Category Archives: games

Pitch Comments

Ijumaa_is

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I don’t have a link to this comment because it is awating moderation and won’t show up normally. Jessica’s Pitch was about the future of online media, through short videos she wants to educate us on the current state of online media, and the overall space of online media in terms of content creation and trends.

My comment set out to ask her how she could veiw her own place in the space of online media and asking how could she mould the future of the online world. As a filmaker/Youtuber I gave a few tips about making her informative videos engaging.

I think my comment was applicable and considerate towards her interests, suggesting another level of perspective into her work (through the lense of the self). Through inviting Jessica to consider how she may edit her videos, I am expressing a desire to see her do well and make…

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D.A Pitch – ‘Growth’

 

 

In short my D.A is a music project titled, ‘Growth.’ The intetion of the D.A is to consider the future of the planet and humanity. I attempt to represent what I would like to see in the future informed by the now (my current state of being). I want to see the growth of a better world, full of peace, love and compassion. The aim of the EP is to inspire the youth to band together to bring about change and making them realise that if they look within themselves, they have all the power they could ask for!

Here is a link to my D.A, namely my ‘Growth’ EP. I would like the feedback to be on soundcloud, but you are welcome to comment feedback on the blog post!

https://soundcloud.com/ijumaa_is/sets/growth

Research:


http://www.ancientgreece.com/s/Theatre/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Queen_live_performances

Dystopia vs. Utopia: Depictions of Future in Video Games

It’s taken a fair bit of time to get the idea down to something as concise as this, and a fair few iterations along the way, and to be honest I’m still not even sure if I’ll stick with it, but hopefully it’ll work itself out.

For the final project I’m thinking of looking at video games (shock horror), but more specifically, how said video games depict the future, be it through general game design, architecture, etc. Is this depiction akin to Dystopia, or Utopia? And more importantly, how closely does this depiction fall in line with the reality of our current world.

This idea came from watching Jayden play Horizon: Zero Dawn. Mostly, I was intrigued by the amount of nature present in a game about robot dinosaurs and a dystopian future version of Earth. It was something new, and I thought it could be interesting to see if there was correlations between what was happening in the world at the time, and the dystopian video games that were produced at this time. Did the old dystopian imagery of a grey metropolis covered earth start to seem a little too close to the current reality?

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H:ZD (2017): Gameplay Wallpaper

Now bear in mind that I haven’t, as of this moment, played this game (Although that’s definitely one of my “research” avenues for this project) so any of my very rough descriptions of the storyline could definitely be not correct in the slightest. But getting back to the point…

I’m mostly interested in how, in previous years, depictions of Utopia would usually involve a return to nature, and life in abundance. And yet, the world of Horizon appears to blur the line between Utopia and Dystopia; a world covered in nature, with spanning landscapes and skylines over mountainous ranges … marred by roaming robotic creations, and the lasting artifacts of a very scientifically advanced era gone by.

For this project, I’m going to be mainly focusing on ARPG (Action Role-Playing Games), as I feel these games are the main ones to deal and focus on the sort of idea I’m looking to investigate. Some that spring to mind apart from Horizon:ZD are Fallout 4 and Bioshock. (an FPS but relevant nonetheless). Feel free to suggest some others, if you know any that might be helpful for this project.

 

Fallout-landscape
“Dystopia. A perfect world with an imperfection. The societies living in most dystopias are aware that their world is imperfect, however it is beyond their control to fix it.”

I think the thing that intrigues me the most about Horizon and it’s depictions of the future are that it seems as if the world went too far with their scientific reaches, and now the people left behind are fighting the remnants of this world, with very traditional tools, and crafted weaponry.

I’m not just planning on looking at the actual scenery in the games however, I’d also like to take a look at the design in absolutely everything the games have to offer, from the title screens to the menu options, and how these reflect and assist the overall atmosphere of the game itself. (just like Nier: Automata’s menu is directly linked to the game itself.)

(Related: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HlSpfIx3wIA – worth a watch, language warning )

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Nier: Automata gameplay screenshot

I’m hoping this will lead to somewhere informative, and let’s be real this will be an excellent excuse to play some dystopian video games, and to get to actually utilize some of my design degree, just not in the way it was initially intended. Stay tuned.

 

Audio: The True Hero In All Video Games?

The effect of video, images and all kinds of visual landscapes on our minds, are very vivid, and we commonly highlight the concept that a picture tells 1000 words – Indeed! But, why don’t we add the dimensional layer of Audio, that not only allows you to vividly visualise something with your eyes, but also being effected in an audible way to which heightens our senses, makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up, creates tension and abruptly affects our reactions.

Video Games have endured a long journey from its early developments in the 8-bit Era (Third-generation consoles) 1972–1988 where simple, retro, chiptune electronic sounds from consoles such as Famicom/Nintendo (NES), Sega & Atari would be created for popular games like Pong! & Space Invaders in their super early developments with                        “one pulse sounds” and no background sounds. Its not until 1985 with games such as Super Mario Bros. when rhythmic strings of sounds and musical compositions would be created to provide aural clues in relation to the gameplay, where most commonly the music would gradually rise in tempo to induce a reaction in the user that time is essentially running out!

Throughout the 16, 32 & Early 64-bit Eras, musical compositions which were relative to the current setting of the gameplay would be created originally for those video games only. Where electronic music producers would create an album of soundtracks for entire games as they allowed for a larger amount of storage on Compact Disc (CDs).

It’s not until the 6th Generation gaming and onwards where sound design and audio within Video Games have become a collection and creative recipe of all variants of it’s predecessors. If you can, picture (aurally), soundscapes and sound design which create an urge in the user to feel emotion or react to sound in a way that effects their gameplay. The Metal Gear Solid Series is an excellent example of this,  where the gameplay soundtrack seamlessly mix into high-tense environments and then to more calming scenes where the user is safe in their current environment. Along with all Foley, Background, found sound design, the entire experience covers a range of depth, with viciously noticeable sounds in the foreground and the more subtle elements which create the atmosphere but aren’t necessarily always noticeable.

Without these complimentary aural senses the user is almost playing the entire video game blind. As their reactions to the challenges within the game assist to solve the obstacles the video game possesses. Essentially, sound design is the true reality behind what you see with your eyes, must also be seen with your ears.

The aim and “end game” for my research is to highlight how video games use audio in a creative and most interesting way to induce a reaction from the gamer – (And I’m not talking about Dance Dance Revolution, or Guitar Hero variants) The search for “clever use” of audio in video games is very limited, which I believe will be a challenge in itself. However, exploring tangents of this idea of “Audio Effect/Driven Video Games” will be something I have to explore further and then hopefully narrow down from there.

The Search continues – any ideas will be kindly appreciated

– Dan