Braid is a platform and puzzle video game developed by independent software developer Jonathan Blow. The game was released on August 6, 2008 for the Xbox 360's Xbox Live Arcade service. A Microsoft Windows version was released on April 10, 2009. Hothead Games ported and released the game to Mac OS X on May 20, 2009 and the PlayStation Network on November 12, 2009. A Linux port, created by Ryan C. Gordon, was released December 14, 2010 as part of the second Humble Indie Bundle.
The basic story elements unfold as the protagonist, Tim, attempts to rescue a princess from a monster. Text passages laid throughout the game reveal a multifaceted narrative, giving clues about Tim's contemplations and motivations. The game features traditional aspects of the platform genre while integrating various powers of time-manipulation. Using these abilities, the player progresses the story by finding and assembling jigsaw puzzle pieces.
Blow designed the game as a personal critique of contemporary trends in game development. He funded the three-year project with his own money. Webcomic artist David Hellman drew the artwork, which underwent several iterations until it satisfied Blow's vision. A preliminary version of Braid without the final artwork won the "Innovation in Game Design" award at the 2006 Independent Games Festival; the final version received additional accolades. The game received highly positive reviews from critics, eventually becoming the highest-critically-rated title on Xbox Live. Some reviewers, however, criticized the game's price relative to its length.
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