The Path Interview - Are Games Art?

Written by Joe Martin

April 8, 2009 // 9:06 a.m.

Tags: #art #endless-forest #games-are-art #graveyard #interview #joe #tale-of-tales #the-path #the-path-interview-are-games-art

bit-tech: How have you responded to the critical reaction? Were you worried beforehand that people might not ‘get’ the game and, after release, how have reactions meshed with those expectations?

Tale of Tales: We were fully prepared to be completely misunderstood and unappreciated. The only thing we were hoping for was that our audience would ignore the reviews and discover the game’s merit on their own. This assumption was based on our own experience of really liking games that were received as boring or uninteresting by the press. We had expected nothing more for The Path.

As it turns out, to our surprise, we have underestimated the games press. So we feel we should apologize. Many journalists have expressed deep appreciation for The Path, even if sometimes they did not entirely enjoy their experience or were bothered by some of its technical or design flaws.

Some reviewers even went as far as refusing to give the game a score because they felt that it was inappropriate.

The Path Interview - Are Games Art? The Path Interview - Going Forwards

We are also receiving emails or comments on our blog and forum from players who thoroughly enjoyed the game. And the people who didn’t, they easily make themselves heard as well. There are a few people in the middle, but they are rare. The Path does seem to polarize the audience, which we can only find flattering. And as far as we can tell, the positive pole is far greater, more interesting and more nuanced than the negative one in terms of critical reception.

Commercially, we still have a long way to go before we can call this project viable. So hopefully, many people will purchase the game, if only to support independent development in an industry where original ideas are extremely rare.

The Path Interview - Are Games Art? The Path Interview - Going Forwards

BT: What lessons do you think you learned from making and releasing The Path? Do you have future projects you’re going to apply those lessons to?

ToT: It’s a bit early to make any final judgements, but one thing that we feel strongly about at the moment is that the production of The Path was a little bit too big for our small company. So, our next projects will probably be a bit smaller - but not less ambitious.

The positive critical reception is encouraging us to continue down this path and explore further the uncharted areas of the interactive medium. We also hope that it stimulates other artists and designers to see that there is an audience out there for a different kind of game.

And that’s it! A big thank you to Auriea and Michael for taking the time to answer our questions so thoroughly and if you want to know more about The Path then you can check our review, or visit the official site.
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