March 3, 2014
Now that the Oscar award season is officially over, let's talk about a different sort of Oscar, shall we? In this case, the Oscar at hand is a game in progress that's seeking funding through Kickstarter. In Oscar, you play as a young girl who embarks on a journey with her stuffed elephant friend through her childhood fantasies. The game appears to be a simple, atmospheric 2-D platformer, but its developer, the Vancouver-based Team Sharkeye, maintains that there's more to it than meets the eye:
Oscar focuses on developing narrative in a way especially suited to video games: Empathy. Set in an abstract fantasy world, we never tell the player what is going on or how they should feel about it; simply by playing the game and absorbing the experience, the player unravels the truth behind Oscar's childhood story in their own way - because we have all been through at least a bit of what Oscar's about.If you can't see the video embedded above, please click here. Team Sharkeye is spearheaded by the dynamic duo of Josh Long, the lead designer and composer, and Kristina Soltvedt Wiik, the story writer. Long has had years of experience developing games, including a stint as a lead multiplayer designer at Relic Entertainment, and Wiik is a former game journalist. The team has turned to Kickstarter in hopes of accumulating at least C$40,000 in funding for Oscar by March 30. At the moment, a number of backers have pledged nearly $7,000. The campaign still has some way to go, so if you want to help Oscar become a reality and receive a copy of the game on launch day, go to its Kickstarter page now. If you can't see the video embedded above, please click here. Oscar is planned for release this fall on Mac, PC, Linux, and iPad.