|Platform Win, Mac, PSN, Linux||Publisher Curve Studios||Developer Mike Bithell||Release Date 04/23/2013|
By Philip Kollar on May 01, 2013 05.01.13
Thomas Was Alone begins with a cheery British narrator (voiced by comedian Danny Wallace) speaking the title phrase. Thomas, in this case, is a rectangle, an AI who has become self-aware and been given a shape within the abstract computer world where he exists. As Thomas explores his surroundings and solves simple puzzles, he doesn't remain on his own for very long; a growing list of colorful characters join up to help him. Each new character introduces a wrinkle to the stand-alone levels that make up Thomas' journey. The goal is always to get all active characters from their starting point to an exit, but you'll need to use their powers in tandem to do so. For example, there's a large square that can't jump as high as other characters but has the ability to float on water,...
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By Jenna Pitcher on Feb 27, 2014 02.27.14
Six games across PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita will become free downloads for PlayStation Plus subscribers during the month of March, Sony announced today. PS4 users with a PS Plus membership can download Dead Nation: Apocalypse Edition, previously announced. The top down shoot 'em up is coming to PlayStation 4 on March 4 through the PlayStation Store for $14.99 The three PS3 titles that will be available free to PS Plus members in March include Mike Bithell's puzzle platformer Thomas Was Alone, Superflat Games' psychological survival adventure game Lone Survivor: The Director's Cut and Crystal Dynamics' action-adventure title Tomb Raider. Free PS Vita titles for subscribers include Capcom's action role-playing game Monster Hunter: Freedom Unite and Zipper...
By Emily Gera on Feb 19, 2014 02.19.14
But for former Bossa Studios lead, there are other ways of challenging the masculine heroism that makes up the lion's share of video game narratives. There are still stories starring men worth exploring, he says, despite what he calls "the boringness of the standard chiseled beefcake with the big gun." Bithell's plans changed substantially in pre-production of the game, he said. Initially, he intended to release a new heroine-led title following the launch and later success of his first independent release, Thomas Was Alone. This, he said, would be a way to experiment with writing for a new gender after developing Thomas' titular character. "When I sat down to come up with the story of Volume, and who would be its characters, I of course had to decide on which gender the...
By Jenna Pitcher on Jan 30, 2014 01.30.14
A new PlayStation Vita Indie Mega Pack featuring 10 games will launch in February, Sony announced today, outlining that the pack will be available from retail on an 4GB memory card for €24.99 or bundled with a PS Vita for €199.99. The following 10 titles included in the Indie Mega Pack are: Alien Breed, Thomas Was Alone, Velocity Ultra, Men’s Room Mayhem, Coconut Dodge Revitalised, LIMBO, Hotline Miami, Total Recoil, Superfrog HD, Floating Cloud and God Saves the Pilgrims in HD. Correction: The article above originally listed an older bundle and has been updated to reflect the correction.
By Colin Campbell on Dec 18, 2013 12.18.13
Indmusic and TuneCore seem to be two of the most active claimants against video makers, filing multiple claims and, in doing so, diverting revenues away from the game makers and towards themselves and their partners. The two companies are being cited by multiple video makers including Terry Cavanagh, developer of VVVVVV, who had a copyright infringement flagged against one of his trailers. Rami Ismail of Vlambeer also called out Indmusic and TuneCore. "Basically, if you make music for games, @indmusic and @TuneCore might be "services" you want to avoid," he posted on Twitter. Mike Bithell, maker of Thomas Was Alone tweeted that he is "pissed off at @indmusic, they are currently systematically copyright claiming all footage of my game, and monetizing. Daylight robbery." TuneCore...
By Dave Tach on Oct 25, 2013 10.25.13
Thomas Was Alone designer Mike Bithell's upcoming Volume will retell the story of Robin Hood in a modern setting and star a Thomas Was Alone veteran, according to a trailer released today. Volume tells the story of Robert Locksley, a thief who finds the titular volume and hatches a plot to tip the scales against the rich and in favor of the poor. Press play above to hear Thomas Was Alone narrator Danny Wallace, who plays the protagonist's AI companion, and YouTube personality Charlie McDonnell, who plays the Locksley. For more on Volume, check out our interview with Bithell. You can read Polygon's Thomas Was Alone review learn more about his last, life-affirming game.
By Samit Sarkar on Oct 18, 2013 10.18.13
Thomas Was Alone developer Mike Bithell knows he could probably crank out a sequel to the hit platformer and it would be successful, but it's not something he's interested in right now, he said in an interview with Joystiq. "I've got lots of people who would actually now buy that game at launch, and I would make a lot of money. But it's boring. And it's a decision and promise I made myself. I'm not going to use this opportunity I've been given to do that. I don't think Thomas needs a sequel right now," said Bithell. As of mid-August, Bithell had sold more than 700,000 copies of Thomas Was Alone, which launched in July 2012 on Windows PC and Mac, and this past spring on PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita and Linux. At this point, he's not dismissing the idea of ever doing a sequel, but...
By Jenna Pitcher on Oct 08, 2013 10.08.13
Tomb Raider, Thomas Was Alone and Lego City Undercover have been shortlisted for the 2013 Writers' Guild Awards video game category, according to the Writers' Guild of Great Britian website. Writers Rhianna Pratchett for Tomb Raider and Graham Goring for Lego City Undercover are in the running to win the video game writing award from the Guild, along with Mike Bithell for Thomas Was Alone. The Thomas Was Alone writer is currently working on his second game, a modder-friendly crime-simulator called Volume. We previously spoke to Pratchett about her work on the Tomb Raider reboot, where she discusses how Lara Croft's backstory "finds a middle ground between strict adherence to canon and poetic liberty." The video game award is one of 13 categories for writing across various...
By Colin Campbell on Sep 18, 2013 09.18.13
Mike Bithell, developer of Thomas Was Alone (pictured) has been named as one of the key speakers at this year's Bradford Animation Festival. He'll be talking about new project Volume. Other speakers at BAF 2013, due to take place at Britain's National Media Museum on Nov. 12 and the University of Bradford on Nov. 13, include Warren Spector (Deus Ex), Brian Horton (Tomb Raider), Viktor Antonov, (Dishonored) and Phil Gray (Lego Marvel Super Heroes). The Bradford Animation Festival is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, and will be handing out a lifetime achievement award to puppet and animation house Mackinnon & Saunders, responsible for work in films and shows like Frankenweenie, Fantastic Mr.Fox and Bob the Builder. Tickets and passes are on sale today. Polygon will be...
By Emily Gera on Sep 10, 2013 09.10.13
The eighth annual GameCity festival will run in Nottingham, England from Oct. 19 to Oct. 26, with panel discussions from Thomas was Alone developer Mike Bithell and others, an "antiques game roadshow" styled event, and a conference exploring the "boundaries where videogames and interactive culture intersects business and media," it was announced. The festival will additionally feature an exclusive director commentary of the classic Gone Home game and Minority Media will be unveiling its Silent Enemy project. Full information on the event can be found right here.
By Colin Campbell on Aug 21, 2013 08.21.13
At its Gamescom conference yesterday, Sony introduced a significant price cut to both its models of PS Vita and showed off the machine's Remote Play feature with a PlayStation 4 demo of Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag. Perhaps just as significant was the shotgun blast of indie games announced for the handheld, as well as the appearance of a series of respected independent developers who were willing to wax effusive about the machine, despite its difficult first 18 months on the market. Tellingly, Sony won't release sales numbers of PS Vita, though there's no doubt that it falls into the "niche" category, a long way away from its maker's mass-market aspirations. But the machine is adding to its list of benefits, seeking to emulate the success of its predecessor, the PSP. Despite strong...