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Archive for the ‘Video Games’ Category

A staggering visual history celebration of Prague’s 600-year-old Astronomical Clock from Oct. 2010, with video mapping projection. This artform slays me. Unlike all of the people taking flash photography during a light show.

 

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Here’s a fun little trailer for League of Legends Season One:

I don’t play WoW. Apparently, this is a spin-off from it, and the Trailer is marketing for the game. Which is cool.

If one peruses the LoL website, you can check out the multiple characters, and it’s pretty staggering: artistically, it’s like you took comic books, Mortal Combat, pro “wrestling”, steam punk elements, Harry Potter, Frank Frazetta, Pokemon, D&D, pin-up models, cute anime characters, and Capcom into an blender, and this is what you’d get. It’s like a unified theory of role-playing, power-wish-fulfillment, and avatar-powered escapism. And it’s pretty grand.

These MMORPG games are an artistic borg- “What? Superheros? Sure. We’ll take ’em. A He-Man-type comic Orko sprite-thing? Yep. Magic chick in an improbable bustier? Yes, please. Sauron-huge guy with proportionally ridiculous armor? Uh-huh. Werewolves? Well, WHY the f*@k NOT?!?” And I’m not even capping on the sensibility; there’s something amazingly, geeksomely democratic about the whole thing.

Watching the two teams of super-hero archetypes in fantasy-sheep’s clothing Avengers Assemble! into two fighting forces for “the Final Battle” would make Jack Kirby proud. You’ve got your huge bruiser-type, your hot-chick-who-can-best-any-man, your thief/mage, your magician, your small-yet-mighty lil’ guys- it’s the Superfriends vs. the Legion of Doom, WoW-style. When I saw it, I was like, “Of course it was heading in this direction: take the proven super-hero soap-opera, skin it with fantasy elements, add some FIGHTING…” and there you go.

When I saw BioShock a couple of years ago, I was really taken by how it combined Myst-like storytelling, remarkable cinematic design (both character and sets), with Doom and Silent Hill-like scary atmospherics and action. Intense. I think at this point, it’s beyond safe to say that the true visionaries are working in games, not movies.

Taking chances in the box, not worrying whether someone’s nephew (who got the studio job because of staggering nepotism) will greenlight a project if he can get his client/good friend on board. Game production is punk rock, in the box (the computer, rather “artistic box”), with an unlimited budget for effects, costumes, and sets.

What of story? (more…)

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I cannot wait to see this. The scene in the trailer where Banksy scales the wall effortlessly to escape the cops is tre´ Ninja.

This, to me, is the purest example of art needing a valve. When people will risk criminal prosecution to exercise free speech, creativity, and really, hard-ass-work, I think there’s a pretty compelling case for the world always getting its prophets when it needs them.

It’s just a ride.- Bill Hicks

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Great short in which New York is attacked by 8 bit arcade characters.

My favorite (of course) are the Donkey Kong and Tetris bits. Could use a little Sinistar and Kangaroo, though.

UPDATE: I was given the following comment below from the One More Production Company- my apologies. I’ve embedded the official version now. Questions arise about how much anything can be official when you’re using characters that are other people’s intellectual property, but I’m assuming One More has permission from Nintendo, et al. I’d be surprised if it’s simply a Fair Use deal.

Regardless, it is truly stunning work. Sorry, Karen and One More!

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I’m not a big video game player (at least not since my Donkey Kong days- the Glory!) but occasionally I fall into one like Alice down a rabbit hole. The SSX series completely had me for about 2 years, I enjoyed the hell out of the lo-fi World of Goo, loved the ambition and scope of the  claymation-meets-Edgar Allen Poe CD-ROM The Dark Eye, even if it was fairly static and uneventful.

And BioShock made my head explode.

Above is the trailer for Machinarium, by Amanita. It’s a point and click game for PC and Mac, and the world is just beautiful. I think this is where games need to go: creating not only interactive worlds, but lush, designed worlds with a unifying artistic vision, even down to a cohesive pencil-style and design. Imagine Dave McKean’s Mirrormask as a playable game. Shane Acker’s 9 might’ve been more successful as a game, although I haven’t seen it, and should just shut the hell up until I do.

These are exciting times for creators to be alive.

Boing Boing has some really nice sketchbook pages from Amanita’s Jakub Dvorský and Adolf Lachman, as well as some stunning screengrabs. Check it out, y’all.

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