Malaysia’s very own SwinDesign studio from Swinburne University of Technology Sarawak debuted their Melanau-inspired game, ‘Tou: The Sacrifice’ at the Microsoft Imagine Cup world finals in Seattle, Washington in July 2015.
What was once started as a Final Year Project, turned the game into a success after SwinDesign emerged as the Malaysian champion in two out of three categories in the Microsoft Imagine Cup world semi-final competition.
Currently, the game has been downloaded over 5000 times within just a few weeks after the launch on Microsoft platforms. Besides the United States, the game is also popular in China – based on the number of downloads. Stella Wang, Lead Artist Assets Designer of SwinDesign, who is also one of the member of Sarawak’s native Malanau tribe said, “We created the game to educate the local youngsters about the distinctive culture and rituals of Melanau Tribe. Now we get to share the experience with the world.”
Tou: The Sacrifice is a horror exploration game both in 2D and 3D inspired by the Melanau tribes of Sarawak, Malaysia. As a player, you play a role of a father, who ventures into a forest near a cursed Melanau village with his daughter Alice. The adventure starts when Alice was kidnapped by a spirit, thus begin the journey of a father in search of his daughter following the trails of the spirit.
Looking into the future, SwinDesign is planning to collaborate with the Microsoft band to enhance its gameplay experience and interact directly with the players to bring them one step closer into the tribe. ‘Tou: The Sacrifice’ is currently available on Microsoft platform, but studio has announced that they will work on a version for both iOS and Android soon.
Stella Wang, Lead Artist Assets Designer and Sim Jia Ying, Visualizer Animator represented SwinDesign at Visual Arts Expo 2015.