Eurogamer.net

InnerSpace could be the prettiest aerial exploration game on the horizon

Imagine a mix of Journey, Shadow of the Colossus and Proteus.

InnerSpace's announcement trailer is certainly striking for a game that's only been in development for a few months. The commercial debut by the Dallas, Texas-based PolyKnight Games tasks players with exploring impossible, colourful 3D worlds with an airplane.

Looking like a mix between Journey, Flower, Shadow of the Colossus, Proteus, Hohokum and the upcoming No Man's Sky, InnerSpace's abstract adventure is primarily based around flying as you assume the role of a cartographer mapping out fantastic worlds made up of inverted spheres, so the "surface" is actually inside the globe. This means that if you fly up high enough in the sky, you'll come to more ground, or water. It also means that gravity is all screwy, so everything falls away from the sphere's core.

Thankfully, your plane will fly independently of gravity, so you don't need to get bogged down in realistic physics, but there will be plenty of room for slick maneuverability so simply flying around these details environments should feel cathartic and exciting.

But there's more to do than just look at stuff. Thorough explorers will find relics that can be brought back to your archaeologist partner who will use them to tell you more about the world and upgrade your ship.

There's danger too! InnerSpace may not exactly be a combat game, but there will be hazardous plants, mysterious life forms and even majestic gods that lord over these realms. You'll be able to interact with these creatures, though they won't be typical boss fights.

"You will organically encounter monolithic creatures during your travels. These creatures were once revered as gods, and because of the locals' worship, ascended to greater power," PolyKnight explained on its Kickstarter page. "At first glance, they may be all that matters in the immediate environment, however, by exploring and observing, the player may find how these creatures behave and why."

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"Imagine taking notice of a giant, whale-like behemoth swimming in the ocean below. The player may ignore it, attack it, or simply observe it. Eventually, the interaction with it may intensify, but not always through hostility," the developer added. "Encounters with the deities aren't just boss battles. Instead, they're the stage for incredible cinematic experiences, in which you come into direct contact with the very pillars of life in the realms of InnerSpace."

You will have guns - and blades on your wings for that matter - but these won't necessarily be used for combat. Rather they're puzzle-solving tools as you interact with the environment by crumbling shaky foundations and slicing cables.

It all sounds very ambitious, especially for a team of seven recent college grads. That's why PolyKnight has taken to Kickstarter to fund InnerSpace. To afford the development software and additional help PolyKnight is looking for $25K. So far it's already raised $6367 and has until 5th December to raise the rest.

Backers who pledge by tomorrow are still eligible for the Early Bird special, wherein they can get a code for InnerSpace upon its release for $10. After that, it will go up to $15. You can get the soundtrack too for $25 and there are plenty more rewards for various tiers after that.

InnerSpace is estimated to launch in October 2015 on PC, Mac and Linux. For more on the game, here's the developer expounding about its history and goals.

PolyKnight has the most cats I've seen at a video game studio since Team Meat.

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