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Vikings on Trampolines

The developer of Owlboy explains how their new game combines accessibility with a challenging difficulty

Quite the balancing act.

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Vikings on Trampolines, the upcoming game from the Owlboy creators D-Pad Studio, has been a long time coming. More than twenty years ago one of the team's programmers made a prototype of the game where you play as Vikings jumping on trampolines and beating bosses. To make the game accessible for his sister, who was not into gaming, you only controlled your character with a single analogue stick.

Now D-Pad Studio are putting the finishing touches on a full version of game, and while it has been expanded in many aspects, featuring a story mode, bosses, mini games and tons of levels, the core concept of accessibility remains the same, studio CEO and art director on Vikings on Trampolines, Simon Stafsnes Andersen told us during Gamescom:

"We've had people as young as six years old playing this, we've had very old people being able to pick this game up quite easily. And the great thing is you can play it with only one stick, you can hold a drink in the other. We've had people who were slightly inebriated that have also been able to beat us."

Vikings on Trampolines

While Vikings on Trampolines is certainly very accessible - it didn't take us more than a few seconds to grasp the concept while playing with the developer - it doesn't mean that there will be no challenges.

"Because of Covid at lot of people couldn't meet in the same room, so we wanted to make sure that you could also play this game by yourself, or you could play it cooperatively with four people," Simon Stafsnes Andersen explains. "In the adventure mode you play a set amount of worlds, and we have sort of like minigame kind of worlds for that, where you get a ranking when you complete them, but we also have boss fights. After you complete your basic levels, you get a boss fight. And because the controls are deceptively simple, we make the bosses deceptively difficult, so it gets a lot harder as you go on."

As for when Vikings on Trampolines releases, Simon Stafsnes Andersen says the following in our video interview which you can watch below: "We are hoping to at least finish development sometime next year. When the release day is going to be, I'm not going to say, because we are D-Pad Studio, we have a track record of spending some time working on things, but hopefully, hopefully next year."

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