Is it just me, or is Ubisoft trying just a little too hard to drive home the idea that Child of Light is a work of "art." Earlier this week, it showed off a video of original Final Fantasy artist Yoshitaka Amano drawing and illustration for the game, and now it has gone out of its way to partner up with two more recognizable name from the art community.
In an effort to "further develop Child of Light into a well-rounded work of art," Ubisoft's Creative Director Patrick Plourde has unveiled yet anther video describing his teams' partnership with Cirque de Soleil and song-writer Cœur de Pirate. The development team apparently "benefited from a world-class experience in theatrical realization and costume design, adding an authentic stage direction point of view to the game's creation."
"Videogames invites players to be immersed in virtual worlds and no one is better to create immersive and magical experiences than the artists of the Cirque du Soleil. So to be able to collaborate with them to achieve Child of Light's ambition to create a playable poem was a dream come true."
Listen, Ubisoft, we know you are making a fun, personal indie game, and you are excited to not be working AAA product. We get that, we are excited for it, and we even support the idea of "games as art" to a certain degree. However, if a game like Child of Light is indeed "art," then it is supposed to take on that guise naturally after people already have their hands on it. Hammering it into our brains before it is even released like this just sounds like marketing and comes off as really pretentious.
The difference with the Amano painting is that there is a connection to Final Fantasy, and his involvement was justified as to what the game actually represents. Just hype the game as a fun and beautiful throwback to the good old days of the JRPG and leave it at that. This idea to "further develop Child of Light into a well-rounded work of art" sounds sophomoric at best. Put in the public as a fun game, and gamers will know what to do from there.
Child of Light will be released for the PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PC and Wii U on May 2.