- Mørkredd is coming exclusively to Xbox Series X and Xbox Game Pass this December.
- Mørkredd began in a game jam and is heavily inspired by Nordic culture.
- Mørkredd is the first title on Xbox from Hyper Games.
We’re so excited to announce that Mørkredd, an innovative co-op puzzler, is coming exclusively to Xbox Series X and Xbox Game Pass this December. Mørkredd is the Norwegian word for fear of the dark, and you’ll have to use light and shadow to solve puzzles in a dark world inspired by long winters and Nordic culture.
Let’s go behind the scenes for an exclusive look into how Mørkredd came to life.
Every year the Norwegian Film Institute hosts the very official unofficial Norwegian Gameplay Championship, a game jam with a given theme that usually runs for about a week. In 2017, the theme was “fear.” Team Hyper Games wanted to explore fear of the dark. At first the idea was about traversing a dungeon with torches, but soon we started playing with the idea of a shared light source that everyone needed to stay close to. The idea of having characters immediately die when they entered a shadow really intrigued us, and we wanted to see if we could make that work in a puzzle game.
After a week of game jamming we had the first prototype of Mørkredd. We grew to love the concept so much that we wanted to make it into a full game.
This was the very first concept sketch for Mørkredd, made the first day of the game jam in January 2017:
Morkredd means: Fear of the Dark (nyctophobia in English). Usually it’s not the darkness itself that scares us, but whatever could be hidden there. Without being able to actually see anything our mind is able to roam free and conjure up some truly crazy stuff. Mørkredd is not a horror game, but we did want to get players to be a little scared about what they will find in the darkness of the game.
Mørkredd was 3-player in the first prototype, which you can see in early concept art:
We’ve since reduced to only two players — you can also play Mørkredd by yourself, controlling both characters. The biggest design challenge was creating content that would activate both players without one player being too dominant throughout the game.
We’ve taken Mørkredd to many conventions and conferences. Watching people respond to your game, enjoying it, and giving feedback, makes game development all worth it. We even won the award for “Best International Game” at the huge Indie Game festival BitSummit in Tokyo 2019.
Nordic culture has been a big influence for us. Some of it happens by default, because we’re always carrying our culture with us in some capacity. The very concept of darkness is easily tied to our long winters, where any light source is a great solace. During the darkest part of the year in Oslo we only have sunlight from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., so if you work inside you may not see the sun at all on weekdays.
I believe the Nordic population in general appreciate darkness and the feeling of melancholy more than other regions. Our culture has roots in paganism and norse mythology and those have definitely inspired our work in Mørkredd.
Xbox has a long history of supporting and promoting smaller games — especially indie games. Launching the game on Xbox feels like coming home, and we’re really proud that Mørkredd will be our first title on Xbox. Also, we love the fact that the game will be available on all the platforms in the Xbox ecosystem with a single purchase! And of course Xbox Game Pass!
I’m actually amazed at how similar the final game is to the very first concepts. I feel like we went on a huge round trip in development trying out directions that were very different from the original vision. We hope you enjoy Mørkredd, and send our regards to the Orb.