Strangely enough, Super Meat Boy – of all the games – was a kind of inspiration for the development of the gorgeous indie platformer Ori and the Blind Forest.
This tidbit was revealed during a recent interview The Gamer held with Gennadiy Korol – co-founder and lead engineer at Moon Studios. The studios are responsible for developing Ori and the Blind Forest and its sequel, Ori and the Will of the Wisps, both of which were incredibly well-received.
According to Korol, Super Meat Boy – the similarly highly-praised platformer released in 2010 – was definitely one of the inspirational catalysts for the development of Ori and the Blind Forest. That, and boredom.
After having cooked up a prototype for a project called Warsoup – which was to be a “first-person, real time strategy mix” – Korol and co. were feeling restless as they were waiting for its publishing process to play out. “We couldn’t just sit around doing nothing,” he says. So what did they do? They cooked up another prototype in the meantime.
It started off really small, but after working on it some more they decided to shift all their focus towards it instead of their first idea.“This is pretty cool – what if, instead of doing this first-person multiplayer bonanza as our first project, why don’t we try and build this little platformer?”
And of course, this little platformer was destined to become Ori and the Blind Forest. Something that the devs thought would be done and dusted in six months ended up becoming a four-year-long project – in partnership with Microsoft – that would produce one of the most beautiful games out there.
“When we showed it to Microsoft, we were kind of arrogant about it,” says Korol, and in that very first pitch, the developers mentioned they wanted to make something that “feels as good as Super Meat Boy.” At first, Microsoft was apparently somewhat flippant about the whole thing, but very quickly became charmed by what they saw.
“Soon this small prototype designed as a secondary passion project had backing from one of the most colossal tech giants on the planet,” Korol says. Quite the extraordinary tale!
READ NEXT: “We Wanted People To Say Ori Was Like A Baby Game When You Play Ori 2,” Says Moon Studios
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Neuroscience student and massive nerd, currently based in Johannesburg, South Africa. Research interests include how neuroscience and user experience in video games interact with each other. News and feature writer for TheGamer.com. Other interests include anime and everything Japanese, fitness, and cats.
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