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Exclusive preview: This is 'Obduction,' Cyan's spiritual successor to 'Myst'

Hayden Dingman | Oct. 7, 2014
We drove all the way to Spokane and all we got was this exclusive look at the spiritual successor to Myst.

I also get a glimpse at an early puzzle, which has you [MILDEST OF SPOILERS] redirecting the flow of water to open a gate to a new area--in other words, a very Myst-like series of events. "It's funny because they started off very Myst-like in the puzzles and then they moved in a different direction towards the end," says Derrick Robinson, who's doing much of the concept art on Obduction.

He shows me a finished conceptualization of the gate we just opened--how this yellow mass will turn into corrugated metal and old car doors. It's all very familiar and Earth-like, until it's not. There's the tree that has water spraying out of its leaves, for instance, or the enormous floating stone sphere. And, of course, the aliens--three alien races, all of which will be present as NPCs in the game (though they're not in there yet).

And Hunrath is by far the most Earth-like environment. Mofang, which is affectionately called the "Chain Age" internally, is a city built into a cliff. Oh, except the cliff is floating in the sky. Originally an idea for a Myst Age, Anderson resurrected the idea for Obduction and the team liked it enough to make it a full world.

The last world, Villein, is more of a swamp world. However, I don't know much more than that--we bypassed the 3D models and looked at a few pieces of concept art instead, so I don't even know what alien twists will show up there.

"[The three worlds] are very closely linked but they are three very distinct worlds with distinct races and distinct cultures. They're as separate from each other as Myst Ages were from each other," says Anderson.

Bottom line
You know what? I could go on about Obduction forever. And I already kind of have, even without discussing all the stuff I sort of know but am not supposed to talk about because spoilers. If you want more spoiler-free information though, feel free to check out this transcription of the interview I did with Rand Miller and the rest of the team, and if you're an old-school Myst fan I also took some pictures of the fabled "Myst Vault" and Cyan's offices.

But overall Obduction's already looking good. Early in development, for sure, but still good. The game exists--it's not just the handful of concept art we saw during the Kickstarter last year.


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