What is “Drew and the Floating Labyrinth?”

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Description:

A hand-drawn 3D third-person puzzle-platformer for PC, Mac and Linux platforms. Control Drew, a lost young girl trying to find her way back home, through a series of abstract levels requiring you to use clues in the environment to find invisible paths, gaining color to her black-and-white character as you progress.

Why It’s Unique:

  •  Featuring hand-drawn HD frames of animation to bring the main character to life. Drew uses over 1,000 frames of animation to achieve her presence from multiple angles. Only possible using modern hardware requirements, this method inspired from older pseudo-3D games is updated for the current generation, and allows artists to make virtually any game, any genre, with hand-drawn art. Since it is achieved with individual images, this method can bring traditional, stop-motion, Claymation, live-action, and other animation styles in 3D games in a way never seen before.
  • What if you played a platformer where the level was invisible? Simplistic yet full of potential, levels will use a variety of visual clues to help the player find their way to the end of each environment, requiring you to look before you leap, and be constantly wary if where to go next. A game of patience and observation.
  • The simple narrative will show that Drew isn’t where she thinks she is, leading to an emotional conclusion.

Header

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Free Demo:
(Released June 2, 2014. May not represent final game.)
(Released June 8, 2014. Fixed menu bugs. OS builds recommended. May not represent final game.)
(Released August 5, 2014. Menu still unfinished. Levels closer to representing final product.)

Windows PC Build (zip)

Mac Build (zip)

Linux Build (zip)

Instructions

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System Requirements:

Windows OS (XP, Vista, 7, 8, or higher), Mac OS, or Linux OS

Minimum Requirements:

2 GB of ram (32-bit operating system), 3 GB of ram (64-bit operating system), dual-core processor, Intel 3000 HD graphics or better, at least 2.4 GB of hard drive space.

Maximum Requirements:

4 GB of ram, dual-core processor, Intel 3000 HD graphics or better, at least 7.9 GB of hard drive space. (applies to HD version that will be a separate included download from the SD version, available demos are SD only. Only difference between them is character texture resolution.)

(above requirements may be greater than necessary to play the provided demo)

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Development History:

Dust Scratch Games originally planned to release “James – Journey of Existence,” a similar game in visual style and theme, but an adventure game instead of a puzzle-platformer. After helpful feedback and realization that it might be too demanding on the one-man development team, plans scaled back to start “Drew and the Floating Labyrinth,” to the advantage of the developer’s ability and to focus on certain areas. “James – Journey of Existence” is still in development. “Drew” can be considered a prequel to “James” in a planned trilogy, but both “Drew” and “James” are stand-alone games, connected only in theme.

The visual style was first developed as a research project at the University of Windsor in 2013. A brief concept demo showing the gameplay was created as a school project in February 2014.

Active development of “Drew and the Floating Labyrinth” began in April 2014. “Drew and the Floating Labyrinth” was initially shown to the public in Windsor on May 10, 2014 during “Science Rendezvous,” a public event across Canada to showcase science and research to children of all ages from top institutions. Children and adults who played the game enjoyed themselves, some coming back multiple times, and provided helpful feedback to help shape the game levels and design. “Drew and the Floating Labyrinth” was officially revealed on May 16, 2014. A teaser trailer and gameplay, along with a public demo, were revealed on June 6, 2014. A Steam Greenlight page was opened on June 8, 2014.

“Drew and the Floating Labyrinth” was one of over 150 indie games to be showcased during the first “indiE3” event, held during E3 2014 online. “Drew and the Floating Labyrinth” was shown off by Dust Scratch Games at PAX PRIME 2014 in Seattle, Washington, on the 6th floor of the Washington State Convention Center from August 29 to September 1. Four free collectable postcards and free business cards were given out with game information. Over 2,000 gamers and fans tried out the game during the event. This also shone light on a variety of small bugs that Dust Scratch Games has since fixed in future patches. “Drew and the Floating Labyrinth” released a Kickstarter campaign late into development for additional language support and extra features. It ended unsuccessfully on August 30, with $280 and 16 backers.

“Drew and the Floating Labyrinth” was released on Desura.com on September 3, 2014. “Drew and the Floating Labyrinth” was included in “The Debut 18” bundle on IndieRoyale.com on September 5, 2014. “Drew and the Floating Labyrinth” was released on IndieGameStand.com on September 19, 2014. “Drew and the Floating Labyrinth” was featured in a PWYW deal on IndieGameStand.com in December 2014, and included in “Build a Greenlight 16” on Groupees.com on December 30, 2014. “Drew and the Floating Labyrinth” was successfully Greenlit on Steam on January 7, 2015, and was released on Steam on February 4, 2015.

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Press:

“… I stumbled over a fantastic hand drawn game called Drew and the Floating Labyrinth… was amazed that such a simple idea has turned into a unique and enjoyable experience…”
Angus McLaren, THE HIGHSCORE BLOG, developer interview

“… Drew and the Floating Labyrinth stands out when compared to other 3D puzzle platformers…”
Gabriel Mejia, TWO-DASH-STASH

“…Think Super Monkey Ball levels if they were actually about careful platforming and were hand-drawn…”
– Connor Selinske, INDIE GAME MAGAZINE

“…honestly too charming to miss out on…”
– FreakOrama, KSALUE

“… Voiceovers and the gradual use of color on the heroine give the game some emotion…”
– Ron Newcomb, The Videogame Backlog

“…very intriguing. It is both simple and complex at the same time… I want to recommend trying it out…”
– Techno_Mark, The Geek Church

“Drew and the Floating Labyrinth” was one of over 150 indie games to be showcased during the first “indiE3” event organized by TJ Thomas and other indie developers, held during E3 2014 through online streaming.

“Drew and the Floating Labyrinth” was listed as an “honorable mention” for the IGF Student Showcase 2015 competition.

Other Press regarding past work:

“… who knows what else will come from their talented fingertips…”
Anthony Swinnich, INDIE GAMES – THE WEBLOG

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Videos:


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Screenshots / Art:

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Developer / Contact Info:

Developed by Dust Scratch Games

Contact: ahlynka@fromdustscratch.com

Music by “Mee” and Kevin MacLeod
Voice of Drew: Jessica N. Osborne
Voice of the Bird: Max Gonzalez
Casting Director: Ben-Robert French
Programming, Art, Animation, Story: Andrew Hlynka

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