Pixel Junk studio Q-Games is once again tugging on different strings to the mainstream
We salute Q-Games’ astonishing-looking The Tomorrow Children
The otherworldly stylings of The Tomorrow Children, the forthcoming project by the Tokyobased Q-Games, was inspired by traditional Czech puppets and theatre shows. It’s a route that, combined with a powerful voxel-based engine, lends the game an uncommonly tactile aesthetic, but also meshes perfectly with the Marxism-esque social systems that govern this world’s inhabitants.
“Our art team actually went to Prague to research the ways the puppets are made,” Q-Games founder Dylan Cuthbert tells us. “The aesthetic is not so much ‘tin toy’, which would imply a ’40s or ’50s leaning, but a metal, stone, wood – and a little plastic – style, which gives [the game] a much more 1960s feel.”
The Tomorrow Children’s architecture, meanwhile, is based on the Brutalist school. “It’s quite heavy structures of concrete, stone and metal, which really gives a Soviet Iron Curtain feel to everything,” Cuthbert says. “The Czech Republic was annexed by Russia in the late ’60s, so this all mixes together to create a strong Eastern European vibe, which we feel is unique in gaming.”
Another rarity is how realistic every material appears to be. The result is that The Tomorrow Children looks like a window into a physical world of marionettes cut loose from their strings and imbued with charming life. Q-Games has long been relentlessly courageous in its embracing of experimental ideas and projects, and The Tomorrow Children feels like something of an apogee for its approach.
“For us, every game is a pinnacle, since we never take our foot off the pedal when we’re making a game,” Cuthbert says. “Every one we make has to be the best of its class in some way, or at least introduce a new type of gameplay to the table. This is definitely our most ambitious project in scope, though, and our next game will be our most ambitious in some other way too, I’m sure. We always try to find something novel or ingenious and lock onto that. It’s not always the most financially successful path, but it is definitely the most interesting and exciting one.”
The Tomorrow Children is scheduled for release on PS4 before the end of 2015.