Knife To Meet You is a custom hardware game featuring three buttons to press while a dissplay trash-talks you and a sharpened French kitchen knife moves ever faster and more erratic as the game progresses.
Knife To Meet You was exhibited at the Leftfield Collection at EGX Rezzed in London from April 7th - 9th 2016.
Three players co-operate to beat six increasingly difficult levels. Each level has a bar that fills up if two or more buttons are pressed at the same time. If no buttons are pressed, the bar slowly empties, with three buttons it fills up quickly.
The first few levels feature quite predictable blade movement, while later levels include feints and faster erratic movement, accompanied by trash-talking of the display.
The game is housed in a wooden suitcase, which makes it fairly easy to transport and install. A power outlet is required to run the game for longer periods of time.
The game uses the concept of pain as a core game mechanic, but the pain is mostly implied: even being repeatedly hit by the knife is merely inconvenient and does not cut the skin.
However, the formidable French kitchen knife used, together with the spectacle of a machine (seemingly) haphazardly wielding it near human fingers makes for a very thrilling experience, even more so as a spectator, who can never be quite sure how painful the actual experience is.
There are not many similar games that use the threat of pain to such an extend - only the PainStation comes to mind, but there the physical pain only comes after the fact - as a punishment when the game ends. In Knife To Meet You, pain is a much more immediate mechanic: the more risks you take and the more pain you are willing to endure, the better you do. This works very well together with the cooperative component where you don't want to let down your team - or maybe appear too squeamish.