XING: The Land Beyond is an Atmospheric First-Person Puzzle Adventure game being developed for both the PC and Virtual Reality. Gameplay is mainly exploration, solving environment-based puzzles and gaining/using powers such as Rain and Snow to progress through levels. In the land of XING you are crossing the threshold between life and death. Each realm you visit was once home to a spirit, which will act as a guide in telling the story of his/her life through scattered poetry.
What started out as a college Level Design 1 project turned 3 students into full-time developers. One game competition led to another, and after a successful Kickstarter in March of 2013, the team spent the summer planning out the road map for XING - as well as forming their own company: White Lotus Interactive LLC. From there, they have been busy developing 40-70 hours per week - putting out promotional material whenever possible while trying not to lose momentum. As of now they each work remotely from their homes. Their philosophy has always been to “make something that we enjoy playing, and to continue to expand our skills and knowledge to further improve the quality of the game.” John does tech-art, coding, sound design and music composition; James does modeling, coding, tech-art and environment design; and Koriel does story, sculpting, level/environment design, 2-D graphics and PR. "This type of job is not for everyone, but we at White Lotus love it."
What if you had the power to go up to a gravestone, read the epitaph, and transport yourself into the past life of the deceased? Our idea is to take players on a beautiful, fantastical and spiritual journey through the afterlife. XING is non-combative and there are no time-restraints. We want players to feel intrigued by the story and puzzles presented, but also relaxed in the lush environments we create using the Unreal Engine. The stories being told through the different lives of the deceased are “human” and relatable, so that the player can feel a connection to the other spirits trapped in the land of XING.
The puzzles we are creating are similar in difficulty to those of Portal 1, which are accessible for a wide audience. Ultimately we want children, teens, adults and seniors to be able to play our game and gain something from the experience. Something we really take our time on is getting mechanics down right. We love our fire system (setting objects on fire), our snow and rain systems, and especially our time of day system. Players will unlock all of these and more to change their environments, and the way puzzles can be solved.
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