Extra Lives: ‘The Witness’ finally has a release date

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Nick Booth, JagWire copy editor

In 2008, Jonathan Blow released one of the most highly rated and influential indie games of all time, “Braid.” The game’s fiendishly difficult puzzles and innovative time travel mechanic pushed the boundaries of the puzzle platformer genre, especially when combined with a powerfully emotional story. Since then, just about everybody involved in the gaming scene (including me) has been eagerly awaiting his follow-up.

“The Witness” was originally slated for release in the winter of 2011, but has been delayed time and time again since then. However, Blow has come out and announced that he is finally done with the project, and it will officially be released on Jan. 26, 2016, on PC and PlayStation.

“The Witness,” like “Braid,” is a puzzle game, but it looks to be a much different kind of player experience. Whereas its predecessor was focused on platforming, “The Witness” is primarily an exploration-driven game, and, according to Blow, is inspired by the ground-breaking 1993 game “Myst,” which itself innovated and inspired in its time.

So, why am I so excited for this game? For one thing, I initially found out about and got excited for “The Witness” back in 2012 — during my freshman year. Now I’m a senior, and I’ve quite literally been waiting for this game throughout the entirety of my high school career, meaning that its eventual release is kind of a long-awaited moment for me. “Myst” is also a personal favorite of mine, and any game following its legacy of exploration-based puzzles and quite, serene environments is definitely cool in my book. Part of it for me has also been the incredible amount of hype I’ve been building up for this game in my mind. It’s coming, it’s coming, it’s coming — this game has been in the back of my mind for years. On the surface, it sounds like my dream game, which is why I very much don’t want to be let down.

Hopefully, though, Blow used the game’s many delays over the past several year to focus on creating an interesting, exciting and focused game that will please everyone who’s been waiting for it for so long. For better or for worse, we’ll find out when January comes.

Senior Nick Booth has played games since he was a young child. He is still an avid PC gamer to this day, spending a large portion of his time playing with a keyboard and mouse.

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