Finally, the rest of the world can experience Hogworld: Gnart’s Adventure, the children’s adventure game app that made it to #1 top-grossing app in Norway.
"The exciting atmosphere and beautiful graphics grip them (the children) immediately. As a digital children's story this is a big and welcome step towards more interactivity,"
Aftenposten (Norway's largest newspaper, naming Hogworld Norwegian game of the year)
In an early review, Wired.com concurred:
"This is an app that transforms eBooks with gameplay and quality animation so that it feels like a book and game simultaneously. That is quite an achievement! ... It should be in Apple’s Best Apps for 2011 list and big developers of eBooks should take a look and see what they can learn from this story — it is more than touch points. The interactivity is woven into the plot, making it a real adventure."
Part adventure game and part storybook, this application occupies an exciting new hybrid category somewhere in-between; a territory Norwegian game developer SnowCastle calls “Interactive Stories”. This is storytelling the adventure game way. Although the narrative remains linear and chronological, you interact with the story elements in subtle, but effective ways that make you feel in control of it. In Hogworld: Gnart’s Adventure all interactivity has a purpose and often propels the story onward, but unlike a game, the story takes precedence. No task or challenge must be completed to move the story forward if you do not chose to do so. On the other hand, the rich surroundings are an invitation to explore. You may pause the story to do so, or even better, follow the story to its end and return to find the hidden treasures you missed in your first reading.
The ten-man team at SnowCastle Interactive spent a year developing Hogworld and it clearly shows. “We believe it is possible to combine the linearity of great storytelling with the interactivity of gaming, and the reception of Hogworld shows we are right,” says producer Bendik Stang.
“Nothing was spared to ensure that Hogworld became the quality application we needed to prove our concept”, ads SnowCastle CEO, Erik Hoftun. “The story is a collaboration between SnowCastle and Jorn Kubien, the veteran behind Disney and Pixar successes like Little Mermaid, Lion King and Cars, as well as Nightmare Before Christmas, and the music is by Canadian composer Eiko Ishiwata.The beautiful artwork and characters come from SnowCastles own award winning Lead Artist, illustrator, and animator Fridtjof Olsen.”
The option to turn off voice narration makes Hogworld a great educational application for the beginning reader.
Hogworld is intended for children 3 to 6, but has enough depth and sophistication to be enjoyable for quite a few adults as well.
Screenshots, promotional video and Press Kit can be found on the Hogworld homepage