Current videogame developments from
Tale of Tales

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      Salacious, risqué, and brimming with provocative insinuation, Luxuria Superbia is a tongue-in-cheek transgression that preys on the player’s lust and voracity towards the sensual and intimate. Its witty prose, luscious hues, voluptuous forms and arousing descants are an assurance that the fallacy that are video games has at long last come into flower.

      Luxuria Superbia is here!


      Press release below.

      Today, Tale of Tales is delighted to announce the release of their latest game Luxuria Superbia, priced at $3.99 for iPad, Android tablets and OUYA and $6.99 for Mac OS X, Windows and Linux with a launch sale price of $2.99 and $4.99.  It’s available for purchase on App Store, Google Play, OUYA and direct sale via the newly launched website

      Luxuria Superbia is a visual and conceptual departure from Tale of Tales’ previous critically acclaimed titles such as The Path, The Graveyard and Bientôt l’été. Luxuria Superbia is a simple game of touch, pleasure and joy made for fingers on touchscreens and joysticks on computers. Luxuria Superbia is a musical journey from the sensuous to the spiritual.

      In Luxuria Superbia, the player is asked to give pleasure to the game, as much as the game promises pleasure to the player. This starts sensually and physically with cheeky innuendo and playful feedback.  As you progress it expands gradually into the ethereal and the euphoric. Luxuria Superbia is a celebration of joy and beauty in life.

      “We feel beauty is the most important thing to experience in a human life,” say designers Auriea Harvey and Michael Samyn. “The joy that beauty brings makes us better and stronger people. And such joy can be found in both the sensual and the spiritual.”

      Music is pivotal to the emotional effect of the Luxuria Superbia. Walter Hus, known from his work on Bientôt l’été along with films, live concerts and ballet performances, composed music especially for the game’s dynamic mixing engine. The game plays like a living instrument as the music ebbs and flows with the intensity of the interaction.

      “We use music as an emotional reference in our work,” according to Harvey and Samyn. “We try to match the effect of the music in the visuals and the interactions in order to achieve a harmony of the senses.”

      Tale of Tales is a small development studio run by couple Auriea Harvey and Michael Samyn out of Ghent, Belgium. They have been living and creating games together for the last decade. Luxuria Superbia is the inaugural title in the new creative direction the duo announced at the Game Developers Conference in Cologne last August. Luxuria Superbia was featured at IndieCade in Los Angeles, Game City in Nottingham, Notgames Fest in Cologne and XYZ in the Museum of Design in Atlanta. Its production was supported by Flanders Audiovisual Fund.

      Luxuria Superbia play trailer

      A short video about playing with Luxuria Superbia.

      Luxuria Superbia is a game by Tale of Tales with music by Walter Hus. It can be played on iPad, Android tablets, OUYA, Mac, PC and Linux. Release date: 5 November.

      More info on:

      We spent a whole day making variations on the icon for Luxuria Superbia. Previous test versions of the application already had a whole series of different icons. But the circular rainbow surrounded by twelve petals was the image the stuck the most.

      This shape is based on the top view of the temple where you choose which flower you want to play with. The rainbow circle covers the central dome and each petal covers a column. The concentric circles refer to the tunnel shapes of the flowers.

      But we felt something was missing and started experimenting with adding a side view of the garden too: the round hill with the temple on top. This hill used to be conical, by the way, but rounded felt more sensual, like a breast crowned by the nipple of the temple.

      When the temple was drawn with only three columns, the spaces between them looked like eyes. We were attracted to the appearance of a little ghost in the image but decided against it in the end because it didn’t make much sense for the game. By adding a column we removed the effect.

      The suggestion of a narrative with the little landscape of a temple on a hill appealed to us. But when we removed the columns altogether and put the dome immediately on the hill and colored it black, we fell in love. It felt like a Magritte-esque landscape of a daytime rainbow behind a nighttime hill. We did worry that the shape reminded too obviously of a breast, though.

      So we continued to experiment with the temple. We liked the white temple with the cloud-like petals. But when we pasted this icon onto a mock-up of the App Store screen, it did not stand out much. It also felt a bit too attractive to children and young girls.

      So we decided to go with the dark icon. It clearly reads as “adult” and it stands out a lot. And we decided that it must be our dirty minds that made us see a breast in it and that nobody else would. Or at least didn’t need to. It’s totally abstract! Right?

      On iOS, icons cannot have transparency. But on all other platforms, the circle of twelve petals has become the shape of the icon.

      Find us @GameCity on Monday evening in the Suede Bar and on Tuesday morning in the Councel House.

      On Monday we are co-hosting a Night of Work, Love and Sex with Leigh Alexander and Quintin Smith. There will be multiple ways to play with Luxuria Superbia. The event starts at 8 PM with a lecture by our co-hosts about relationships in games, and the medium’s potential to convey romance, meaningful bonding and sexuality.

      On Tuesday at 10:30 AM we will talk about how Luxuria Superbia came to be and how we feel about sensuality and spirituality in art and games. In the Council House Ballroom.

      String of pearls floating in Unity’s scene view of Luxuria Superbia.

      This the last flower: the perfect circle. It only has a single string of pearls, while the others are quite lushly ornamented with them. The pearls are pure decoration. But they also serve the function of communicating where you are in the flower. Each flower (level/tunnel) has 4 stages. With every stage, the number of pearls increases. You are rewarded for achieving stages, so this is significant. As you continue, the flower looks more and more decorated.

      (Perhaps it is worth noting that in Flemish, the language we speak next to English, the word for decorating, “versieren”, also has the meaning of to seduce.)

      This picture also show a close up view of some buds. They are the sensitive parts of the flower. The parts that you touch to make it flush with color. They are actually egg-shaped but they fit in a little buttocks-shaped cup that makes them look like hearts.

      The models for these, as for most other things in the game (tunnel frames, pearls and the “buddies” that pop up when you touch the buds), are completely flat and only look dimensional because of their textures.

      Luxuria Superbia will be released on 5 November! For iPad, Android, OUYA, PC and Mac.

      Here’s the press release:

      Tale of Tales is announcing their latest game Luxuria Superbia for release on November 5th, 2013 for iPad, Android tablets, Ouya, Mac and PC!  Luxuria Superbia is a playful exploration of the concept of pleasure, where you pleasure the game as much as it pleasures you. With light, colorful aesthetics and music composition by Walter Hus (also of Bientôt l’été) the players interact with their device in a unique and intimate exploration of pleasure.

      A demo is currently available online where players can get a first hand experience of Tale of Tales’ new approach to design and style of playing. A new gameplay video also features players interacting with Luxuria Superbia.

      "We have always thought of our games as amusing and entertaining and beautiful. Now it is time to bring that joy to more people," designers Auriea Harvey and Michael Samyn stated in their GDC Europe presentation of the Beautiful Art Program, a list of creative intentions for the next decade.

      Luxuria Superbia was an IndieCade finalist and will be featured at the Blue Monday: Night of Work, Love and Sex event with Leigh Alexander and Quintin Smith at Game City in Nottingham this Monday. 

      You can also vote for Luxuria Superbia on Steam’s Greenlight program.

      Tale of Tales is an independent studio based out of Ghent, Belgium. Designers Auriea Harvey and Michael Samyn have been creating games together for 10 years, including critically acclaimed titles such as The Path, The Graveyard and Bientôt l’été.

      Here’s Luxuria Superbia's sea flower scene when the game is not running in Unity.

      We have have just given it all its buds, which you can see pointing inwards all around the shape. The buds are the sensitive parts of the flower. When you touch them, it blushes.

      Previously, there was only one bud in the scene and the others were copies made in real time. But in an effort to reduce the strain on the processor, we have copied them by hand.

      The node you see in the picture is still copied in the game to form a tunnel. We may also replace this logic by handwork to optimize machine performance.

      It feels contradictory that these machines that are supposed to make our work lighter, work better when we do their work for them. Lazy buggers!

      Luxuria Superbia is almost done. Play a beta demo here:

      And help it get on Steam here: