The Escherian concept of impossible geometry seems like it would be a perfect conceptual fit for a puzzle-platformer, but oddly, there are few notable examples. When I played The Bridge at this year's IndieCade festival, I was instantly impressed by both its beautiful grey-scale lithographic art-style and the way that it quite effectively tasks players with navigating its series of two-dimensional puzzles--the realities of which are dictated by perspective.
The Bridge is very much a "pick-up and play," sort of game that really only requires the player have the most basic of platform literacy. In addition to the expected running and jumping, the player is also given the ability to tilt each screen, or even freely rotate it until down becomes up, and left becomes right. The simplicity of the controls is key, because it allows players to focus on figuring out how to navigate the game's progressively intricate spaces and solve the self-contained puzzle of each.
What sets the game apart from a similarly Escher-inspired title like echochrome is its two-dimensional nature and fixed perspective. It's a significant difference, one that--moreso than other games--makes you feel like you're walking through one of M.C. Escher's sketches.
According to creators Ty Taylor and Mario Castaneda, development on The Bridge is complete, and while they couldn't discuss the specifics, they're currently in the process of negotiating release details to try to bring the game to as many platforms as possible, as soon as possible. I'm currently playing through a final build of the game they were nice enough to provide, and am really enjoying myself. Successfully getting to the exit of some of the trickier levels is appropriately satisfying, and the pencil-drawn art is fantastic throughout.
The official trailer for The Bridge can be seen below, followed by my conversation with Taylor and Castaneda at IndieCade 2011 about the development process and some of the ideas behind the game's design.
The Bridge - Official Trailer
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The Bridge - IndieCade 2011 Interview with Ty Taylor and Mario Castaneda
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