Last weekend, Jon, Andy and Luis headed to Vegas to show the game to the public for the first time!
We spent over a week play testing, bug fixing, designing the booth, printing banners, and re-designing the website. It was encouraging to see that the game was already in very good shape and nothing major was broken...getting it ready for the event almost took less effort than getting decent prints of the banners from a print shop.
Here are some images of the booth:
People loved the game! Even those who came in with doubts ended up playing for long periods of time, and we got all very positive comments. The line in front of the booth was huge, it would have been great to have a bigger area with more PS4s.
We made some new posters while preparing the booth:
If you wanted to print your own posters or bookmarks, you can download the huge versions here.
Jon also did a short Twitch stream, it's on YouTube here.
First!!!! And who cares…
Where can I get all of those prints for my home decor?!!
You guys are freaking me out with excitement for this game.
Oops spoke too soon. I just now saw the link for the large prints. AWESOME!!!
Any plans to be at PAX South? I would love to see you guys there.
also, what about pax east? would be awesome (for me and the east coast people) if you were there
Super exciting! I’m so happy for the team. Good luck with the remainder of development, everyone!
I’m amazed at your patience when watching other people play the game Jon. Kudos!
Looking incredible so far! I hadn’t seen any gameplay before this, and I really like the amazing amount of variety you’ve managed to create in such a seemingly simple puzzle mechanic. Keep up the good work!
Lovely to see more gameplay! The world’s looking brilliant and I’m itching to solve those puzzles for myself. Also like the new website design :)
Can’t wait, keep it up guys!
Dude. I’m digging your Puggsy icon, didn’t know anyone else played that game XD Also, super hype for The Witness, keep it up team!
I couldn’t help but smile when you mentioned that there “Might be one song in the game.” Glad to see you’ll still be including that talk, it had a profound effect on me. Can’t wait to see what you do with it!
I can’t help but feel that you and the rest of the team are really just toying with the games media. I hope I’m right in thinking that there is much much more to The Witness than anyone realizes.
Seriously, you guys? I mean, I know nobody on your team follows these comments, but maybe a few other fans will. “A few more months”?, Stop being perfectionists. It looks no different now than it did then: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rDSrYiheVow. A few extraneous puzzles, an area that was already there that we just hadn’t seen, and some bushes that still clip over wires. Just finish it. I picked PS4 JUST for this game, and its never coming out. Ori and the Blind Forest… a game that’s actually coming out. Oh Xbox One, what did I do. A bunch of perfectionists thought they were too good for you, and I fell for it.
oh, and you changed the black stone/ white stone puzzle from purple to blue. step backwards, it looked better purple.
What does a platformer game for xbone have anything to with this game? They are both coming out at around the same time Im sure. Jon said its coming early 2015. Whats the hang up? You just want it NOW even though its not finished? Thats the problem with this generation of kids, they have no patience for good things. They want something now, they get it, see something else thats shiny, and go get that.
I agree with Ryan… We don’t need a perfect game. No need to spend time on… Wait, bushes clip through wires? Yeah, please fix that now.
I took a mortgage out on a house JUST to play The Witness. And I also quit my job so I would have time to play it. Now, I’m risking foreclosure and being on the street because this game hasn’t been released.
I hope you’re trolling.
Thanks for making me laugh! It’s incredibly discouraging to see the impatient negativity of some people, when you already can’t wait to share the game you pour your heart into every day for years. Fortunately we get very little of that on this blog, the peeps who visit are generally great!
Orsi, I appreciate you responding, and I really am sorry to have offended you. That was not my intention at all. I know that on this post most people don’t agree with me and I’m getting attacked left and right for stating my opinion, but a few months back one of you guys posted something along the lines of “some late game screenshots I’ve been working on”. It was some screenshots of a cave. There were plenty of other people on there with the same opinion as me. I have more patience than a lot of people on here are giving me credit for, I have been following the progress of this beautiful game for a very long time, and I’m sorry but sometimes patience starts to run out no matter how much you have. I was so excited to watch the video and see the progress it’s made, but the second I saw that bush blow through that wire, and I heard Jonathan say “a few more months”, my heart sank. He’s been saying that for years. I have nothing but love for you and your team, and once again I am sorry to have offended you, but I’m not trolling, and I’m not the only one worried about this games pending release date. I really, really just wanna play your game.
The thing is, we are people, there is about 7 of us making this huge 3D game, and it’s our lives, every day. We can’t wait for it to actually be played. So when someone starts a comment from such an offensive stance, claiming that we are arrogantly tweaking irrelevant stuff, assuming that we don’t read the comments because we don’t care, stating that the game will never come out and that we have lowered their quality of life in some way, it makes us sad and discouraged. Especially since that kind of loud, uninformed, negative opinion sharing spreads like wildfire online.
I’m very glad you want to play our game, we are making it or you to play! We will release it for sure, when it’s finished.
It won’t let me click to reply to you, Orsi, so I’m replying to my comment and hopefully you still get a notification or notice it. I never tried to claim it was lowering my quality of life, that’s for sure, I just claimed I had the resources to get one system, and picked the PS4 almost entirely because of this game. That was supposed to be a compliment. In my own terrible way I was just trying to get some sort of reaction. Like I said, it came out awful and I get that, and you are right to call me out on it. I was not trying to hurt or discourage you, but I was hoping to motivate you. I know it’s not up to me to motivate a team of people who are much better at what they do than I could ever be, but I was trying to at least start some kind of fire beneath you, not discourage you. I think, given the unanimously negative feedback I got to my initial comment, you guys have nothing to worry about in regards to my opinion spreading “like wildfire”. Thanks for “moderating” my comebacks towards the immature attackings of Bryan and Nathan into oblivion, BTW. I don’t think any wildfires will be spread when we have people like you to censor them. Did they have a few swears? Yea, and that’s why I’m using asterisks now. But did they make my point in a way that SHOULD have gotten a meaningful response and discussion going if you had let me? Yep. But now they get the last word without so much as an immature “my generation” ranting from me in response. Thanks a lot. While I regret the way it came out, and regret making your team sad and discouraged, I still stand by what I said. When you guys pushed back the 2014 release date, I thought it was because technical things needed to be worked on. My 100% missed point with the color change on the black/white stone puzzle and the bush wire clipping thing was this: if that’s the kind of thing that STILL hasn’t been noticed or fixed, what has been going on at your meetings? I ask this with absolute respect, but with so much silence on these blogs, a long time anticipator like me is left to wonder the kinds of things that get discussed. “Hey maybe we should add an entire (cave/swamp/outer space, etc.) section!” “Hey, you know that building you come out of the intro hatch into? Let’s make that like a gazebo type thing instead!” “You know that one puzzle? Let’s change it to blue instead of purple!” Those kinds of discussions and changes could go on forever. If I had that kind of time and indecisiveness I’d still be working on my term papers from four years ago. “Hey, did you guys see how that bush just blew over a wire that should be a solid, physical entity?, Let’s fix those kinds of things and get this f**ker out the door to all the loyal fans that have been waiting for years!” seemed to not be one of the things mentioned. Like I said, nothing but respect, but at this point if you take it as offense so be it. It’s my piece, my opinion in a free country, and someone should say it. If the creators of The Witness all hate me because of it, I’ll feel like s**t if the game turns out anywhere near as amazing as I’m hoping, but oh well. They’ll still be getting my support and praise when the game finally does come out.
First of all, the intro looks noticeably different, and that gives a different mood, and it’s important to them that the mood is right. And there’s over 90% of the game you haven’t seen yet, and maybe some parts would be something you’d look at, and say “Oh, that doesn’t look right at all. That looks rushed and sloppy.” It’s a huge, ambitious project that the majority of which hasn’t been revealed. Also, making your own games is more exciting than waiting for someone else’s game to come out, because you can make whatever you want, and you know every stage of progress involved.
Question: In “VerticalBanners_Low01.jpg” is that a character model underwater? Is that meant to be here? (I’ll assume so) Or is that a placeholder? I’ll assume it’s intentionnal, in which case it’s intriguing..
I’m trying to look as little as possible at what is published to keep the experience fresh when it’s finally available…
Wow, good eye! My guess is that’s one of the statues we see elsewhere. This one happens to be underwater.
It looks done! Please release it soon.
You saw maybe the first 2% of the game….just sayin’
Promise we are working on it as fast as we can and not just sitting around laughing maniacally at all the impatient comments :P
I remember seeing an interview where Jon said he hopes people speedrun the game. If you take too long to release, you won’t leave any bugs for the speedrunners to exploit. Think of the skips, Jon! Think of the speedrunners!
Do you guys have any idea of the total length of the game on first playthrough?
It kind of depends on how much of it you want to complete. Jon’s been saying 25-30 hours…for someone like me, it might take as much as 50, because I’d want to finish everything with no help, and there is a lot to do!
Nice! Sounds promising.. I usually like to take my time, especially in immersive games; with any luck I might complete it in less 60 hours.. :p
Keep up the good work!
Also, I like a few glitches in the games I play.
I found this preview from PAX, and it’s pretty interesting:
I found it a bit concerning that the author says Jon has almost exhausted the budget! I hope it works out OK for everyone. It looks great!
Sorry, I meant “from PSX.”
Of course, Jon is committed to spending ALL of the Braid money. He’s just crazy like that. :)
While “The Witness” was clearly the star of your show, you forgot to mention it was nearly upstaged by one thing:
Jon’s awesome German coat ;-)
Please tell us the coat brand.
It looked like Deckard from Blade Runner
Also, you need extra funds? KICKSTARTER
of course, I bet you’ve thought of that, but just in case you needed encouragement :D
Don’t listen Jon – do not release the game soon. I am shivering with anticipation but you should still finish it. I’m sure you know that, I just don’t want a premature game that didn’t reach its fullest potential. Thanks for the update!
Oh my God ….
I just watched the Twitch stream & see that you’ve opted to go with the freely walking around-style of movement instead of that touch/move-touch/move method you used earlier. The free movement adds SO much to the immersion and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for choosing that way!
The PC and PS4 versions have always had fully free-moving first-person controls (mouse & keyboard and/or twin-sticks on a controller).
The touch-to-move system we showed a while ago is a prototype system for the iPad version of the game. It still needs work, but we want something better than “virtual twin sticks in the corners of the touchscreen”.
If we get it to work well enough , we’ll most likely include touch-to-move as an optional control method on the other platforms too.
This looks amazing. So looking forward to playing this. It’s clear that you’ve paid a ridiculous amount of attention to every detail. I know polishing something that seems great as it is can be frustrating, but I’m sure it’ll be worth it in the end. Keep it up guys!
Like so many here I have been excited beyond words by this game. We, well at least I, understand the incredible difficulty of creating a game like this. The wait is not fun for us. But, far worse for you since you have put money, heart and soul into this effort. We appreciate that more than you can know. Release the game when it is ready. We can wait. It will be all the better when it gets here.
Ahh, the witness, a discovery/inductive reasoning game to rule them all (not that there are so many in this vaunted, special category). It’s going to be like a game of riddles in the dark between designer and player.
This, ladies and gentlemen, is a learning game, the rarest of them all. It demands something of the player, and its pay off is epiphany.
I’m hoping for great things, even to the point of puzzles that respond to the players acts — which the player has had a hand in knowingly or unknowingly designing himself over the course of play, or during the puzzle previous. It will be quite a dance.
I think the team can do it. They can take as long as they like.
Meanwhile we all know the whiners are all going to hush the moment this bad boy goes live.
I have been so excited for this game since the day it was announced! Besides the original trailer I have basically kept myself in the dark about this game. I do not read updates or look at any new screenshots. I want to experience it all myself first-hand. This game reminded me in a way of Myst when I first saw it, which excited me even more for it! As bad as I want to play this game I am very happy that it is not being rushed to be released. The wait will definitely be worth it. I cannot describe my excitement for the game, this will certainly be something special. Keep up the good work everyone, I cant wait to experience the finished product!!!
Two words: Chinese Democracy
Two more words: Just kidding!
Hey look! Alcazar is now available on Android and iOS.
It’s a very different sort of puzzle from the Witness (except for on the surface appearance of tracing a line on a grid) but if anyone is looking for an interesting, bite sized series of puzzles I would greatly recommend it!
This video was exactly what I needed to hold me over a little longer. Thanks Jon & Team! Say, when y’all have a moment, how about an Island Shot for old time’s sake? :D
Hey, I don’t know how many of you have heard of or played this game ( maybe most), I’ve only heard of it recently, though it was made a few years ago. Even though it works very differently from the witness (3d sokoban) the vibe it gives off feels a lot like what I’ve seen of the witness
you can try out a free demo at the site below
It’s so inspiring to follow your work on this website, and see how much you care about every last bit of this game. I know you will make it perfect! Just can’t express how thoroughly excited I am to dive into it! Take your time though, and polish ’til it shines!
Ó, és hajrá Orsi!
When Jonathan gives a puzzle count – I think the last one I heard was over 700 – does that assume each maze panel as a puzzle? I imagine it’s not that black and white as the game progresses, but is that essentially how we can interpret it?
I was actually wondering the same thing. Does a set of five with the first panel being essentially a straight line count as five puzzles? Or the panel that *spoilers* (just in case) brings up the boat count?
Yeah, he is just counting the number of puzzle panels in the game. Some are much harder than others.
All I have to contribute is my love, passion, and excitement!
Hey Orsi (and team),
Just wanted to take a moment to thank you guys for the dedication and effort you are all undoubtedly sacrificing well into the holiday season, and beyond.
I hope you guys are able to take as long as you need to ensure your vision is fully realized; the notion that anything is owed to us beyond delivering the experience you are providing to us is absurd. In a Fall that has seen myriad high-profile titles be released incomplete, buggy, or broken, I think we should be more appreciative of developers willing (and able) to ensure the product they roll out is the one they intended to.
The game looks absolutely gorgeous, and I honestly think you could have a secondary business manufacturing those prints!
Please keep up the good fight, and know that this game WILL move people. Can’t wait to play it (but will, gladly).
Thank you for responding to some of these posts.
I know it’s off topic, but I wanted to mention there’s a good puzzle game out right now on IOS, which is called “framed”. It explores the very cool idea to reorder the drawings in a comic book to change the outcome of the story. And to my surprise, Jonathan was mentioned in the end credits :-)
I’m the Ryan that has commented a few times before on previous posts and the above Ryan doesn’t speak for all the Ryans. This Ryan wants to play the game Jon releases when it is ready. I’d love that to be now but I’m excited for the game that Jon is excited for whenever he is ready to release it. Godspeed on the final stretch or wherever you guys are at. I’ll sit here and lazily reload this blog weekly while you guys work your butts off. Cheers and Merry Christmas!!
I, for one, am looking forward to getting lost in that crazy ambiguous space that I found in Braid and in movies like Mulholland Drive, Donnie Darko, or Memento Mori. I love it and can’t get enough of it. Yet I can rarely find such generous places. Everything I’ve seen about the Witness is gearing towards a very deliberate headtrip that doesn’t primarily resort to sensationalism to administer it. My brain is drooling while my body waits patiently.
I had a dream that I played The Witness last night. It was pretty awesome.
Like most of you, I’ve been following development here and eager to play this wonderful game. I’m also happy to wait. But the comment about budget running out has gotten me worried. My patience may be infinite, but resources aren’t. And there have been many great projects that ran out of fuel and never finished at all. Including mine ;-) I’d hate for the team to end up with the classic 3 bad choices: raise more capital, release something unfinished or hurried or, heaven forbid, cancel altogether. In any case, if it comes to it, you can count on me in the kickstarter campaign :-)
Heh, people take that kind of comment too seriously. It was just to say that, like any project, ultimately there is a time when there just wouldn’t be more money. But The Witness has been *way* less resource-constrained than most game development projects. If we’d had to ship on time with the originally-envisioned budget, you would have gotten a game in winter 2011 that was a small fraction of what we have actually made, and not anywhere near as good.
Like everyone else, I would like the game to come out as soon as possible!
Will this be a downloadable only game?
All of you who want Jon to release this game faster should play The Talos Principle. It’s a modern 3D puzzle game which is somewhat similar to The Witness. It’s like The Witness released prematurely. This is a good game, I’ve finished it (collected all the sigils and stars), but I didn’t really like it. I can write a long list of its flaws, but this is not the point. To me the game feels incomplete, there’s lots of generic garbage in the gaps between actually good stuff. And even though it’s polished visually, it’s not polished as a game.
I don’t think guys from Croteam slacked off, they probably did their best. But I know that Jon and his team can do much better. So give them time. If all you want is just another good puzzle game – just play another good puzzle game. If you want a masterpiece – wait.
So when is this coming out roughly now? May?
The new website looks great. I’d like to recommend that you integrate the homepage into the new design as well. http://the-witness.net/ seems to be in the old format.
Looks and sounds great! Can’t wait!
I cannot wait for this game to consume my life! Are there any plans to port it to Android? This game seems made for a tablet
omg honestly have been waiting for this game since the first time I saw it on the playstation unveil trailer please hurry up and release the game :)
I’m fine with waiting and the team crossing their Ts and dotting their Is. I actually don’t want them to hurry up. I am, however, itching to see a new Jonathan Blow talk or interview.
I also would love to see a list of your favorite books, movies, and music Jon. So far you’ve mentioned The Mindscape of Alan Moore, Mulholland Drive, Invisible cities, and Einsteins Dreams in interviews and their all my cup of tea. I’m going to have to check out Gravity’s Rainbow. I’ve also seen Primer years ago, but not Upstream Color yet. It’s refreshing to find someone with similar taste.
I’m very excited about the Witness and I haven’t played a game in a few years. Portal and Braid has kind of ruined most other games for me.
It would be nice if you gave us an absolute date on which The Witness would be released. By that I mean a date at which the game will run out of development funds or a date at which you will end everything regardless of wanting to adjust leaves and puzzle configurations. The 2014 date might have counted, however, it was not an absolute date in that the game development was evidently able to continue after that date. Instead, I would like information on the absolute latest month that this game could be released.
During the PSE last month Jonathan Blow awnserd a question about the release date with: we hope not to late in 2015. I think thats the most we will get until the real release date.
A short summary of Jonathans talk on PRACTICE:
Whats comming after The Witness and his programming language doesn´t sound safe. I´m intrigued!
Folks, is there anything about The Witness, however tangentially related, that isn’t breathtakingly beautiful?
Also, does “PC” here include a linux_witness.cpp platform layer or may Linux be one of the “other platforms”? (I’m learning about platform layers and much much more from Casey.)
Though I really like the new visual design for the website, it’s now really hard to navigate through old blog posts:
1) There’s no search box to be seen, a good way to do a search is to trigger a 404 (for instance http://the-witness.net/news/search) which prompts a search bar
2) Most articles have tags (useful!) but there’s no easy way to see a list of all the tags (like it used to be: “Engine/Tech”, “News” and so forth).
It would be totally understandable that you guys don’t have time to deal with this for now… but I’m hoping that, at some point we could get these features back! (Especially in order to browse all the awesome tech/engine articles ;)).
Best of luck for the remaining work :)
Thanks for the feedback. I wasn’t sure how useful those used to be.
I’ve just added them both, let me know it that works for you!
Perfect! Thanks Luis \o/
Sorry to butt in, Luis, but is there any chance you could moderate my comment from 16th Jan? I’m guessing the problem is that I included a link to one of Casey’s youtube playlists.
If it went into spam, forget it… we get so much spam it’s INSANE, and WordPress doesn’t seem to give me a reasonable way to search through spam comments.
Ah, no worries. Cheers, Jon! And, err… yeah, just thank you.
P.S. I think (hope) I now know the answer to my question after seeing you cloc [i]The Witness[/i] code in one of your compiler programming videos.
I approved your comment yesterday morning, it’s just up a little.
Greetings to all the other fans that check this site and the comments section every day! Hang in there!
Every. Day. :)
How’s it going man? Yeah, thanks there fellow. Ugh, it’s hard. I know the less that happens here on the blog that the more is getting done, but I don’t remember the last time I’ve anticipated the release of a game with this much enthusiasm. Nice music btw. I’m a musician too.
Super excited for this game!
Just curious if we can expect this before summer. Can’t wait to play.
I was at playstation experience. You gave had a very nice booth! Just how much will you be pricing “The Witness” at release? Very excited for the game!
This might be premature, but I’m wondering if you can give us a good idea of the system requirements for PC and Mac. Will it be pretty much anything that can run Direct X 11? Also, are you willing to give us a price range? I’m guessing more than $20 for sure.