Friday, April 23, 2010

Understanding Architecture

Understanding architecture has some excellent insight to building material, history of architectural styles, terminology of building elements, and the relation of architectural forms to the identity of civilizations.

My favorite parts, most relevant to my project were on the topics of:

1. Materials, how they are used within architecture, and what certain materials can do and provide towards a building. For instance wood has more tinsel strength so structures can extend outwards much more then stone structures can (virtually impossible for a stone building to be suspended on its own weight). This is important because it will help present all the possible building materials for players, and make sure that they remain balanced, so that all materials are desirable under different circumstances (just like in modern architecture).

2. The illusion of architecture. Some structures displayed in this book show how some architectural feats can make a building look like it is on the brink of collapsing. Once we discovered advanced metal smithing techniques, using metal to this degree (essentially much stronger per square inch, and able to take stresses in several forms) made buildings look precarious. So some choices within a buildings construction would dictate putting an overly large column to give people an at ease feeling when using the space. Since my game will be entirely virtual or representational, the physical restraints are not there, however letting the player know some spaces are more reinforced then others is an important part for militant reinforcement and indications of spaces which can be expanded upon.

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