Today on Facebook Jason and I announced our current direction for Shu and her world:
We’ve been silent for a while now, and wanted to bring everyone up to speed on the state of things. Recently we’ve had some tough decisions to make about where to take Shu. When we set out on this journey last year, it was with the intention of finishing and releasing a small game in a short period. But along the way Shu’s adventure became more and more ambitious, perhaps too much for its own good. The failure of the Kickstarter helped drive this home for us.
Some of our ambitious ideas for Shu will have to be put on hold, but in a way, the swell of ambitious ideas spells a strong future for Shu. We have seen many potential games arising while working on this project, and some of them just might resurface as future titles. In the mean time, though, we’ve resolved to focus our efforts on a much-streamlined game which can serve as a “first taste” of Shu and her universe.
And so we’d like to announce Shu’s Garden, built on the best elements of our work thus far. This mobile game, targetted especially at kids, is designed to be very open-ended and free, offering you the chance to explore a world filled with plants and to sculpt a garden however you see fit.
There are no explicit goals, just the contents of the world and Shu’s abilities. The player’s imagination becomes the engine behind the gameplay. Children will learn how plants need nutrition to grow and stay healthy, how mature plants produce seeds and how planting those seeds in new locations grows new plants. Children will also learn that a garden is a personal space free to craft as they please according to their own notions of order and beauty. And of course, there’s always the joy of rolling and bouncing.
We’re well into completing the basic functionality of Shu’s Garden and are pleased with our progress so far. (Realistic goals can be surprisingly motivating :)) If all goes according to plan, you can expect this first taste of Shu to be available this spring, with a simple up-front price (no in-app purchases and very kid-safe).
We are both very grateful for all the support Hey, Shu! has received and we plan to have some free download codes to offer for Shu’s Garden when it is released.
Thank you for your understanding and support,
Colin and Jason
So there you have it. A new name to reflect the more focused experience. Of course there is always a chance that Jason and I will be able to work on another Shu instalment in the future, but we’re learning to take smaller steps to avoid splitting our pants.