It's been a while since we've heard much from Amanita Design, but in this case silence is golden, as the Czech developer has clearly been working hard behind the scenes. The creator of Machinarium has recently announced production on not one but two new adventures, Botanicula and Samorost 3.
Botanicula is about five tiny tree critters who begin a quest to save the last seed when their treehouse is invaded by parasites. The "simple" point-and-click game is led by Amanita's animator Jara Plachy and will be a mid-sized project that falls somewhere between Samorost 2 and Machinarium. The first screenshots unveiled demonstrate once again the studio's uniquely surreal glimpse into the natural world. According to Amanita founder Jakub Dvorsky, production of Botanicula is about half-finished, currently on course for release late this year or early in 2012.
Perhaps even more exciting, but further off in the distance, is Samorost 3, the latest sequel to the acclaimed Flash-based series. While the previous two games have been short, browser-based adventures (the first being entirely free), Dvorsky promises that the new game will be "full-sized game with full-HD graphics." Few details about the game have yet been revealed, but the designers are aiming for a more accessible game than Machinarium and a much higher level of sophistication this time around, more like an "interactive toy" than a traditional game. There will still be a main quest, but when finished, players will be encouraged to continue exploring the Samorost universe looking for additional Easter Eggs.
Production on Samorost 3 has only recently begun, and the developers aren't yet venturing a likely release target at this point, but given the scope of the project, we can expect wait a fair while for this one. To help pass the time, however, Amanita will be releasing Osada, a free "interactive music video", which will be launched soon on the studio's website.