Passion can make a project come to life, but dedication and conviction are the elements that keep it alive after troublesome times, that is the story of D-Pad Studio. Simon Andersen had the idea to make Owlboy back in 2007, and with a team consisting of 4 people (including himself) development of a demo of the game started on that same year. What began as a little platform exploration game with a mix of flight and platforming went through difficult times due to lack of funding, complete overhauls due to insatisfaction with the results of development, and Mr. Andersen´s lifelong struggle with depression. But after nine years of reworking, developing and finding a way to keep the flames of passion alive, D-Pad Studio has finally completed and released Owlboy on November 1st, 2016.
The Release date was revealed in PAX West 2016, where an Owlboy exclusive panel was held on September 5th called “Owlboy: How to Survive 9 Years of Development”. One of the panel’s features was a small trailer that showed the final release date, and the audience cheered and clapped when the mysterious date was finally known. Owlboy has launched on PC through services like Steam and GOG, but the developers have stated interest on making console ports for the Xbox One and Playstation 4. According to D-Pad Studio Main Programmer Jo-Remi Madsen, “we’re going to aim for console, although we’re not quite sure which one we will focus on first. We’ve added PlayStation and Xbox controller support already, so aiming for those platforms would be a most likely starting point.”
Watching Owlboy finally release is truly remarkable and the product ultimately shows the ammount of effort every second of its development had, from the beautiful hi bit sprite art made by Mr. Andersen himself, to the incredible soundtrack made by Jonathan Geer. Owlboy is available on Steam and GOG right now, if you’re a fan of platformers and open world exploration then you should absolutely pay attention to it, you won’t regret it.