The video game Genesis Noir was made with modest means but conceived on a grand scale. Developed by Feral Cat Den, a small indie outfit in New York City, the game packs reflections on love, crime, religion, the origins of the universe, and saxophones into a visual world as spare as the story is dense.
A cross between a puzzler and a point-and-click adventure, Genesis Noir follows No Man, a watch maker whose attempt to thwart a murder takes him on a detour through a black hole. This metaphysical mystery looks like few other games, its mostly monochrome world inhabited by line drawings and slinky abstractions.
Genesis Noir is the brainchild of Evan Anthony and Jeremy Abel, who led the creative and technical sides respectively. The idea came to them in 2013, after a reading of Italo Calvino’s fanciful Cosmicomics stories; stated influences also include Kavin Huizenga’s comics, Sun Ra’s music, William Blake’s poetry, Jean-Luc Godard’s Alphaville, Michael Frei’s Kids, and the animation of studios like Buck and Giant Ant.