Captivating audiences with their brief presentation at last year’s 2018 E3 Expo, the game’s development team Shedworks featured a strikingly captivating trailer that showed a world filled with beautiful desert landscapes, eye-catching color palettes, and of course beautiful renditions of towering architecture. Taking much inspiration from classic graphic artists like Jean “Moebius” Giraud and games such as 80 Days and Sunless Sea, the overall plot of the game revolves around a young character named Sable and her exploration of a world whose history is unknown. Sable‘s lead designer uses his architectural education to create a world that expressed a way for gamers and enthusiasts to understand architecture through exploration.
When developing the game’s overall concept lead designer Greg Kythreotis explains it was important to build something artistically evocative. Much of the game consists of empty lands and forgotten architecture. As an open-world exploration game, the environment the main character interacts with almost acts as a secondary character to the story. Having a degree in architecture played a significant role in the game’s overall design concept. according to Kythreotis “When I approach world-building elements, I try to design spaces that don’t only work as levels but also work as inhabitable spaces, I try to think about a potential client or inhabitant and build a structure or place based on the requirements of the people and the context.”
Environmental design in gaming is an is an essential component. The world and structures created not only set the scene for a game and storyline but also enable gamers to interact with architecture through this sense of wonderment and mystery. Tall towers and crumbled ruins make up a significant portion of the game’s landscape. Evoking a level of emotion when exploring the world of Sable, Kythreotis explains the game’s world reflects on “learning about the culture of the world, the people in it and how they live is a really big part of the game. I think a sense of wonder, mystery, and loneliness is a lot of what we’re going for broadly speaking.”
Sable isn’t Kythreotis’ first project that focuses on architectural elements to gaming. In 2018 he collaborated with Sam Jacob Studio on a project called: Disappear Hear. The project focused on the possible overlaps between architecture and video games through perspective. The highly anticipated game dubbed “one of the most promising” and “pretty indie games” will be released in 2019.
Curious to see the game trailer that had E3 Expo audiences captivated? See the video below.
Video courtesy of Raw Fury and Shedworks