The Lead Designer of Monument Valley Discusses Florence
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The Lead Designer of Monument Valley Discusses Florence
9 July, 2018
News

Ken Wong, the lead designer of Monument Valley, has recently joined Milanote to discuss a critically-acclaimed game called Florence. The game is so simple, yet manages to tell a beautiful story about relationships and daily life through mini-games. What is the secret behind the game’s charm? Let’s find out. 

Because of my previous work on Monument Valley I was able to get the attention of a publisher and they helped fund the project. The idea was to build the team first and then figure out ‘what are we going to make?’—just trusting that we would figure it out. And we did! It was very scary though.

Ken Wong 

The whole game revolves around simple mini-games through Florence’s 20 short chapters with most of them focused on  common social interactions and daily routines. For example, one of the mini-games is just a talk between two characters.

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I think of the mini-games as metaphors. The interaction on the touch screen … how can that make you feel something about the characters? One of the stronger metaphors that is in the final game is when they’re on their first dates and you’re putting the speech bubbles together. People often tell us that’s one of their favourite levels. The idea was that it feels like putting words together, but that as the dates go on and they find it easier to talk to each other, the puzzles become easier and easier.”

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Brushing teeth represents the mundanity of everyday life. In comics they would call it a “slice of life”, something based on real human lives and real human experiences. It’s not intended to be difficult, the idea is that anybody can get through this and have a nice experience. Later in the game when Krish is in Florence’s life, tooth brushing symbolizes that they have fallen into a routine.

Ken Wong 

Make sure to read the full article here.

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