Interesting Independent Internet Projects: Broken Age

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By Claire Frank

Let’s talk video games.

On February 8, 2012, Double Fine Productions and 2 Player Productions created a Kickstarter for a new point-and-click online game. With a goal of four hundred thousand dollars, Double Fine Adventure was announced to the world. The game has since then been renamed Broken Age and raised over $3.3 million.

If you scroll through Kickstarter as much as I do, you’ve probably heard of Broken Age. It’s hard not to: Kickstarter has been featuring the game on the front page of their website for months now, heralding it as one of its biggest successes of 2013. I’ve been following its success for a couple months, and now that the game is finally available to the public (Broken Age was released on January 28, 2014), I decided it was time to talk about it.

The first graphic action adventure developed by LucasArts and Double Fine Productions computer game designer Tim Schafer in 16 years, Broken Age is a point-and-click adventure following the coming-of-age stories of Vella Tartine (voiced by Masasa Moyo) and Shay Volta (voiced by Lord of the Rings star Elijah Wood). The characters’ stories are separate but similar and involve them breaking away from the societal expectations and traditions that oppress them.

An adventure game packed with puzzles, Broken Age boasts of fun game play, beautiful backgrounds, and an impressive cast, including Wood, Moyo, Jack Black, Jennifer Hale, Wil Weaton, and Pendleton Ward. Metacritic ranked Broken Age a strong 81/100 and Polygon gave it a 9/10. Marty Sliva of IGN ranked it an impressive 9.5/10, stating, “Act 1 of Broken Age is a gorgeous, impeccably written adventure that simultaneously tugs at my nostalgic core, while ushering in a new era for the point-and-click genre.”

Broken Age is currently available on Steam for $24.99 for Mac and PC. To learn more, visit Broken Age’s official website, http://www.brokenagegame.com/about/, or the Kickstarter, https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/doublefine/double-fine-adventure.