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Journey Game Out Today; Designing Feeling, Timeless Design

“Can a game move me?” That’s the deceptively-simple quandary posed by producer Robin Hunicke of thatgamecompany on the eve of the release of their new PS3 title, Journey. But it’s a serious question, one that lies at the heart of all we do in creating digital music and motion. I often have conversations with other makers about whether the ephemeral aesthetic objects of our creative output are meaningful. To put it more bluntly: are we actually doing something productive with our lives? (Oh, admit it. The question must have occurred to you now and then.) But this idea of transforming …

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Joys of OpenGL in a Browser: WebGL 1.0 Release and Dev Goodies, and Play with Fractals Right Now

It’s a great time to be coding 3D – and a great time to be destroying your workday playing with 3D – thanks to free and open resources for OpenGL, now even in the browser. If lovers of 3D dreamt up a standard for getting hardware-accelerated 3D in a browser, they’d have a tough time topping WebGL. It’s cross-platform and truly (cough, H.264 video) royalty-free – not just for some people under some circumstances, but for everybody, all the time. With similar code to the OpenGL ES 2.0 API, porting to mobile (where it fits in your hand) or native/desktop …

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Cubic Game Visualism: Awesomely-Inspiring Game Trailer from Gamma

4fourths – Game Trailer from Mikengreg on Vimeo. It’s been a long time coming, but there’s real hope that convergence of lovers of independent, creative game design with audiovisualist aficionados could bring us to a new, game-inspired visual age. Of course, a good way to start would be for some game designers to start to kick ass with their games. And that means lame trailers simply aren’t an option. For a demonstration of how it’s done, check out the trailer for 4fourths. This winning entrant to the one-button game challenge help by the Kokoromi Collective could pass for a music …

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Music Game Revolution, Now Indie Friendly, as Rock Band Network Goes Live

They are the robots: Flight of the Conchords. Now, you are the robots, too, as Rock Band Network opens the indie floodgates to the music-distribution-as-game model. (And yes, you’ll get to sing along with the Conchords, too.) Photo (CC-BY-SA) kris krüg. Music games Rock Band and Guitar Hero are simple enough in terms of gameplay, but testifying to the power of people’s passion for music, their impact has been staggering. At a time when purchasing recorded music has waned from a 90s peak, downloads for games are proving surprising growth, despite pundits predicting the segment would cool off. The talents …

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This Week at the Game Developer Conference, San Francisco, Push the Button

What can you do with this? Game designers and artists find out this week at GDC. (Pictured: my own submission, up close.) Why should Create Digital Music and Create Digital Motion (and, well, their editor) go to a game conference? This year, in particular, the annual gathering of game developers in San Francisco means a real convergence of gaming culture and digital music and motion, of ideas about how interactivity can work (and the challenges of making interaction design creative), of generative and adaptive music and new cultures of digital media. Aside from that, of course, there’s no particular reason. …

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Extended Through Friday: One Button Objects Call

You have until Friday to change the way we think about buttons. We live in the age of multi-touch, of sophisticated GPS and accelerometers tracking gestures, of augmented reality and $100 computers. In other words, it’s the perfect time to meditate on the lowly button. And as visualists and designers, you have a unique relationship to buttons and the digital worlds they control. I can’t wait to assemble the results of the One Button Game Objects show, opening at Gray Area Foundation in San Francisco with the collaboration of CDM and gaming collective Kokoromi. I’ve already seen fascinating contributions that …

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Call for Works: One-Button Game Objects

Push the button: Kokoromi’s Gamma game challenge, which we saw earlier this week, challenges game designers to build an entire gameplay mechanic around a single button. What can be done with a single hardware object – a self-contained, one-button invention? We’re looking for creations that answer that question, inspired by games (and encompassing hardware games and hacks), but also extending into interactive art and musical and visual instruments. I’m putting this on the CDMs partly because I’d love to see these sorts of objects from visualists. We have upcoming hackday events in New York, Amsterdam, and San Francisco which could …

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Indie Game as Visualist Event: As the Deadline Nears, One Button Inspires

Games as culture, as event, as art with a lowercase ‘a’ – real, active, evolving, sometimes-commercial, sometimes-experimental art – are finally beginning to grab hold. There’s a real scene. It’s a scene that’s interconnected with the ‘visualist’ scene we describe here on CDMotion, somewhere at the nexus of club visuals, gaming, interactive art, and improvising with screens. And if you want to follow that scene, one particularly delicious event is the annual Gamma game competition. Embracing ideas like incorporating sound and 3D glasses, Gamma is a celebration of the craft of the independent game maker, with results that sit between …

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Push the Button: One-Button Game Design Challenge with Kokoromi's Gamma4

Photo: Steven Depolo. Game design may be trending toward neural inputs and cameras that sense your body in three dimensions and intelligent agents that respond to your every gesture and word. But interaction design – whether in gaming or music and visual performance – is often about doing more with less. Kokoromi have the ultimate in minimalist challenges for their annual Gamma independent game design competition. Think you can embody fun in just the contact of one fingertip? Then it’s on. Behold the one-button game. You have until January 31 to come up with something really brilliant and make it …

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Push the Button: One-Button Game Design Challenge with Kokoromi’s Gamma4

Photo: Steven Depolo. Game design may be trending toward neural inputs and cameras that sense your body in three dimensions and intelligent agents that respond to your every gesture and word. But interaction design – whether in gaming or music and visual performance – is often about doing more with less. Kokoromi have the ultimate in minimalist challenges for their annual Gamma independent game design competition. Think you can embody fun in just the contact of one fingertip? Then it’s on. Behold the one-button game. You have until January 31 to come up with something really brilliant and make it …

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