No thread yet? Here it is! I am so looking forward to this release and so very happy for Jon. I played the PC months ago and thought it was close to perfect then.

I dont want to do spoilers but for those curious why they should be excited, my opinion is that Braid expresses itself through mechanics, symbols and plot and also lovingly takes apart the platform genre block by block, then puts it all back together again.

Oh and its also fun :)

What, uh, is Braid?

As far as I know, its just how my wife arranges her hair sometimes.

Check XBLA tomorrow.

Nevermind. Congratulations, Jonathan!

(I really should pay attention)

Hey Rod! I enjoyed listening to your appearance on GFW Radio recently. Good stuff :)

Is there any word on when the PC version comes out? I’ll probably get it on XBLA anyway, but I like options.

Braid is out tomorrow? Woohoo! I’ve been looking forward to it since I saw it on the 1Up show.

Thanks man! Was really fun, those guys know how to get a good conversation going!

Wow, Braid got a 9 in the latest Edge. I’ve seen plenty of Edge issues go by without ANY game getting a 9. Nice work, Jonathan.

Braid’s achievements are listed here; from the discussion we had around Jonathan’s concern about being forced into including them in his game, it looks like the achievements went the way I figured would be best, or at least most passive anyway. They should just flow naturally from beating the various levels and getting puzzle pieces so the achievements don’t look (well, to my peanut gallery point of view anyway) to be terribly intrusive. I understand Jonathan’s argument that a game like Braid isn’t really about achievements and really is much more of an auteur’s wanting to provide a unique experience, but this seems like a fair compromise, yes?

I was reading ign’s review for Braid last night. From the description , do you only have to complete some of the rooms to finish the story, and the rest is there for people who want to do everything?

For each day that this is not available on the PC I’m going to kill a kitten!

haha lol

I had to laugh at that.

Wake me when it’s on PC, etc., blah blah.

Be sure to get it, this is a game that shows what just a few passionate gamers can do when they set their hearts to something. Too bad for Eternity’s Child, but I can guarantee Braid will not disappoint.

You have to get all the puzzle pieces to keep unlocking worlds and finish, actually. (though there are some easter eggs in the epilogue I guess you could skip) The game gives you some leeway to move on to other puzzles in the same world (or sometimes the next world) without doing every single puzzle piece in strict order, but you do eventually have to come back to them or your progress will halt.

(Assuming there hasn’t been a major change in this area since the beta I played).

You have to finish all the puzzles to access the final chapter, but you can tackle most of them in any order. It is kind of like a “puzzle gallery” that you wander through, spending time with exhibits that draw you in.

And thanks for the thread, Rod.

Today Gamasutra is running my article on how the art for Braid came together … for those interested.

This is going to sound like a criticism of Braid (which I’ve played and quite enjoyed) or Jonathan, and it’s intended as neither, but I’m curious if it would be receiving this level of acclaim without the “this is a big art game from a big thinker” hype.

Well, hype isn’t the right word. But the way the game has been presented by the media—mostly bloggers, less so the IGNs of the world—makes it seem like an enormous leap forward in design or art or whatever, and I’m not entirely convinced it holds up to that level of scrutiny. Or maybe I’m just not down enough with academic design methodology or something, or unable to appreciate some of the things it’s doing.

(It’ll likely receive some criticism too, as in, “Oh, this is the fabled brainy art game, but it’s just a platformer with a time mechanic that was stolen from Prince of Persia, LOL!!1!” That’d be even more wrong than those who might put it up on a pedestal of, “this is how all games should be.”)

Anyway, I’m finding myself unable to get to my point very easily, but let’s say I’m making a game and it too is able to “express itself through mechanics, symbols and plot,” yet I’m personally unable to articulate this through presentations and speeches and interviews and such. Would my own game be received in the same manner as one from someone who is able to present it that way? That is, do you need to know how “arty” the game is before playing to even get that it’s an arty game?

You can call me anti-intellectual, but the main draw for me in Braid was having a new 2d platformer. I guess there may be people out there who heard ‘arty game that expresses itself through mechanics, symbols and plot’ but I personally haven’t heard much from that quarter. It’s pretty much icing on the cake, at least for me.

So I’d say if Braid had a less familiar mechanic, wasn’t rooted in a game style we have played many times in the past, it would have a harder time finding its audience. It seems apparent that Jonathan is using our familiarity with games like Super Mario Brothers to hook us, and then holds us with the game’s own unique touches once the game diverges from what we’re familiar with. Just being ‘arty’ wouldn’t have gotten the game a second glance from me, but recognizing the artistry once I had played a few levels was a really nice surprise.