Die Gute Fabrik
NYC & Copenhagen
PS3 / PS4 / Mac / Linux
Johann Sebastian Joust is a no-graphics, digitally-enabled playground game designed for motion controllers.
The goal is to be the last player remaining. When the music — J.S. Bach's Brandenburg Concertos — plays in slow-motion, the controllers are extremely sensitive to movement. When the music speeds up, the threshold becomes less strict, giving the players a small window to dash at their opponents. If your controller is ever moved beyond the allowable threshold, you're out! Try to jostle your opponents' controllers while protecting your own.
For info about supported controllers, see the Sportsfriends presskit.
(Also see Sportsfriends release reviews)
Road to the IGF: Die Gute Fabrik's J.S. Joust
Leigh Alexander, Gamasutra
IGF Factor 2012: Johann Sebastian Joust
Alec Meer, Rock, Paper, Shotgun
The Rumble Pack Podcast – 2012-06-21
The Rumble Pack
A game of Johann Sebastian Joust breaks out
On The Verge, 2012
The Besties go to PAX East 2012
Polygon, Boston, 2012
Johann Sebastian Joust Saves Gaming From Video
Forbes, United Kingdom, 2013
Johann Sebastian Joust was first prototyped by Douglas Wilson at the the 2011 Nordic Game Jam. The original version used Wiimotes. In the summer of 2011, Doug ported the game to the PlayStation Move in order to take advantage of the controller's programmable LED light. In November 2011, we distributed a private, early alpha version of the game to several hundred people who had contributed to Brandon Boyer's Venus Patrol Kickstarter campaign. The game has since won a number of awards, including the Innovation Award at the 2012 Game Developers Choice Awards.
The game draws heavily from several folk games and playground games that Doug learned while living in Copenhagen. Like many classic sports, folk games, and playground activities, J.S. Joust features a simple ruleset and sound design that encourage physical performance, face-to-face interaction, and spectatorship. The hope is that this open-ended rule set "deputizes" players to improvise their own "house rules." For instance, are you allowed to kick your opponents? What are players allowed to do (or not do) after they're eliminated? What about playing with the controllers in your pockets? The idea behind games like J.S. Joust is that often, the most enjoyable game of them all is making up your own game.
Doug has written about the game at length in his PhD dissertation. You can read more here.
The early PlayStation Move alpha version of J.S. Joust used an open-source API pioneered by Thomas Perl.
Concept, Game Design, Code, Promotion
Nicklas "Nifflas" Nygren
Dominique "dom2d" Ferland
Design Advice & Early Logo Concepts