Indie developer Mike Bithell is currently working on a prototype of a possible new videogame using the Oculus Rift virtual reality (VR) headset. Bithell has spent the past weekend working on a new design idea that is ‘inspired by Zelda mechanics’, which came to him last week. Since then the developer has provided a few updates on the project’s progress, including a very early screenshot which can be seen below. It is not currently clear if the project might ever see a full release.
“Can’t sleep, hooked on a design idea,” Bithell posted on Twitter on Friday, 23rd May. “Writing notes. Not sure if good or not, but having fun.” He described it as a “minimalist puzzle meditation game about energy depletion inspired by Zelda mechanics, with threes inspired scoring.” The developer followed up on this tease the next day, stating: “Update on weird idea from yesterday: I still think it’s nifty, will build prototype this weekend, going to dust off the oculus for this one.”
Since then Bithell has revealed little about the project, though did provide an early screenshot taken from his work, which can be seen above. He did mention that “using 3D depth to convey information on Oculus is fun.” Again, there wasn’t any mention of if the prototype might turn into a full videogame but Bithell did note that he was “actually surprised at how solid this prototype is getting.”
He later stated that he had “just guineapigged that prototype with gf. She was doing cool stuff within a minute with the mechanics,” later concluding that he was “excited to continue.”
Bithell has become a key member of the independent development community over the past few years thanks to his popular platform videogame, Thomas Was Alone. It was an intriguing, story-driven piece that utilised a minimalist art style in portraying a touching narrative littered with inventive mechanics, all of which has left us asking what’s next for the developer. Of course, Bithell is currently working on an upcoming stealth-based title named Volume for PC, PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita.
What could this Oculus Rift project be? Will the developer pursue the project further given his current commitment to Volume? VRFocus will continue to follow Bithell’s work and report back with any more updates.