS THE SAME!! THERE’S NO WAY THEY HAVE ANYTHING ELSE IN MIND FOR VR!!! WE’RE ALL DOOMED!

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