Bristol’s Igfest – the Interesting Games Festival – has always done really well at looking good, at that cluster things starting with “spect”: spectacle, the spectacular, spectators. This year’s event, with a Village Fete theme during the day and an enormous zombie chase at night, was firmly in the best Igfest tradition: a lot of games to play, of course, but also a lot of really strong images, and tiny theatrical touches that made sure the games delighted passers-by as well as players.
The big game of the weekend was 2.8 Hours Later, the zombie chase. It ran twice, with a total of 400 players, and it was just vast. Certainly too vast to be squashed into a blog post with other games, so I’m going to leave it to the side for a moment and write about it in more detail later in the week.
Which leaves the afternoon of fete-themed games, with drums, balloons, water, glowing RFID devices, and hundreds of cardboard boxes…
An interesting article from the ever-insightful Philip Pullman in the weekend’s Guardian, expanding on the idea that use of the present tense in contemporary fiction is excessive, and likening it to the overenthusiasm for the hand-held camera short in the current cinema. In particular, I was struck by this statement:
Fri 8th October will see an amazing day of play as part of the PlayStation GameRunners project, an experimental project where PlayStation, members of the public and young people from diverse backgrounds come together to create social games.
The project has been developed by PlayStation and Hide&Seek with a team of 8 initial Game Runners who PlayStation have picked to train as game designers. The event, in a central London location, will run all day – do come along and play!
The second of Hide&Seek’s upcoming Script Factory workshops deals with transmedia for writers.
Stories have always been everywhere, but they’re now expected to be everywhere at once. As traditional, linear narrative forms forge closer relationships with digital, interactive and distributed formats, it’s getting harder to know where a story should start and stop. Working across these media provides extraordinary opportunities for evolving how we tell stories, but also presents technological, practical and conceptual challenges for writers.
The first of Hide&Seek’s upcoming workshops with the Script Factory will run on 27 October, 10:00 to 5:30.
From major studios to micro-distributors, experiments in transmedia – screen storytelling in a networked world – have taken many forms. There have been blockbuster games, film characters with their own social network pages, fictitious websites: a dizzying array of attempts, many with mixed results. Ensuring success is hard: attracting audiences, managing digital production and safeguarding creative integrity are all big challenges.
This workshop, designed for producers, directors and writers, gives a general overview of these formats, a clear insight into their value and opportunity, and strategies for how this content can be effectively integrated into the production process.
In lovely “everything from the past is just like everything now, except when it isn’t” news, All Movie Talk provides scans of an amazing 1929 Film Daily Yearbook. It’s aimed at cinema owners, and it’s full of completely ridiculous tricks for marketing every possible sort of film.
The stunts seem to alternate between things that make you go “huh, that’s definitely a precursor of things people still do now”…
The latest development in treasure hunts is newspaper co-operation in which the newspaper provides daily clues in cross-word puzzle form. Another version of this buries the clues among the individual ads in a double truck co-operative ad page. This latter idea has the advantage of getting revenue for the newspaper through the sale of the co-operative page.
…and stunts that make you go “no, wait, what?”…
Run a Saturday morning show, and advertise it extensively as a Potato Matinee. Any child is permitted to see the show upon presentation of a potato at the box office.
The whole ten-part series is worth reading (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10), if only for the bewildering number of proposed competitions: ukelele contests, drawing contests, “most popular girl” contests, longest hair contests, oldest married couple contests, “see whose thumbprint is most similar to the star’s” contests (yes, really), “see whose leg measurements are most similar to the star’s” contests (again: yes, really). But here are a few of the highlights: