Tuesday, October 24, 2017

K'nossos - A True Work Of Art (And A Great Sci-Fi Game)

If you believe that games can and should be elevated to true works of art, if you believe that we are not doomed to a Idiocracy-esque downward spiral into a hypermodern nightmare of fascist n-word spewing online game culture or neoliberal lowest-common-denominator loot-box late-capitalism or some combination thereof, then you're in for a treat with K'nossos.

Svarun Games has just launched their K'nossos Kickstarter today, for what might be the most original-looking game I have seen in eons. In the time it takes to travel to Alpha Centauri in non-FTL cryo sleep, you might never find another game like this one.

Here's a quick synopsis:

"K’NOSSOS is a classical science fiction point-and-click adventure game which follows the story of a lone passenger aboard a huge interstellar colonization ship traveling the unknown reaches of the cosmos, and the things he uncovers on his journey."

Having recently played the demo, I can say that K'nossos is a point-and-clicker's delight, especially if you're a fan of sci-fi. While puzzle difficulty can be somewhat subjective depending on how experienced you are and your personal preference, I can say that K'nossos appears to be in that Goldilocks Zone of 'not-too-easy, not-too-hard'. The plot itself is intriguing thus far, and chock-full of Star Trek-quality technobabble if that's your thing. (I'm watching ST: Discovery right now, but "Dune" or "Stasis" (the 3D point-and-click) might be closer, style-wise.) All in all, what I gathered of the science fictional story is already intriguing—this xenomorphic, xeno-aesthetic creature definitely has claws that drag the player into its Byzantine, fascinating depths.

Most remarkable though, is the art. K'nossos' abstract expressionist art style really gives this game an other-worldy feel, almost like touring a virtual high-art museum. Like a surreal daymare as experienced by a Picasso/Kandinsky fused mind. I can say, hands down, I haven’t seen a game that even attempts to do what is being done in K’nossos.

The sound track has similar megawatt-inspiration going on here, and reminds me of my MUS 412 - Post-Modernism In Music class in university, with a lot of Eastern and atonal intervals infusing meditative electronica soundscapes. It’s definitely got a feeling all its own!

So, if like me, you believe the Blade Runner 2049 box-office numbers mean that we should encourage a less-lazy, more sophisticated audience/culture, rather than dumbing everything down with explosions every 10 seconds and pretty faces, then check out and support K'nossos.

Two (three?) thumb-like, cubist appendages up—and I look forward to the full game!


  1. Wow man... It brings tears to my eyes knowing someone liked it so much, and I am all the more glad that it's you, a fellow indie developer working on renaissance of the adventure genre. Thank you very, very, VERY much for this! Nikola

  2. Must have missed this first time round - you Sir are a person of excellent taste - and if we doing something that appears to be anti-neoliberal then so much the better

    1. Thank you for your kind words! It is an uphill struggle to try to push games which attempt something more than mere entertainment. But ultimately, like the fight against dark global economic forces: we do not fight because we will win, but because it is the right thing to do!