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영문은 채팅캣 서비스로 교정을 받았습니다.
Contemporary Architecture Theory
and Game Storytelling
I read a column about the criticism of aesthetics by Professor Jin(진중권), and I found these passages:
“There are two elements of criticism. One, it has to contain a description of the work’s special qualities. Two, it has to contain an evaluation of the work’s aesthetic value. Criticism has its own literary form. That is, criticism is not parasitic on the work, and is not directly related to methodology. Criticism is a creative activity which creates a third form of literature. Meaning is not an object of the work. Meaning is produced through criticism. The work’s meaning has to expand through a variety of forms.”
I wonder, ‘can video game criticism be based on aesthetics?’
Of course, if video games have a story, then we can try to critique them like works of literature but I feel that is not enough.
In the current decade, the storytelling of video games has been regarded as the background stories or quests in the games.
Additionally, there have been some people that have negative thoughts about video games in Korea and researchers have not been willing to accept video games as aesthetics.
So, I have these ideas.
Is there a more suitable theory for game storytelling criticism?
Perhaps to reflect the game’s spatial narrative; to reflect space design’s view too?
I guess there are answers in architectural criticism.
Contemporary architecture’s point of view is similar to that of digital’s.
The architectural field has many philosophical analyses about space design and humanity through interactivity from human to space.
Well, I will talk about these topics.
- one, the spatiality of digital media.
- two, such spatiality of digital media can be analyzed by considering theories of contemporary architecture, because the spatiality of digital media is clearly generated from user participation.
- three, contemporary architecture theory explains that space is understood in sequential scenes by users. It is embodied by real-time rendering in video games. Real-time rendering is an important storytelling tool.
Before the modern age, people thought that space can be separate from experienced person and would not be changed regardless of experience of person.
after the modern age, however, the space that a person does not experience is identical to the space that does not exist. In other words, they argue that we should recognize the space as a variable and relative thing.
In the theories of contemporary architecture, the text in architecture and the participation of human bodies have become important concepts.
And Wolfgang Iser said that a literary work eventually can be complete after the reading behavior of readers. Gil said that architecture as text provides possibility to the participation of human bodies. He explained that the structure has been read and accepted through human bodies.
Human body become a media between architecture and meanings.
Frankl and Rassmussen also said that the spatial image generated by relationship between a structural space and movement of a human body is an important tool for analysis of an achitectural space.
Understanding the architectural space can be considered as a process that a person summarizes a sequence of images which is captured during exploration inside and outside of the structure.
we never see this.
we combine these sequential scenes.
In according to Janet Murray, digital medium is non-linear, which means that it does not follow chronological order unlike books and films, and has spatiality in itself. She said The new digital environments are characterized by their power to represent navigable space.
It is in fact independent of the computer’s ability to display maps, pictures, or even three-dimensional models.“
And Martin Seel said that the virtual world can be meaningful only if a body is related to it.
He employed the concept of cyberspace in the narrow sense of a mechanically produced spatial state that changes its vistas in coordination with the bodily movement of beholders.
Of course, we have to use our bodies in order to experience real world. However, our existence is not strictly necessary for the existence of the real world.
In a point of modern view, the space can exist, even though we do not experience it and do not know about it.
On the other hand, in a point of contemporary view, the space can be meaningful only if the participation of the body happens.
In order words, there would be no space if there were no movement, so the space can be only recognized by the movement.
This concept of user-oriented space leads human-oriented design in current architecture.
This is a famous Korean poems.
Until I spoke his name,
he had been
no more than a mere gesture.
When I spoke his name,
he came to me
and became a flower.
So, I think it is a contemporary concept of a space.
Here is a good example. This is a “Church of Light” model designed by Ando Dadao. People don’t understand the whole structure of church.
People should take the narrow and crooked path to the church. People only see these scenes.
At the end of the crooked path, people see the cross-shaped light in the centre of church. People just believe that their life is forgiven through overcoming obstacles. This structure provides a well organised narrative to the people’s lives.
Such a sequence of images experienced by person through his or her body is called “scene.“ In other words, the scene is a space that consists of a collection of views.
This concept definitely denies the aspect of modern architecture, which argues that a person can be an independent subject of observation and can understand a structure in a bird eyes view.
As we mentioned above, a complicated trajectory generated by the movement of human can be treated as the space itself, and this space can be considered as the scene constructed by experience of a person.
The space of virtual worlds definitely agrees with the concept in contemporary architecture. The space cannot be represented if the user does not perform any action. Everything in the virtual world is stored in binary code, and has no physical shape, and is shown in the user’s view through real-time rendering while the user interacts with the object. In order words, the space in the virtual world is generated and exists temporarily and interactively because of the participation of the user. This is a most basic element of game graphic technology.
In short, the real-time rendering in the game provides scenes, and they becomes the main characteristic of the spatial storytelling of the game.
Therefore, when we want to analyze the storytelling of the game, we should analyze the way how the scene delivers the story and let the user understand the space.
A video game is the most obvious text that its story is affected through user participation and control.
Many years before, we discuss space storytelling in video games already.
Many years before, we discuss space storytelling in video games already.
The video games can be considered as spatial storytelling contents which put their story in the space.
So, the game storytelling can be directly produced by the users that explores the world in the game.
The narrative intended by the authors can be constructed by using the background story, system setting, and world campaign setting, and this would work as a guideline for exploration of the users. Thus, the exploration of the space in the game world would be identical to the story experience.
The space storytelling in video games is like this.
This puzzle adventure game’s title is ‘Fez’. We have to solve how to change the view. Basically, this game seems like a two dimensional world, but we can turn the angle freely. That is, the clue is in between the views, so we can solve how to turn the direction of views.
This puzzle adventure game’s title is ‘The Bridge’. The W, A, S, and D keys can move my avatar. The right and left arrow keys can tilt the world. The whole space design is a puzzle. We can solve the puzzle through the tilting of the world.
One way games
Now I wonder about many 3D adventure games. They have wide 3D worlds. We can lose our way and wander anywhere, but the player always knows the right way. It is amazing. The player knows that spaces and story events are matched one by one. Therefore, he or she gets used to solving puzzles and proceeding in stories by finding slightest differences which are harmoniously laid out in a game environment. So these games with first-person camera deliver the story by only using scenes without the third person view. Especially, many games that consist of only one way to proceed are designed by using the space for the scene.
Here is another sample; please forgive these video’s slang.
This horror adventure game title is “Among the Sleep”. One baby explores a house in the night. Basically, the camera view is the same as the baby’s, so the camera angle is always a low angle. People feel more realistic fear.
and thisSometime, people want something more immersive to game storytelling. This game title is Skyrim. It is a perfect example to show that a game’s space can be considered the scene constructed by the experience of a person. He really enjoyed that.