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Beautiful creatures animate Lost Ember

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Animals explore nature in this Kickstarter success story

Lost Ember successfully concluded its Kickstarter campaign today, pulling in more than $350,000 on a target of a little more than $100,000.

It's another pretty game to add to this year's tally of titles that pay homage to the beauty of nature, and to a desire to return to natural things. I wrote about this phenomena last week, which takes in a diverse bunch of games such as Virginia, Firewatch, Oxenfree, Everybody's Gone to the Rapture, The Witness and Small Radios Big Televisions. Greenery is definitely in this year.

Lost Ember's trailer shows a third-person exploration adventure in which a wolf and other creatures move through natural environments seeking out the truth of a civilization’s fall. This early footage looks like the game is on rails, but developer Mooneye Studios points out that the final build will feature more free roaming.

"Later in the game we have more open areas which the player can explore freely by using the skills of all the animals," said programmer Pascal Müller, in an email interview with Polygon. "Exploration is definitely one of the core elements."

Lost Ember
Mooneye Studios

Müller said that the game will "be focused on emotions and how the player feels." He added: "We had some puzzles and more complex mechanics but the longer we tested them, the more we felt that most of the mechanics were slowing down the game too much and were not really fun. We have some smaller puzzles for which you have to use the different skills animals offer but these are not too complex." He cited Journey as an inspiration.

Lost Ember is due out in 2018 on PlayStation 4, Windows PC and Xbox One, with virtual reality versions also planned.