The masters of Rhythm Platformer design on the art of controlled chaos

Sup Holmes every Sunday at 2:30pm EST!

[Sup Holmes is a weekly talk show for people that make great videogames. It airs live every Sunday at 4pm EST on YouTube, and can be found in Podcast form on Libsyn and iTunes.]

Recently on Sup Holmes, we had back to back episodes with the developers of the Bit.Trip Runner and Electronic Super Joy, two of the best Rhythm Platformers ever made. Strangely enough, both games star a character who is made entirely of black pixels, with the exception of the whites in their eyes. It feels like a crossover between Bit.Trip and ESJ was meant to be, though right now their developers are hard at work on entirely different projects. 

We talked with Choice Provisions about many of those projects, including Tharsis, the survival horror, resource management game of dice and cannibalism. The more we talked about it, the clearer it became that the game was a metaphor for the terror and excitement that comes from running a game studio.

Similarly enough, Electronic Super Joy creator Micheal Todd’s latest project also works as a metaphor for his “team”, which consists of one person bouncing ideas of hundreds of people through the internet and face-to-face interactions. While Tharsis is about the white knuckle tension of exploratory team leadership, Queen Under The Mountain is a wild mish-mash of boundary-breaking, crowd sourced creativity. Both are about embracing the unknown, coming at that space from entirely different angles, managing to generate fun from interlocking variables in their own ways.

As always, I was grateful to them all for being willing to take a chance on the unknown with me on our live streamed chat show podcast, and am excited to see what they all do next. 

Jonathan Holmes
"Where do dreams end and reality begin? Videogames, I suppose."- Gainax, FLCL Vol. 1 "The beach, the trees, even the clouds in the sky... everything is build from little tiny pieces of stuff. Just like in a Gameboy game... a nice tight little world... and all its inhabitants... made out of little building blocks... Why can't these little pixels be the building blocks for love..? For loss... for understanding"- James Kochalka, Reinventing Everything part 1 "I wonder if James Kolchalka has played Mother 3 yet?" Jonathan Holmes