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Sep 16

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Cultivate an Infinite World in Manifold Garden

William Chyr's Avatar Posted by on Sep 16, 2015 // Developer and Designer, Manifold Garden

Manifold Garden

Hello! William here. I’m an independent game developer based in Chicago.

You might be familiar with my game Relativity – it’s an exploration puzzle game where you can change gravity and walk within a world of impossible geometry. It was part of PlayStation Experience last year, and was also shown during the PlayStation livestream at E3 earlier this year.

I have some big news today. The game now has a new name: Manifold Garden.
The original prototype was based on the M.C. Escher print Relativity and just involved changing gravity to walk on walls. The game is so much more than that now. We’ve added a ton of new mechanics, and the game is now really about exploring architecture and consequences in a world where physics is turned upside down.

Geometry

In Manifold Garden, the world wraps back on itself in 3D. You can travel in any direction, and you end up back where you started. Going down actually leads you back up.

A lot of the puzzles in the game involve exploring how physics behave in such geometry. What happens when you drop a cube off the edge? You’ll see it come back down from above, and you’ll also see it falling beneath you, at the same time.

In the later levels, we even start to change how the world wraps around. What happens if you staggered each repetition? Or rotated every other instance?

Manifold Garden

Water

One of the new mechanics we’ve introduced is water. How does water behave in a world that wraps around on itself? Like the cube, when water falls of the edge, it’ll come back down from above, except since it’s a continuous stream, you actually get a waterloop!

In my previous post, I showed the cubes being used to trigger switches and hold up other blocks. The cubes now can be used to “bend” or redirect streams of water.

Not only that, the cubes are actually fruit that grow on trees, and you can even “plant” a cube to turn it into a tree. As you progress throughout the game, you’re cultivating a garden and harvesting cubes.

Photography Mode

Manifold Garden

A major theme of the game is architecture, and I really want you to be able to experience it and express your creativity with the space.

Once you finish all the puzzles in an area, you’ll unlock photography mode, which will give you access to a variety of cameras and effects, such as axonometric, or “glitch” to play with:

Manifold Garden

Conclusion

I’m super excited about the new direction that the game is taking. It’s opening a lot more room for player expression, both in puzzle solving and in the visuals.

As part of the name change, here is a collection of 100 beautiful high resolution wallpapers to celebrate.

If you want to stay up to date, check out the website. I also post regularly on Twitter, as well as the game’s devlog. And if you’re interested in game development, I actually stream development every weekday over on my Twitch channel. Drop by and say hi sometime!

Finally, if you have any questions, I’ll be answering them in the comments section.

//Add Your Own

23 Comments   13 Replies

1

+ paulogy on September 16th, 2015 at 8:06 am said:

Simply amazing. I did like the name before, but no matter what you call it this game looks stunning and I’m eager to play it for myself :-)


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    + William Chyr on September 16th, 2015 at 9:01 am said:

    Thanks so much! Really glad to hear that.


2

+ Brawl96 on September 16th, 2015 at 8:07 am said:

I personally prefer the old name but still gonna buy day 1 so watevs. Still so excited!!!!


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    + William Chyr on September 16th, 2015 at 12:32 pm said:

    I’m so glad to hear that!! You’ll come around to the new name, I’m sure ;)


3

+ SaviorMachine on September 16th, 2015 at 8:14 am said:

Good look, I think Manifold Garden is a much more interesting and distinctive name


4

+ Future-Islands on September 16th, 2015 at 8:25 am said:

Great gifs! Very interested to see how this turns out.


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+ gor1llap1mp on September 16th, 2015 at 8:28 am said:

Its titles like this that remind me of why I have been enamored with Playstation since its inception! 2 questions, will this support stereoscopic 3D and how about some Playstation VR (which I think they should stick with Morpheus) support?


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+ gor1llap1mp on September 16th, 2015 at 8:30 am said:

Hey Justin Massongil, anyway the site can remember your log-in without having to always manually type in your credentials?


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    + Justin Massongill on September 16th, 2015 at 9:09 am said:

    Not sure why it wouldn’t keep you logged in… make sure you have cookies enabled in your browser?


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    + Justin Massongill on September 16th, 2015 at 3:15 pm said:

    Thanks for the info here guys, I’ll pass along to our dev guys to see if we can do some troubleshooting.

    As for the mobile version of PS.Blog… stay tuned. ;)


     

    + paulogy on September 16th, 2015 at 8:45 am said:

    Seems to keep mine for quite awhile, so … ? (I’m using Chrome)


     

    + Skater_Ricky on September 16th, 2015 at 11:15 am said:

    @Justin Massongill, This issue happens to me using Google Chrome via Android App but keeps me logged in on my PC. I check the PlayStation Blog on my phone more then I do my PC. I hate having to login ever time to leave a comment. What ever happened to the Mobile friendly version of the PlayStation Blog? It was working before Jeff left and when he left the Blog so did mobile friendly site. But the Mobile site never gave you the option to leave a comment. So leaving a comment is important to mobile user’s.


7

+ jgrizzle358 on September 16th, 2015 at 8:41 am said:

Woah that’s trippy… when can I buy it!? :D


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    + William Chyr on September 16th, 2015 at 11:11 am said:

    No date yet. But rest assured we are working really hard!


8

+ Dajmin on September 16th, 2015 at 8:45 am said:

I love this kind of weird mind-bending stuff. I could also stare at that first gif for hours :)


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+ TwinDad on September 16th, 2015 at 8:52 am said:

Looks wonderful.

@William Chry,

You might want to have them fix your title. Unless your game studio is Relativity.

Posted by William Chyr on Sep 16, 2015 // Developer and Designer, Relativity


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    + William Chyr on September 16th, 2015 at 9:02 am said:

    Thanks for the heads up!


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    + Justin Massongill on September 16th, 2015 at 9:06 am said:

    We actually had this updated earlier, might have just not changed on the user side yet. Try refreshing the page!


10

+ Fatty_Fatness on September 16th, 2015 at 9:23 am said:

I was already pretty stoked about the game after playing through the entire demo at last year’s PlayStation Experience, but with all these amazing new additions, I am PSYCHED!

(And this, coming from someone who can’t handle first-person perspective games due to motion-sickness!)


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    + William Chyr on September 16th, 2015 at 10:11 am said:

    Whoa! Thanks so much for checking it out PlayStation Experience last year! The game has definitely come a long way since.


11

+ ytl1986 on September 16th, 2015 at 10:38 am said:

Reminds me of echochrome. Now I must go back and play that game. Thanks. :)


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+ SureBigBuster on September 16th, 2015 at 11:03 am said:

As a math nerd, I REALLY like that “Manifold” is included in the name. This is day one for me for sure. Looking forward to it!!


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    + William Chyr on September 16th, 2015 at 11:09 am said:

    Yes! You are the kind of person I’m making this game for :D


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    + William Chyr on September 16th, 2015 at 11:10 am said:

    Also just want to add we are not using ‘Manifold” to sound mathy (like a lot of places do with “quantum”). I didn’t go into it too much in this post as I didn’t want to get technical, but a lot of the global spaces and geometry you’re exploring are about manifolds (for example, the 3-torus)


     

    + SureBigBuster on September 16th, 2015 at 5:22 pm said:

    I’m very glad to hear that William! Thank you for making this and good luck on everything!


13

+ kitler53 on September 16th, 2015 at 12:40 pm said:

i love the concept behind this game and certainly plan to purchase it when it comes out…

..but having watched your trailer please improve your AA. that was painful to watch in moments.


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    + William Chyr on September 16th, 2015 at 1:03 pm said:

    Working on it!


14

+ plaztiksyke on September 16th, 2015 at 12:49 pm said:

Looks even more amazing than before! Really looking forward to it.

Super-crisp lines and CMYK colors at the edges of x.v.color range may make this the HDTV demo like PixelJunk Eden was for PS3. What anti-aliasing strategy are you guys using/trying? Is it same to assume 60fps?

Are there echochrome-like 2D optical illusions? if not, is stereo 3D a possibility?


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    + William Chyr on September 16th, 2015 at 1:00 pm said:

    Hey! We’re still working on the anti-aliasing stuff. It has taken 2 years to nail down the edge detection and to clear a lot of artifacts, but AA next. Right now, we’re using a pretty standard post-processing shader for AA, but will probably eventually roll our own.

    Optimization is definitely our main priority right now. The art style is very minimalist – no textures, etc, but we are rendering really large view distances so it’s definitely pushing the hardware really hard. We are definitely trying for 60 fps.

    No optical illusions, as it’s a 3D space that you can walk around in and see things from all different perspectives (echochrome needed fixed perspective). Hadn’t thought of stereo 3D, but will look into it!


     

    + PanTheMan16 on September 17th, 2015 at 4:47 am said:

    @William – You shouldn’t bother replying to this person. He literally spams this on every post, looking for attention.


15

+ cusman on September 16th, 2015 at 12:49 pm said:

I am not sure my brain can handle it, but I am eager to give it a try


16

+ selfdeztruction on September 16th, 2015 at 12:57 pm said:

Will this game be from a first person perspective? Will it support PlaystationVR/PSVR? Will it support the Playstation Move? The game is really intriguing and I look forward to playing it. Thank you for creating such a unique game.


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    + William Chyr on September 16th, 2015 at 1:01 pm said:

    Yes to first-person perspective. Don’t know about VR yet. We’re going to focus on delivering a rock solid non-VR version first (so as not to spread oursevles to thin). We’re rendering a tremendous amount so it actually is pushing the hardware a lot.

    Once we ave the base version running – I will definitely look into VR and move.


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+ Zoryu_of_Setsuna on September 16th, 2015 at 1:08 pm said:

Now that looks awesome.


18

+ Ender_Bean on September 16th, 2015 at 2:19 pm said:

Genius! Definitely on my day-1 list.


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+ DoomworksUK on September 29th, 2015 at 2:57 pm said:

Blimey this looks stunning!

I remember meeting you at Pax East back in 2014 and playing the Relativity demo in the Indie Minibooth. Its so awesome to see the games progress and all the new mechanics that are in play.

Are any of those early levels still in the game, as tutorials maybe?

Can’t wait to play it! :D


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