Jonathan Blow

2 July 2007

Jonathan Blow / Number None, 2007 / USA

Using an innovative approach to puzzles based on time manipulation, independent game designer Jonathon Blow offers a playful deconstruction of the classical 2D “platform game” – a game format popularized more than twenty years ago by “Super Mario Bros.” and its brethren. “Braid” is less concerned with the genre’s requisite jumping and climbing than with examining the relationship between “game time” and “real time.” Clever programming allows the player to manipulate the flow of time in the game, giving her the ability to rewind the game play to undo her mistakes. Unlimited “rewind” in the game lets the game play explore alternate approaches to the usual “platformer” action with a focus on the game’s unusual puzzles. On each level different rules govern how the rewind ability changes the flow of time, providing new and fascinating challenges, in addition to something distinctive for a videogame: a surprise ending. “Braid” was awarded the Innovation in Game Design prize at the 2006 Independent Games Festival in the United States.