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Erg: Concept

In my younger years I often thought it unfair that the video game as a medium is mostly overlooked as a form of true art. As I have come into my own as an artist, it has become apparent that this is not a simple matter of bias so much as a lack of innovation and a bar set low. 

Literature offers words so that the user may create their own vision. Cinema offers images so that the user may create their own words. A video game offers choice so that a player may create their own path. A video game is not a story, it is a tool for creating them. 

The medium offers something unique that others cannot: agency. To script such an experience is to overlook this artistic gift.


Erg aims to make players behave earnestly. Set in a seemingly endless desert, Erg sets out to fully realize a world characterized by emptiness and fragility. Where many games encourage the player to behave badly, the unique results of emergence from simulation begs the question: why destroy what you could cherish?

At its core, Erg is an enlightenment simulator, designed to gently nudge the player towards a moment of realization that forever changes both the game world and they way a player chooses to interact with it. Once achieved, the player is given the choice to take control of a new individual and begin the cycle anew. The choices you make influence not only the outcome of one character but of every subsequent play-through forcing players to approach the world with appreciation and caution.

Our story revolves around a stream of mysterious constructs that have roamed the deserts for untold ages. These mechanical wanderers straddle the line between the animate and inanimate, originating from somewhere upwind, and carrying with them the seeds of life. Plants, shrubs and even small animals dangle dozens of feet above the scorching sand, following the wind deeper into the desert. For the inhabitants of the desert, life would be impossible without the resources harvested from these ultra-light titans. Most simply accept this gift but a select few seek answers. Over generations, many have sought the source yet one have returned. 

Art direction - Ian Perkins

Design - Ian Perkins

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