Space Marine versus Battle Babe versus Elderly Lady
Tale of Tales’ tranquil interactive vignette, The Graveyard, in which you play an old woman who visits a cemetery, has been nominated for the European Innovative Games Award. The award ceremony is held in Darmstadt, Germany on November 6th. The artsy independent title is up against some remarkably heavy competition from European game development powerhouses such as Ninja Theory (nominated with “Heavenly Sword”), Crytek (“Crysis”), Konami (“PES 2008″) and Nintendo of Europe (“Wii Fit”). The other nominated games are “Sharkworld” (by Ranj Serious Games), “Rider Spoke” (by Blast Theory), “Blake White” (by Games Academy), “Somersault” (by Enter-Brain-Ment), “Swinxs” (by Swinxs) and “Remote Impact: Shadowboxing over a Distance” (by Distance Lab).
“We must admit that it came as a bit of a shock to see our little game nominated next to these huge productions. But it’s interesting that the jury has chosen games from the commercial industry as well as from artistic and academic contexts. It shows that innovation can be found in many different places. We’re proud to be on the shortlist. May the best old lady win!”
The Graveyard was released in February 2008. It is a very short game in which you play an elderly lady who visits a cemetery, walks past the graves, sits on a bench and listens to a song before heading back out in the same slow, difficult manner. The Graveyard creates a pensive atmosphere in which the player is invited to meditate on the subjects of death and old age.
A trial version of the game can be downloaded from Tale of Tales’ website for both PC and Mac. The full version costs 5 USD and only adds a single feature: the possibility that the protagonist can die.
The Graveyard was created with Unity and funded by the Flanders Audiovisual Fund. Auriea Harvey and Michael Samyn designed and directed the piece. Laura Raines Smith animated the main character. Kris Force created the sound effects. And Gerry De Mol composed the music in the game.
Reviews from the time of launch:
Tale of Tales is an independent games development studio founded by media artists Auriea Harvey and Michael Samyn, specializing in artistically meaningful games. They are currently finalizing The Path, a short horror game inspired by Little Red Ridinghood, next to running their “play-a-deer” “pure joy” multiplayer game The Endless Forest.