Lecture / Reading

A Tale of Two Jousts: Multimedia, Game Feel, and Imagination

Sponsored by Bio-X Program, mediaX


Tuesday, October 11, 2016
12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
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Event Details:

Douglas Wilson, A Tale of Two Jousts: Multimedia, Game Feel, and Imagination. Are videogames "games"? Maybe, but I'm skeptical. To kick off this inquiry, I compare my own motion control game Johann Sebastian Joust to the seemingly similar folk game Lemon Joust. This juxtaposition provides a useful illustration of how videogames are so much more than the sum of their rules and mechanics. At stake here is the notion "game feel," something we videogame designers talk about all the time but have trouble defining. What I want to argue is that the term "game feel" is so useful precisely because it speaks to the messy amalgamation of computation, multimedia, and cultural context. I discuss why this matters not only theoretically, but also practically. As a designer, I'm interested in how audiovisual content, in combination with player imagination, encourages different ways of gesturing, moving, behaving, playing.

Douglas Wilson is a co-owner of Die Gute Fabrik, a small independent games studio based in Copenhagen, Denmark. Douglas is best known for his award-winning motion control game, Johann Sebastian Joust, winner of the prestigious Innovation Award at the 2012 Game Developers Choice Awards. He was also the Lead Producer on Sportsfriends, a compendium of multiplayer games published on PlayStation Network and home computers in 2014. Douglas now lives in Melbourne, Australia, where he is an Assistant Professor (“Lecturer”) at RMIT University’s School of Media and Communication. His work has been exhibited at festivals and museums around the world, including: the Independent Games Festival, IndieCade, Roskilde Festival, XOXO, MoMA, SFMOMA, Hong Kong Arts Centre, and the Museum of the Moving Image.

Interactive media and games increasingly pervade and shape our society. In addition to their dominant roles in entertainment, videogames play growing roles in education, arts, science and health. This seminar series brings together a diverse set of experts to provide interdisciplinary perspectives on these media regarding their history, technologies, scholarly research, industry, artistic value and potential future. As the speakers and title suggest, the series also provides a topical lens for the diverse aspects of our lives.

Admission Info

Free and open to the public on space available basis.

Also listed as one-unit course BIOE196

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