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Giant Bomb Presents

Giant Bomb Presents: A Chat With Jonathan Blow

Austin Walker and CNET's Jeff Bakalar sit down with Braid designer Jonathan Blow to talk about The Witness (his new game), the history of adventure games, and what it might mean to make "honest" art.

Giant Bomb Presents is giantbomb.com's home for interviews, previews, and more.

Oct. 28 2015

Posted by: Austin

109 Comments

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Trey1death

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Giant Bomb Presents has been blowing up this last week.

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CaLe

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Sweeeeeeeet. Always interested in what Mr. Blow has to say.

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blueskatten

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JEFF BAKALAR

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katiedey

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awesome

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Dooley

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This dude is wicked smart.

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hippyjack

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Good questions fellas!

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hammondoftexas

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Edited By hammondoftexas

I love Jeff Bakalar! The 404 Show for LYFE!

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hassun

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More chats with people!

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billyok

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1. Find any article whatsoever about Jonathan Blow

2. Search for some gamer misusing the word "pretentious" to describe what actually is intelligence, attention to detail and a guy expressing love for what he does

3. Inevitably find it

4. Close tab and sigh

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Nordom

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Great interview. I really like hearing what Jonathan Blow has to say and I am really looking forward to The Witness.

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icedturtle4

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I'm loving all the audio! great for work.

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Jimjamjaha

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SirThirdFilms

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Edited By SirThirdFilms

Whenever Jonathan Blow is talking, I have to listen.

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Kibblez

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Some speaking coach needs to sit down with Jonathan and finally get those constant 'rights?' out of his system.

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JayPB08

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Despite the extremely long time between Braid and The Witness, it's been even longer since Half-Life 2: Episode 2...

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Xeirus

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@billyok said:

1. Find any article whatsoever about Jonathan Blow

2. Search for some gamer misusing the word "pretentious" to describe what actually is intelligence, attention to detail and a guy expressing love for what he does

3. Inevitably find it

4. Close tab and sigh

I notice the mods deleted the other post saying this, lmao. Someone is getting STRICT.

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dr_mantas

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Jonathan Blow always has something insightful and interesting to say.

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ripelivejam

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ripelivejam  Online

2 MNE INTERVUUZ

(Nah this is great, keep it up!)

E: finally tthis stuff is getting on trackular.

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slimepuppy

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Looking forward to listening to this. Big fan of his work and he's had some pretty strong/pointed opinions about games that use game systems and mechanics in a calculated manner to hook people in without providing substance or 'meaningful' rewards which is a really interesting subject.

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mellotronrules

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Whenever Jonathan Blow is talking, I have to listen.

troof. thoughtful guy, that johnny blow.

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Lashe

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These interviews are great, and super insightful. However I really don't enjoy the stereo mic setup - is there anything that could be done to clean up the audio before it gets uploaded?

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Gildermershina

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Edited By Gildermershina

I'm excited to hear this at work tonight.

Braid was the first of an increasingly lengthy series of indie games that really speak to me, either on a design level, or a story level - and it really opened my eyes to the way a "simple" game's mechanics can wrap around and inform the entire narrative.

So far The Witness looks beautiful, and I love me some escalating puzzles. But I'm really hoping that all of it adds up to something more.

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mathey

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Interesting chat. Glad that there's guys like Blow pushing the medium, even if I don't always agree with his take on art.

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larmer

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Austin calling The Witness "interesting"

;)

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RagingLion

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So far The Witness looks beautiful, and I love me some escalating puzzles. But I'm really hoping that all of it adds up to something more.

Completely. That's what I'm looking for. And I think it's going to be there. I'm hoping for this to be something truely special and surprising.

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MichaelBach

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Edited By MichaelBach

Giant Bomb Presents is awesome. Some great gets! Thanks GB!

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noah_duncanson

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So when are you guys going to give cnet the bad news that they can't have Jeff back?

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SuperJoe

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Shots fired at Gabriel Knight 3

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singing_pigs

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Really fascinating and insightful conversation. I love how deep Austin likes to get into a subject like that. Also I'm happy Jonathan got to mention his programming language, I've been following it since the beginning and it's really phenomenal stuff. Here's a link to all the demo videos he's done of it, for anyone interested.

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SilverTorch1

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@billyok: If you get upset every time someone does something dumb on the internet you likely have an ulcer.

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betaband

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I'm all about the Bakalar!

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kdenicolo

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All the interviews on the site recently have been great. I hope they are getting a lot of traffic so you guys do more. Really fascinating hearing this side of the industry

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graf1k

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Austin was overwhelmed with all these recent interviews, but luckily his buddy had his Back-alar, and sat in to pick up the Slack-alar in this Jonathan Blow Spetac-alar, although it would have been nice to include a user FAQ-alar.

Please don't hurt me...

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seannao

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This was an interview to really pay attention to! One might even call it interesting.

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GhostHouse

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Really interested in The Witness' inevitable twist

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Dussck

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Edited By Dussck

Cool, hearing this made me want to play The Witness.

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Inert_Krypton

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Man, I really want to wander around that environment, it looks beautiful. A little bummed that it's a 50-100 hour game, kinda wished it was shorter as there are too many big games vying for my attention currently (and I'm a completionist). Guess it's a good thing it doesn't come out until next year.

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JDP83

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@austin_walker Great interview! Excited to play The Witness even more now! Loved Braid.
One question - what was with that rude person interrupting the interview around 20:49? Is that just something you guys are having to deal with at the GBeast HQ? Is it from people not giving the sort of respect deserved by fellow professionals or the fact that they have not provided you guys proper recording facilities with things like an isolated room with proper external noise insulation?

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ch3burashka

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My impression from 404 was that Jeff was a mediocre nerd, but he's been able to express his true knowledge of games and whatnot on the Beastcast. I'm sorry I doubted you Jeffrey.

Also, good interview. Can't wait to see what the fuck the Witness is.

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csl316

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Oh damn, this is a good surprise.

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Onemanarmyy

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Edited By Onemanarmyy

I really dig the intro tune.


A shame that the room had so much echo, but the interview was pretty rad.

I think the whole 'language through puzzles' thing could be really interesting.

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DHIATENSOR

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Edited By DHIATENSOR

Interesting to hear more about this. I'm looking forward to it. Though it must be said, Blow does come across a bit Holden Caulfield-y at times.