Make a game about anything you want! Game-O-Matic was conceived as a tool for generating journalistic games (or newsgames) through a simple "concept mapping" of relevant actors and their relationships. It is a versatile way of thinking about meaning and games and can be used as a general design tool to explore the relationship between things, the metaphorical potential of game mechanics, and procedural rhetoric.
Mike Treanor, Bobby Schweizer, Bryan Blackford, Simon Ferrari, Michael Mateas, Ian Bogost
Prom Week is a next-generation social simulation game driven by a novel artificial intelligence engine. The goal of Prom Week is to make social interactions truly playable. While games have increasingly gotten better at physical simulation, social interactions in games still tend to be scripted, using dialogue trees or other static structures to represent in-game choice. As a result, games are more often about combat or physics-based behaviors (which are easier to make playable) since these simulations are the only part of the system dynamic enough for interesting gameplay.
Prom Week uses the AI system Comme il Faut (CiF) to enable rich, emergent storylines by letting players use "social physics." Just as games like Angry Birds support emergent solutions to physical challenges, Prom Week's underlying simulation of social considerations (containing over 5,000 rules of social norms and behaviors) allow for emergent solutions to social challenges, like getting geeky Simon a prom date or convincing Buzz to give Monica a second chance. And unlike games like The Sims which use abstractions such as nonsense words or icons to represent language, Prom Week features actual English dialogue, and characters with detailed histories, likes, dislikes, permanent traits, and temporary statuses---all of which can be leveraged by the player to produce just the right prom night story. (Excerpted from UC Santa Cruz)
CORE TEAM: Josh McCoy (Lead AI Design), Mike Treanor (Lead Gameplay Design), Ben Samuel (Lead Engineer), Aaron A. Reed (Lead Writer)
The Tell-tale Heart is a game based on one of the classic tales of Edgar Allan Poe, the master of literature and poems. This game puts you in the role of the story's narrator as you re-enact key points of the story's narrative connected to the demise of their dear friend. This high stakes game features addictive action and high-contrast, graphic novel visuals. How long can you maintain your sanity?
Polyglot is an educational game prototype for learning languages. It is designed to entertain while enforcing language comprehension. The game is designed around 6 rooms of floating, cubicle tiles. Each tile is assigned a foreign language word, and a pictographic representation of that word. The cubes are clustered by topic, usage, or form of speech to encourage contextual recognition and aid visual memory. The player must match the spoken word with the cube that corresponds to it.
Black Like Me is a puzzle game. All you have to do is discriminate by color. Affirm two colors are the same to win. The longer you play, the more the colors look alike. The game starts easy, but doesn't stay that way. Can you really tell your colors apart, or in the end does everything just look black to you?
Big Huggin' is a game designed for use with a custom teddy bear controller. Players complete the game by providing several well-timed hugs to a 30-inch teddy bear. Instead of firing toy guns at countless enemies or revving the engines of countless gas-guzzling virtual cars, why not give a hug?
Critical Gameplay is a collection of "strategically designed" video games. Each game asks what common game mechanics teach us. The games in the collection are designed to help reevaluate our perspective on gameplay experiences. As Critical Cartography changes the way we perceive the world, Critical Gameplay seeks to offer alternate perspectives on the way we play.
Pilot a drone to
pick up packages and deliver them to eagerly waiting customers. But
don't fly over the wrong house! You might be issued a privacy
game belongs to a relatively new genre of games, known as newsgames.
Newsgames are small games intended to editorialize themes from the news
through procedural programming. This game was created as a rapid
development project for Artscape 2015.
Mike Treanor, Josh McCoy, Chris Totten, Lindsay Grace
In Lissitzky's Revenge, you are a red wedge beating puzzles in order to destroy the white circle while you are chased down by enemy Russian words. The game art was made using paper cut-outs instead of digital drawings, and it is based on the poster Beat the Whites with the Red Wedge, by the artist El Lissitzky in 1920. The game is part of the Atelier Project of the AU Game Lab, and was featured on Kill Screen Daily.
Drawing Fire is in design phase. It is the second game in the Atelier Project, and art for the game includes cartoons hand-drawn in ink. The player is a political cartoonist, and each day the comics they create become a part of the characters world. Elements assembled by the player-character into images become real events in the player's life.