Viewing posts tagged braid

Time and The Island

So I recently finished the last couple of Jonathan Blow video games, so curious was I about this developer's work given the interest in it by people I respect. As Phil predicted, The Witness was a bit more up my alley than it was his. Phil is often right.

Not that I didn't like Braid. Indeed, the basic mechanic itself in that game is both fascinating and relevant to the game's overall points about regret and nostalgia, which are entwined with the impetus to "save the princess." The actual puzzles I found very entertaining. Indeed, stripped down to just its mechanics, Braid has a wonderful, enchanting structure. Each section is basically an exploration of what happens when the mechanic of going back is contradicted or expanded in some novel way. Even more so, the way the various levels unfold remind me of certain musical compositions.

Take, for example, the rather well-known Canon in D Major, by Johann Pachelbel, or Ravel’s Bolero. Certain passages repeat, over and over, but with different tones and expressions as they are played by different instruments and with slight variations. This is the sense I get of Braid’s structure, from the ...

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