- Join Hoa in her platforming adventure featuring hand-painted art, lovely music, and a relaxing atmosphere.
- Experience the magic of nature and imagination as you play as the main character, Hoa, on her journey through breathtaking environments back to where it all began.
- Hoa is available today on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One.
Hello! My name is Paul Hartling, Director of Marketing over at PM Studios, inc. and I wanted to tell everyone about Hoa, a puzzle-platforming adventure game that just released today on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One! Hoa is a puzzle platformer that follows the main character, Hoa, who belongs to a tribe of fairies with the power of nurturing flora and fauna. Hoa is sent away as a baby after a tragic event, and she ends up with no memories of who she is or what happened. The game starts as Hoa coming back to her homeland after being away for many years. Throughout the game, she uses her magical powers to bring life back to her home, and as she progresses, she discovers more about herself and her past.
I sat down with Hoa’s own Game Director Son Tung, and Art Director Son Tra from Skrollcat Studio to see just what type of emotional impact they wanted to create in Hoa, and what their main source of inspiration was throughout development.
How would you describe your game to someone who isn’t very familiar with video games?
Son Tung: A very unusual walk in nature. *Sprinkles cuteness and magic*.
What drives you to continue developing Hoa?
Son Tung: As individuals, we have always been observant of our surroundings. Nature fascinates us, just as much as people, or magic does. One can learn a lot with a keen eye and an open mind. This fascination and appreciation for beauty and humanity, is something we hope to share through Hoa, in the form of a creative, uplifting and meditative experience that people can genuinely enjoy, and perhaps reflect on. We have with this project every attachment a serious artist has with their artwork, along with those high expectations of ourselves.
Last but not least, making a game that is both fun and beautiful is not easy and we love difficult things.
What do you think makes Hoa stand out?
Son Tra: Apart from the meticulous attention to background art and animation, what we feel is most special about our game is the childlike freedom we took in imagining Hoa’s world and how she interacts with it. Also, our bosses are pretty cool.
What inspired the game? Where did the idea come from, and how did you know the idea would work as a game?
Son Tung: Both of us are quite observant and imaginative, which we felt has always made every situation we were in a little more interesting. When the opportunity came, we wanted to make something through which we can share with others the excitement and comfort we find in embracing curiosity, empathy and imagination.
Son Tra: One of the great inspirations is the works of Hayao Miyazaki, not only the visuals, but also the philosophy. In reality, the taking shape of the game was a lot more like a journey than a moment. When we finally more or less agreed on the direction of the game (the pace, the style, the story), we knew it could work because the look holds up, the character is relatable and the uplifting experience we planned should be enjoyable regardless of age and skill level.
What’s been one of the biggest challenges you’ve had to solve during development?
Son Tung: We are a young and inexperienced team, so there has been lots of big challenges (laugh), but one big lesson we learned is the importance of effective planning and time management.
What do you want players to feel while playing? What kind of emotional impact are you trying to create?
Son Tra: The way one felt as a kid. Hopefully Hoa, kind, curious, and adorable as she is, will remind us of how we saw and explored the world when it was new, and perhaps we will find that the meaning we seek was within us since the beginning.
PM Studios, Inc.