Vanitas. analog.

So we took The Very Broken iPhone. (It was broken when we received it. a gift. made sure it was *really* broken myself, with a very big hammer.)

there was made an octagonal table. Michael spent quite some time making the matching octagonal radiation on the floor.

We created within a physical representation of the contents of the game. A little bird skull, dice, a tarot card, a twig from a tree, a key, dead leaves, a tooth, a shell, etc., and lots and lots of ladybugs. All under glass.

added 4 iPods. and then came the people.

see the whole set here

For all our nervousness it all went quite well. Surprisingly so. I think it created a nice environment for people to view Vanitas. It was exciting and fun to be able to watch so many people interact!

Thanks to:
* Wolfgang Wozniak for the Very Broken iPhone.
* E.K. Huckaby for his kind, indispensable assistance.
* Lord Whimsy for his good advice.
* whoever made the table, we give thanks.

This and all the other games made for The Art History of Games exhibition at Kai Lin Art in Atlanta, GA will be up and playable until March 2nd.

Vanitas trailer

Our first iPhone app Vanitas will be launched on February 4 at the opening of the Art History of Games symposium for which it was commissioned. Vanitas will be exhibited in a special installation (including live ladybugs!), next to games commissioned from Jason Rohrer and Nathalie Pozzi & Eric Zimmerman, at the Kai Lin Art gallery in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, from Thursday, February 4 until Tuesday, March 2. The opening reception will take place Friday, February 5 from 8:00 pm until 10:00 pm. More information here.

There’s still some tickets for the symposium and exhibition.Register here!

And don’t forget to check the App Store as of 4 February!

Our first app… coming soon!


Today we’ve submitted our first app for iPhone/iPod touch to the Apple app store for approval! Excitement!!

It is called Vanitas.

Vanitas has been commissioned for The Art History of Games, a public symposium which is taking place February 4th-6th, in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, at the High Museum of Art. Where we will be attending and speaking among good company. We are one of 3 developers selected to make something on occasion of the event. The other two being Jason Rohrer and Eric Zimmerman. All 3 projects will be at a special exhibition at the Kai Lin Gallery during the conference and for a month afterwards. We’re planning something special for the gallery … ­čśë

Vanitas is not a game. Hopefully the approval process won’t get complicated. It should be available in time for the exhibition opening, then you can find what its all about!

The Endless Forest 3.30 released with new feature “De Drinkplaats”

De Drinkplaats

Download The Endless Forest here. It’s free. Like, for real, not as in “free to play”.

We have upgraded The Endless Forest engine and added a new feature to the game for the occasion of the exhibition Fantastic Illusions which opened in Kortrijk last week. It’s an exhibition of work by contemporary Belgian and Chinese media artists that explores the idea of immersion (there’s two games in it: The Endless Forest and Flower). The show ran in the Museum of Contemporary Art in Shanghai in September and can now be seen in the Broelmuseum in Kortrijk until February.

The Broelmuseum collection includes several paintings by 17th century Flemish painter Roelant Savery, many of them featuring animals very prominently. One painting, entitled “De Drinkplaats”, or “the watering hole”, served as the inspiration for the addition we made to The Endless Forest.

In The Endless Forest, De Drinkplaats is a peaceful place where players can bring their deer to have a drink from an eternally flowing source. When they do, however, they change into one of the other animals that inhabit the forest, often of disproportionate size (including the new raven and bunny!). The more players gather in the place, the more magic happens (courtesy of ABIOGENESIS).

More information here.

new Bunny character new Raven character
This could be you!

New prototypes with FoAM in Brussels

On Thursday evening, at the groWorld bazaar, we’re presenting some prototypes we collaborated on with FoAM for a strange multiplayer game in which everyone plays a plant (!). Come and have a look between 6 and 9 at FoAM studio, Koolmijnenkaai 30-34, Brussels.

groWorld prototype

– groWorld plant game prototypes by Tale of Tales & FoAM
– groWorld gardeners web by Sixtostart
– Urban Edibles by Foamlab Holland
– urban gardening info-booths by FoAM & Foamlab
– biologically corrupt hard-drives & Biomodd game by Angelo Vermeulen
– PhoEf tribute to the sun by Bartaku
– patabotanical illustrations by Lina Kusaite & Theun Karelse
– experiments with plant sensing by Nik Gaffney & Dave Griffiths
– vegetal scents by Maki Ueda
– seasonal botanical refreshments by Rasa Alksnyte & Pieter de Wel
– sonic atmoshperes by Lowdjo & Antz

see more…

Tale of Wales

This Saturday, at 2 pm, we’re giving presentation at the Ffotogallery in Penarth, near Cardiff, Wales, UK, during the May You Live In Interesting Times festival. Booking is essential. Please contact the gallery staff on 02920 708870 to book a place.

And next Saturday, the 31st (Halloween), kids are invited to the gallery to make Endless Forest masks! Yes, in case you forgot: He is back!

While we’re there, we’ll also be meeting up with Alex Mayhew discussing secret projects, Emma Westecott and, hopefully, Eddo Stern, whose solo exhibition is opening at Chapter in Cardiff tomorrow.

The Path selected for IndieCade festival

Our short horror game ThePath has been selected for the IndieCade festival. The award ceremony, exhibitions and conference take place from October 1 to 4 in Culver City, Los Angeles, California, USA.


Sadly, we will not be able to attend the event -because we are w o r k i n g– but it looks like it’s going to be great!

Tale of Tales in Shangai

Nick Ervinck
Sculpture by Nick Ervinck

Today an exhibition entitled “Fantastic Illusions” opens in the Shangai Museum of Contemporary Art. It’s a “Media Art Exhibition of Chinese and Belgian Artists.ÔÇŁ Which means that it features The Endless Forest (Tale of Tales’ Michael Samyn is Belgian) and Flower (Thatgamecompany’s Jenova Chen is Chinese)! A second leg of this exhibition will take place in the fabulous Broelmuseum in Kortrijk where we will confront our work with ye olde Flemish Masters.

The theme of the show is actually very close to our hearts. Here’s a quote from the concept description by curator Christophe De Jaeger:

The title of the exhibition alludes to the human desire to be admitted to a world that is out of the ordinary, a world of fantasy. Considering the philosophical developments in the 20th century the least of the tasks of the critical artist is to create illusions. However, history shows that both artists and spectators have a constant desire that can be described by the romantic phrase Die Sehnsucht im Bild zu sein: the desire to dwell in the image.

Who of us has never experienced the uncontrollable urge to step into the world of a painting? Take a Dutch landscape by Jacob van Ruysdael; our gaze is irresistibly drawn to the path that runs through the landscape until it can go no further. What a disappointment that we cannot get beyond the horizon or feel the wind raging over the countryside!

Sadly we couldn’t go to Shangai because we’re too busy with Fatale, which happens to address the issue described above directly. But Jenova was there! And we’ll be in Kortrijk!

Other artists include Anouk De Clercq, Bart Stolle, David Claerbout, Hans Op de Beeck, Heidi Voet, Nick Ervinck, Hu Jieming, Teddy Lo, Peng Yun, Xu Wenkai and Wu Juehui. Guess which ones are the Belgians! ­čśë

The show in Shangai runs until 11 October. The show in Kortrijk starts on 13 November. We’ll probably report on it again then because we plan on doing something special in the Forest for the occasion…

Tales of Play, Adventures of the Unexpected

Today, Video Juegos: Historias l├║dicas, aventuras ins├│litas starts in the Centro Fundaci├│n Telef├│nica in Lima, Peru. It’s an exhibition curated by the lovely and talented Daphne Dragona, with work by yours truly, Brody Condon, Julian Oliver, Eddo Stern, thatgamecompany, Bill Viola and several others. The show runs until 4 October.