William Dube always love the language of myths. It was the mercuriality and struggles for power of the Greek gods, the ferocity of Beowulf, and the fatalism of The Divine Comedy, that kept his mind rapt while he studied computation arts at Concordia University. “I think there’s something almost sacred in these old stories that have survived,” he says from his apartment in Montreal.
Last night, Dube’s beloved myths became a reality as he launched Jotun, his first game with his studio Thunder`Lotus Games. Jotun places you in the role of Thora, a disgraced warrior who must battle her way through the Norse underworld to prove her bravery to the gods.
But Dube says Thora’s journey will be unorthodox. Rather than a traditional kill-kill-kill approach, Thora’s adventure will be punctuated by large-scale encounters with Jotun itself. Think Shadow of the Colossus or Pacific Rim. Scale will be your enemy.
For Dube, the mythos of the Norse provides a perfect backdrop for this tale of bravery. In particular, it was the oral nature of Norse myths that intrigued him. As Charlotte Grunberg wrote in the Guardian: “[Norse] myths are an amalgamation of the oral storytelling tradition, and it's in their nature to change. The stories' unpredictability opens them up for every generation to interpret as they wish.”
Part of what makes games so potent is their fungibilty. My experience is not your experience is not our experience. The ability to share our yarns together mimics the same pattern that the ancients used to weave their stories for generations.
At the very least, with the popularity of Thor, Dube is working with bubbling source material. “Mythology gives you a great foundation,” he says.
Jotun launched last night and is available here.