E3 2012: Pid (Hands-on)

by: Travis -
Put simply, Pid was one of the most innovative and stunning titles that I was able to play at this year's E3. Developer Might and Delight, based in Stockholm, Sweden, walked me through some of the game's concepts and then handed the controller over to let me experience its unique gameplay. Even before entering into the actual gameplay, I was already impressed with the minimalist menu that simply included elegant text and nothing else. The finely-crafted narrative of Pid begins as a young boy named Kurt awakens to find himself in an alien world that's ruled by robots.

As Kurt struggles to find his way home, players will gradually acquire a set of abilities and tools that will aid them in their adventures. The primary ability that will be utilized in traversing levels and obstacles is what the developers referred to as a light beam. Eventually, the young boy gains two light beams that can be placed nearly anywhere in levels and work to propel him or objects in their set paths. The game supports local co-op play, allowing for another player to assume the character of Audrey. Thus, each player will only have the ability to place one light beam. The developers jokingly mentioned that this mechanic can be used to help one another, or to create havoc for the other player when feeling evil.

As players progress through levels, they will discover stars that can be collected for buying various items at stores found along the adventure. These items range from a vest that adds additional life points to bombs and even a slingshot. The narrative will last from anywhere between five to ten hours, depending on if the player decides to explore every inch of the fantastically-crafted world. Levels will take place in a variety of locales and will also be paced differently. Some areas may involve a slow and calm pace, while others will have players franticly running and jumping until the next checkpoint.

At the foremost, Pid is a retro-inspired adventure game that provides polished gameplay in addition to some of the most impressive visual and sound designs. The developers were proud to proclaim that the actual in-game visuals look as if they were taken straight from the original concept images. The smooth and sleek graphics of Pid can be contributed to the developers' decision to not use any sort of textures. Instead, the characters, environments, and objects utilize the power of colors to bring spectacular life to the game's visuals. Along with the game's visuals, Pid incorporates a unique blend of jazz and other melodies into a moving soundtrack.

It was immediately evident that the developers behind Pid were excited about their project and releasing it to the public. One particular statement that stood out during the conversation was a goal of reinventing the adventure genre and breaking through the current market of shooters and other generic repeat titles. From the developers' comments and my hands-on time with the game, I could see that Pid was a genuine adventure game that introduced innovative concepts to the genre as well as a captivating narrative. My favorite phrase used by the game's creators was their description of Pid as a love letter to the adventure genre.

I urge readers to view some of the game's concept art, screenshots, and footage attached below to fully appreciate the effort that is being put forth in its development. Pid will be available this August on an assortment of digital platforms including Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Network, and PC.


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