else { Heart.break() }

After more than 1 year of pre-production, plus another full year of actual production (supported by the Nordic Game Program), I feel that it’s really about time that I reveal something about the project I am currently working on together with some friends.

It is called else { Heart.break() } and will be a kind of adventure game. Here’s an excerpt from the initial description I wrote for the game:

else { Heart.break } is a game about being able to change reality. It is set in a mysterious world made up of computers and their code; a place where bits have replaced atoms. The player – who is assumed to have no previous knowledge about programming – gets access to the code and is taught by other characters how to modify it. As the story unfolds the possibilities of what can be reprogrammed, hacked and controlled increases greatly. Eventually the inner parts of the gameplay code are revealed and the barrier between our own world and the game starts to dissolve.

The idea is to create opportunities for truly creative gameplay that goes beyond the kind of puzzle solving and stats improvement normally seen in games. Ideally it even allows the player to free herself from the designer of the game! The goal is an experience that borders the metaphysical, and to create a kind of game where thoughts and knowledge mean everything.

An arcade machine at 'Bar Yvonne'

Besides the programming aspect, we also focus on creating great possibilities for interactive drama. The game world will be inhabited by characters living their own little lives. Talking to them and becoming part of their world is a big part of the game and just being in the world should be a fulfilling experience in itself.

We are a team of five people working on the game: me, Johannes Gotlén (programming), Oscar Rydelius (sound design), Tobias Sjögren (graphics) and Niklas Åkerblad (art direction, music and graphics). Here are some drawings that Niklas has made for us:

So far, work on the game is going well but there is still a ton left to do though, so we won’t be finished for another year at least. Hopefully we can share some videos and smaller demos soon. Come back again for more information!

Best regards,
Erik

PS. For readers of Swedish, here is an interview we did about the game last spring: http://www.blogemup.se/?p=11588

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51 Comments on “else { Heart.break() }”

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  2. […] Svedang sent in an odd long video of him sitting in his bed rambling about his current game else { Heart.break() } with a little big of gameplay, and this was followed by the new trailer for Everybody’s […]

  3. narcoglitch Says:

    I already feel like paying 100 bucks for it. Just, please, bring it on!


  4. […] else { Heart.break() } skal handle om programmering og menneskelige følelser. Ifølge Erik Svedang (en av skaperne), skal det være historiedrevet, men også gi spilleren mye å utforske. Du skal til og med kunne drive å hacke verden litt. Spillet er nemlig plassert i en virkelighet bygget opp av datamaskiner og kodene deres. Noe som kan være vanskelig å se for seg, men virker kjempespennende. Det ser i hvert fall nydelig ut. […]


  5. […] On his blog, Svedang describes his game as one “able to change reality” and that the player, once taught by other characters, can modify the codes which make the game world tick. The blog continues, “Eventually the  inner parts of the gameplay code are revealed and the barrier between our world and the game starts to disolve.” […]


  6. […] On his blog, Svedang describes his game as one “able to change reality” and that the player, once taught by other characters, can modify the codes which make the game world tick. The blog continues, “Eventually the  inner parts of the gameplay code are revealed and the barrier between our world and the game starts to disolve.” […]


  7. […] Website: http://eriksvedang.com/2012/02/16/else-heart-break/ […]

  8. Cameron Says:

    I’m definitely gonna buy this when it’s finished! :) It sounds great!


  9. [...] и интересную историю и придать всему этому смысл. В описании он даже не стесняется употреблять слово [...]

  10. CSExodus Says:

    Will definitely go for a pre-order if there were to be pre-order available.


  11. [...] rather interesting games have come up this week.. else { Heart.break() }, which will allow players to access and alter the game code itself, and Code Hero, which teaches [...]

  12. namuol Says:

    Can I preorder? :) I want to support this effort.

    • eriksvedang Says:

      Yay, that’s very nice to hear :) We will probably do preorders but only when we can clearly see the end of the project and can promise a date when it will be done. Does that sound good?


  13. [...] games that make players into coders: else { Heart.break() } puts you in a world where the (upcoming) game’s code itself can be accessed and altered by the [...]

  14. pootzko Says:

    w00t, I’m tellin’ everybody about this! :))

    please consider making this moddable and provide a way to generate user-content (think of minecraft). I believe this will be a great platform to create new levels/maps/puzzles.

    can’t wait for it to come out… good luck! :)

    • eriksvedang Says:

      Glad you’re excited! :)

      Modding would be great, although I don’t know how to do it exactly yet. There will be some way to share the programs you make inside the game, for sure.

      Thanks!
      Erik


  15. [...] else { Heart.break() } games indie development [...]


  16. [...] else { Heart.break() } sounds brilliant. I guess the reprogramming isn’t completely for reals (“please exit game to recompile…”), but it’s a really intriguing idea nonetheless. And tempering the novelty, there’s this promising line in the linked to blog post; Besides the programming aspect, we also focus on creating great possibilities for interactive drama. [...]

    • alanball Says:

      There are tons of languages that compile on the fly. LISP is even able to treat the code itself as a list object. That being said it would be way too easy to break the entire game. I look forward to see how they do it!


  17. [...] days ago the Swedish indie game developer, Erik Svedäng,  released a blog post that took gamers by storm.  He, and his four associates, had this idea for an adventure game [...]

  18. Doron Terre Says:

    Looks and sounds absolutely amazing and the concept is very bold and intriguing. It also sounds like a large-scale project. May I ask how it is being financed?

    • grenig Says:

      We got some money from the Nordic Game Programme and besides that its mostly gonna be out of our own pockets.
      Eating alot of noodles, robbing toiletpaper from the general store, that sorta thing.

      Nicke

  19. Jonathan Frederickson Says:

    Is this going to be Windows-only? Sounds like a fun game, but I’m a Linux user…

    • eriksvedang Says:

      The game is made with Unity (the 3D-engine/tool) which is slowly making it’s way to Linux, I believe. Hopefully it will work when we are done with the game but we’ll see. I truly hope so! On a related note: a lot of the code works great on Linux (using the Mono framework) so at the very least I want to open source the underlying technology we have developed. More info about this later, and thanks for stopping by!

  20. Gustavo Says:

    Just curious about some few things: What programming language are you guys using to program the game? Which libraries? What programming language’s going to be used inside the game?

    • eriksvedang Says:

      Great questions! The game is made with Unity and C#. The programming language inside the game is made by us and focuses on being fun and easy to use, plus producing good error messages. I’ll show the design of the language in demos later on.

  21. Life Says:

    Conceptually this sounds absolutely amazing. I’m really looking forward to seeing where you go with it. Best of luck!

  22. LJ Says:

    Good job guys, really hope this materializes, I studied creative communication, and something like a game would make understanding programming so much easier!

  23. Zyu Says:

    Will this have multiplayer though?

  24. Bas Says:

    Looking forward to this! Just wondering though: will this game teach you programming basics? And if so, of which language?


  25. Looks cool, Can you set up an “email me when its done” button. More indie games being developed need one of those.

  26. Thultex Says:

    The Art looks great, the Ideas sounds so. I’m already thrilled to play this ambitious experiment! I hope you’re going to finish a wonderful thing here.


  27. WOW this is blowing my mind!

  28. kidkoexist Says:

    Looks amazing! Really looking forward to it

  29. Zinnaca Says:

    i hope i have a machine that runs this game, sounds so interesting :)

  30. Mike Says:

    Now it’s time to play the waiting game (for the release).

  31. nyarla Says:

    this sounds fascinating and really cool! though i can’t quite imagine all it might entail, from the description.. looking forward to seeing it.

  32. Johan Says:

    Coolt! Är bild två, den från baren, möjligtvis framspånad på Kellys?


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