Two works demonstrated how a game called Unreal can be transformed from its original bloody shoot-em-up massacre into something that transports you into an experience that leaves you feeling tranquil, cuddled and warmly loved by nature itself. In Summerbranch, by igloo you are put inside the heart of the UK’s New Forest, where the joystick becomes a navigator allowing you to explore a scene that lets you pretend to be Maid MaryAnne, out for a stroll or Robin Hood camouflaging himself as he lurks, watching for the next wealthy patron to pilfer. Enjoyable for a fantasy was having the eye-view of a fluffy bunny, poking about for nibbles or scouting for places to shelter and bed down. Headphones complete the impressive experience with piped in sound of the forest itself. All in 3D, it makes your head spin a bit, until you get used to moving about, and once adjusted, you might not want to leave this digital forest. There are no hidden menacing creatures to threaten your visit, just sun dappled leaves and moss covered trees all wrapping you in its calming peace.-- Lisa's report of Artful Gaming (we make money not art)
Next-gen is going to get interesting as people try to determine how to move beyond the "big hair" games which do little but toss huge budgets into production values. Interactivity will be a whole new dimension (moving from photorealism to videorealism as some have put it). Another dimension will be simply the art of gaming itself, methinks. Shadow Of The Colossus, even more so than Ico before it, may be exemplary of this ... and reminds me that I need to get my hands on Okami.
tagged: game, gaming