Results for tag "a-maze"

5 Articles

Released: Busara – The Enter Africa “megagame”

Last year, I joined Enter Africa, a project spanning 15 countries, led by the Goethe-Institut, and engaged in a “megagame workshop” in Ethiopia to create a board game with cooperation between 15 countries.

It was an eye-opening workshop in October 2018 that began the journey of creating a pan-African board game, which culminated in the presentation and release of the game Busara at two international events this year: A MAZE Berlin (April 2019), and Gamescom (August 2019).

My role in this project was a game design consult and primary graphic designer. Together with an amazing core team (Christoph Deeg, Bethlehem Anteneh, Dagmawi Bedilu, Stefanie Kastner, Dr Julia Sattler), we journeyed with participants from 15 countries throughout Africa to design Busara.

A cultural artifact

The game was created as a print-and-play, that means it is a free game that anyone can play. It is meant to be a cultural artifact, something accessible to as many as possible.

You can download the game for free here

The year-long endeavour to creating Busara has been an incredible experience. Having participants from 15 countries, juggling literally so many ideas, priorities and aspirations was a challenge. We are stupendously proud of what we were able to stew down into the eventual essence.

Busara is a game that takes inspiration from Africa, and a rare interpretation of Africa by Africans.

Busara is a conversation on identity, borders and borderlessness, competition and cooperation.

Busara is a cultural expression wrapped up in a game, whose birth journey is more important than the physical bits themselves.

I hope you enjoy the game! Again, you can download it for free here.

10 Things About VR – A VR Primer [A MAZE 2016 talk]

I did this talk at the 2016 A MAZE International Game and Playful Media Festival in Johannesburg, as a primer for people getting into VR, because I just got into VR, and I got into VR HARD. Absolutely in love with it. (And yes, this is about 2 months late, sorry!)

Download 10 Things About VR slides in pdf

Unfortunately it wasn’t recorded, but here is a very quick and dirty companion to the slides to explain some stuff that won’t be apparent from looking at them:

  1. Origin Story:
    I got into VR because of the Vive. Nothing else was nearly as good. I spent a few weeks jamming games on Free Lives’ Vive, and made three quick prototypes (one I haven’t put online yet) within my limited time with it.
  2. Things I wish I knew about Vive + VR:
    It’s easier than I thought it would be, it has no Mac support, direct sunlight wrecks the sensors.
  3. Simulation sickness:
    Look up the poison berries theory, try not to get people sick.
  4. Depth:
    Such an important dimension that humans already know but had to unlearn in 2D interfaces. Now we can intuitively access it again!
  5. Presence:
    Different ways of convincing human minds of plausibility of the simulation.
  6. Social VR:
    VR is not anti-social.
  7. Ultimate Display:
    VR is one more step along the continuum of technologies that close the gap between one’s private mind and one’s shared reality.
  8. Storytelling:
    VR brings people back to a less singular vision of stories due to the popularisation of books and film and other single-point-of-view medium
  9. Audio:
    Audio is key to immersion, much more than visual. Remember that!
  10. VR is important because:
    See the slides! It’s bigger than any single person!

AMAZE 2014 Joburg: Hypertalks

hyper_02

A MAZE 2014 in Johannesburg was as usual a mind-blowing event. Gathering indie game developers from all around the globe to our humble city, this the third A MAZE marks two years from the day I discovered game dev as a possible career choice, during A MAZE 2012.

There were many many great things at this A AMAZE, meeting amazing people, listening to amazing things come out of their amazing minds. All of which can be found on the A MAZE Youtube Channel. A week’s worth of amazingness.

Here however, I want to show you the Hypertalks – talks by amazing people to show you that 5 minutes is all it takes to get you thinking. A MAZE had just released these videos (I had shaky iPhone shot versions which sucks, these are much better)

My favourite one is David Hayward‘s one where he plays Super Hexagon while talking about how it’s like his (other) favourite hobby 🙂

Here they are! Enjoy!

 

Cartel News – Korea, A maze, Piston

Cartel is a card game that I’m working on that’s in prototyping stage. You can get the Print and Play files here.

So many things going on! I’ve kinda left Cartel alone for a while, and all of a sudden, it’s sprung back to life with not one but THREE bits of exciting news!

 

Finalist: 2014 Korea Board Games Contest

Cartel has been selected as a finalist in the 2014 Korean Board Game Contest! Annually, Korea Board Games runs a game design contest on Board Game Geek. This year, the theme was “fast play” – or games that end in 60 minutes, and Cartel just so happens to fit that very well, so I entered it.

Out of 214 worldwide submissions, they selected 25 finalists, and I’m super proud to say that Cartel is among them.

What’s also very cool is that on top of the usual finalists they also selected five elementary school kids’ designs! How cool is that! Very cool to see that Koreans actively encourage game design as a proper career path even from a young age!

 

Set phaser to A MAZE 2014

Cartel is being shown at A MAZE 2014 – Third International Games and Playful Art festival, right here in Joburg! I’ll be there, there’ll be dedicated people there to teach the game to anyone who wants to play, and it’s gonna be awesome 😀

What both of the above means is that I have to make some prototypes to A) Send to Korea and B) get it made to be played at A MAZE, so that got me thinking – what can/should I update in Cartel?

 

Piston City Cartel

So there’s this idea that’s I’ve been kicking around in my head. That idea is Piston City. A Steampunk Noir setting where crime isn’t only bad, it’s dirty. Where government regulate the “air” you breath, where steam vents can be, and how tall your umbrella can go. But all rules are more often broken than enforced, and steam-powered automatons run half the city’s businesses and amenities. Or do they?

Cartel: Piston City Racketeers

In this vision of Cartel, criminal rackets build legitimate businesses so they can acquire steam automatas legally (regulations require a registered business, along with site-inspections, for an automata to be issued), then put them to more nefarious uses, like territorial battle among rival Cartel gangs.

The idea is that I can take Piston city and stick multiple titles under its umbrella, and make a bit of a cool running story type thing around it. Build a world that I’d love to populate and grow and nurture into the scumbag dystopia of mecha and dirty cops I love to hate!

 

What do you think?

1. Should I not bother with it cos I can’t dictate what publishers – if I ever get that far – do with a game?

2. How do I name the buggers? I *would* like to start names with the game title itself, so like Cartel of Piston City… Or Cartel in Piston City… Cartel: Piston City… That sounds retarded. Right now Piston City Cartel sounds the least wonky… But again yea,h I wanna start with the game title 😛

3. How’s the art look? Does the art and the story line up? 🙂

 

If you’re interested in giving Cartel a play, you can download the Cartel Print and Play files here right here!

 

Awesome, thanks for catching up with me on Cartel, please comment if you have any questions! 😀

A MAZE game dev convention in Jozi Aug 24 – Sep 2

[vimeo width=”600″ height=”365″ video_id=”46302975″]

Game dev in SA??

If you are like me two months ago, you probably think that South Africa has zero game development culture. Two months later of discovery, while I can’t tell you we’re the game development capital of the world, I can tell you that we do have a vibrant and active game dev scene, and the proof of that is that we have a 7 day gaming convention running right around the corner right in the heart of Jozi!

Info and links

It’s officially titled A MAZE / Interact, here is the official page, which quite frankly looks cool but functions as well for me as a calculator that has dice instead of numbers, but it’s all there.

The festival runs across 6 venues throughout the heart of Joburg and will run for 7 days – here is the link to the programme  showing where everything is – trust me, you’ll thank me for linking you this since it was next to impossible to find on the site.

Some highlights for me:

  • The Annual General Meeting with the makegamesSA.com guys talking about the plans for Make Games South Africa, our very own local game dev association.
  • The Game Jam, which is a bunch of game devs coming together to make a game at the convention within the short few days, spitballing ideas and duct taping code like ninja jugglers.
  • An amazing exhibition of 25+ in-development indie and not-so-indie games. This is the closest SA’s come to PAX South Africa 🙂
  • Meeting people all over SA and the world (Germany, Czech, Finland, etc) who’re samurais in game dev.
  • A Jump ‘n Run Party – with international and local acts like BLKJKS, By Haruo, Chris Palmer, Meneo, Ootz and Wiij Timski who will DJ without any hardwire equipment, with the movement of his body. WHAT!?
  • Workshops on Limited Game Design, Puredata & Sensors, Wii & Kinect Hacks for performance and installation art.
  • Having my mind blown.

 

So if you’re remotely interested in new digital trends, games, meeting cool people, dreaming big and reaching for it, I’ll see you at the party 🙂

 

css.php