Mega-publisher Electronic Arts is funding an indie game and announced a release date for it Monday. The cutesy platformer Unravel from Coldwood Interactive is bringing Yarny to the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC early in 2016.
Unravel will launch via the PlayStation Network, Xbox Live, and Origin on February 9, 2016 for $19.99 in Noth America. EA Access members on the Xbox One will be able to play the game prior to release and will receive a 10 percent discount.
For those who aren’t aware, EA Access is a subscription service that gives Xbox One games from the Electronic Arts catalog for free, such as Dragon Age: Inquisition, Madden NFL, and Battlefield 4. It also gives early access to trial versions of newly released games, as well as a 10 percent discount when purchasing EA games and DLC expansions. The EA Access subscription costs $30 for a year or $5 for a single month.
The EA Access trials for games typically last 10 hours. While details for Unravel’s early access trial haven’t been unveiled yet, don’t expect it to last more than a couple of hours.
The Swedish developer’s take on the puzzle-platformer with an adorable character made of yarn is unlike anything it has released before. Coldwood Interactive’s Unravel was one of the true surprises during Electronic Arts’ E3 stage presentation and immediately gathered a following, with Polygon declaring the game won the annual convention and IGN recounting how the game and its main character stole their hearts.
Everything about Unravel is meant to tug at heart strings as an old woman longs to reconnect with all that she lost. Creative Director Martin Sahlin explains more in the launch date press release.
“Gaming is a powerful platform, able to inspire players and touch their hearts. With Unravel, we’re hoping to do just that,” Sahlin explained. “Yarny’s quest is to mend broken bonds and the yarn represents the love and connection between people. Along the way, we’ll test your cleverness with environment-based puzzles inspired by our home in Northern Sweden.”
The press release goes on to describe Unravel’s gameplay, which you can also see in the accompanying story trailer posted to YouTube.
Unravel is a game all about overcoming obstacles, both big and small. Using Yarny’s small thread and big heart, players will traverse through the breathtaking, lush environments of Northern Scandinavia in this unique physics-based puzzle platformer. Some challenges are simple, like using Yarny’s thread to swing across a gap or rappel down a tree. But others are more complex, and players will need to use Yarny’s thread in clever and creative ways to find the path forward. Whatever the case, no feat is too big for Yarny. Along the way, unlock a heartfelt story about love and longing, and the ties that bind, with Yarny as the red thread that runs through it all.
Unravel started after Sahlin created a Yarny doll out of tire wire and yarn during a family camping trip in northern Sweden, as revealed on the PlayStation Blog. The doll became a companion of sorts on the trip, and the Creative Director posed and snapped pictures of Yarny in different gameplay-like situations.
Development on Unravel started, and connections with fellow Swedish developer DICE (owned by EA) resulted in Coldwood Interactive inking a publishing deal with Electronic Arts. It’s been one of the more surprising moves by the mega-publisher known for heavy AAA franchises like Star Wars: Battlefront, Dragon Age, Battlfield, and Mass Effect.
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[Image via Electronic Arts]