The art of pinball

Sign up to receive each week’s Playlist e-mail here! Also check out our full, interactive Playlist section. INKS (iOS) BY STATE OF PLAY GAMES Pinball is something of a lost art. With the glory days of arcades and The Who’s rock opera Tommy (1969) behind us, the Pinball Wizard may appear to have lost his luster. But State of Play’s INKS is breathing new life into this arcane mode of play, by making the pinball machine double up as a blank canvas for painters. From the creators of Lumino City (2014), the game brings a similarly tactile approach to design. Instead of flashing colors, your ball hits…


You’re one step closer to actually touching Lumino City

The narrative arc of history bends towards our being able to reach through a screen and actually touch Lumino City. Everything between now and then is just a stopgap measure.  Meet the latest stopgap, Lumino City for iPad and iPhone: You may have noticed that it looks just like Lumino City, as well it should. The buildings are all still made out of paper and delicately pieced together. The scenes have still been filmed with a shallow depth of field, giving everything a toy-like quality. This world is still full of puzzles that the game’s animated lead must traverse. The…


Bloxels charts a course between physical and virtual game-making

The act of prototyping a game is a game in its own right. It involves the conceptualizing of space and the solving of puzzles. So why not just turn prototyping into a game? the best of both worlds  Bloxels, which is currently halfway to its fundraising goal on Kickstarter, takes this thought to its logical conclusion. It allows you to layout levels using blocks on a physical gameboard, photograph that board with your mobile device, and then turn that layout into a fully realized game. These games—or, more accurately, levels—can be shared with friends. Moreover, as a player passes through…


The very real Lumino City will definitely be available next month

Lumino City finally has a release date.  We’ve been tracking the game for awhile. First we discussed the British origins of the beautifully handcrafted game, where “warmth” and “serendipity” encompassed the design process and a release date was still a fuzzy, far-off idea. Then we went on a whimsical tour through the real-life papercraft set of the game. Now we can report that it will be available for Mac & PC via Steam on December 3rd, 2014. The announcement was paired with a “Making of” exhibition across the pond. Curated by State of Play in collaboration with Gamecity, the exhibition featured…


The almost-real Lumino City will be almost-really available next month

Lumino City, that gorgeous, handcrafted follow-up to Lume that we’ve been talking about for months, is now pegged for release in November. The London-based duo behind the game, have built an intriguing world out of cardboard, found objects, and laser-cut pieces, and then reassembled them into a big clockwork world. It straddles a weird divide of perfect recreation of imperfect objects. This year’s The Swapper similarly repurposed found objects to surprisingly emotive ends, and, while Lumino City is a much brighter affair, it looks to have a similar sense of purpose.  Anyway: we’ll find out next month.