In Windward, players will take on the role of an earnest inventor determined to explore the skies. In his world there is no ground to speak of - just infinite sky and floating rocks. Players will be able to traverse this fantasy world using the flying machine - a crazy airship designed to allow people to move between islands. Gameplay will mainly be based around story and exploration, with players being allowed to go anywhere in the world at any time and take content at their own pace. Dungeon crawling will also make an appearance, with challenging puzzles and huge fights.
Focus will be placed on player decision. Players will be free to fly wherever they want whenever they want, although they may not have the knowhow or items to complete certain tasks. For players who dislike a game having very little direction, the main story will allow players to see a large chunk of the games content. Of course, you can deviate from the main story at any time to explore.
Another big factor in development will be immersion. Rather than attempting to create a realistic world, Windward will create a world with a supernatural feel. All story and player information will be told through ingame texts. Any tutorial information will be spoken by NPC characters presented in a way that does not break the fourth wall. Of course, player understanding of texts will be key to the game experience. To encourage players to think for themselves and memorize things, the game will not include a “Quest log” feature. Instead, if players forget what their goal is, they must return to the NPC that gave the quest and ask for clarification. All this helps foster an adventurous feeling in the player.
The final main development philosophy is diversity. The game will feature a large selection of environments, each with its own culture, geography and overall “feel”. The aim of the world design is to make every island feel like a unique place.