Converting Surrealism and metaphysical paintings into 3D worlds
Published 3 years ago
The making of SURREALISTa
SURREALISTa was first shown to the public in 2013, Alpha version 1.0, basically a prototype at an indie game event at Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (IGDA-Rio).
The event gathered some developers and students in a pub, and the most voted game won discounts for beers :D
At that time Gigoia Studios team was composed just by me, and I decided to try to create an immersion in paintings that I love, mainly from Surrealism movement.
Basically the game had basics platform mechanics in a 3D environment, all based in the rich universe of Greek-Italian artist Giorgio de Chirico, with some touches from other famous painters such as Magritte and Dali. My main 3D tool from Asset Store is the fantastic ProBuilder Advanced  for level design and texturing.
After four stages, the last part of the game: a lounge with vases, paintings and a huge canvas of Giorgio´s self-portrait. Simple words on some photographs penetrated deep into the heart of the player, showing that the game was a tribute to someone who opened the doors for the Surrealist Movement in the world.
So... the game just ended there? Certainly not. The game still would advance for broader horizons, with new influences, and well-defined aesthetics.
Why not create a story inspired by all Chirico´s works and life, wich can reflect in a narratively coherent and imagetically fantastic world, as if the game was a great open interpretation? ". So I began to work at the new SURREALISTa.
I studied all the biography and stuff related to Giorgio de Chirico, weaving theories, observing unique angles and linking two very important factors in a Fine Art Game: objective and subjective learning entertainment; I think the player could, throughout the game, understand, even if subjectively what was Surrealism, its artistic hues and hermeneutical characteristics of the movement. We wish the player to be amazed and enriched after playing the game.
I was giving life to 3D maps and architectures, doing logics for the puzzles, mechanics, and player interactions; attention to detail was crucial for the universe to become intellectually tangible to the point that it can benefit the player with a sense of satisfaction, like to walk at an art exhibition and "feel" a canvas painting.
I graduated in Arts and Environments for games, and I´m an avid student of artistic movements. I think the game can go beyond itself and be an object of study and academic reference on Giorgio de Chirico, for all audiences.
Gradually a magical world was created, where painting elements, mysticism, philosophy and collages of modern perceptions over antique works converged to a universe capable of supporting complex networking concepts and values from Giorgio de Chirico, and slowly that rich network is being built into the game´s narrative and objects.
Throughout the production, every new alpha version of the game was released, so I could get valid feedback from the public. Surprisingly, the game got attention from art critics across USA and Europe, and also can be found in many YouTube gameplay videos, podcasts, articles and art magazines. Gigoia Studios was invited to display the game at important museums.
SURREALISTa exhibited at Arvada Center for Arts and Humanities (Colorado - EUA).
 The game is free. We believe in Chirico´s spiritual force and the game is a tribute to him and the Surrealism Movement in the world.
Thanks so much for reading. we really hope you like it! And you can keep up with all our news through  Twitter, Facebook and our website.
Photographs of Salvador Dali and René Magritte paintings belongs to its owners, all rights reserved.
Gigoia Studios has no commercial purposes in using these materials.
Carlos Monteiro
Game Artist. Level / Environment designer - Artist