Hit The Decks: Record Tripping

By John Walker on February 16th, 2010 at 7:36 pm.

Go on, guess what kind of game it is from this screenshot.

This is rather awesome. A webgame called Record Tripping. The game is controlled with your mousewheel, which acts as a means of record scratching. Beginning with a record player, then expanding the idea into increasingly obscured scenarios, you control the playing of a passage from Alice In Wonderland. Scroll up to scratch forward, back to to go backward. Then holding down the left mouse button will slow the record down. There’s a background track for each of the five chapters, and three difficulty levels for each chapter.

Created by Bell Brothers, it’s hard to learn much about Dan and John from their site. Other than to learn what they’re tweeting, listening to, and renting from Netflix. But clearly there’s some real design smarts going on here.

The game is absolutely beautiful, and densely detailed. The load time is enough to tip you off to this. And while brief, the imagination on display is truly impressive. It doesn’t worry that it needs to tell you what to do, instead letting you use your common sense in each situation. I really would like a lot more of it.

More than anything it Record Tripping reminds me of Negativland. The British voice reading the story, perhaps. Digging around it seems to be one Davina Porter, who appears to make her living reading audio books. Her clipped, well-enunciated English reminds me most of the beginning of The ABCs of Anarchism. Add in the scratchy noise and the connection was made. But maybe that’s just me. Although here the Brothers have put links to let people buy the tracks they’ve used. So not that Negativland…

It’s smart, and silly, which makes for an excellent combination. Cheers to Rachel for the nudge.

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22 Comments »

  1. Metalfish says:

    I player a bit of this a few days ago. The track eventually started to grate, but ’twas good fun.

    Actually this was in the b3ta.com newsletter: “We once had an idea about making a game with a scroll wheel – you’d rub it and it would simulate female masturbation.”

    This game was probably a more marketable idea.

  2. Kelron says:

    Nice little game, and good music.

    • Kakksakkamaddafakka says:

      Gotta love that intro to Brothers on a Hotel Bed.

  3. Nighthood says:

    Wow John, you know Negativland? I always thought they were a fairly obscure band, maybe I was wrong.

  4. linfosoma says:

    Somehow, I think they could have done something more creative than stealing music from Gorillaz, but it’s a nice game.

    • Stupoider says:

      Stealing music from the Gorillaz? :O But they give credit to them in the music section! And it does sound quite entrancing.

    • Psychopomp says:

      But El Manana is a lovely song!

    • Stupoider says:

      Exactly, Psychocomp! I’ve been listening to a Gorillaz album ever since I unearthed it from a box about a week ago, and I’m still in love with it. 8D Where the hell was I when most of this stuff was released?

    • Shatners Bassoon says:

      They may have permission to use it, considering they have also made the following.

      http://www.gorillazgroove.com

      Which could very well have been licenced by Gorillaz. But then again maybe it wasn’t.

    • terry says:

      Pretty sure that Gorillaz don’t give a crap unless they’re earning money off it, and I think, given their connection with DJ Dangermouse, they’d most likely support it.

      edit: their/they’re :( I never do that!

  5. Phydaux says:

    I stumbled upon this a few days ago. Some of the games/puzzles are better than others. By “better” I mean, the scroll-wheel-scratches-record-and-affects-game, when it produces a pleasing scratch in the music/speech as opposed to the games that are frantic scrolling and therefore frantic scratching.

    It’s a lovely idea, and I’d like to see it expanded upon.

  6. Taillefer says:

    Coincidentally, I listen to audiobooks when playing slow games; I went through the same Alice one they used playing King’s Bounty.

  7. xot says:

    Great concept and aesthetics but utterly fails in execution. Could have been interesting if the audio was relevant to the experience.

    • Hodge says:

      For me the opposite was true. I loved that nothing in the game had anything to do with anything else. It was happy to just be batshit crazy and not explain anything. Bring back surrealism in games!

      That said, I agree that the idea would also be interesting in something more serious. Audio manipulation in general is something that has been crazily overlooked by game designers.

  8. fam says:

    how wonderful!

  9. Frostbeard says:

    Nice find. Thanks

  10. Ian says:

    I played this on Kongregate last week. I got a bit frustrated with it but I really liked how it was put together, all in all.

  11. John Peat says:

    Whilst the game aspect is a bit simplistic – it’s use of sound/music is extraordinarily magnificent to the nth degree – truly, truly fantastic.

  12. Pod says:

    I think this is the first time I’ve seen the word “clipped” refer to a voice belonging to someone who wasn’t in the military.

  13. nutterguy says:

    Really fun little game! Excellent music and equally excellent design and artwork.
    Thanks John.