XBLA Wednesday 8/6: Braid
Braid, the second release in the ongoing “Summer of Arcade,” has been released today for the somewhat-pricey sum of 1200 Microsoft points ($15). It’ll be hard to follow up on the success of last week’s release, Geometry Wars 2. At the very least, this looks like an innovative game — certainly by XBLA standards, where there are more twin-stick shooters and ports of classic games than I care to count.
Strangely enough, the game has essentially been done for two years. But the game’s solo designer, Jonathan Blow, has spent that time tweaking puzzles and polishing the game in a fashion that he believes most indie-developed games don’t receive. “By the time the initially-playable version of the game was done, the puzzles had been decided upon — anything that didn’t work was thrown out. But over the two years since then, many puzzles have been adjusted, and a few have been changed entirely,” he told 1UP earlier this year. “When you get really detail-oriented, you find a lot of problems to fix. Many independent developers release games without going over them in this fine-grained way, but most of those games are unpolished and fail to reach their potential.”
Hopefully for Blow that extra time and persistence will equate to big sales on Xbox Live Arcade. It certainly has a good chance of doing well, thanks to being featured as the only Arcade title this week and the big Summer of Arcade giveaways that only ask you to try out the newest XBLA games.