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Colour Clash uses Missile Command-style gaming to create artworks

Colour Clash [itch.io page] is a little game about firing projectiles to make artworks. There’s a Missile Command-ness where you’re using limited reserves to stop these alien blobs from reaching the ground, but here it’s more about the visual effect you’re creating in tandem with staving off the swarm. When you’re done the level is presented to you as an artwork and your high score is presented as the number of visitors it’s had.

The results are similar each time so unless you get really into the high score side of the game it only has a short lifespan as a game. That said there are a few resource management elements I was interested in. I mean, you only start with 30 projectiles yourself and there’s no way to pick more up so if you want a higher score you have to keep an eye out for where the swarm’s pathways might intersect, maximising how effective each little explosion bloom can be. I found that the more efficient I became the more compact my final artworks were because I was waiting for the invader’s pathways to intersect.

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The game’s developer, Victor Weidar, explains that Julie Mehretu’s art was the inspiration for the game. Art21’s video of Mehretu at work on one of her large-scale pieces I think helps present that inspiration:

But this interview does more to illuminate her way of thinking about what she creates:

My first attempts were these firework-looking things, expansive and sprawling. It reminded me of an allium bloom – Allium cristophii (Star of Persia) specifically.

Anyway, Colour Clash is pay-what-you-want over on itch.io for Mac and Windows. It’s rather charming.