The game is doing great on Steam …

... and this is just preorders, the game isn't playable until tomorrow! steam_cropped Thanks to everyone who's been following along on these forums, and everyone who's been interested in the game generally! We'll see what happens tomorrow!

70 Comments:

  1. Fan from the uk here, it’s 12:30am. Waited patiently until midnight but nothing…. Guess the pan store works to us time zones???

  2. Congrats on finishing the game and meeting your release date! I haven’t been this excited about a game in a very long time. Can’t wait to play it.

    • Hello – I live in NZ but very keen to play this. Will this game be on the NZ PS4 store? I can’t seem to uncover this information, which I don’t think is one of the game’s puzzles.
      Best regards,

      Mark

      • I’m just some guy and I don’t know about NZ specifically but check the last few blog posts… due to a misunderstanding about how preorders on PSN work they were unable to offer preorders. I assume it will still be available for normal purchase tomorrow.

      • “I can’t seem to uncover this information, which I don’t think is one of the game’s puzzles.” – LOL, gotta laugh at that one! Who knows, maybe it is ;-D

  3. Oh man oh man oh man…

    Any word on what time for the PSN on the west coast?

  4. Easy to wait 9 more hours but harder to avoid spoilers.

    By the way congratulation for the godd presales and also good reviews, hope it will give you even more freedom on your next project.

    • Absolutely, left for work at 8am and it wasn’t on the store, hoping to download so it’s ready when I get home. Got to work to find its on there…..
      Radio silence from here on in.
      See you on the other side.

  5. In a few hours from now, the game will rest on my drive. I’ll then calmly wait for Friday night, when the stress is low and the lights are dim, and I’ll open up a good seven years vintage and just let the wine and puzzles mix slowly.

    Thanks for all the efforts you guys put into this game. And thanks Johnathan for your thoughtful videos on your ideas for an improved programming language.

    Cheers to you all!

  6. When is it going live on PSN time zone wise? I dont know which time zone you are releasing this in at midnight? Arent you guys in California or something?

    Wish I could take tomorrow off and just “Witness-out” but alas I have to work.

  7. Also Jon, just so you know, I never get excited for games and follow them as closely as I have with this game. What you have been doing and are doing is something special. You have a gift, good sir. I wish you all the success a second time around with this game as much and well beyond your success with Braid.

  8. My preorder definitely came with a warm, fuzzy feeling but I was a bit confused about the lack of DLC and and upgrade options.

    Seriously though, congratulations to you and your team. I have been looking forward to this one since 2009. You’ve been a major influence on my understanding of game ethics and respecting players. I can’t wait to experience what you’ve got in store for us!

  9. Hi Guys,
    Congratulations on the final release of “The Witness” and a perfect 10 score review on IGN. I have been watching your blog now since the game was announced, and now I am counting down the hours till the PS4 version releases. I can’t wait to play a game that I know will be nothing short of amazing. Thanks for creating this.

  10. Congrats on the release! Any plans to have this game playable on Mac?

    • Mac support would be awesome, although you’d think they would have mentioned it by now. I know some early media coverage was promising Mac & PC support, but that was years ago.

  11. I’ve been following this game since 2011, but this is the first time I’ve left a comment. I just wanted to say that I expect great things from this game and it feels surreal that it’s finally here. Congratulations to the team for finishing this huge project.

  12. Jonathan Blow,

    I think you’ve had your doubts regarding your career choice due to your intelligence, but it is great that you’ve put so much of your time and effort into this industry: it wouldn’t be the same without you. At the very least — if money and fame do not convince you of the importance of your contributions — you’ve inspired a few people through your unusual but much-needed standards regarding game design (I, myself, have become a game designer because of your lectures).

    Since you’ve already shaken the industry with Braid and your design philosophy, it’s amazing to see that you haven’t settled. I hope The Witness becomes an even larger milestone in gaming than your previous title, and I hope to see Jai under widespread usage whenever it’s out. I also hope to see further work later on!

    Sorry for the fanboyism, but I am very excited about all of your contributions. Please try not to abandon this infant industry any time soon, because you’ve seen deeper into its possibility space than most of us. And thank you for that. I hope you and the team can rest soon. Good luck with the launch!

  13. Like some of the others here, I’d like to congratulate the team on finishing this game. And thank you. :)

  14. Congrats to the team on finishing, and congrats on the numbers you’re getting on metacritic, too! I’ll be grabbing a copy tomorrow most likely.

  15. Any word of when it’s released via psn EST?

  16. Congratulations on becoming the top seller! You’ve earned it.

  17. Alec "Baldwin" Nielsen

    Even though this is being released a day after my birthday I consider this to be a lomg awaited gift. Sir Jonathan Blow I want to extend a welcomed handshake to this achievement and I prepare for the journey you will allow me to partake discovering and solving the mysterious Witness and the breadth of gameplay that myself and others will undergo to enjoy your latest artwork. See you on the otherside! (Of completing the game 100 percent).

  18. And now I await the physical release. :D

  19. Is anyone else bumping “Notorious” by Duran Duran for the part where they go “you control the Witness” over and over again?!… No? Alright.

  20. Congratulations and hats off to all the team! Game looks fantastic and intriguing, you geniuses ;-)

  21. Thank you and the whole team for creating this game! Gonna quit work early today to play as much as possible!

    I also just wanted to say that I have a tremendous amount of respect for you. The fact that you decided, after 7 years of hard work, to still give away some part of your profits to a good cause, I honestly don’t think I would have done that If I were in your shoes (feels kind of bad to admit that but it’s the truth).

    Congratulations.

  22. Everyone, if you search for The Witness on the PSN store, you can now purchase and download it (in the U.S. at least, on the West Coast).

    I’ve been anticipating this moment ever since I initially thought this moment would come in December 2012. Braid changed my view of art and video games and I think life in general in some subtle ways, and I’m looking forward to what I’m sure will be an even grander intellectual challenge than that game. I’m ecstatic they were able to roll it out so soon after midnight.

    Thank you, Jonathan Blow, for all that you do, particularly for speaking out regarding the devaluation and misuse of art in our society and providing such stark counterexamples to the many games that don’t hold themselves to high standards. If you ever question whether the immense work you put in is worth it or whether it is futile to try to have a significant positive impact, please be assured that what you are doing has had an enormous impact on many gamers, their loved ones, and the industry as a whole.

  23. Dear Sir or Madam,

    I´m testing out games for my visitors on YouTube.
    My viewers are mainly german lets Player and Gamer. They use our videos for there own lets-play projects on youtube.
    We kindly request you to send us a key of “The Witness”

    Thanks in advance.

    Kind regards Sonky

  24. Wish you the best of luck on the game release!

  25. I preordered it on Steam yesterday and am sitting very impatiently for it to be released for download… Argh, I can’t wait! Looking forward to it very much!

  26. I am so happy and excited for everyone at Thekla on the release of this game. It’s been such a joy seeing the parts of the process that you’ve shared with us over the past few years.

    Thank you for the work that you do, the consideration and thought that you pour into your creations, and most of all just thank you for making anything at all.

    I’m looking forward to beginning my experience with your creation.

  27. Is anybody actually able to play this on any platform yet? Humble sure doesn’t seem to work.

    • Alright, now they seem to have made it available. Based on the download speed, it seems like many people want to play the game. Or the Humble servers suck. But at least it’s loading now… :)

  28. Somehow, I just had a flashback to when I was 15 years old and waited for some DCC transfer on IRC of some 6 second porn clip to fiiiiinally make it onto my hard drive.

    Oh, how interests change over the years. ;)

    • You just took me back when you mentioned DCC transfers! I completely forgot about those days of downloading through IRC. Brings back some terrible slow memories.

  29. Why don’t you give a product link for Steam? If you sell this game both on Humble Store and on Steam, maybe it is appropriate to give links for both stores.

  30. I haven’t used steam in years, any chance of this landing on a DRM-free platform like gog?

  31. This game has some serious technical problems. I am unable to play the game at all. Can someone please take a look at the link below and try to resolve the issue?

    http://steamcommunity.com/app/210970/discussions/3/458607518211420661/

    Its not just me either, I have seen a lot of other posts with similar problems.

  32. Congrats on getting the game out. It has received a perfect 10 out of 10 on IGN, and I’m certainly getting my copy. Quick question – am I right in assuming that this game was entirely written in the JAI language? Are you planning to do a post-release video about how you used the language? Is the language ready for release yet? Thanks and congratulations!

  33. Just bought the game via the non-Steam option and I’m really enjoying it!

    A couple questions: I was hoping I’d be able to use my Xbox controller with my PC, but it doesn’t seem to react. On the Steam page it says “Partial Controller Suppport.” Does that mean that if I had purchased via Steam, my controller might work?

    Will you be publishing updates for things like bug fixes?

    Finally, I would like to provide a bit of feedback about the download and installation process. Neither the installer nor the exe itself is digitally signed. You did post an md5 hash, which I checked, but I still would feel a lot better about running the exe if it were signed (especially since I have to run it as administrator). I actually have a rule now that I only run signed software on my system. This is the first un-signed product I have installed since my last Windows reinstall. (Guess that shows how much I wanted to play.) But I would really appreciate it if in future updates you guys signed the code.

    • In theory we support all xbox controllers, I would make sure it is plugged in before the game starts, though.
      If it doesn’t work let me know and we can look into it.

      About code signing, that is just not something we can deal with right now; we are already at the limit of what development complexity we can handle.

      • Thanks for the reply! Regarding the Xbox controller, this was user error. In case it helps other users, what was happening was this. I had a wireless Xbox 360 controller with the wired charging kit, which is a cord that connects your controller to your Xbox 360’s USB ports. I assumed that this also allowed the controller to communicate over the wired connection. What I didn’t realize is that, even when you’re plugged into a USB port on your Xbox 360, your controller is communicating wirelessly. The USB cord is only for power. So a wireless controller will always, only, communicate wirelessly. I got a wireless receiver for my PC and now everything works great. (For me, the game is way more natural to play this way, by the way.)

        Regarding code signing, it sounds like you’re at exhaustion stage. As a fellow developer, I totally hear you. After you rest up a bit, it’s not really that much extra work or expense and it will make people a lot more confident in running the code. Just my two cents.

        I played a couple more hours tonight and I have to say, this game is great. The puzzles are challenging but well calibrated, and it’s very satisfying when you solve them. Even at this early stage, it’s clear you’ve produced something awesome. Thank you, Jonathan!

  34. would Windows Vista work?

    While Windows Vista are not officially supported, does it worth a try to run a Steam version on Vista 64bit?

    • We haven’t tried it, I don’t know.
      Steam offers refunds though, so you could try and if it doesn’t work request a refund.

      • Update: I am about 1 hour in and everything works fine (including installation) with Vista 64bit. I hope that I will not be too hooked to this game. :)

  35. Thanks a lot for releasing a DRM-free version. I’d have waited, if it were only available on Steam and pick it once it’s below $10. But the superior DRM-free version means, that this game deserves a full-price purchase.

    I really appreciate it.

  36. For the DRM-free version, are we going to have to download the entire game again every single time there’s a patch? If so, are we to uninstall the previous version and then install the new one? Some instructions and/or some smaller patcher files as an option would be much appreciated.

    • Yes, right now you have to reinstall the whole game, sorry. However, we are going to try to keep it reasonable how often / how many patches we put up.

      The installer will automatically uninstall the old version so you don’t have to worry about that.

    • To be fair to Thekla – I’ve purchased many games via Humble and developers rarely put patches on there, mostly just full installers.

      Hell, most don’t even list the date of the installer, so you have to click on it and hope that the download prompt for it will have a version number.

      And change history? Forget about it.
      Which I find way more annoying than having to download the whole game. I’d like to know WHY I should bother downloading the game or even a patch.
      What was even patched in the version of The Witness from the 29th?

  37. I’m loving the game, it’s quite an achievement. Thanks so much!

    One minor quibble is that because there’s a launcher, it requires a mouse/keyboard to actually get the game started, even if the entirety of the rest of the game can be run from a game pad. If you could make the launcher support a gamepad or give the option to bypass the launcher every time, that would make it so people didn’t have to get up off the couch to play the game (via Big Picture mode or Steam Link). :)

  38. I’ve found kind of an annoying bug, or just some wonky controls which make solving a puzzle really frustrating; I know the solution, but the game is not allowing me to execute.

    **SPOILERS BELOW**

    I’m doing the 3rd part of the windmill puzzle, and the transfer off of (or through) the second blade is completely infuriating; I have been able to do it ONCE before, but for some reason the game just won’t consistently let me transfer from the middle section of the second blade to the left orange rail on the tower’s face. As soon as the orange lines meet: the game starts to move the reticle onto the tower’s face, but then as the blade passes it kicks me back onto the blade.

    I have tried solving the puzzle while viewing the tower from multiple angles, but have the same problem every time. I also have no trouble transferring off the first blade onto the same rail.

    • The puzzle you are talking about is just like other puzzles: you can’t trace over where you have already been.

      • Thanks for responding, and on a Sunday, no less.

        I did get it to work, but the solution involved the reticle jumping from one side of the windmill face to another when a blade clipped-through; it didn’t feel like the solution you may have intended.

  39. I have bought The Witness from the Steam store. It works but gives me serious motion sickness after about 20 minutes. I gather other people have had the same response. Is there any way round this. I’ve seen mention of FOV but as an octogenarian game player, I don’t know what this means!
    I know it is early days but I would appreciate your thoughts.

    • We have put up a version of the game on Steam that has some tweaks that may help with motion sickness. It is currently the beta “future” if you want to opt into that, but at the end of tonight we will make it the main version so it should download automatically.

      We will continue to make more fixes in this area, but what we have done here should reduce or eliminate this kind of problem for many people.

      Also, a simple fix is just to sit further back from the screen.

  40. Hi,

    any idea about when/if there will be a DRM free version available for OS X?

    Our experience with the game so far, following a playthrough, pausing when a puzzles comes up, solving it in mind and then continuing with the video. Aspects like freedom and exploration are limited this way but nonetheless it’s fun.

    It’s a beautiful game. I appreciate the silence, the colours, the architecture, … I dislike video games typical limitations regarding a more natural movement (which might sound strange, considering the way we’re playing), like that you can’t climb over a fence or on a wall with structure.

    Congratulations on the release.

  41. Jonathan Blow and Team

    Wow. Thank you for the incredible vision and hard work. Ive been checking in here
    since the beginning. I am so happy for everyone there. Wow. Unbelievable.

  42. You know, I see a lot of negativity around this game and Jonathan as a person and I know that in such times, every bit of positive feedback can be important.

    So here is one.

    @ Jonathan
    I love what you say and do, even if I may not agree with all of it. I’m not a groupie, you merely remind me quite a bit of both a friend of many years as well as myself. And everybody can be flawed at times. Hell, I guess that’s part of what started your success in this industry.

    And I also really love how The Witness turned out.
    I’m not going to write a review but do want to mention a point that is maybe a bit out of the ordinary.
    Which is that I have recently started a meetup group that’s all about critical thinking in general and thus about a combination of philosophy, art and science (at least to me, having a curiosity about the world means an interest in all of these things to some degree) and while I would’ve touched on probably all of the topics presented in The Witness during discussion sessions, the videos did remind me of some aspects, showed me some new perspectives/arguments and just generally more material that will be of great use.
    Which is by the way why I disagree with James Burke’s assessment as at least I understood it – he seems to dismiss art, philosophy, etc. quite a bit in favor of science. But… even this is going to make a nice topic for discussion. Especially since other meetup groups in the region are about tech, spiritualism and drinking. It might turn out to be a bumpy ride and a futile attempt to find like-minded people but… at least the thought that I tried will be somewhat satisfying.
    Which in a way reminds me about the mixed reception of The Witness. But after all… is it really wise to define the success of one’s works through how many people it reaches over it having a positive impact on just a few in the first place?

    • On second thought, I guess the story of Braid had nothing to do with its success. And it probably also was no motivator for you (getting that story out there), considering that I think you said at some point something like it feeling tacked on and that’s why you want to avoid having a story in The Witness.

      Oh well… While the stuff about the flaws would’ve sounded nice, at least the rest still stands.

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