Czech video game with embroidered characters has the internet in stitches

The trailer for the upcoming Scarlet Dear Inn went viral on Twitter, getting more than 23 million views.

Ioana Caloianu

Written by Ioana Caloianu Published on 03.05.2023 14:00:00 (updated on 03.05.2023) Reading time: 1 minute

Viral fame is a needle in a haystack, yet a video game creator from the Czech Republic found the perfect formula for advertising an upcoming release. A tweet from Eva Návratilová announcing her work on a “game where all characters have embroidered animation” received 262,000 likes, earning the trailer more than 23 million views.

The game itself, called Scarlet Dear Inn, is a one-of-a-kind project of Czech studio Attu Games, which consists of Návratilová and her husband Lukas. The duo is in charge of work from A to Z, from animation to music-making and programming.

The Scarlet Dear Inn invites gamers to follow the story of Elise, a mother of two, who “isn’t particularly special” until “an expected tragedy her to explore places full of unusual and interesting, but also dark and evil events.” Its creators cite Studio Ghibli films as their inspiration, along with The Witcher games, as well as Medieval Europe and Slavic folklore.

Craft and technology come together in a passion project

Návratilová also shares sneak peeks of the creative process on Twitter. "It takes a few minutes to embroider each frame. It depends on the number of colors in the embroidery and how complicated it is," one tweet reads.

If you find that complicated, think again: the embroidery is only one step of the process. Návratilová tweeted that, before embroidering, all characters must be digitized, which means creating vector graphics. After that, she changes the direction of the stitches to make the result look natural.

The huge interest in the game is indeed a great success "for an independent studio with minimal means for promotion," iDnes writes. However, the trial by fire consists in translating the success into sales numbers, especially as the release date of the game hasn't been announced yet.

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