When thatgamecompany sets out to make a game, one of its main goals is to make us feel something unusual. From flOw to Flower to its BAFTA-winning Journey, the studio founded by Jenova Chen and Kellee Santiago has shown little interest in conveying a specific message or framing interactive metaphors and instead tailors its work to elicit a range of responses. For me, it's a goal it achieves time and again.
Being the home of completely unhinged game concepts, Tokyo Games Show is perhaps the ideal venue to debut a game as completely contrary as flOw. At first glance, the uncluttered abstract outline form of the cell-like visuals and sky blue background palette make it look like some sort of Electroplankton rip-off. Some casually ill-informed remarks might sneer about Sony's attempt to ape Nintendo's recent innovative streak, but actually getting your hands on it proves to be a strangely calming, almost serene experience. Quite some feat over the manic bass throb that pulsates across the cavernous hall.