Trying to keep up with all the Independent Games Festival nominees is quite a chore, much less trying to actually play them. But, every once in a while, one really sticks out and really makes you want to play it. Such is the case with Kyle Gabler and Ron Carmel's gorgeous and quirky World of Goo. Under the name 2D Boy, gabler and Carmel have created a captivating game experience that has netted them three award nominations in this year's IGF: the Design Innovation Award, Technical Excellence Award and the highly coveted Seumas McNally Grand Prize.
Gamasutra got a chance to sit down with the boys and discuss some of the things that make World of Goo what it is. When asked what they felt the most interesting part of their game is, designer Gabler had this to say.
People seem to like "the friendly Sign Painter" - a mysterious tipster leaving you signposts in each level. The Sign Painter becomes increasingly involved and uh... friendly. Anyway, there is a deliberate "story" that happens throughout the game, but it is entirely optional and never explicitly told. I mean, it's just a dumb physics game, and I hate forced story in games! It ends up being more a "suggested emotional journey" through "themes" (giant corporation stuff, booth babes, quest for self discovery, enlightenment, blah blah blah) - see, it sounds stupid when you say it, so we just don't. Forget I said that. It's all about feelings!
If it sounds like there is a lot going on here, there is. Couple Gabler's ebullient explanation with the amazing visuals and you've got pure indie gold. World of Goo is being developed for a Valentine's Day release on the PC and subsequent releases on Mac, Linux and eventually, the Wii. Good luck to Gabler and Carmel on what many consider this years top IGF pick.