Posts Tagged ‘Robin Arnott’

Weird Cyberspace Wanderings With Im Null

I'm hung up on its website name. Say it aloud: mooosh. Mooosh. Mooosh mooosh. Mooosh.

“You might like this,” my flatmate tells me, sending me a link to Im null with no explanation. The free browser-based game’s site won’t explain what it is either, simply asking you to define yourself with a number then dropping you into a void with a few white wireframe models. Ah, yes, this is something I might like: a weird little cyberworld to explore, and multiplayer at that. I think. Probably.

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Interview: Robin Arnott On Biofeedback

Beepity beep

Image by Ken Fager (used under CC license)

One of the fascinating things about the Oculus Rift headset is the way it forces players and developers to consider the body in relation to a game. A lot of the talk is about how to represent your avatar’s body. There are questions like whether it’s a problem when you look down and see “your” body but in the wrong clothes, and fascinating art projects designed around you being in someone else’s skin. But another avenue of exploration when it comes to incorporating bodies in gaming is biofeedback.

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Of Mice And Gamepads: The Future Of Controllers

If I’m going to be dull and reductive about it, playing videogames works like this: we tell a game something through an input device – say, a gamepad, motion contoller, touch screen or keyboard – and get a response back in the form of images or sound. It’s like a conversation, but it’s shaped by the devices we use to talk. Without the Wiimote, there is no Wii Sports. Without the touch screen, there is no Fingle or Bloop.

If I don’t own the relevant controller, then I can’t play these games. But what if the controller doesn’t even exist? Many games are impossible to conceive of because we don’t have the hardware to act as muse. Are we living on a junk diet of gamepads and mice – or a rich land of controller plenty?

Let’s have a chat with a few developers and see wot what they think.

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Soundself Has Got People Talking

Oh look, it's Malachai Rectum again

It bears reminding ourselves that old-school RPGs and adventure games with sky-high budgets aren’t the real reason that crowdsourcing is a tantalising new model for game development. Smaller, madder ideas with eminently achievable funding goals are why Kickstarter and IndieGoGo are a force for good. Soundself ticks all the right boxes – novel but not ridiculous concept, sensible target, playable prototype.

The ‘not a game’ lobby will doubtless be out in force should Robin Arnott’s voice-controlled curio achieve any kind of profile, but the rest of us can enjoy tinkering with the odd, mesmeric sound and vision generated in response to our own voices. It’s almost self-hypnosis.
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