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© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
© Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pitt...
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"The Poetics of Games: Art, Poetry and Storytelling in Modern Game Design," Maria C. R. Harrington, Ph.D., Art Institute of Pittsburgh 2008

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"The Poetics of Games: Art, Poetry and Storytelling in Modern Game Design," Maria C. R. Harrington, Ph.D., Art Institute of Pittsburgh 2008. (I gave a similar one to the ETC CMU crowd, at the invitation of Drew Davidson).
This was a guest lecture I gave to art students in game design at the Art Institute. I wanted to challenge students to think about game engines as a new artistic and aesthetic medium. One that could be used to create beauty, open to new perceptual dimensions and analysis of reality. Not only consistent with traditional linear stories in text, games also allow branching and exploration of multiple stories, futures, and paths, thus creating a new artist medium for the artist intellectual. My aim was to inspire new forms of visual expression and to fully embrace the emotional power of these high fidelity, multi-media, electronic paints, fluid temporal canvases, and digital printing presses, to leave cultural records of meaning for future generations.

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"The Poetics of Games: Art, Poetry and Storytelling in Modern Game Design," Maria C. R. Harrington, Ph.D., Art Institute of Pittsburgh 2008

  1. 1. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Maria C.R. Harrington Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Maria C.R. Harrington School of Information Sciences Department of Information Science and Telecommunications University of Pittsburgh 135 North Bellefield Avenue Pittsburgh, PA 15260 USA mharring@pitt.edu Human Computer Interaction Spatial Information Theory Knowledge Acquisition Systems
  2. 2. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Maria C.R. Harrington Dissertation: “Simulated Ecological Environments for Education (SEEE): A Tripartite Model Framework of HCI Design Parameters for Situational Learning in Virtual Environments.”
  3. 3. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Overview “The Poetics of Games: Art, Poetry and Storytelling in Modern Game Design” Art Poetry Storytelling ->>> Designing new experiences Art in 3D Worlds Poetry in 3D Worlds Storytelling in 3D Wolds
  4. 4. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Art Overview • Definition(s) • Offer an experience that represents expert execution and high aesthetics and high intellectual and emotional response Expert Execution = High Aesthetics Novice Execution = Low Aesthetics NoviceConcept=LowIntellectual& EmotionalResponse ExpertConcept=HighIntellectual& EmotionalResponse
  5. 5. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Art: Example
  6. 6. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Poetry Overview • Definition(s) • Offer an experience that represents expert execution and High Standards of Rhythm, Verse, Sound and Semantics Expert Execution = High Standards of Rhythm, Verse, Sound and Semantics Novice Execution = Low Standards Rhythm, Verse, Sound and Semantics NoviceConcept=LowIntellectual& EmotionalResponse ExpertConcept=HighIntellectual& EmotionalResponse
  7. 7. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Poetry: Example He Wishes For The Cloths Of Heaven by William Butler Yeats Had I the heavens' embroidered cloths, Enwrought with golden and silver light, The blue and the dim and the dark cloths Of night and light and the half-light, I would spread the cloths under your feet: But I, being poor, have only my dreams; I have spread my dreams under your feet; Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
  8. 8. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Storytelling Overview • Definition(s) • Offer an experience that represents expert execution and High Standards in plot of a narrative or dramatic work Expert Execution = plot of a narrative or dramatic work Novice Execution = Low Standards plot of a narrative or dramatic work NoviceConcept=LowIntellectual& EmotionalResponse ExpertConcept=HighIntellectual& EmotionalResponse
  9. 9. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Storytelling: Example • Treasure Island • Robert Louis Stevenson, narrating a tale of "buccaneers and buried gold". 1883, • “Coming of age story” • Adventure tale known for its superb atmosphere • Character and Action, • Wry commentary on the ambiguity of morality • It is one of the most frequently dramatized of all novels
  10. 10. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Poetry Expert Execution = High Standards of Rhythm, Verse, Sound and Semantics Art Expert Execution = High Aesthetics Storytelling Expert Execution = plot of a narrative or dramatic work Design Space for new experiences with Games Expert Concept & High Intellectual & Emotional Response Design Space: Visual, Emotional, Rhythm, Sound
  11. 11. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Goal: Designing new experiences • Start with what we know… Contrast to existing experiences… • Games for excitement? – First person shooters (targets) – Collaborative often with teams – Fast – Violent! • Games for ego? – Cards – Collaborative – Competitive – Roles are winner and losers • What is the user experiencing in these types of games?
  12. 12. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA What are the user experiences? • First person shooters? – Excitement? – Adrenaline rush? – Accomplishment? • Cards? – Money!!!! – Wining!!! – Psych-out others?
  13. 13. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA What is missing? • Need to define new goals in the “Gap” • What is the “Gap” ??? • The Gap is the place that exists in the market – user needs – that are not currently being satisfied by the market… Gap = New Design Features and Opportunities
  14. 14. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Goal: Designing new experiences • What is missing? New goals? (Flip it!) • Games for excitement calm? – Exploratory (ok not to have a target) – Individual? Or collaborative? But a different type - helping? – Slow – not timed – under the individuals control – Peaceful! • Games for ego self? Intellectually and Emotionally Stimulating? – Individual? Or collaborative? – No explicit goal, pure exploration – No winner and losers
  15. 15. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Poetry Expert Execution = High Standards of Rhythm, Verse, Sound and Semantics Art Expert Execution = High Aesthetics Storytelling Expert Execution = plot of a narrative or dramatic work Design Space for new experiences with Games Expert Concept & High Intellectual & Emotional Response Design Space: Visual, Emotional, Rhythm, Sound
  16. 16. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA What are the user experiences? • How to design for Calm? – Slow and peaceful? – “Flow” – Csikszentmihalyi, M. (1991). Flow the psychology of optimal experience. New York, NY.: Harper Perennial. – No goals • How to design for Self? – Highly personal – “Multiple Intelligences” – Gardner, H. (1983). Frames of mind: The theory of multiple intelligences. New York, NY: Basic Books Paperback. – Helping others = release of “endorphins”
  17. 17. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Designing new experiences • Qualities of the design taxonomy – Art => Aesthetics – Poetry =>Rhythm – Storytelling => Personal • Experience – Results from the Balance of main qualities – Ambiance and Mood is created
  18. 18. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Designing Art => Aesthetics • Definition • Example of Art => Aesthetics in Games • Char Davies • Virtual Environments Osmose (1995) and Ephémère (1998) [ Integrating full body immersion, interactive 3D digital imagery and sound, and navigation via a breathing interface. • “Breath – “Just Breath” •http://www.immersence.com/index.html
  19. 19. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Designing Poetry =>Rhythm • Definition • Example of Poetry =>Rhythm in Games • SIGGRAPH 2006 video • Heebok Lee, CMU “Tread Softly” an interpretation of W.B. Yeats poem • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QcmfU-9VGIQ
  20. 20. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Designing Storytelling => Personal • Norbert Braun • “Project “Geist • “Storytelling in Collaborative Augmented Reality Environments” • WSCG 2003, Plzen, Czech Republic
  21. 21. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Geist The Castle of Heidelberg Sketches of Characters Augmented Reality Implementation and Interaction
  22. 22. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Critical Features of Experience • Most Common – Aesthetics • Influences all signals • Emotional and Affective – Rhythm • Linguistic • Musical • Pace of Spatial-Temporal – Personal • Anecdotes • Tales • Roles for both teller and listener • Writer -> control of destiny
  23. 23. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Myst … A Case Study • By Robyn and Rand Miller • Released in 1993 for the Macintosh • Best selling PC game for many years • Over 12 million copies • Four sequels: Riven, Myst III: Exile, Myst IV: Revelation, and Myst V: End of Ages • Myst Masterpiece Edition, and realMYST
  24. 24. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Myst: Some Background Facts • The original Macintosh version was constructed in Hypercard • The gameplay is a first-person journey through an interactive world • Users can interact with specific objects on some screens by clicking or dragging them • This is an evolution of interactive exploration • Narrative unfolds with nonverbal images & sounds • The player must explore the seemingly deserted Myst Island • Where they can find clues to be transported to several 'Ages', each of which is a self-contained mini-world • Each Age – (Selenic, Stoneship, Mechanical, and Channelwood) - requires the user to solve a series of logical, interrelated puzzles
  25. 25. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Myst: What is different? • The primary objective of the game is to discover the objective of the game? • There are no obvious enemies, • No physical violence, and • No threat of "dying" at any point • There is no time limit • No need for speed • The game unfolds at its own pace and is solved through a combination of patience, observation, and logical thinking.
  26. 26. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Myst: Extraction of Design • Art: High Aesthetics and Emotion – Surrealistic Island, Solitary and Mysterious Atmosphere • Poetry: High Standards of Rhythm, Verse, Sound and Semantics – Pace, Images and Sound Create Poetry of Space • Storytelling: Plot and Narrative Personally Engaging – Discovered and Created on Route – Highly Personal
  27. 27. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Conclusion & Generalizations • Critical Features to keep in mind for design – Art: High Aesthetics and Emotion – Poetry: High Standards of Rhythm, Verse, Sound and Semantics – Storytelling: Plot and Narrative Personally Engaging
  28. 28. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Poetry Expert Execution = High Standards of Rhythm, Verse, Sound and Semantics Art Expert Execution = High Aesthetics Storytelling Expert Execution = plot of a narrative or dramatic work Design Space for new experiences with Games Expert Concept & High Intellectual & Emotional Response Design Space: Visual, Emotional, Rhythm, Sound
  29. 29. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Conclusion & Future Application • How to apply? – Education • “Talk-to-Me Phonics Amazing Animals Boxed Set” – Edutainment • “New Nancy Drew: The White Wolf of Icicle Creek” – Advertisements • IBM in Second Life – Works of multi-media art • SIGGRAPH Art Gallery and Emerging Technologies
  30. 30. © Maria C.R. Harrington, 2008, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Presentation to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, January 14, 2008, Pittsburgh, PA USA Demo & Questions • Simulated Ecological Environments for Education • http://www.sis.pitt.edu/~mariah/phd/index.html

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