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Author Topic: positive community, games with soul  (Read 7555 times)
bender
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« on: June 16, 2009, 04:31:53 pm »

This is a sweet message board with uniformly positive contributions from consistently earnest and enthusiastic people about a game that just looks great. It is a pleasure to read what everyone has to say. It reminds me that the medium of video games can actually be a quite profound means for creative expression, and that people are appreciative of these possibilities.

When I was a kid, and I played stuff like Monkey Island, Another World & Flashback, the shareware version of Doom, Duke Nukem 3D even! Along with Amiga stuff that I can hardly remember... I remember that games could communicate what I interpreted as a genuine 'feeling' - distinct emotional responses. I'm not talking despair or rage or anything of that order, but much subtler impressions and colours. Like a key to the personality or personalities that contributed to works creation. The games I loved I loved because I felt they had so much character. Perhaps this could have been because they were created by smaller teams (or even individuals), and graphics technology was so limited that more thought was given to other methods for creating interest. As the industry's evolved and expectations have shifted, I too changed my attitude and came to derive satisfaction from different aspects of video game craft, being more and more impressed by graphics fidelity and exploratory freedom, as such huge strides have been made in those areas over the past couple decades.

Nowadays I find myself pretty disinterested in most big-budget games. They can be great fun, but there is more often than not what I find to be a distinct lack of subtlety in their execution - it is difficult for me to express clearly, but I only get those 'feelings' from playing games occasionally nowadays. flOw on PS3 definitely precipitated that response, and Everyday Shooter too. And some blockbuster products definitely evoke some pretty strong vibes. Half-Life 2 and the opening of Bioshock were the last two to really rock me with directness and clarity of their creative vision. Fallout had it in absolute spades, Planescape: Torment, Shadow of the Colossus definitely, and Killer 7...for me these things have been diamonds in the rough. Although it could be reasonably argued that many of these works had gameplay problems, for me it's irrelevant - after all what am I really doing? I'm sitting on my ass clicking on a bunch of objects and pressing some buttons the offer highly predictable responses. What I'd like to get out of it, and what I remember attracting me to video games in the first place, is a distinct feeling - one completely unique to whatever piece of entertainment I'm experiencing. That's what makes it 'good' for me. Machinarium gives me that just from seeing the trailers and the artwork. I find it to be beautiful. It's got soul. Really looking forward to checking it out, and am touched by the enthusiasm and communication shared between those who've posted on this forum and the developers.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2009, 06:22:21 pm by bender » Logged
ABoretz
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« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2009, 09:20:29 am »

Thanks for contributing your thoughts bender.  I'm glad someone finally stated the obvious; that this forum is being visited by some very cool people!   Grin

I also share your perception that what one is sometimes drawn to in a game can only be described as a "feeling".  That's always been the attraction of Amanita's releases for me; it's always been about a feeling - or, put another way, a really nice state of mind - that I experience when I'm engaged with the "games" Jakub & Company have made.

I think the obvious term for what we're talking about here is, simply, "Art".  Art is evocative.  It's what Art, by definition, does: it evokes an aesthetic response from the viewer.  And, like JD once said, "a game can be art"  (from a December 2005 interview   http://www.adventuregamers.com/article/id,593/)   Maybe that's what we're witnessing... the evolution of a new technology (Flash) into an Art medium?!  (my vote would be a resounding Yes!)


And BTW, bender, I also have fond memories of the demo version of DOOM.  It was truly helpful in getting me through a rough patch in my life.  (after all, what could be better for your head than killing Hell spawned creatures when you're feeling down?!)   ;-)

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leanne
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« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2009, 12:45:47 am »

i feel once in a week at least a wish to post here and tell how much i admire amanita's work, but how much can i do that then, heheh.. it is just Something Else In This World, i have always trouble to tell people around me about machinarium and samorost, i start by saying, that it is a computer game, then, i mostly repair myself very quickly - no, no, it's not actually a game, it is like you help a painting to go on or like a moving picture, i can never find the right words. And samorost and other amanita pieces have created a genuine feeling by themselves, i can't describe samorost by something, but i can describe other things, if they remind me something about samorost&co.

also the music has the same qualities, i can describe other things via thomas dvorak's music but not much vice versa. and i admire how the music and picture go together.. i have samorost2 soundtrack constantly on my mp3 player and on my stereo system at home Smiley

i have never been into world of computer games more than minesweeper, mahjongg or most graphic of them - gold miner :p nothing has drawed me in, although i have seen computer games played by other people.

i so much agree with what has previously said, these games make a difference and i think that only great people are joining this forum Cheesy i love everyone that loves amanitas work Cheesy
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verticalcity
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« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2009, 08:13:52 pm »

bender touched some interesting subjects in this post. for me it was a delight to come across samorost 1 & 2, because these games were reminding me, though completely different, of the few games that i really loved when i was gaming while being a teenager. or even earlier. the reason why they touched me were mostly a) the gameplay or, even more important, b) the soul of it. i think you can feel if that work is made with dedication to it or just following marketing schemes. and i realised later, some of the games are simply art - what amanita design is pulling can be described at best as art. together with the fabulous soundtracks they reach an irritating high level. Wink for me amanita is connected with some of the eastern animation movies that were fascinating me as child for their easy and at the same time serious atmosphere they were creating. remember these small animation series from czech republic with that small mole which came without dialogue? it reminds me of samorost, but samorost is more "dreamy". also the subtle humour in it, for example that probably pot smoking guy gave me a grin. i wonder if something like that will appear in machinarium as well. and if anyone knows the story behind that guy, let the story be told. Wink
as much as it goes for art games, the first game that dragged me in and which i still like is "madness" by i think, rainbow arts - simple and addictive with great music by chris huelsbeck and later some delphine software titles like another world / heart of the alien and of course flashback. never liked ego-shooters that much, though doom was refreshing at it's time... and from the modern blockbuster games i think the gta series is very interesting for the freedom the gameplay gives the player. you can't call gta subtle though. as for independent "dreamy" gaming - there is this wonderful small (and free) platformer "knytt stories" which is really a hit. anyhow, gladly waiting for the pre-ordered machinarium.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2009, 08:16:48 pm by verticalcity » Logged
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