Jonathan Blow has taken to the PlayStation Blog for an update on upcoming PlayStation 4 game The Witness.
Set on an open-world island “full of puzzles,” players can go wherever they please in The Witness. The game “does not try to force you into a linear path,” according to Blow.
“For the past couple of years, we have had the island mostly built in a gameplay sense, and we were trying it out, moving things around, developing location concepts, tweaking puzzles,” Blow said. “At this point, most of that stuff is figured out, so we are now going through all the areas of the island and detailing them.
“What we learned in this process is that the island is in fact very big, for a place where you carefully visit every location during gameplay! Correspondingly, for a small independent team like ours, detailing this huge space is a lot of work!”
A single playthrough of the game, according to the studio’s internal run, is about 25 to 40 hours, depending on how much you play (some parts are optional). It was originally meant to be an eight hour game, Blow said.
He added, “On the tech side, we are working on making The Witness run with a smooth and solid frame rate, making the graphics look as nice as possible, and ensuring that the streaming system loads things quickly. We wrote our own engine for this game, so on the one hand, it means we get to do a lot of work; but on the other hand, it means we have precise control and can tweak it carefully until it is the highest-quality experience we can deliver.”
View a new set of screenshots at the gallery.