Ian Bogost

Lives & works in Atlanta, Georgia.

Bio:

Bogost is a game designer, critic, and researcher. He is a professor at  the Georgia Institute of Technology, and a founding partner at Persuasive Games. His work has focused on games an expressive medium, and his main focus is on games about social and political issues. He is the author of a couple of books, and his most recent notable games include Cow Clicker and A Slow Year. He holds a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and comparative literature from the University of Southern California and a master’s degree and Ph.D. in comparative literature from UCLA.

Source:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ian_Bogost

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Blendo Games (Brendon Chung)

Founded: 1999

Background:

Chung has been programming his own projects, and created the Blendo Games brand for these. In 2004, Chung was hired as a designer at Pandemic Studios but continued to work on his personal projects, releasing Gravity Bone during that time. When Electronic Arts closed down the studio in November 2009, Chung immediately set to work to create Flotilla, a game based on a prior project he has earlier ceased worked on. After Flotilla‘s release in 2010, Chung went on to create Atom Zombie Smasher, released in 2011. Atom Zombie Smasher received high critical praise, and was featured at the 2011Penny Arcade Expo and part of the 3rd Humble Indie Bundle charity drive. A sequel to Gravity BoneThirty Flights of Loving, was developed to support a Kickstarter project for the Idle Thumbspodcast, and released in 2012.

Blendo Games remains a one-man studio, though Chung gains gameplay ideas, playtesting help, and music from his friends and family.

 

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blendo_Games

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Rod Humble

Born: June 1, 1964 (still alive)

Bio:

Humble is the CEO of Second Life and Desura creator, Linden Lab, he was also the former Executive Vice President of EA Play. He has been contributing to videogames since 1990, working on big names such as The Sims 2, The Sims 3, and Everquest. In his spare time, he continues to develop experimental games such as: The Marriage, Stars Over Half Moon Bay, and Last Thoughts of the Aurochs.

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Game, Game, Game and Again Game

When: 2007

Who: Jason Nelson

Medium: Web based game

Description (author’s description): “Game, game, game and again game is a digital poem, retro-game, an anti-design statement and a personal exploration of the artist’s changing worldview lens. Much of the western world’s cultural surroundings, belief systems, and design-scapes, create the built illusion of clean lines and definitive choice, cold narrow pathways of five colors, three body sizes and encapsulated philosophy. Within net/new media art the techno-filter extends these straight lines into exacting geometries and smooth bit rates, the personal as WYSIWYG buttons. This game/artwork, while forever attached to these belief/design systems, attempts to re-introduce the hand-drawn, the messy and illogical, the human and personal creation into the digital, via a retro-game style interface, Hovering above and attached to the poorly drawn aesthetic is a personal examination of how we/I continually switch and un-switch our dominant belief systems. Moving from levels themed for faith or real estate, for chemistry or capitalism, the user triggers corrected poetry, jittering creatures and death and deathless noises. In addition each level contains short videos from the artist’s childhood, representing those brief young interactions which spark out eventual beliefs. Game, game, game and again game is less a game about scoring and skill, and more an awkward and disjointed atmospheric, the self built into a jumping, rolling meander of life.”

Media:

Image

 

Link to the game:

http://collection.eliterature.org/2/works/nelson_game.html

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Velvet-Strike

Date: 2002

Who: Anne-Marie Schleiner

Medium: Performance piece within Counter-Strike

Description:

Velvet-Strike is a performance piece where players or “performers” would go into Counter-Strike servers, equipping anti-war graffiti tags that their characters can spray in game. Then the players, rather than shoot, would do nothing but run around and spray their tags in visible areas and refuse to shoot back at other players.

Reception:

Velvet-Strike garnered a decent amount of attention online and in the anti-war activist community as it began as the same time as the US War on Terror. Around the Counter-Strike community however it was seen as a neasense. 

Categories:

activist art, performance, art in games

Media:

Image

 

Links:

http://www.opensorcery.net/velvet-strike/

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Consequences

Date: ??

Producer: Surrealists

Medium: Pen & Paper

Description & Rules:

Consequences is an old parlour game in a similar vein to the Surrealist game exquisite corpse and Mad Libs.

Each person takes a turn choosing a word or phrase for one of eleven questions, in this order.

  1. Adjective for man
  2. Man’s name
  3. Adjective for woman
  4. Woman’s name
  5. Where they met
  6. He wore
  7. She wore
  8. He said to her
  9. She said to him
  10. The consequence was… (a description of what happened after)
  11. What the world said

Then the story is read (for example):

Mediocre Joe met transparent Kim at the bowling alley.

Joe wore a seafoam green leisure suit. Kim wore a sandwich board. Joe said to Kim “During the last storm, we had a little party in the mud.” Kim said “She wasn’t that into me.” As a consequence, the band got back together. And the world said “Somehow, I think I saw this coming.

The game is traditionally played by writing the words on paper and folding the paper to hide the previous words before passing it to the next player.

Consequences can also be played in a drawing version where the first player draws the head, passes it unseen (by means of folding) to the second player who draws the body, then on to the third player who draws the legs. The composite person or creature is then revealed to all by unfolding the paper.

(Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Consequences_%28game%29)

Categories:

Surrealist, parlor games

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Ah Pook Is Here (William S. Burroughs, and Phillip Hunt’s stop-motion video)

Date: 1994 (video) 1979 (collection)

Producer: William S. Burroughs (narration), Phillip Hunt (video)

Medium: audiovisual

Description:

Ah Pook Is Here was a collaboration between author William S. Burroughs and artist Malcolm McNeill. It began in 1970, when Burroughs was living in London and McNeill was in his final year of art school. It first appeared under the title The Unspeakable Mr. Hart as a comic strip in the English Cyclops. When that magazine ceased publication, Burroughs and McNeill decided to develop the concept as a book.

Phillip Hunt’s stop motion video is a interpretation of Burroughs’ spoken word.

Categories:

postmodernism, audiovisual

Link:

http://vimeo.com/36013914

 

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William S. Burrougs

Born: Feb 5, 1914 in St. Louis, Missouri

Worked out of Kansas and Missouri

Died: August 2, 1997 in Lawrence, Kansas

Bio:

Born to wealthy family in St. Louis, Burroughs began writing essays and journals in early adolescence. In 1927, he left home to go study English at Harvard, where he then got his postgraduate degree in Anthropology. He then attended medical school in Vienna, where during WWII he was turned down by the US Military to serve, at which point he became addicted to drugs which stayed with him for the rest of his life. He then kept writing until his death in 1997 from a heart attack, and most of work was semi-autobiographical in nature.

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Latent News/Cut-up Technique

Date: 1920s

Who: Dadists

Medium: text

Description:

Latent news is a game where  in which an article from a newspaper is cut into individual words (or perhaps phrases) and then rapidly reassembled

Rules:

Cut up a text, then rearrange it to make a new meaning

History:

The history of cut up is traced back to dadists who used it to create poetry. An example of this is T.S. Elliot’s poem “The Waste Land” which incorporated newspaper clippings rearranged into a poem. Later, the technique was a favorite of William S. Burrougs, who was responsible for re-popularizing it in the 1950s and early 1960s.

Categories:

dadaist, writing games

Links:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Surrealist_techniques#Games

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cut-up_technique

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Exquisite Corpse

Date created: 1918 or 1925 (depending on who you talk to)

Producer: Unknown

Medium: Pen & paper

Description:

Exquisite corpse is a parlor game where players pass a paper around and take turns either writing a sentence down or adding to the drawing.

Rules:

If sentences are used, the person writing is only allowed to look at the sentence before theirs, but nothing else

Categories:

Surrealist games

Reference:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exquisite_corpse

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