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Behind the Folklore that Inspired Spirit of the North

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If you are unfamiliar with Spirit of the North you play as an ordinary red fox whose story becomes entwined with the guardian of the Northern Lights, a female spirit fox. As you journey over the mountains and under red-stained skies, you’ll discover more about your companion and land left in ruin.

For Spirit of the North we took a mix of Finnish folklore and Icelandic landscapes to create what we believe is a very unique experience for players.

The folklore that inspired Spirit of the North is based on the Finnish legend of “Tulikettu.” According to the legend when the “Fire Fox” runs over the snowy hills its tail fur brushes up against stones creating sparks. These embers of light ascend into the skies and form the Northern Lights. The Finnish word for Northern Lights is revontulet which means fox’s fires.

Standing stones or Runestones were another big inspiration for the game, we thought they would be great objects to interact with and use as objectives or puzzles. Most historical Runestones or Standing stones are found in Scandinavia which allows them to fit the overall theme of Spirit of the North quite well.

The scenery in Spirit of the North was heavily inspired by Icelandic landscapes. Tayler (co-developer) visited Iceland in 2017 and was inspired by the bold landscapes. Black sand, hexagonal basalt pillars, treeless vistas, blue glacier ice, and geothermal pools all made it into the final game design.

Spirit of the North took our two-person studio around two and a half years to develop and release. Over that time we held true to our vision and original inspiration. We think Spirit of the North is a world that everyone can relax and enjoy. Spirit of the North is available digitally on PS4.

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Behind the Folklore that Inspired Spirit of the North