Rediscover gravity and explore an Escher-esque world of impossible architecture. Witness infinity in first-person, and master its rules to solve physics-defying puzzles. Cultivate a garden to open new paths forward, where an eternal expanse awaits.
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Recent updates View all (7)

May 2

Development Update Video #11



Development update video #11 is now up!

We are currently focusing on audio design. In addition to making the actual sound effects and filters, I also have to make a lot of tools to help us balance and debug audio.



Above is a custom tool I built to enable and disable each sound effect in the game. This is really important if we're trying to tweak the timing and volume level of one specific sound. Even with an action as simple as pressing a button to open a door involves a multitudes of sounds. This tool allows us to disable everything except one, and has been incredibly useful.



Another tool is shown above. This displays every sound that is currently playing in the game. Initially, audio debugging was very frustrating. I'd hear an incorrect sound playing, but would not be able to tell where it was coming from or what it was. With this tool, I can see a list of all the sounds currently playing, which categories they're in, and how many there are.

It's been useful figuring out which sounds are not being called to stop when they're supposed to, or which ones have duplicates.

It also has the bonus feature of filtering out certain sounds, such as water and laser, from being displayed. The reason is that these sounds involve multiple sound emitters for one object, and if each one is printed out, it can take up the entire display.
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April 15

Development Update Video #10



Development Update Video #10

Unity 2017.4

We recently upgraded to Unity 2017.4.

There are a few key reasons for this. The main one is that we can now use MSAA for Anti-aliasing instead of just super sampling. We’re using our own rendering pipeline, and it wasn’t possible for us to use MSAA until 2017.4.


Tech

As far as the rest of the tech is concerned, we’re not adding new features.

We’re focusing on optimization, visual glitches, and bugs - basically making sure the game runs as smoothly as possible.

There are a lot of interconnected systems, so it often feels like we’re playing whack-a-mole with bugs. We fix one, but then 2 more come up.

One of the optimizations we’ve done is we’re using a slightly different render system to render the duplicates. In the past, to create duplicates for the cube, there were 125 instances (as it was on a 5x5x5 grid). However, this meant there were 125 transforms getting updated. The new system actually bypasses the renderer component. Instead of sending information for each transform to the GPU, we store the information for one in a buffer, then just look it up and add the positional offsets.

Additionally, we’re also now doing frustum culling on the GPU.

Saving and loading continues to be a really tricky problem, but it’s becoming more stable. Testing it is rather time-consuming, as it involves playing through the game multiple times.



Audio

We've been working on audio design for the past several months. Most of the sounds in the game are currently placeholder, as we’re focusing on the technical side.

We have about 90% of the audio hooks in. The remaining hooks involve more technical complications. For example, we need to have different sound filters depending on whether you’re indoor or outdoor. This means we need a systematic way distinguish the spaces, which isn't as straightforward when there is world wrapping and complex architecture. There are also situations like having sounds play continuously when you go through a portal (The approach we are using here is to have the sound emitter on the player instead of on the door itself).

Localization

We’ve finished localization. Currently for launch we are planning on having: English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Russian, Japanese, and both Traditional and Simplified Chinese.

There’s still some work left to adjust the layout for each language and to accommodate the difference in length of words.



Level Design

Most of my focus with level design now is figuring out and refining the pacing in the last third of the game. At some point, I will return to the opening level and retweak it. I was at GDC last month and saw a lot of room for improvement when people were playing the game.

Additional Info

As always, you can find me on twitter and twitch, where I stream development daily.
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Reviews

“There's something undeniably artistic about its colors and architectural displays.”
Polygon

“It’s just this absolutely beautiful strange thing that gives me a little pleasure spike every time I see it”
Rock, Paper, Shotgun

“It’s got mind-obliterating puzzles for days.”
Kotaku

About This Game

Manifold Garden is a game that reimagines the laws of physics.

Rediscover gravity and explore an Escher-esque world of impossible architecture. Witness infinity in first-person, and master its rules to solve physics-defying puzzles. Cultivate a garden to open new paths forward, where an eternal expanse awaits.

In November 2012, William Chyr began working on Manifold Garden. Initially the project was called Relativity, and it drew inspiration from various physics thought experiments. In early 2015, Manifold Garden was backed by Indie Fund. Over the course of its development, the game has been shown in over 20 game conventions and festivals, including E3, Tokyo Game Show, Gamercamp, and Indiecade East.

Key Features

  • A unique gravity-manipulation mechanic that allows players to walk on any visible surface.
  • An expansive and beautiful world filled with secrets for players to explore.
  • Mind boggling Escher-esque architecture.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: GTX 780
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