This is the eighth article in the series The Academics Are Coming.
Die Gute Fabrik's Doug Wilson tipped me off that Chaim Gingold might be a suitable interview subject for the series. But who is Chaim Gingold?
Well, he completed an MS in Digital Media at Georgia Tech then went into the games industry. To a job at Maxis, to be precise: Gingold was the design lead for all of Spore's Creators. He went independent in 2008, doing freelance work and creating two iPhone games - MinMe and Earth Dragon. He's now working on a personal project called Geology: An Interactive Primer, one of last year's IndieCade finalists, a geological toybox that teaches through experimentation.
But that's not the important bit: Gingold is currently engaged in a PhD at UC Santa Cruz's Expressive Intelligence Studio.
Why has a successful mainstream games developer gone back to school? In the following interview, Gingold exposes a larger question about what it means to be "games studies academic".
This is the seventh article in the series The Academics Are Coming.
Dr. Dan Pinchbeck is a senior lecturer for the School of Creative Technologies at the University of Portsmouth. His PhD thesis, completed in 2009, was titled “Story as a function of gameplay in First Person Shooters: an analysis of FPS diegetic content 1998-2007.”
As discussed two weeks ago on Electron Dance, Pinchbeck is a champion of development-led research. He is known principally for Dear Esther, originally a Half-Life 2 mod from 2009 which was released commercially this year. He runs a studio called thechineseroom which is working on two new projects: Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture and Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs with Frictional Games.
Dan has a lot to say about the relevancy of academic research and the strengths and difficulties of academic game development.
The third of a five-part video series. This time I harass Ed Key. Yes, Ed Key, developer of Proteus.
Warning, this video contains colours&music. And:
- How Proteus is as much Kanaga as it is Key
- Wait, how much detail is coded into this thing?
- Proteus reference points
- I say awesomestupidthing "games which aren't games" when the correct phrasing eludes and deludes me
- Schafer vs Hofmeier deathmatch
This is the sixth article in the series The Academics Are Coming.
So this game. It had a dreadful. Slow. Pace. And it wouldn't let me participate or edit its story in any way. Yet, the confident, rambling narrative and superb voice acting worked some sort of mad magic.
I wasn't exactly onside with Lewis Denby when he suffered a life-threatening attack of hyperbole and said Dear Esther changed his outlook on games forever but, yeah, it was definitely interesting.