So as we announced at E3, Funomena is collaborating on a new commercial game project with Keita Takahashi!
We haven’t been saying much since we made this initial announcement at Horizon, but we have all been very very busy. Proof? Well – here we are having a very serious meeting about the upcoming project!
Meanwhile, Funomena has been working to secure visas for Keita and his family. That involves lots of paperwork, kind letters about his abilities from wonderful people in our industry, and some cold hard cash.
We’re very happy to say that finally, all the paperwork is done and the visas have come through. Keita will be moving to San Francisco to join Funomena full time in September!
We cannot be more excited about this – especially since it means we’ll soon be able to build a huge moving-box fort with Keita in person. Working together online has been fantastic, but being in the same city will make it even more fun.
While details about the game are still under wraps we wanted to let you know that we’re hard at work and very much looking forward to sharing it with you when the time is right. In the meantime, we hope this lovely skybox texture will brighten your day!
On our recent trip out to Sacramento, Martin and I were able to visit an amazing origami exhibit that features many of the artists from Between the Folds. It was a lovely exhibit, full of amazing folding that really pushes the boundaries of the form. I’ve posted some photos from the trip over on Facebook.
Since then I’ve been busy folding more of Hideo Komatsu’s amazing animal shapes. I’ve also started to look at more natural forms, like flowers and plants! It’s amazing how much the structure of what you’re folding influences the actual experience of bringing it to life!
To see more, check out Funomenal Folding!
So a while back we told you that at Funomena, we believe that games can make the world a better place. By that we mean a couple of things. First – that games can bring people together in new ways, expose people to new feelings and new experiences that open their hearts and minds. We hire people who believe this, and we make games to continue sharing this perspective.
Second, we believe that games can give something back to society. Our first “20% time” project as a studio is a game that lets kids explore the surface of a foreign planet by using real-world FitBit steps! We’ve been working on this game as part of the NSF funded GetUp program, building and testing prototypes with kids in Sacramento since January.
Earlier this month, Martin, Ari and I travelled up to UC Davis to spend time with the researchers on the project, discuss the goals for the prototype and deployment plans for schools in the Sacramento school district. It was an inspiring trip that got us very excited to see the kids following summer break. Even more exciting, we’ve found a very talented artist to help render the world of Terra… freeing it from the burden of programmer art!
Due to the research aspect of the project, and the fact that we’re working with kids, we’re not posting much about the game just yet. But it does look like we’ll be able to have people outside the school district play the game for beta testing sometime later this fall. If you’re interested in signing up (you’ll need a FitBit and a FitBit account to play!) write us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll add you to the beta list.
Incidentally – while we were up in Sacramento, we were able to stop by the Crocker Art Museum to view a wonderful exhibit on origami! You can read more about that in this post here.
Yay! We are so pleased to announce that Keita Takahashi is joining us here at Funomena to work on a new game!! At today’s Horizon event here in Los Angeles at the Museum of Contemporary Art, we spoke briefly about our collaboration and the inspiration behind the game.
Keita thought of the core idea while playing with his two-year-old son. He imagined what it would be like if the blocks suddenly sprang to life. This image shows some of his first thoughts about the idea. You can check out our short “Q&A” about this over on our Horizon page – which will be updated as we develop the title.
We have also updated our about page so you can see a bit more about some of the people helping bring this new project to life. Be sure to check us out on Facebook and Twitter, so we can keep you updated as details emerge!
Psst: Fans of indie games! Tune in to horizon.venuspatrol.com tomorrow before 10 AM PST to see … something awesome!