Gris brings genuine artistic prowess to the platformer
style, substance and a whole lot more in-between
Format: Switch, Pc | Publisher: Devolver Digital Developer: Nomada Studio | release: Dec 2018 | Players: 1
As talented as the world of game developers most certainly is, we can’t think of many who have seen their art displayed in museums across the world, but that’s something Nomada Studio can boast thanks to its creative director Conrad Roset. Apparently his introduction to the world of game-making was a chance meeting with his studio co-founders Adrián Cuevas and Roger Mendoza in Barcelona that turned to a discussion of translating his signature, elegant and often watercolour-infused style into a videogame. The end result of that conversation some three years later is Gris.
The game itself is a classic platformer in many ways, drawing on the elegance of Roset’s art while also pulling from the likes of Journey and perhaps to some extent Limbo to give the game a sense of flow, place and mystery. The Nomada team isn’t giving too much away about its lead character beyond saying she’s getting over some things, so we’re left to interpret what’s happening from the disjointed and dreamy world around her. The bottom line though is this is an absolutely gorgeously animated and designed world that we absolutely have to see more of in the coming weeks before launch.
one of Gris’ biggest nods to Journey is the cloak worn by its lead character, which billows and pulsates in a very similar fashion to that seen in thatgamecompany’s great release. since the character can sometimes be quite small on screen, the cloak is the expressive part of her presence, giving you a great sense of the environment she’s in and what she’s experiencing at any given time.
ebb AND flow
we often say that still images of a game don’t do it justice, but actually the fluidity and movement of Gris is rather nicely captured by these stills, perhaps because the movement and animation itself is based on the still art of its creative director. it’s all embellishing that base design, but suffice to say, the world feels like it’s inhaling and exhaling with each movement and change to the level.
while there’s certainly an element of puzzle platforming involved in what we’ve seen of Gris thus far and that may become more complex deeper into the story, the overall feel of the game is quite leisurely, allowing you to take in the game world and appreciate every corner of it. the score we’ve heard so far, building on the ethereal visuals with a similarly airy soundscape, complements this very nicely.
“WE’RE LEFT TO INTERPRET WHAT’S HAPPENING FROM THE DISJOINTED AND DREAMY WORLD”