War Stories, on BBC 2 just now, was a documentary on how war is represented in popular culture. At the end, they had a brief section about gaming. It was only a few minutes, focussing entirely on Call of Duty. So far, so predictable.
Dominic Diamond appears as a talking head, in serious mode. He’s talking about how games can provide a form of reality that movies can’t; how they can represent ideas in a tangible form that young people in particular respond to very strongly. I’m waiting for something, anything, about games trivialise the issue or how they encourage violence.
I have never seen a completely pro-gaming bias in any form of serious non-specialist documentary before. It’s completely remarkable that we’re now allowed to take it for granted that games can both deal with serious issues and be considered artistic works with worth extending far beyond mere entertainment. We can talk about them in the same breath as movies.
Happy holidays everyone. Mode 7 Towers is doing well, and I got a completely fabulous Falcons beer-mug for christmas. And the Falcons made the playoffs too! For the record, they’re beating Arizona in the first round but losing to whomever they play next.
Talking of Falcons, I’ve got a small (Novint) Falcon game cooking in my head which I’m going to try and make this weekend, and since it’s going to be an audio-only game I’ll get Tamsin to do the voices and get EC (he doesn’t know this yet) to make the sound effects. I really feel like making something small and silly during the holiday, and I’m going to try and push myself to do it.
I’m going to head down to halfords tomorrow and pick up one of those car stereos whoch you can plug your MP3 player into. I was forced to get an iTouch for work and while my dislike of Apple still stands, I’m really enjoying the podcast subscription feature of iTunes. Whenever I’m driving anywhere I just want to have all the american sports talk-radio I possibly can, and I think that’s now an easy possibility.
Jordan and Melly, massive friends of mine and brother and sister-in-(not quite yet)-law to Bin and Burn, made a surprise visit to their folks in the village this christmas. They’re here for three nights and it’s awesome fun.
Straight after the aforementioned Scooter gig, I drove up to Manchester to be part of the filming of The Krypton Factor. I had two jobs – the first was support for my libraries which are used for the graphics on the show, and the second was to oversee one of the games on the show, “GridLock”, which was produced by Mode 7 (a big shout out to JamesU for handling the coding on that one). The show was filming for seven days and I’ve just driven back to the office.
The whole experience was fantastic. The best part is the people. You have about seventy extremely competent and professional people working in sync with each other. Our game went without a problem and everyone was pleased with it. It would be boring for me to describe just how happy the whole thing has made me, but I will just say that it is an unbelievable pleasure to be an important part of something as big, impressive, and, er, synergistic, as the Krypton Factor production was. We would work all day from 11am to 10pm and then go back to the hotel where ITV had put everyone and drink in the bar for a couple of hours. The show will be every thursday at 7.30pm on ITV during Januray and February.
I was working in the gallery alongside Paul Soulsby and Chris Scull. Competent graphics-handling performances were awarded with this: