★ TouchArcade needs your help. Click here to support us on Patreon.

Heartbeats - A hardcore sci-fi puzzle/graphic novel

02-12-2015, 09:26 AM
#1
Joined: Oct 2013
Location: Aarhus, Denmark.
Posts: 78
Heartbeats - A hardcore sci-fi puzzle/graphic novel

Heartbeats - A Graphic Puzzle (release: MIDDLE MARCH)

The app icon with the main character:




Game screens (or parts of them, because if we show the entire screen it spoils the experience a bit, we think...):



A SHORT STORY:
An intergalactic emperor's final heartbeats as he looks back, while the empire he ruled crumples.

GENRE:
An unforgiving hardcore puzzle in a graphic novel format.

WHAT YOU DO:
Each page in the graphic novel is a puzzle and you need to solve it to get to the next.

THE PUZZLES:
Among other elements Heartbeats contains original twists on point'n'click, chess, unblock, rebus and jigsaw puzzles. It's short, tight and tough! There's just ten puzzles and then you've gotten the entire story.

IT'S FREE:
You can download the game for free, and if you want to continue playing after 3 puzzles, you pay 0.99 $ for the whole game.

A GRAPHIC PUZZLE:
We've labeled Heartbeats a Graphic Puzzle and made it according to the following dogmas as a design challenge:



SPOTIFY PLAYLISTS:
We've made the game on an extremely limited budget. Therefore, we've asked a bunch of cool people, who knows about music, graphics or gaming to create Spotify playlists for the game. You can access the playlists through the game and listen to them, while you play Heartbeats.

NO SOUND:
We've left out sound too due to the budgetary limitations and instead we've focused on being a puzzling reading experience, where you can listen to curated music while you play.

WHO ARE WE?: We are a small collective of indie developers, who wanted to do something new, small and meaningful together, that we could be proud of.

Kamila Slocinska - the unique, critically acclaimed and award winning illustrator behind the graphics of Heartbeats

Boris Hansen - programmer and critically acclaimed and award winning author behind tech and story of Heartbeats

Esben Kjr Ravn - Owner, founder and CEO of Kong Orange, the production company behind Heartbeats. Designer and producer of Heartbeats

WHAT HAPPENED:
We've soft launched the game in Denmark in order to get in shape for the global launch, which won us a bunch of experience and a nomination for a Danish Game Award (we didn't win, though)

PERFORMANCE:
We've focused on iPhone 4 and above + you can play it on your iPad as an iPhone app.

Other resources: https://www.facebook.com/TheKongOrange or https://twitter.com/TheKongOrange


We'll love to keep you posted here! And if you want to share your thoughts and reactions we're all eyes and ears!

COMING UP:
- Small gameplay video teaser
- Links to the Spotify playlists
- A press release puzzle


Best Regards,

Esben Kjr Ravn, designer

Last edited by esbenravn; 02-13-2015 at 08:34 AM.
02-12-2015, 09:48 AM
#2
...wow, this art is stunning, just stunning.
The game itself sounds very good also, I love strange experimental stories like this, as well as a good puzzle!
The pricing model seems very sensible, and I'd be willing to buy the full game just from these screenshots and your description of the game; I can clearly see that a lot of love went into this!

Will be following this thread! Can't wait for the release!

02-12-2015, 10:01 AM
#3
Joined: Apr 2011
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 3,585
This looks great and with the more then reasonable payment model, it is a must try. I would prefer a native iPad app, but for a buck it is fine.

Game Center: MarinasideSteve
02-12-2015, 10:45 AM
#4
Joined: Oct 2013
Location: Aarhus, Denmark.
Posts: 78
Hey guys, thanks!

We hope to give you a good run for the buck!

All the best,

Esben
02-12-2015, 03:32 PM
#5
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 1,918
Sounds cool.
02-12-2015, 04:06 PM
#6
Joined: Oct 2008
Location: Italy
Posts: 2,850
Wow, looks really interesting!!!
Subscribed!!!
02-12-2015, 04:54 PM
#7
Joined: Oct 2013
Location: Aarhus, Denmark.
Posts: 78
A Doom Metal playlist for Heartbeats!

More wonderful feedback!!! Thanks, guys, it means a lot!

We'll do some different posts on the thoughts, that went into the game, and here's a bit about the Spotify playlists and a Doom Metal guy!

WHY PLAYLISTS?:
As mentioned we kind of struck the ceiling of our budget right away, when it came to music in Heartbeats. This meant we've tried to do something different in that respect.

WHO DID THEM:
We've asked people we think have the proper mindset and cultural inside to create a Spotify playlist for Heartbeats.

A playlist they with suits the experience of playing Heartbeats and that was basically their only dogma. And they went a bunch of way from there (to say the least!)

These guys are sort of your Heartbeats game experience DJ's.

There's a playlist by a jazz composer, a folk band, a book cafe, an electronica artist and a comic book creator. (it gets a bit hipster, yeah, yeah, we know, but then check the below!)

HERE'S DANNY KREUTZFELDT - DOOM METAL AFICIONADO


Danny has released bleak electronic music under various guises for years. He Runs the drone & doom metal label Drowning and was active in the extreme music organisation NoiseJihad.

DANNY'S SPOTIFY PLAYLIST FOR HEARTBEATS: http://goo.gl/zP4lsk

OTHER STUFF ON DANNY KREUTZFELDT:

Drowning:
His Drone & doom metal label. Releases free d(r)ownloads.
http://drowning.cc/

Periskop:
His solo music project with industrial dub techno and U-boat noise
http://periskop.cc/

Check him out!

All the best,

Esben, designer and producer
02-13-2015, 02:58 AM
#8
MID=middle?
02-13-2015, 05:30 AM
#9
Joined: Oct 2013
Location: Aarhus, Denmark.
Posts: 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by EthanLean View Post
MID=middle?
Exactly! I'm from Denmark so my English can go anywhere, sorry.

/Esben
02-13-2015, 08:41 AM
#10
Joined: Oct 2013
Location: Aarhus, Denmark.
Posts: 78
No animation alert!


- the upper part of a puzzle in Heartbeats, where the text and the art elements and their correlations need some serious consideration, before you can complete the puzzles.

MINIMALISM OR CONSERVATISM IS WHAT WE'RE DOING:
As in a graphic novel the pages, i.e. the puzzles of Heartbeats are fixed visuals with no animations or moving elements.

We've gone completely minimalistic in that approach, but that said you can actually manipulate elements and when you do, you get a certain amount of feedback.

We expect this approach to divide the audience, since a lot of people expect game elements to be alive, but in Heartbeats they aren't.

What do you think of that approach?