First official trailer for The Witness

as seen in today's PlayStation 4 announcement:



(Watch it in HD + fullscreen if you have the bandwidth!)

78 Comments:

  1. I officially can’t wait. :-)

  2. Hi Jonathon,
    Loved the trailer and I, like many others, cannot wait to play it.

    I was wondering – was the piece of music in the trailer composed for the game or was this a song you found earlier and felt it went well with the game? I really like it.

  3. Thank you for putting so much effort into making the best game you can.
    We need more craftsmen that take pride in their work.

  4. Congratulations, this is looking very beautiful. I’ve never seen such pleasing landscape architecture in a game. Glad the site is back up.

  5. The game looks even better than I’d imagined it would – some of the animations are really, really nice and the lighting is just superb. Here’s hoping for a 2013 release, then?

  6. Wow. Great job.

  7. Does the self-publishing on the PS4 exceed your expectations? Can an Indie really make a game for the PS4?

  8. Just read the Game Informer article on the witness, said it won’t be coming to consoles because you felt ‘360 and PS3 were dated’ I guess that didn’t rule out PS4.
    Not sure if I will purchase on Steam or PS4, but either way I’m excited.

    • That may have been based on relatively old discussions. We didn’t know we would be on the PS4 until relatively recently. At one point that was an accurate description of our stance. But we change these things from time to time: you have to be at least kind of agile because the market situation is changing all the time.

  9. Wow I never thought that I will see the day when an indie development in these exclusive hardware presentations, Day1 PC for me.
    I love the music, the art style, dammit released already.
    Thank you Jonathan Blow we need more like you.

  10. The game looks great, as it has for the months I’ve been following it. I’m just bummed that I won’t be able to play it. PS4 *exclusive*? No PC release? Hugely disappointing.

    • It is a timed exclusive: “This is the first official trailer for the upcoming game The Witness, to be released on the PC, iOS, and PlayStation 4… and eventually, several other platforms.”

    • I think it will be a “release exclusitivity”, I mean, it will be a PS4 exclusive during it release, and after some months will be released for others plataforms.

      I can’t express how much disappointed I am with it. I’ve been following the game development since it’s announcement and waiting anxiously for it’s release. Braid was my all time favourite game and Witness is my most antecipated upcoming game. I have no plans to buy a Ps4, so I’ll have to wait to play it on PC? Everything led us to belive that PC would be the main plataform, maybe with tablets. Of course I will still buy the game and I will still (propably) enjoy it, but I really felt mistaken.

    • Well, the wording Jon used was that PS4 would be the only “console” The Witness would release on “at the time”. It depends on your definition I guess, but I consider PC and iOS to be “platforms”, not consoles. He didn’t use the word “platform”, so I’m assuming the vagueness means PC/iOS/PS4 simultaneous launch is probable, followed by other platforms later.

      Just my speculation though.

      • Stephen, what you said makes a lot of sense. I never thought this way. My hopes are renewed, though I still think the chances are higher to be released only on PS4 at the moment.

    • These sorts of announcements are always difficult, especially for a small team, because it’s hard to give specifics about what platforms a game will be on and when _because often times even the team doesn’t know for sure_.

      I know it sounds strange, but when you’ve only got three or four programmers, and say one of them is working on iOS, maybe you suddenly have to make a decision to pull them off that to help finish the PS4 version. Or maybe you have to pull the guy doing the PS4 version to finish the PC version. It’s always a balancing act, and you have to make the call based on a number of factors, like how far along the code is for a particular platform, what the certification overhead is, where you think the largest audience is, etc., etc.

      So you may _intend_ to have certain platforms ready at certain times, but you often don’t want to commit to that publicly because then when emergencies happen and you have to slip a platform, the players on that platform will get (understandably) upset. You often have to make these kind of judgment calls about what’s going to slip, and no matter what you choose, some part of the audience – who you definitely do care about – is going to be hurt, and that’s hard. Believe me, we’d all love to ship on every platform under the sun if we had infinite resources and infinite time. Who wouldn’t want to get their game out to more players? But part of the reality of being an indie is that, even if you’re well funded by comparison to indies at large, you still actually have very little to work with.

      All this being the way it is, anyone in Jon’s position has to be very careful about what he says. You’ll note that he specifically said that the PS4 would be the only _console_ running the Witness _within the launch window_. So that explicitly does not talk about tablets, desktops, phones, watches, abacuses, or anything else, and it doesn’t even talk about what might happen on other consoles _outside_ the launch window.

      So I really would recommend not reading too much into that statement. It’s a very mild statement as platform announcements go, and certainly no cause for concern at this stage for people who would prefer to play The Witness on a platform other than the PS4.

      Cheers,
      – Casey

  11. The ground level view look so much nicer than the overhead island snapshots! Great work.

    • Agreed, having only really seen the overhead shots recently, seeing the world from the ground was definitely a ‘Whoa!’ moment – I always thought the island shots looked great, but I didn’t expect so much attention to detail.

      Jon and team; Incredible work, visual, audio, the whole shebang – there are not many games I would describe as ‘Beautiful’ – you’ve truly outdone yourselves and I cannot wait :)

  12. Loved the trailer, it’s confirmed my excitement for the game. Does The Witness being a launch title for the PS4 mean that it won’t be available for PCs and Macs until the PS4 has been released – so in other words, will the game be delayed for so long as the PS4 is delayed?

  13. Jonathan,
    When you said on stage that the PS4 will have launch window exclusivity, my heart sank.
    Were you referring to console exclusivity?
    Will other platforms (pc, etc.) see a delayed release, and if so how long?

    Regards

  14. It looks wonderful. I’m really happy for you guys. Keep up the good work! We’re all happy to wait.

  15. Looks a lot nicer than I thought it would at this point.

    This is the last thing I want to have seen before playing the game. I’d like to approach it with innocent eyes as much as possible.

  16. So beautifull! I can’t wait to play it, even though I need to buy a PS4 for it.

  17. I love intelligent side scrollers like Oddworld.

  18. How did the island get so pretty so quickly? It had single color blocks and unfinished water a few weeks ago. Excellent work!

  19. Congrats to the team ! I saw it live and I was amazed to see how good the game looks now, and the music is fantastic, can we have more info about the soundtrack ?

  20. Reminds me so much of MIST and RIVEN on PS1,loved playing them ,still cant finish Riven.

  21. I just watched the stream footage for the PS4 unveiling. That’s great that they had a spot for you to show and talk about The Witness. Watching the games that were showcased beforehand made me a little upset… Sci-fi shooters, fast cars, and explosions. I know the companies that make these games work really hard to create these kinds of experiences, but I really don’t care at all for those experiences. And I hope that most of the player-base wants something more than that…

  22. I wish you could clarify what the PS4 deal means for the PC version. Will that version be delayed because of this?

    You have every right to do what’s financially right for you, but it would be dissapointment for me, after following this game with interest for years. I can afford to buy the devices I want, but I won’t be rushed into buying a PS4.

  23. This was EASILY the best part of the PS4 announcement and it blew my mind in the best of way when they called your name. My question as with many I’m sure, (and to be honest I’m sure you cant answer this) is how long is it going to be exclusive to PS4 before I can buy it on Steam? Answer if you can of course but I need to say again that was the coolest thing I’ve seen in a while, seeing someone I respect so much show up on something I was haphazardly watching at best for fear of seeing nothing but the usual derivative games! It’s odd to say but I felt some sort of ownership seeing you show up on there because I’ve been screaming at friends for the past year that The Witness is a must play when it is released. Glad the whole world can see it now!

  24. awesome game…

  25. It’s still coming to PC, right? I assume it is, but is it coming out later than the PS4 release or at the same time? I’m super scared, right now, because I don’t plan on getting a PS4.

  26. Looks nice but everything is too static – like frozen in time – kinda immersion breaker for me…

  27. The game looks very beautiful, but what really has me going is the song. Who made it? Is there any way to get my hands on it? I’ve had it on repeat all afternoon. If the rest of the soundtrack is this good, this is a must buy for me.

  28. I’m not sure about this… reminds me a lot about: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CkzvwDnjM30

    But I guess we will see whether it was just a smart, acceptable business decision or selling out.

  29. Can we please get a little info on a PC release?

    I am also scared about whether I’ll be able to play this game :(

  30. What a pleasant surprise seeing you take the stage last night! With all due respect to the rest of the tech tonight, The Witness trailer was the highlight of my night :-)

    -Paul

  31. Well done on getting this trailer together, and congratulations on your presentation. It can’t have been easy speaking in front of 1200 people, let alone for such a major event.

    The game is looking beautiful, and I loved the song choice.

    Do you plan on doing a blog about the clouds in the game? They’re quite unlike anything else I’ve seen.

  32. Curious to see whether or not the ‘Sharing’ functionality or Social aspect will be implemented into this game, the experience you have seems like a personal and solitary one I mean will your friends having the ability to instruct you on various puzzles ruin the overall all experience?, like dropping hints Mid-game? I’m sure this can be just ‘turned off so to speak’, but will any of these features be seen in the final game or would it just change the overall game entirely?

  33. He Jonathan and gang,
    like some, I found that The Witness was the star of the show of the PS4-Release, because I don’t like Action games that much and love to get lost in atmosphere, music and puzzles – I can not wait to explore this beautiful island. There is something about it, that makes me want to live there.
    Could you let us know what that piece of music was that was played in the trailer? It was captivating and fit the whole experience perfectly. Please let something like this make it into the game!
    Thanx!
    Christoph

  34. I’m worried. Do i need to upgrade my pc to run it? >_<

  35. fThe music is “Glass Window” by Mediaeval Baebes.

  36. This was by far the best part of the conference -very unexpected!

  37. Congrats on the presentation, you were rgeat. I’m happy The Witness is coming to PS4.

  38. I followed the conference too, and watching this trailer I had two questions:

    1. Isn’t this trailer full of spoilers?
    2. Does it means the technical requirements for PC to get the same quality as in this video (assuming HD kind of resolution) would be close to the PS4 configuration? I suppose not but I’m suddenly feeling feeble with my laptop…

  39. Hey Jonathan,

    Is there any story behind the “25 hours” quote? You don’t seem like one to say such a thing; were you asked to reveal such information?

  40. My computer will definitely not support this… =[
    Why is money such a hassle?

  41. I think I remember a comment by you in the past that it’s very difficult to convey why this game is worth playing through screenshots or snippets of game footage (when people read up on the PAX version of the game, they thought “Is this just a game about blue panels?”).

    Given that, I’d be interested to know the thought process behind the way the trailer ended up being structured.

  42. So excited for this!! Outstanding trailer.

  43. congratz, great trailer and the game looks beautiful!
    can’t wait to play it!
    btw, for me personally the best news in the pressconference

  44. Congratulations Jon. I am glad this game will be accessible to many more people than if it was a PC release only.
    Best wishes for the future, looking forward to the release

  45. I’m just waiting for the backlash.

    Torrents of “dude-bro gamer” hate.

    Frat boys incendiary with rage. “This game is gay. What’s it doing on the PS4? When is Modern Warfare 9: Faceshooter coming out?”

    I can’t wait. For the game. Not the hate.

  46. Wow, that trailer just made me 200% more excited than I already was. It’s looking absolutely wonderful.

    One great thing I noticed is that even though you actually see the puzzles being solved, it doesn’t at all spoil anything. The solutions don’t at all seem to make sense to me, something that will obviously be explained when I play the game, but I mean in other games showing such solutions would ruin the fun. It also shows what you said in the interview, puzzles are all related to each other and they all relate to each other, up to the point where you get to a puzzle that would be impossible to solve had you not gone through all the puzzles before it.

    In any case I’m hugely excited. I’m not going to assume that the game’s release date is anywhere too near, but I’m sure that a trailer is already a big step closer :)

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