Monday, September 6, 2010

Ted Talks

I recently got into a few ted talks about gaming, one was suggested to me.

David Perry on videogames

David Perry -Producer of some older titles like Aladdin and Earthworm Jim, then the more recent title "The Matrix", which is probably hands down the best title made off of a movie because of the project merging the movie industry and game industry as opposed to an exchange of licensing.
His talk was primarily about the overall progress of video games, he showed a montage of video game graphics to display how crazy gaming will get in 10 years. But the best part was a video put together by one of his students which talked about his development as a human because of his nonstop interaction with video games. He shed some light on what it means to be a gamer, to pursue goals on a nonstop basis, and to imagine things constantly.

Hillel Cooperman: Legos for grownups

This talk was primarily to display how lego's, although perceived as a children's toy, can also even by a sculpture medium because of the robust support from community and tools provided by enthusiasts and the company. But my favorite part of this entire speech was one sentence:

"So umm, these are the Dark Ages, and the Dark Ages are the time between when you put away the Lego for the last time as a kid and you decide as an adult that it is OK to play with a kids toy."

This statement is absolutely stunning to me because I witness it in action everyday and after having a couple of classes centered around play I can spot out a person who lacks playful engagement in their everyday life. Now this isn't to say that you must sit down everyday and essentially "play" a game or a system in order to lead a happy life, but being "playful" is something which we as a society do to take the edge off or even to learn in groups.
My uncle has recently had 2 kids, and I know him to be a very playful guy, having tons of things as a kid from comics to toys. I recall him telling me he can't wait for his kids to be old enough for an Xbox so that he can play it as well. I guess what I'm trying to say is that its a shame that kids are needed at an older age to validate certain activities and overcome the "Dark Ages".

Jesse Schell: When games invade real life

This one wasn't technically a TED talk because he went on for 30 minutes, but never the less, Jesse Schell went over the sudden and recent phenomenon of facebook games and the effect of social networks on video games, how most of these games utilize some psychological aspect of human behavior to become successful.
He also went on to talk about how there is a game in everything, from frequent flyer mile points, to credit cards, to social networking statistics. He then went on to talk about how our lives could essentially become one big game with the introduction of sensors everywhere which reward you for participating in things to give you a "good person score".

This lead me to think about the reverse of this idea. If our lives can be turned into a game, then what kind of life does a game provide to a gamer. What role do you fill in specific games.
I've been thinking about Monopoly, Risk, and other common board games because they essentially simulate a rough experience of being an investor, or a ruler respectively.

This thought has definitely given me new perspective on the simple aspects and concepts behind my game, which will hopefully lead to better communication about my project.

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