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Indie Game “Nour” Successfully Funded on Kickstarter

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The independent, experimental video game “Nour,” developed by TJ “Terrifying Jellyfish” Hughes, launched a Kickstarter project to fund its development on Sept. 18 and reached its funding goal on Oct. 15. Kickstarter is a platform in which creators pitch their ideas and interested participants donate money to raise the funds necessary for making the idea a reality. The Nour project had a goal of $25,000, which was met with over 60 hours left in the campaign. When the funding period ended on Oct. 18, the game had been backed by 1,127 people and raised a total of $29,011, 16% higher than the original goal.

Nour, short for nourishment, is described by its creator as “an interactive exploration of the aesthetics of food.” Users jump through different 3D scenes centered around various foods and use the DJTechTools Midi Fighter 3D, an instrument normally used to make music, to perform various actions and quite literally play with their food. The player is given no objectives or goals, and is free to explore and discover how the different buttons on the Midi Fighter change the scene and how different foods and objects interact with each other.

Some of the more popular scenes include a table with a lamp and a bowl of ramen, a cup filled with boba tea, and a room full of toasters that never seem to run out of toast. A button on the Midi Fighter might change the center of gravity and make all the ramen noodles swirl into the middle of the screen, drop a straw or throw a boba bubble into the cup, or darken and burn a piece of toast as the player holds it down. Other scenes take a more surreal and artistic approach, such as an ornate bathtub full of ice cream scoops, complete with a showerhead that sprays sprinkles on to them, or a meat grinder into which the player drops bars of gold and silver and tiny hoverboards to see what they would look like in the shape of ground beef (yes, this is a thing).

Hughes noted that, due to the lack of a objective, some players find themselves inventing their own games. “When you’re given an action figure, you’re not like ‘Okay, what’s the objective, what do I do with this?’ You just play with it and have fun, so that’s sort of what you do with this… Some people try to get the lantern into the ramen, or try to get all the ramen out of the bowl. It’s like a bunch of little games inside of one interactive package.” he said during an interview with Polygon last March. Perhaps that is part of the appeal of Nour: no part of the game is linear and the player is free to do things as they please. If the player prefers to put the lid on and the straws in the cup before attempting to throw in the boba, they are free to do so.

TJ Hughes, working under his solo company Terrifying Jellyfish, is a longtime game developer and 3D artist based in St. Louis, Mo. He has, quite accurately, described the Terrifying Jellyfish brand as “associated with sparkly bright colors, endearing absurdity, and positivity.” After experimenting with Nour for two years, Hughes is ready for the world to try the game and to play with their food without shame. It is being released for PC and Mac on Steam and Itch.io and is expected to ship in early 2018.

About the Writer
Christian Rodriguez, Features Editor/Copy Editor
Christian Rodriguez is a senior at La Quinta High School who has an affinity for electronic music and animated cartoons. He wants to pursue music production as a career but enjoys journalism as a class and a hobby. Rodriguez draws weird pictures and writes silly (but completely true) stories for the Hawkview. If there’s a story...
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