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Friday, October 15, 2010

Moving scenes



I've been checking out a demo of Heavy Rain - the special edition that uses the new Move
controller.

Non-geeks read this: "Move" is an add-on piece of kit for the Playstation games console. You wave the special device around as you play the game and the Playstation can 'see' it and so can change what happens on screen. You use it instead of a mouse or keyboard. When using it, you look a bit like Tom Cruise in Minority Report, but less cool. The Wii is a bit the same, if you know that.

As you can see from the video, this game tries to put you in the action by, well, making you do actions. Probably like you, when I saw the video I nearly laughed out loud. But that could be because everyone in the video looks like a right chump.

However, I feel there is something there. The problem with this early game is that it is trying to make the device fit - rather awkwardly maybe. In the same way that early 3D films had things wooshing out at you.

But the reason it could work is to do with the kinetic feeling. As a player you have to focus more on the movement and action, so you generally pay more attention. You are NOT slumped on the sofa. Your mind is more alert, so you pick up on narrative details faster.

It would be interesting to see if this is slowly related to gameplay and / or to the writing. I feel it would mean less dialogue and more visual clues as it is the eyes that are working harder.

What I don't feel it does is actually make you feel 'in' the game / story. In fact it is very 'fourth wall' but you are reaching into the fake world.

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