Dishonored 2: The unconscious body piles exhibition

I took last week off to play Dishonored 2 [official site]. That might seem strange, but this was a game I didn’t want to play for work. I wanted to approach it completely differently, play it like I would play games when I was a teenager, no pressures to produce copy by a deadline, no weighing up pros and cons as I went, and most of all, the liberty to luxuriate in playing slowly, meticulously, without worrying that I’d not reach the ending before the internet had moved on. So of course I’ve got so much to write about it now, because apparently I can’t switch off the work bit of my brain. I’ve got a few features half developed, but I thought I’d get the most important and pressing article done straight away. Here’s a gallery of the piles of unconscious bodies I left on my way.

Sorry some are murky, not that I’ve absolutely any idea what being able to see piles of bodies more clearly is going to offer anyone. You can click to make them bigger though. I’d already edited all the pics before realising just how weird a thing this is to have done. But hey-ho, demand your money back. Click on the images to see them lots bigger, and enjoy my artistic progress, as I develop from simply dumping them in roughshod piles in gloomy corners, to arranging them in diorama, before my great dénouement of seeing how big of a pile I could create.

I like to think things start off well. This isn’t just a couple of sleepy bodies dropped in a corner. This is a splendid pile of identical blue guards, topped off with one red guard. I call it I Scream Sundae.

These three chaps could well be having a lovely sit down after a hard day’s grumbling about their hive-mind complaints, or stamping on rats. But actually they’re half-strangled and sleeping it off.

This is more emblematic of my early work, where I took a more rough-n-ready approach, just dumping them atop one another. Here there are actually probably five drowsy victims – count the limbs.

This piece is called, The Kitchen Is Fully Stocked.

I dedicate this work to the anonymous artist behind Casualties Of The Paris Commune, 1871.

Lie Back And Think Of Serkonos

Victory For The Common Man

Here we enter my mid-period pieces, where I begin to experiment with scenes, almost telling short stories with the arrangements. Here I think is clearly portrayed the tale of two uncles reassuring a concerned nephew about his upcoming exams.

I shall be honest here. In the first of my Witch Works, my goal was to arrange the sleeping sorceresses in a pentagram, but this proved a small degree of effort and instead opted for a more freeform glyph.

As you can see, this is more typical of my mid-period oeuvre, the second of my Witch Works, which is entitled, Waiting For MacBeth.

And now, bang up to date, my most recent piece, tentatively titled “GARGANTUA”. It’s interesting to note how the human eye attempts to deny the true scale of the pile here, assuming only the visible surface to be made of bodies, perhaps piled up over a discarded cabinet. That is not the case – this is bodies all the way down. A mixed media of traditional guards, some witches, and uniquely in this collection, some actually dead bodies previously killed by another artist and left lying around for me to procure. It’s composed of approximately twelve bodies in total, and pushed my chosen medium to its very limits, as Dishonored 2 really doesn’t like it when the piles get too high and starts having them supernaturally wiggle their way loose to slough off to the floor. Achieving this height was no mean feat. £3,500.

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  1. Premium User Badge

    Skabooga says:

    Walker really hit his stride in the early mid-period of his work, as exemplified in The Kitchen Is Fully Stocked. A true union of technical ability and coherent theme, as contrasted with his later period body-stacking endeavors, which, while a spectacle to behold, lacked as firm an authorial intent, and which noted critic Buddy Stackerton characterized, with only minor hyperbole, as "Jenga with laudanum addicts."
  1. Chorltonwheelie says:

    Oh Baby! This is the stuff my man.
    I have a screenshot of every single last guard at Lady Boyle’s posh do piled up on her sisters bed. Took me hours.
    It’s the group snoring that does it for me.

  2. tigerfort says:

    And now I’m disappointed that this is the only result for the “what happened to this site?” tag. Still, great work from John here; I’m sure it’ll keep the critics busy for quite a while.

  3. klops says:

    My favourite of John’s work is “Lie Back And Think Of Serkonos”.

    • Premium User Badge

      Serrit says:

      Yeah think I’m in agreement there, although “I Scream Sundae” unfortunately stole the show early on for “name wot made me laugh the most”.

  4. Premium User Badge

    Mungrul says:

    There’s a bug in the Royal Conservatory level that can prevent you from getting non-lethal if you knock unconscious the two witches in the alley near the start. The way around it is to sleep dart them before triggering the non-lethal ending.
    I didn’t know which ones were causing the problem at the time, so… link to images.akamai.steamusercontent.com

    Then there’s my attempt at posing dudes. Well, it’s a photo studio, what did they expect?
    link to images.akamai.steamusercontent.com
    Similarly, I used a single plastic bin to clear entire levels of Deus Ex: Mankind Divided. Here’s a bunch I crammed into a toilet stall, and a shot after they started clipping through and I had to open the door and let them spill out:
    link to images.akamai.steamusercontent.com
    link to images.akamai.steamusercontent.com

  5. Premium User Badge

    Skabooga says:

    Walker really hit his stride in the early mid-period of his work, as exemplified in The Kitchen Is Fully Stocked. A true union of technical ability and coherent theme, as contrasted with his later period body-stacking endeavors, which, while a spectacle to behold, lacked as firm an authorial intent, and which noted critic Buddy Stackerton characterized, with only minor hyperbole, as “Jenga with laudanum addicts.”

  6. stele says:

    Masterful work, John! You had me in tears! Where can I send the £3,500?

  7. Daymare says:

    I feel after having perfected the scene-setting on a macro-level it’s time to start working on the smaller details now. I’d like to see one where they are sorted in order of escalating facial expressions. Say, from vaguely confused (right) to fully-fledged horror (left).

    Either way, I’m glad John has proven that not only are video games art, you can actually create art in video games!

  8. Premium User Badge

    DelrueOfDetroit says:

    I couldn’t find it but just pretend I put a clip of The Simpsons when there are two men knocked out on the floor and Homer giggles while placing one’s hand on the others bum.

  9. deborah says:

    I created an account just to say “I love you!” I carefully arrange my victims, on a comfy couch or bed if possible, and often screenshot the results. You, sir, have taken it to an entirely new level by giving titles to your art installations. I am inspired.

  10. kraftcheese says:

    Ahhh…reminds me of the work I did in Oblivion in the late 00s; it was mixed media, mostly using bandits.

  11. Rumpelstiltskin says:

    I recall reading that the idea that you can neatly incapacitate someone with a well-placed hit on the head and have them stay safely unconscious is a Hollywood myth. Even choking with an ether-drenched hanky doesn’t work, at least definitely not instantly, and not for long.

    • Premium User Badge

      phuzz says:

      Yep, if you’re hit on the head hard enough to cause unconsciousness, then there’s a very high chance of brain damage and you should go to a hospital and get your noggin checked out.
      Unless you’re a guard working for an evil villain, in that case it’s fine.

    • Premium User Badge

      DelrueOfDetroit says:

      Yup. Another way to say “knocked out” is “in a coma.”

  12. DeathBeforeDiscomfort says:

    This is the most uplifting thing that has happened so far today, and it´s only 13.15. Imagine what the rest of the day might bring.

  13. A Gentleman and a Taffer says:

    This is an Atrocious Exhibition. 10 stars.

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