One of the things EA has shown at this year’s E3 is a game called Unravel, which stars a yarn mascot. At first, my thought was that they were simply trying to cash in on the “cute yarn character” craze. In my defense, all they showed was a cute yarn character, and I’m sort of a cynical asshole.
Then they gave the actual presentation, and I was sold.
You could see genuine emotion on the presenter’s face as he gave his speech. He talked about coming up with the idea while on vacation, he talked about wanting the character to have a sense of wonder and exploration, and then?
Then they showed the video. The game looked like it controlled smoothly, and it looked like there were some innovative and interesting ways to move across the level, but that’s not what drew me in. What drew me in was the fact that they presented a platformer which captured the feeling of being a small child playing with her favorite toys in the yard, treating the yard itself as an obstacle to overcome and get across.
Somehow, the combination of the developer’s sincerity and the fact that they took a childlike graphical design and gave it childlike game play makes me think that it well may be the best yarn-based platformer ever made.