TUMBLR

A scrapbook of stuff I'm reading / looking at / listening to / thinking about...



Posts tagged "video games"

Jan 18, 2014
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GTAV: War Correspondent

I started playing GTA Online in passive mode as a combat photographer. I should add that my character is wearing camo pants, a black jacket with “MEDIA” printed across the back, and a helmet. I try very hard to find and use the WEZL News van to drive to the hot spots to take pictures. It’s fun to see who “get it” and let me get up close while they fight. Most people seem to have fun with it, but there is always one guy who can’t stop trying to run me over.

cf. Street photography in GTAV (via)

Oct 18, 2013
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Street Photography V

PetaPixel:

Photography student and street photographer Fernando Pereira Gomes is used to practicing his craft on the streets of New York, but recently, he’s taken to shooting photos on the virtual streets of Los Santos, San Andreas, the fictional city of Grand Theft Auto V.

Here’s an interview with Gomes at Mashable:

I’ll go on long walks, and sometimes I’ll find a background on the street that really pleases me, and maybe I’ll hang around there and see if anything interesting happens. I can’t go out and look for the photo — you have to anticipate what is going to happen around you, and you have to react to it with your camera.

I love this. I don’t have an XBOX live subscription, so every once in a while I’ll take a picture of the screen with my phone and post it to instagram. (I did this while playing Red Dead Redemption, too.)

Follow Gomes’ tumblr here. (via)

Apr 25, 2013
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Catching The Big Ridiculous Fish


  “Ideas are like fish. If you want to catch little fish, you can stay in the shallow water. But if you want to catch the big fish, you’ve got to go deeper. Down deep, the fish are more powerful and more pure.They’re huge and abstract. And they’re very beautiful.”
  —David Lynch

Catching The Big Ridiculous Fish

“Ideas are like fish. If you want to catch little fish, you can stay in the shallow water. But if you want to catch the big fish, you’ve got to go deeper. Down deep, the fish are more powerful and more pure.They’re huge and abstract. And they’re very beautiful.”
David Lynch

Apr 17, 2013
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Portrait of an inbox.

Portrait of an inbox.

Apr 08, 2013
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Feb 11, 2013
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Kentucky Route Zero - screenshot from a very interesting point-and-click adventure game suggested by Jez

Kentucky Route Zero - screenshot from a very interesting point-and-click adventure game suggested by Jez

Oct 22, 2012
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Jun 18, 2012
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Tom Bissell, Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter

Finished Bissell’s Magic Hours and headed straight into this. Good read. Came to it through Mark’s review. Some notes:

The trouble with videogames is that they’re really fucking fun.

You love them because they’re fun, but you hate them because they take you away from what you feel like you should be doing:


  The most consistently pleasurable pursuit in my life is playing video games. Unfortunately, the least useful and financially solvent pursuit in my life is also playing video games…


Building worlds is what (the) videogames (that I like) do best.

Talking about Red Dead Redemption in an interview, Bissell, the fiction writer, said:


  There’s a sense of fiction in every video game… It creates a world for itself that you want to obey… Games tell stories best when they’re elliptical and ambiguous and there’s a sense of roaming and freedom…


Those worlds make maps in your mind:


  I often wonder where these mental maps reside in my mind. The same place where I have stored my extensive understanding of Lower Manhattan or my sketchier grasp of central Paris?


And re-playing the best videos is like re-visiting a city you love: you go back, if not to re-live an experience, to have a new one.


  As the game designer Jesse Schell writes in The Art of Game Design, “The game is not the experience. The game enables the experience, but it is not the experience.”


Storytelling is not the be-all, end-all device for making meaning.

“Interactivity sabotages storytelling.” That’s a quote from Bissell’s review of L.A. Noire.. He explains in the book:


  the video-game form is incompatible with traditional concepts of narrative. Stories are about time passing and narrative progression. Games are about challenge, which frustrates the passing of time and impedes narrative progression.


There are two kinds of storytelling usually deployed in videogames:


  One is the framed narrative of the game itself, set in the fictional “present” and traditionally doled out in what are called cut scenes or cinematic, which in most cases take control away from the gamer, who is forced to watch the scene unfold. The other, which some game designers and theoreticians refer to as the “ludonarrative,” is unscripted and gamer-determined—the “fun” portions of the “played” game—and usually amounts to some frenetic reconnection of getting from point A to point B.


In many narrative-based games, any meaning that derives from the game is often a battle between the game’s author(s) and the game’s player: “Authors had their say in static moments such as cut scenes, and gamers had their say during play.”

But there is a new model emerging in which a game’s meaning comes not out of the story, but more out of the actual gameplay — this type of game is benefitted by an “austere approach to narrative,” one that the company Valve (maker of Portal and Left 4 Dead 2) is very good at. In those games, very little is explained by the authors. (“The impulse to explain is the Achilles’ heel of all genre work.”)


  For designers who want to change and startle gamers, they as authors must relinquish the impulse not only to declare meaning but also to suggest meaning. They have to think of themselves as shopkeepers of many possible meanings…


Recommended.

Tom Bissell, Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter

Finished Bissell’s Magic Hours and headed straight into this. Good read. Came to it through Mark’s review. Some notes:

The trouble with videogames is that they’re really fucking fun.

You love them because they’re fun, but you hate them because they take you away from what you feel like you should be doing:

The most consistently pleasurable pursuit in my life is playing video games. Unfortunately, the least useful and financially solvent pursuit in my life is also playing video games…

Building worlds is what (the) videogames (that I like) do best.

Talking about Red Dead Redemption in an interview, Bissell, the fiction writer, said:

There’s a sense of fiction in every video game… It creates a world for itself that you want to obey… Games tell stories best when they’re elliptical and ambiguous and there’s a sense of roaming and freedom…

Those worlds make maps in your mind:

I often wonder where these mental maps reside in my mind. The same place where I have stored my extensive understanding of Lower Manhattan or my sketchier grasp of central Paris?

And re-playing the best videos is like re-visiting a city you love: you go back, if not to re-live an experience, to have a new one.

As the game designer Jesse Schell writes in The Art of Game Design, “The game is not the experience. The game enables the experience, but it is not the experience.

Storytelling is not the be-all, end-all device for making meaning.

“Interactivity sabotages storytelling.” That’s a quote from Bissell’s review of L.A. Noire.. He explains in the book:

the video-game form is incompatible with traditional concepts of narrative. Stories are about time passing and narrative progression. Games are about challenge, which frustrates the passing of time and impedes narrative progression.

There are two kinds of storytelling usually deployed in videogames:

One is the framed narrative of the game itself, set in the fictional “present” and traditionally doled out in what are called cut scenes or cinematic, which in most cases take control away from the gamer, who is forced to watch the scene unfold. The other, which some game designers and theoreticians refer to as the “ludonarrative,” is unscripted and gamer-determined—the “fun” portions of the “played” game—and usually amounts to some frenetic reconnection of getting from point A to point B.

In many narrative-based games, any meaning that derives from the game is often a battle between the game’s author(s) and the game’s player: “Authors had their say in static moments such as cut scenes, and gamers had their say during play.”

But there is a new model emerging in which a game’s meaning comes not out of the story, but more out of the actual gameplay — this type of game is benefitted by an “austere approach to narrative,” one that the company Valve (maker of Portal and Left 4 Dead 2) is very good at. In those games, very little is explained by the authors. (“The impulse to explain is the Achilles’ heel of all genre work.”)

For designers who want to change and startle gamers, they as authors must relinquish the impulse not only to declare meaning but also to suggest meaning. They have to think of themselves as shopkeepers of many possible meanings…

Recommended.

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What if Wes Anderson made point-and-click adventure games?

While replaying Day of the Tentacle yesterday, I had a thought: I like Wes Anderson a lot more if I think of his  movies as point-and-click adventure games…

Above: The SCUMM Aquatic by Mads Herman

What if Wes Anderson made point-and-click adventure games?

While replaying Day of the Tentacle yesterday, I had a thought: I like Wes Anderson a lot more if I think of his movies as point-and-click adventure games…

Above: The SCUMM Aquatic by Mads Herman

Jun 04, 2012
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The pitch you’re making when you pitch to a publisher is a financial one. You’re saying, ‘Here’s my argument for why if you give me this many millions of dollars I’ll return thirty-five times that.’ That’s really the calculation they’re figuring out. If you’re making a pitch to the fans, you’re saying, ‘Hey, I’m gonna do this creative thing that’s gonna be awesome, and who wants to help me?’ It’s not even an argument, it’s more like an invitation to a party.
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