Burly Men at Sea

Folktale Adventure Game

Burly Men at Sea is the second game my husband and I developed as Brain&Brain. Told in the form of a branching folktale, the story is about a trio of large, bearded fishermen who set sail for the unknown. You play as storyteller and wayfinder, shaping a custom tale in a series of encounters with creatures from Scandinavian folklore.

Our team of two developed the game during our own adventures as nomads and, at one point, farmhands. As creative lead, I was responsible for all writing, art, design, and animation. I also created a set of twelve illustrated, hardcover books, one for each branch of the game’s story.

Released in September 2016, the game was one of TIME's top ten of the year and was granted a number of other honors, including exhibition in the Smithsonian and honorable mention for Excellence in Narrative (IGF 2017).

Burly Men at Sea is available on Switch, PC/Mac, iOS, Android, and PS4/Vita.


Art, Animation, Story, Game Design, UI Design

The game's dialogue is displayed in a storybook-style layout, complete with animated nautical typographic marks.

A sample of the game's animation style. Animals and other elements in the environment react to player interaction.

Each scene uses a different interactive viewport shape, themed to or otherwise integrated into its environment.

Hand-lettered logo for the game.