Studio Waterzooi is an immersive experience game studio based in Brussels, Belgium. We develop low threshold games inspired by literature, culture, philosophy, society and art, with a focus on ‘the human condition’.
Games as a medium
For us games are above all ‘a medium’. It’s not just about skills, high-scores or combat. It’s about being entertained, immersed in a topic, being emotionally moved and enjoying the story & aesthetics. Conflict is a part of every good story, but it doesn’t have to be the only part. Entertainment is about being immersed and triggering emotions, not only about having fun.
We focus on creating shorter experiences that are still impactful (because of the typical time-shortages tied to adult life). The success of pc-games like ‘Firewatch’, ‘Life Is Strange’, ‘What Remains of Edith Finch’ or mobile titles like ‘Monument Valley’ and ‘Florence’ tells us that there is a market for these slice of life experiences.
Inspired by Pietro Righi Riva’s manifesto Rejecta, Thomas Meynen founded Studio Waterzooi. The manifest aims to provide guidelines to develop games for a new audience.
He (and we) want to advance the medium in a certain direction that makes it interesting to people that are not normally interested in video games but have other interests such as art, culture, humanity..etc (or are interested in video games but don’t find games about specific topics that interest them). We have to cater to these people and learn how to make games for them so games can eventually become the art-form it deserves to be.
Please, Touch The Artwork
‘Please Touch The Artwork’ is Studio Waterzooi’s first title.
It’s a relaxing 2D puzzle-game inspired by abstract art.
It’s an introduction into the world of early 20th century abstract art pioneers such as Piet Mondriaan (Dutch, De Stijl), Kazimir Malevich (Russian, Suprematism) and Wassily Kandisky (Russian, Abstract art).
The game aims to educate the player about art-history while providing a subtle growing puzzle-challenge at the same time. It aims to illustrate the creative process these pioneers might have gone through and inspire people in any way possible, just as the artworks of the pioneers did with other modern artists.
The creative process is a process of trial and error at first and this is reflected/symbolised in this puzzle-game. That’s one of the reasons why we don’t spoil/tutorialize the puzzle mechanic and let people figure it out themselves. Part of the satisfaction and reward is in the knowledge that you figured something out yourself. It hopefully also teaches that it’s ok to make mistakes and failure is essential. There will be 3 tracks (one for each painter) and the puzzle-mechanic will be different for each painter.
Join us on a journey at the origin of modern art and let yourself be mesmerized during the design process of these masters.