The accelerometer of the iPhone and iPad is used to create interesting looking 2D platform gameplay that shifts perspective between the foreground and background, and is used as a puzzle mechanic by throwing in an element of augmented-reality.
This makes the purchase of Kidu a fascinating package, as it offers something of an AR experience when played on iPhone or iPad, and a straight 2D platform experience on Apple TV, while being available for all three devices via one universal purchase. When combined in this way, it’s a great example of what a diverse gaming platform iOS and tvOS can be.
Argentinian developer INvoluntary Games Studio’s mission statement is eloquent and revealing: “We strive to achieve harmony between voluntary and involuntary experiences we put in our games, and enjoy creating the most beautiful playable pieces of art.”
Identifying that distinction between the voluntary and involuntary aspects of gaming presents a lot of food for thought. We’re assuming the voluntary aspects are the things that players have control of, and the involuntary aspects are the elements the developer has control of. Maybe there are involuntary aspects that not even the developer has control of, such as emergent gameplay.
Employing a brightly painted low-poly visual style, screenshots of Kidu definitely tick the “pieces of art” aspect of the team’s mission statement.
Through these very cubist-looking environments, players will be tasked with exploring ancient historical eras in order to solve the “mystery of the evolution of humanity,” as INvoluntary explained to Apple in the Today feature.
It’s a lofty, and intriguing concept.
The video below shows some good examples of the perspective-bending gameplay, and we’ll post some impressions later this week after some hands-on time with Kidu.