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White Paper Games Announce ‘Ether’

Every once in a while a game comes along that hits you with a vivid art style and intriguing design at a hundred miles per hour. Say hello to Ben Hill and Pete Bottomley – collectively known as White Paper Games – and their début title Ether.

Built in the Unreal engine, Ether takes place in an alternative history that takes the player on a first-person adventure which explores human memories and emotional themes. You take the roll of a ‘restorer,’ a person who holds the gift of unique ethereal projection, capable of curing illness, and mental disease. Restorers also possess the innate ability to reconstruct broken memories.

Featuring a distinct visual style, explorative game play, narrative driven puzzle challenges and strange mysteries that can be lifted from the game via QR-codes, Ether is set to tell a mature and fascinating story that will keep you immersed until the very end,” says Co-founder and Creative Designer, Ben Hill

The story centres around a lost restorer who has become stranded deep inside of one of his client’s mind, causing him to lose sight of his own identity. Individuals are tasked with seeking out three unique artefacts that, over time, will aid in the restoration of the restorer’s mind and help him understand his own historical link with the mysterious client, Jean, who can only be described as an enigma.

When prodded for more information about Jean and her living-status, Co-founder and Technical Designer, Pete Bottomley had the following to say:

It’s difficult to say how much we should give away about Jean because we don’t want to ruin the experience for people but at the same time we want to share it with people, thin line!”

Details on gameplay may be sparse, but White Paper Games are keen to point out that you don’t necessarily have to solve puzzles in order to finish the game. If you so desire, you could run directly from the start of the game to the end, completely bypassing all puzzle elements. It’s up to the player to decide how much time they invest in the world of Ether.

You do not have to solve puzzles to progress in the game, however if you do choose to solve these puzzles, only then will you be rewarded with the information. We’re really trying to push the focus on creating these meaningful choices in to the design of Ether so that players can get as much or as little out of it as they want.”

Ether has a tentative release of Q2, 2013, for PC and Mac via digital distribution.

Source: The Indie Game Magazine – White Paper Games Announce ‘Ether’


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‘Ether’ Features An “Episodic Community Based” Narrative

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White Paper Games is developing a new type of narrative in their game, Ether. The story, they say, will extend well beyond the confines of traditional games.

On their website, White Paper Games writes that Ether is an “episodic community based 1st person adventure game that charts an unknown protagonist as he delves into a world of forbidden technology, mystery, hope, love and death.” Sounds promising to me.

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The real interesting part is how the game will play out. By reading their blog posts, we can see that the game is being developed in the Unreal Developer’s Kit. However, the game description includes the following:

“Using your online blog journal to record information, and the immense opportunity to get your name in the game Ether aims to rip the story from the screen and place it into your home. Have a smartphone? The adventure deepens with the ability to unearth hidden runes that can be captured by your QR code camera for even more secret information.”

In a blog post, designer Benjamin Hill exclaimed, “After a month of designs and development we realised very quickly that we wanted to create something that was far more in depth than another room based puzzler …. I had recently been reading quite a bit of old pulp sci-fi (which I am a large fan of) and was reading up a lot on cloud-gaming when suddenly this world enveloped my mind and this story started forming itself.”

You can read more about Ether on the White Paper Games Website, or follow them on twitter @WhitePaperGames.

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