We've been talking about The Witness, the upcoming puzzle/exploration game from Braid-creator Jonathan Blow, for some time now. But for all the words we've spilled and the concept art we've shared, it can still be difficult to explain just how the game's puzzles work.
Yesterday at a Sony-hosted PS4 preview event, I chatted with Blow about The Witness, which will make its debut exclusively on the PS4 sometime in the first half of next year. I asked him to demonstrate a single puzzle, and explain how it builds on itself to organically instruct the player in solving increasingly complex challenges. And that's just what he did. (Sorry about the shaky first 40 seconds or so — I had to get my arms set.)
Don't come away with the impression that the whole game is a bunch of little connect-the-dots puzzles on an island, though — there's a lot more to it than that. Imagine that the puzzle in the video is a tiny piece of a much, much bigger puzzle — I've played a lot of The Witness at various points over the last couple years, and I've only the barest sense of how the entire thing comes together in the end. As Blow says, this demonstration is a good example of the language of the game's puzzles, but the full game extrapolates the concepts into much larger ideas.