Posts Tagged ‘robert yang’

Borges ‘Em Up: Intimate, Infinite

By Alice O'Connor on August 20th, 2014.

If I were to recommend one author to people wot like games, it’d be Argentine short story writer Jorges Luis Borges. Oh sure, video games crib from loads of fantasy and sci-fi authors, but that’s all set dressing. Borges is closer to what games are. His stories are often systems–rules, puzzles, and riddles–and concepts as much as they are narratives, all supporting each other. And, like the best games, his stories end once they’ve satisfactorily explored their ideas. Many devs I know dig him.

Intimate, Infinite might be a mite puzzling if you don’t know Borges, but I liked it. Released this week by Robert Yang (who did splendid interview-o-game-make series Level With Me for us), it’s an experimental collection of games adapting a Borges story or trying to capture some part of it.

Read the rest of this entry »

, , , .

22 Comments »

Wot I Think: Experiment 12

By Nathan Grayson on July 29th, 2013.

Terry Cavanagh. Jasper Byrne. Ian Snyder. Jack King-Spooner. Richard Perrin. Zaratustra. Michael Brough. Robert Yang. Alan Hazelden. Benn Powell. Jake Clover. TheBlackMask.

You have probably played games by all of these people. VVVVVV might ring a bell. Maybe Lone Survivor or Kairo. Or, if you’re really, really cool, Blues For Mittavinda. Etc, etc, etc. You get the idea. But now they’ve all congealed into a hivemind and made one giant, multi-stage/setting/genre melting pot of madness. Each developer had three days to make a contribution, and then the next creator picked up where the previous left off. Experiment 12 is insane. Experiment 12 is inconsistent. Experiment 12 is beautiful.

Read the rest of this entry »

, , , , , , , , , , .

30 Comments »

Star-Quashed Lovers: Radiator

By Adam Smith on July 9th, 2013.

Look to the skies. It’s a trailer for the new Polaris, a reworked and extended version of the first of the Radiator experiments. It’s a stargazing, although I imagine some people will consider the eyes to be firmly placed on the navel or shoes. New additions in this version include “completely re-done graphics, interactions, voice acting, narrative, a bit of full-frontal male nudity, and neck-strain-tastic Oculus Rift VR support”. The video contains a rear-end but we’ll have to wait for the full version for the full-frontal. It’s due in August and, for those who haven’t played it before, I’d say it’s the game that has best captured the beauty, stress and banality of being on a date.

Read the rest of this entry »

, , , .

14 Comments »

Specially Level With Me, Adam Foster – Part Two

By Robert Yang on December 6th, 2012.

In this very special installment of “Level With Me”, Robert Yang speaks with former celebrity modder / current Valve level designer Adam Foster about his work and process. In Part 2, we cover his work on Portal 2, game architecture, and how to design for players.

Robert Yang: Let’s talk Portal 2. It didn’t have any health-kits or power-ups, so how did you go about guiding players without those breadcrumbs?

Adam Foster: The game often worked best when it kept to the basic structure of the ‘test-chamber’ – walking through a door, GLaDOS says a funny line, you complete the test, GLaDOS says another funny line… It’s that constant, near-ritualised loop which can be subverted now and then, but you have to show the normal routine before the abnormal becomes surprising.
Read the rest of this entry »

, , , , .

33 Comments »

Specially Level With Me, Adam Foster – Part One

By Robert Yang on December 5th, 2012.

In this very special installment of “Level With Me”, Robert Yang speaks with former celebrity modder / current Valve level designer Adam Foster about his work and process. In part 1, we cover his early Half-Life 1 mods, Valve’s / his approach to storytelling, and his work on the Portal 2 announcement ARG.

Robert Yang: I want to talk about your first mod, Someplace Else. It’s a Xen level without any jumping puzzles. What makes a Xen level a “Xen level” to you?

Adam Foster: Being set in Xen, of course!
Read the rest of this entry »

, , , , , .

17 Comments »

Level with Me, Magnar Jenssen

By Robert Yang on November 7th, 2011.

Level with Me” is a series of conversations about level design between modder Robert Yang and a level designer of a first person game. At the end of each interview, they collaborate on a Portal 2 level shared across all the sessions – and at the very end of the series, you’ll get to download and play this “roundtable level.” This is Part 3 of 7.

Of everyone I spoke to, Magnar Jenssen is the only one still actively working in the game industry as a level designer at Avalanche Studios. Before, he also worked on Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter 2 (GRAW2) and Bionic Commando at GRIN, up until the studio’s demise. When he isn’t raking in all that sweet map-stamp money from arena_offblast for Team Fortress 2, he tinkers with some less profitable but absurdly polished single player Half-Life 2 mods.

Read the rest of this entry »

, , , , , , , .

40 Comments »

Level With Me, Dan Pinchbeck

By Robert Yang on October 25th, 2011.


“Level with Me” is a series of conversations about level design between modder Robert Yang and a level designer of a first person game. At the end of each interview, they collaborate on a Portal 2 level shared across all the sessions – and at the very end of the series, you’ll get to download and play this “roundtable level.” This is Part 1 of 7.

A few years back, Dan Pinchbeck and I were crowned “frontiersmen of modding” by Jim Rossignol. I felt like prom queen all over again. While I promptly sank into relative stagnation, Dan concentrated his powers into a brilliant point of light — a full-fledged retail reboot of the 2008 Source-powered ghost story mod Dear Esther, fresh from the beach with amazing art design by Robert Briscoe, backed by the Indie Fund, and now looking better than ever. (Warning: there are mild spoilers for the endings of S.T.A.L.K.E.R: Call of Pripyat and Metro 2033.)
Read the rest of this entry »

, , , .

42 Comments »

At the Mounting Anticipation Of Madness…

By Kieron Gillen on February 23rd, 2010.

This would be a bad time to tell you about my hay-fever, yes?

Hurrah! More of the critically acclaimed (by us) Radiator in the near future. Robert Yang sends news of its third part to debut in either March or April. One of the two, unless it doesn’t. What’s it about? Well, it’s called Much Madness and Robert describes it as: “You’re trying to escape a sinking submarine after stabbing your husband in the back repeatedly — to make matters worse, Emily Dickinson’s ghost keeps reciting those blasted poems of hers… Maybe drowning to death isn’t so bad?”. Bloody Emily Dickinson, that’s what I say. The trailer follows, but you can download the previous episodes over at Radiator’s site
Read the rest of this entry »

, , , .

44 Comments »

Handle With Care: Gamer Homophobia

By Kieron Gillen on October 6th, 2009.


We’ve covered art mod series Radiator before, both first part Polaris and the second Handle With Care. Because we are all about the art-wank. Or wanking generally, in my case. However, some people are less into splendid art-ejaculate, and Robert Yang writes about their responses over in this week’s Escapist. Of course, their problem isn’t pretension or even iffy Half-life-two-level design. It’s because you were “tricked” into playing a gay protagonist…

You might have, as some players did, invented a female persona for your player character and assumed it was the same young “lady” dating Dylan from my previous mod, “Polaris.” And then you would find out, whether from seeing the name “James” so often or from reading forum posts – that I had managed to “trick” you into playing as a homosexual male.
Read the rest of this entry »

, .

271 Comments »

Shrink Rapt – Radiator #2

By Alec Meer on July 17th, 2009.

Art-mod Radiator returns, and its (entirely standalone from the first part, worry not – but you do need HL2 Ep 2) second instalment is a dramatically different affair to the maudlin stargazing of the first episode, Polaris. It’s no less introspective, but if you’re the kind of chap who’s turned off by even a hint of navelgazing, consider this: it has explosions.
Read the rest of this entry »

, , , , .

42 Comments »