News December 5, 2018

The Aussie creatives behind Apple’s ‘Mac Game of the Year’

The Aussie creatives behind Apple’s ‘Mac Game of the Year’
Image: Tim Shiel (Supplied)

Apple’s global Mac Game of the Year was made in Melbourne.

Called The Gardens Between, it was developed by Melbourne indie game studio The Voxel Agents.

For the game’s music and audio, they brought in Melbourne musician Tim Shiel – a triple j and Double J presenter and founder of the record label Spirit Level, who has collaborated and toured with Gotye among others.”

The adventure game of childhood friends Arina and Frendt was greeted with critical acclaim for its elegance and the cool idea of controlling time with your hands.

The Gardens Between already took out Game of the Year at the Australian Game Development Awards a few weeks ago.

The game is on Mac, PS4, Nintendo Switch, Steam, and launched on Xbox last week.

Shiel told TMN, “I spent four years working on the game after previously working on another Australian indie game that also won many awards and topped a lot of mobile gaming charts (Duet).”

Shiel and Duet creators Kumobius were at the Australian Game Developer Awards in 2014 where Duet picked up some awards when they started playing an early version of The Gardens Between to other developers.

Even at that early stage it started to create a vibe.

Voxel Agents developer Matthew Clark told one game title that it was a natural fit for desktops and consoles “and so far it’s really exceeded our expectations.”

The extended soundtrack album Glowing Pains – which Shiel conceptualised from the very start as a stand-alone piece of ambient music –  includes a range of musician friends including Gotye on on violin, AMP-nominated  Luke Howard on piano, Liam McGorry of Dorsal Fins and Saskwatch on trumpet along with Lonelyspeck, Eric J Dubowsky, Researcher, KAIAR, phir and Broadway Sounds.

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