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General => Introductions => Topic started by: Mick P. on July 22, 2015, 07:46:32 pm



Title: Just reading through the forum mid-2015
Post by: Mick P. on July 22, 2015, 07:46:32 pm
Dear anyone who's suffered my posts,

It's 2015 and I'm just reading through the forum... maybe the entire forum (it's a little intimidating how big it is.) And I probably won't be able to resist leaving a mark on every other thread. Just to help process what I read.

I'm sympathetic to the tumblr blog posts post Sunset. I think if I ever find myself at the nexus of a large inflow of money I will just give a chunk of it to Michael to do what he wants with it.

I'm quite dedicated to cinema-like-games. Not necessarily with meaning, but with esthetic and or ethical values and messages. I find myself agreeing with Michael's blog posts, but have a difficult time with some of the concepts being discussed inside the forums here. I'm not sure why the eagerness to so thoroughly break from convention. Could it just be one-upmanship? Or do I just require time to adjust. It seems like it is/was a largely male dominated community.


Title: Re: Just reading through the forum mid-2015
Post by: God at play on July 22, 2015, 07:49:31 pm
Hi, and welcome :) Can you elaborate on what you mean re: your last few sentences? I'm not sure I get what you're saying.


Title: Re: Just reading through the forum mid-2015
Post by: Mick P. on July 22, 2015, 08:04:23 pm
Hi, and welcome :) Can you elaborate on what you mean re: your last few sentences? I'm not sure I get what you're saying.

Thanks! Someone is here. Maybe we can resuscitate this place.

Rule of thumb, "a few" being 3: "Could it just be one-upmanship? Or do I just require time to adjust. It seems like it is/was a largely male dominated community."

Funny you say so. I just used "Dragon Cancer" as an example for one of Michael's design threads of late (Lose Control) that has repeatedly vexed me to the point that I would be embarrassed if I had any shame. What is your role in that game BTW?

What I mean is just that I'm floored a little bit by how much of the discussion seems driven by a palpable desire to part company from videogames. I find it ahistorical and more than a bit extremist or fundamentalist. I wonder if this desire is true or artificially inflated. And is it even a healthy one. You get men together in close quarters and things will become a pissing contest.

EDITED: I'm really not trying to take anyone down a peg. I'm making excuses for being generally confused, but also wondering why or how things can be this confusing at the same time.


Title: Re: Just reading through the forum mid-2015
Post by: Michaƫl Samyn on July 24, 2015, 05:02:22 pm
Erik Svedang once made the analogy with an iceberg where videogames are the small visible part and notgames the huge unexplored part under the water surface. I think that together this iceberg is one medium, as yet unnamed. And games are just a small part of it. The rest of this medium still needs to be developed. Games are to this medium what action movies are to film, or heavy metal to music, or super hero comics to all of literature. Etc.

Abandoning the conventions of this "genre" called games is a simple way to stimulate creativity.

I for one will be taking another step in my future work and much more diligently avoid games. I personally think videogames are a creative  dead end. They're not going anywhere. And I want out.


Title: Re: Just reading through the forum mid-2015
Post by: Mick P. on July 24, 2015, 06:10:20 pm
I think if you do not welcome some orthodoxy you're going to drown or freeze trying to explore the bottom of that iceberg.

I'd like to ask all of the people who've entered these halls whether they think of themselves as developers/artists first, or revolutionaries. Because if you think of yourself as a revolutionary you have to plan and adapt like a revolutionary, towards an end that everyone is able to articulate.

Something that aggravates me a little bit, is people who want to skip to the end of the story. That's fine if you just want to look ahead, and see how it ends. But that's not how you get to the end of the story (and obviously you miss out on everything.)

(full-disclosure: I always do read ahead to the end of the story... this is how I know when I'm fully invested in it.)


Title: Re: Just reading through the forum mid-2015
Post by: Mick P. on July 25, 2015, 07:28:38 pm
I for one will be taking another step in my future work and much more diligently avoid games. I personally think videogames are a creative  dead end. They're not going anywhere. And I want out.

Maybe I'm just younger than you are, but I don't even think of it as an allegiance or commitment to anything like games. I'm just doing my thing. I wouldn't be doing it the way I am unless I was hungry for an alternative. I'm probably hungrier than you are. I wouldn't be surprised if I'm the person most invested in games alive, which is why I take it very seriously, more seriously than I think you do.

So, wherever you decide "out" is, if it walks like a video game, and quacks like a video game, you'll find me there. I think you've earned the right to call that whatever you want. I hope you don't retreat to old media, or early retirement (my beef with games is I just don't find them compelling. I think people who play games, if they also have a broad media diet, and are intelligent, they will eventually come around to the realization that games aren't pulling their weight. That's the problem with Sunset. It wasn't competing with games. It was competing with real media. That's a completely different weight class. Games were once new and exciting, but they've been around for a long time, so it's time they ought to become compelling. There's no time for excuses.)


Title: Re: Just reading through the forum mid-2015
Post by: God at play on August 01, 2015, 08:24:00 am
Thank you for elaborating! I was asking not because I disagreed, but because I sincerely did not understand your language.

And now I can see that we are very much in agreement. :)

I came here because there were interesting people, conversations, thought experiments, and critique to be had. It wasn't to join a militia. Some people here are more militant than others. I can tolerate it, but I think it drove many others away, most notably Stephen Lavelle, although that case was also due to explicit rudeness.

To answer your question about TDC, Ryan and I started the project together back when it was an interactive art installation in 2012. So I lead the studio with him as his business partner and have collaborated as an artist early on when we were establishing the art direction, and now more as a programmer and designer as we have grown the team. Being busy with That Dragon, Cancer is the primary reason why I stopped being active here, ha.


Title: Re: Just reading through the forum mid-2015
Post by: Mick P. on August 01, 2015, 09:27:33 pm
Thank you for elaborating! I was asking not because I disagreed, but because I sincerely did not understand your language.

And now I can see that we are very much in agreement. :)

I came here because there were interesting people, conversations, thought experiments, and critique to be had. It wasn't to join a militia. Some people here are more militant than others. I can tolerate it, but I think it drove many others away, most notably Stephen Lavelle, although that case was also due to explicit rudeness.

To answer your question about TDC, Ryan and I started the project together back when it was an interactive art installation in 2012. So I lead the studio with him as his business partner and have collaborated as an artist early on when we were establishing the art direction, and now more as a programmer and designer as we have grown the team. Being busy with That Dragon, Cancer is the primary reason why I stopped being active here, ha.

I like the art direction of TDC. I feel like we should just beat people over the head with this kind of looking game until they learn to appreciate it, and only then let them have something different :)

When I asked in another post if we see ourselves as artists or insurgents (revolutionaries) I don't mean in the militant sense, and I know that's not what you mean, but I just want to be clear to readers, that I think if you argue for change, you have to approach it like a coordinated battle, really a movement, and just making games privately doesn't cut it and isn't going to change anything. That's magical thinking more or less.


I'm kind of sad to find my way to this forum in a state of decline. We really need new blood, and this seems like a good historical place to gather to discuss things in general. It's a little bit like finding the motherload when it seemed like there was nothing out there but crickets. It's depressing really, because the Internet hasn't shaken out as a two-way street, I think just because of sheer numbers; the impulse isn't to have the two-way conversation because no one seems to be willing to bother to post comments and talk back, so it seems like everywhere you go about games is "0 comments" until you wonder if there is really anyone out there, or if it's all just hype. It's as if we've all become broadcasters without enough time to be active listeners, and I worry that has created a real vacuum of solidarity.

Michael's Patreon of late is especially depressing for me. It should be more abuzz (edited: the players Michael would call asocial immature I forgets have a lot more than "0 comments" to spare/spread around. We are failing at this level, I wonder if ToT's Beautiful Art Program's suggestion to work fewer hours would help people find more time to talk about things at the end of the day (I know from my own experience that after 6hrs you're doing more harm than good.))


Title: Re: Just reading through the forum mid-2015
Post by: Mick P. on September 06, 2015, 06:41:07 am
FYI: Today I'm going to begin the process of removing all of my posts/threads that did not generate responses...

A while back Michael sent me a PM that I misunderstood because I either failed to read the operative sentence or glossed over it or because that's unlike me (or at least I like to think so) it's even possible a subconscious block prevented me from seeing it at the time. I am going to leave up my last post (*) that has to do with either a completely novel or completely underutilized graphical technique that kind of fell into my lap, and was the reason I went back to read Michael's PM in the first place, because he included his email address in it, and I wanted to privately share this technique with him in the hope he'd use it in his future projects, especially the "virtual sculpture" one described on Patreon.

*) http://notgames.org/forum/index.php?topic=859.0 (EDITED)

(I read his PM as just saying he didn't have time to check in on the forums, politely offering his private email address instead, but buried deep within the PM in a pro forma part of the letter he intimated that he'd like ME to not add to THIS forum, both because he considers the forum semi-private and mainly for his personal use and because he thought some or all of my posts were "intimidating" to other users/friends of his. I'm not sure in what sense of the word was meant, but had I seen this I'd have stopped adding to the forum immediately.)

Michael has since assured me that he has no problem with my posts not being removed. But I want to remove them for my own reasons. Michael thought I was trying to get HIS attention with them. But I explained to him in my response to his PM that his attention was the least of my concerns and that I was actually concerned that his presence undermined the forums. I thought they could function as a public venue, and also I wanted to see if I could get people to rekindle a discussion. Now that seems like both of these possibilities have evaporated I don't have any real use for THIS forum, and reading it is a little bittersweet for me and also a little tedious without the occasional plateau of being able to tack a thought or two onto a thread, switching from reader of discussion to participant (in a longer asynchronous/quasi-anonymous public discussion)

For the record, I don't know which posts Michael thought were intimidating. Whether it's the ones I'll be removing or the ones I'll be leaving behind, or both.


PS: Please read this (http://gamasutra.com/blogs/MickPearson/20150828/252450/Does_this_technology_make_AA_obsolete_Is_it_new_technology_If_so_I_want_credit_and_would_appreciate_some_assistance.php) blog post on Gamasutra. I believe this is of the utmost importance to video games. And share it and get others to read it. Prove to me that the video game complex isn't as aloof as I believe it is. Put it on "social media" if you have accounts. The post is off. It isn't a treatise or tutorial or anything like that. It's the scene of an accident and I am a gibbering victim. Even though it's a good thing, it is traumatizing and I'm still picking up the pieces. So I apologize for whatever I usually have to apologize for. Sincerely or otherwise.

(The substance of the blog post is a way for still images to achieve perfectly clean lines, not using any "AA" (antialiasing) even though it is referred to as AA because that is what it's most like. But truly it's an AA-killer since it has no need for AA (edited: indeed it's a nuisance that the driver AA settings need to be disabled by the user so not to interfere) and it is "free" to use in computational terms. I invite you to imagine the history of film and television with the jagged edges of realtime-3D; would it have been so bewitching? I doubt it. This could be a new era for video games, if people are just willing to take the medium seriously. Before too long I'm going to work on an animated GIF based screenshot system to make 60fps screenshots of this effect, since it cannot be perceived in a still image.)

(EDITED: Michael says he does not see the jagged edges in "games" or does not mind them. But I can't un-see them now, and I can see jagged edges from 10ft away on very small pixels (10ft has my back against the wall) so I don't think they are going anywhere just by making pixels smaller and smaller anytime soon. Especially since some of us are putting displays right up in our faces now. So it's either embrace the jagged edges as some kind of calling card, or continue with costly pixel smudging AA techniques that require multi-hundred dollar devices, or get off the AA wagon. I think this is the only way off. And it's a weird freak of nature that we haven't been doing this since the 90s!)