MediaSynth Final - playground

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Provocation: Create a multimedia installation that explores ‘playground’ and breaks a rule.

Goal and Prompt: Identify a clear intention for a media installation (interactive or non-interactive) and advance it to the stage where it is installation ready. You should cater for all reasonable considerations to produce a high quality, robust and polished piece. Both aesthetics, intent and context should be balanced and the work should be understood by a general audience. The final piece must also be established relative to prior work in the domain.

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Discussion 36
  • Side A/Side B
    Judy Mai
    Judy Mai Posted on 2015-12-10 03:56:12 -0500.

    Great prototype, it's clear you guys already have a set defined idea which you can build on. The five-playered pinball using a pentagon is really elegantly made and definitely very appealing. I'm curious to see how you will have the people interact together to create beautiful music since the objective of the game is to keep the balls inside? Perhaps the more balls they are able to keep within the pentagon, the better the music sounds.
    I'm curious whether your main focus is the pinball game or is the objective to collaborate and make music?
    I really like the collaborative effort incorporated into your game, and definitely try to project it onto a surface so that its more immersive rather than just on a tablet--maybe either project it onto a wall or use a TV. I personally think the balls falling down onto the screen is kind of distracting...I would recommend maybe having like a "hole" or a base in the center of the pentagon where the ball just rolls out. Also rather than just pegs in the middle, maybe have more of a surface like with walls such that it bounces off or gets stuck within a wall. I'm not really sure how the physics would work in that case since it's not like using the force of gravity like in the original pinball game...but these are just suggestions! Ultimately it's your decision--I look forward to seeing the final result!

  • coFarm
    mzhong1
    mzhong1 Posted on 2015-12-09 21:38:25 -0500.

    This looks really beautiful and cool! I know you guys are planning to use the MakeyMakey controller, but have you thought about how exactly you are going to map the controls to what the players can do? Also, is there a platform per individual or is the whole community using a single platform? Also, how can the players explore in this game? Is it just the idea of being able to not only compete against the other players but also cooperate for points? I think your ideas are beautiful, but how are you going to explain the rules? Will they be posted in the curatorial statement or will there be a tutorial?

  • Side A/Side B
    Janine Louie
    Janine Louie Posted on 2015-12-09 00:07:58 -0500.

    Your prototype looked really cool and I thought the idea f having the balls fall into the game from above if they left the pentagon was a very clever and beautiful idea. I was slightly confused during the demonstration as to whether the balls had sounds attached to them or whether the pegs they hit had sounds attached to them. Also I think Daragh made a good point in that maybe it would be nice to see the whole arena projected or spectators to just view since it is really aesthetically beautiful. Besides those two things the game looks awesome and I can't wait to see it!

  • White Noise
    Marie Shaw
    Marie Shaw Posted on 2015-12-08 22:13:10 -0500.

    I think this is a really interesting idea, and that if it comes together well, will have impact both on the visual and audio front. Today you guys mentioned the difficulty of pixel art, but I think that what you have so far looks great and I'm excited to see more. I think to make it more than just putting objects down and having corresponding sounds play, there's a lot that could be done on the audio side. Even though the aesthetic is important, I hope you guys don't spend too much time on the pixel art and lose time that could be spent on making the project better in other ways.

  • toneFarm
    Yijing Chen
    Yijing Chen Posted on 2015-12-08 21:58:05 -0500.

    The prototype you presented in class was very entertaining! You're well on your way toward a final product. Some people thought the animal noises gave the project its own charm, and, you know, it might be an interesting diversion. Several other final projects in this course are working with a musical audio comonent, so making a mainly audio project that's not a bona fide music project would be different. Of course, that idea's up to the people in your group.

    I'm curious about how flexible the project will turn out to be. How many different sounds are there? What's the range of pitches they can take on? I'm interested to see how your project developed in your documentation and where it will go from here.

  • Attic
    Rachel Gu
    Rachel Gu Posted on 2015-12-08 21:31:11 -0500.

    I love the graphics you guys created for the project. I like that it has a story-like element, and that it gets creepier and creepier. However, I'm curious as to whether it will reset for each person who views it, or if some people will see it starting from the creepier parts. Or maybe it will reset a few times over the course of the gallery period? Anyways, I look forward to see it and interact with it then! :)

  • Follow Your Harp
    Azer
    Azer Posted on 2015-12-08 21:28:03 -0500.

    Definitely intrigued by the sound maze idea! And of course, Undertale vid. I now have half an hour to look forward to.
    I think the success of the idea would depend a lot on the underlying logic for hitting a good note versus a bad mode. And after that, the fun in the idea would come from balancing the challenge of the game. I wonder if you might consider timing-based logic for the game. Somehow the game reminds of Crypt of the NecroDancer, which although I've never played, looks incredibly fun to. Maybe there could be a challenge mode or something. I think adding music to the mechanics could really.. /jazz/ it up.

  • Absolutely No Ball Playing Allowed
    Nathan
    Nathan Posted on 2015-12-08 20:59:40 -0500.

    Nice idea! I'd love to see how you'll handle the outside environment with a tech-heavy setup. Also, how are you going to replicate that environment for the installation during finals week?

    Looking forward to playing it.

  • Ensemble
    Dominic Liu
    Dominic Liu Posted on 2015-12-08 20:35:20 -0500.

    You have a good idea that opens a lot of possibilities for yourselves as well as your users. I really appreciate the choice between being creative visually or aurally (or both). This unrestricted freedom will definitely hold your users’ attentions for a long time.

    Some of the suggestions in class focused on the interactions between different users. I think this could really add another dimension to your project, though it does also add many other considerations. Just an idea: maybe you could have all of the canvases overlap with each other partially (like a Venn Diagram) and composite them appropriately into a single image. This way, each user would have the option of creating his/her own drawing, or contributing to a shared area.

  • Side A/Side B
    Ricardo Tucker
    Ricardo Tucker Posted on 2015-12-08 20:31:10 -0500.

    I like the idea behind this, it is certainly unique! I know most people would not think of combining music and a game like pinball. However, how much more control over the music could the format of the game allow? Perhaps the players could also have some sort of control over the bumpers in the middle of the stage and have those affect particular instruments in the song as well? Having the surfaces only affect the volume of the song makes the project seem like more of a fancy audio player rather than a collaborative game.

  • toneFarm
    Roger Liu
    Roger Liu Posted on 2015-12-08 20:27:30 -0500.

    The use of the leap motion works really well with the project, and gives an awesome digital representation of your hand that really adds to the playfulness of the project. The use of animal sounds was also pretty funny, though it did get kind of grating after a while. You should definitely look into creating a large projection for your final installation! There could be more visual flourish, but the stuff you have right now definitely serves the projects purpose.

  • Side A/Side B
    swilhelm
    swilhelm Posted on 2015-12-08 20:23:46 -0500.

    This is a creative idea. There were definitely good ideas presented today, such as making this be on a larger scale than a tablet. I think that will make gameplay seem much less cramped. I liked that there were more and more balls being added. I'm sure that was going to make really interesting and complex music. I can't wait to see how music is incorporated to the gameplay. The prototype looked great. I would personally suggest that the balls that fall bounce less dramatically. I thought it was a little distracting when there already was a lot going on. But then again, maybe the distraction is an added challenge. Can't wait to see the finished product!

  • coFarm
    Kaalen Kirrene
    Kaalen Kirrene Posted on 2015-12-08 20:20:46 -0500.

    This sounds super cool! I was just wondering what specific aspect of play you guys would be exploring. Its one thing to make a game and its cool that its collaborative but I am just wondering what the underlying idea of play is? Is it the collaboration of people or is it the opposition of people and if so what is so playful about it? Games are at their heart playful but its not just about being playful its about exploring an idea of play or maybe using play to express a different idea. Just something to think about. It sounds like its going to be super cool and a really fun idea but maybe just add some bits about the idea you are exploring.

  • Absolutely No Ball Playing Allowed
    brandonx
    brandonx Posted on 2015-12-08 20:15:08 -0500.

    This project is unique in that it breaks the rules in that the main portion situated outside the iDeate gallery, but also in that its in obvious defiance of the sign on the wall. Though I imagine that the reason for the rule is that its in area high in auto and pedestrian traffic, which may also endanger any equipment you're bringing. I'm also curious how projection would work on a black surface, and I imagine you'd have to do some adjustments with color and whatnot. In any case, I really like this project, and hope I get to try it in its intended environment.

  • Playground
    Lucy  Tan
    Lucy Tan Posted on 2015-12-08 20:09:24 -0500.

    I'm looking forward to how this game pans out. So far, the one instance I've seen of the Prisoner's Dilemma in a game was in Virtue's Last Reward, and it was more of a branching point for the plot rather than an actual game mechanic, so this is a pretty unique take on the Dilemma. I think one problem with your idea as it stands now is that the players don't benefit for cooperating (with the way your proposal is currently phrased, it seems as though there is only one winner) and also that it's possible to tell when you've been sabotaged. Since player A would likely lose to player B if player B gives A a setback, it would be more advantageous for player A to also sabotage as well, since the worst case scenario is that A loses anyway. I'm interested in how you will balance this.

  • toneFarm
    Everi
    Everi Posted on 2015-12-08 20:00:07 -0500.

    I thought your prototype was really cool! I like how the user can control the virtual objects with their hands by using the Leap Motion. I also really like the animal theme you had in your prototype. I know you plan on changing the cow sounds to something more musical, but I agree with what was said in class- there's something very amusing to having those weird cow sounds make a tune. Plus the consistent animal/farm theme you had with the cow sounds, the cow background, and the pig blocks made for a really unified, memorable project. Even if you do decide to put in other sounds, make sure you keep a consistent theme across the sounds and the visual components.

  • Attic
    sxv
    sxv Posted on 2015-12-08 19:55:40 -0500.

    I look forward to seeing where this ends up, I very much enjoy mysterious stories and being able to uncover it yourself would be awesome. Also, I like the art so far. It definitely gives an impression of warm invitation, but when you guys played the sound from the boat, it set the creepiness tone very well. It already looks very professionally done!

  • toneFarm
    ashleyle
    ashleyle Posted on 2015-12-08 19:34:55 -0500.

    Hello!

    i see that we're both inspired at least partially by the "Click Some Squares" program, but it's interesting the approach you took to replicate it with your own twists. I think it's really important that the installation has no real objective other than to create an individual (or collaborative) experience, which from your demonstration, you've already achieved the former. Like the others said before, if you could find a way for multiple people to interact with the same environment through different media, that would boost the collaborative factor. Other than that, the work that you've done so far is already pretty amazing. Definitely having a bigger room/more throwing space would make the installation more replayable.

  • Playground
    Nazli
    Nazli Posted on 2015-12-08 19:22:17 -0500.

    Hi!
    I think this game is really interesting. I've heard something like the prisoner's dilemma before, and it seemed very interesting. Your idea to combine that with a game, especially a technological one is very exciting. I would definitely play it! Usually when people play multiplayer games, they are against each other. Although there are some cases where they play on the same side, their actions don't directly affect the other person's playing. Somehow your game reminds me of 3 legged race; both players want to finish the race as fast as possible, but they have to act together or they will get in each others way. Good luck with the project!

  • Attic
    jfrimpon
    jfrimpon Posted on 2015-12-08 19:07:18 -0500.

    I think your project could turn out really well! I'm really excited to see what you'll do with it. The eeriness of it is a great idea. I think it'd be cool if over time, the warm setting slowly faded away and went from bright orange/red/yellow to darker colors and the lightning outside idea you had was really cool. Oh and jump scares like having a creepy grudge thing in the corner randomly appear for a few frames (during the lightning :O) is another idea I had during your presentation.

  • coFarm
    Christine Lee
    Christine Lee Posted on 2015-12-08 16:48:32 -0500.

    This sounds really, really, really intense. It seems more feasible because there are already built frameworks for augmented reality and Makey Makey will make the user input easier to obtain. (still super intense though) I also really like the idea of being able to burn each other's plots, even at the risk of burning your own/harming the entire ecosystem. My question is - what is there to stop someone from being like "haha, I'm going to burn Player 2's plot." Would Player 2 see you burning their land (since everyone is around one installation, and everything is projected onto a larger screen)? Then it'd just devolve into madness as everyone starts burning everything. How are you going to balance that - especially since there are shared resources. Just my thoughts since I'm not sure if there are both shared resources and personal resources. I'm really excited for you guys to finish this project though. It sounds like a lot of broken friendships waiting to happen. :)

  • toneFarm
    Aliya Blackwood
    Aliya Blackwood Posted on 2015-12-08 09:41:43 -0500.

    The idea sounds like a lot of fun. The use of Leap motion rather than a mouse or touch screen is very interesting, although I think that when this project is presented, you may want to make stations so that you can have multiple people interact with the environment. I look forward to seeing how this project progresss

  • toneFarm
    Nathan
    Nathan Posted on 2015-12-07 18:32:54 -0500.

    That idea sounds really interesting! Distance/position data of the LeapMotion controller combined with pitch and volume modification could allow for some really interesting and low-bar-of-entry musical composition! I'd love to be able to create music with others with a very minimal learning curve on such a setup as this.

  • coFarm
    Rachel Gu
    Rachel Gu Posted on 2015-12-04 12:33:36 -0500.

    The idea sounds slightly ambitious but pretty amazing. I'm a little confused as to how the installation is going to be set up -- will people be able to manipulate the physical space and see the screen at the same time, are the screens going to be fixed in place, and is the installation going to be fairly big or relatively small? -- and the role of the makey-makey -- what is the game play/progression aspect, or is that just another idea that isn't actually related? --, but that will probably make more sense once I see the final product. Overall, the idea is very interesting, and I look forward to have the chance to interact with it during the showcase.

  • coFarm
    mmzucker
    mmzucker Posted on 2015-12-04 10:24:19 -0500.

    A really interesting and lofty goal but if well-executed will be something really amazing. It seems like theres some details left to be figured out about how users can collaborate in addition to how you will physically build the code around it. Also something to consider might be the extent of the user interaction (i.e. are they remotely building something together, or are they in the same space using the same materials to cultivate their plants?) Anyway, seems like a cool idea, I look forward to seeing how it works!

  • White Noise
    jfrimpon
    jfrimpon Posted on 2015-12-04 10:13:19 -0500.

    I think you're idea is really cool because it draws inspiration from the same thing our group really likes and want to use (the tonematrix aka click the squares to make music). It seems as if you're going in a different direction than ours because you're creating a playground that allows the user to expressive in more than one way. I'm excited to see what people will come up with using your project!

  • Absolutely No Ball Playing Allowed
    swilhelm
    swilhelm Posted on 2015-12-04 00:56:27 -0500.

    This is definitely on par with some of the examples we've seen in class. I like that you reference the "absolutely no ball playing allowed" and plan to cleverly break that rule. You mentioned in the beginning that you may have multiple scenes. Would this be multiple scenes of people playing ball? If so you could incorporate different kinds of "ball playing" as in simple catch, basketball, maybe even baseball (pitching and swinging the bat). I definitely look forward to this, and hope that I even see it live visiting Oakland!

  • Playground
    ashleyle
    ashleyle Posted on 2015-12-04 00:03:02 -0500.

    Hello!

    Essentially, you guys are aiming to create a game compatible for the Wii/Kinect using a shadow silhouette as the medium through which you interact with the game. While this seems pretty cool, it's also very ambitious. and I'm not sure how you would adjust the Wii/Kinect sensors to detect shadow as opposed to plain motion. As for your alternative, what do you mean by making a video of each level and having people manually control it?

  • Ensemble
    Everi
    Everi Posted on 2015-12-03 22:57:05 -0500.

    I like how you plan on taking one of the traditional elements of a literal playground (tag) and making it digital! However, I was wondering how you plan on displaying your project as an installation? It may be a bit hectic to have people playing digital tag in the space. Another thing I noticed was that your ideas involve a lot of rules to the game. One thing you may want to keep in mind is that users will be people walking by who stop to play and thus the game rules need to be easy to understand quickly.

  • Side A/Side B
    eir
    eir Posted on 2015-12-03 22:45:40 -0500.

    I like the idea of combining music with the actions of a game; I feel like this adds a another level of difficulty that makes the game even more interactive, as the player(s) is switching between senses to appraise how well they are doing. I was a little more confused about your specific idea though. How does the pinball know what note its making? Based on the angle that its hits obstacles? Also, how continuous will the music be? Only making music on impacts or does the music play for longer? How coherent will the song will from this?

  • Follow Your Harp
    Yijing Chen
    Yijing Chen Posted on 2015-12-03 20:52:35 -0500.

    Hmm... I like the creativity with the concept. It's a clever spin on those musical applications that use pads or tiles to generate music. I can definitely see myself playing with this project to make a nice-sounding path!

    What I am concerned about is the extent of this project as a media installation. A maze implies some sort of objective, and media installations tend to be more open-ended. I'd think that allowing the player to backtrack without needing to restart and allowing the player to see the path he/she takes (maybe a pretty path creates pretty music) would make for a more magnetic project. Granted, the objectiveness of this project could be the rule you're breaking.

  • Follow Your Harp
    Christine Lee
    Christine Lee Posted on 2015-12-03 20:50:31 -0500.

    Cool idea! Are you going to have the sounds create a song? Or are they just going to be the same nice-sounding sound/note for all of them? I think it'd give the player more incentive to go back and hit only the correct blocks if they know it's going to play a familiar tune or something. (you could do like a cellphone ringtone since those are pretty short) Is this going to be just on a screen with the arrow keys (one person can play at a time)? I think one way you can make it even harder is by making it into a rhythm game as well - have something pulsing at the top and show the player that they have to move to the time of the beat. Just throwing ideas out there. I think this will be a fun game to play though. :) Do you know what rule you're going to break? Seems like something that would be interesting to use Makey Makey with. You could have it be somewhat like DDR and just connect 4 squares so that a passerby can use their feet to move/dance along.

  • Follow Your Harp
    Ricardo Tucker
    Ricardo Tucker Posted on 2015-12-03 20:48:05 -0500.

    I think the idea of a maze guided by lights and sounds is pretty neat. It seems pretty similar to a mini-game from this game show: https://youtu.be/t2t808HHibE?t=1153

    If the user is able to complete the maze while still stepping on incorrect tiles, what would stop someone from just stepping on every single tile and moving on to the next level? The project seems to focus on having the user learn from their failures to eventually reach success, so making the user have to start over each time they step on an incorrect tile I think would make that intention more clear. But otherwise I think this is a neat idea, and would certainly be very entertaining once it is actually made!

  • Attic
    Janine Louie
    Janine Louie Posted on 2015-12-03 19:34:23 -0500.

    I really like your project and I think your decision to make a looping music video is awesome. I have a question/suggestions. Are you planning on using the same person just in different costumes or were you also planning on changing the actor to make it a more drastic "dress up"? If you were thinking about changing the actor you could also allow people to interact by recording people and add it to the video. You could have it were there is a starting pose and you could have the audience member start and finish in that pose but do whatever in between and then just cut all the videos together. Also were you planning on using the same music track or switching tracks between loops? I'm really excited to see the finished project and I think it will look really cool!

  • Absolutely No Ball Playing Allowed
    Janine Louie
    Janine Louie Posted on 2015-12-03 19:21:28 -0500.

    I really like the project idea and think it would be really fun to interact with and will look awesome even when just passing by. I was wondering which motion capture technology you were planning on using and how you plan on dealing with too many people interacting with the installation at once. I ask this because I think Kinects require that you have an exact number of people being tracked and I don't know if other software have special requirements for motion tracking. Also an idea, which I don't know if it would work, might be to have the piece indoors which might make it easier for people to interact with since its not cold inside and it would also kind of break a rule because I usually play handball outside. Besides that I can't wait to see it!

  • Absolutely No Ball Playing Allowed
    Roger Liu
    Roger Liu Posted on 2015-12-03 19:09:04 -0500.

    I find it really interesting that you're "breaking" the rules laid out by the project and are tackling such a large scope. There are a few things that I would consider. One is how are going to arrange for a controlled environment for your project? What's keeping kids from accidentally knocking over the projector. Secondly, on the more technical side, how do you plan on actually letting users interact with the ball? Things like the kinect don't have the best range, and I'm not sure how effective OpenCV like stuff would be in an outdoors setting. Additionally, is the game 2D or 3D? To participants hit the ball to each other on a 2D plane, or do they somehow hit the ball "into" the wall, creating an illusion of depth. I'm quite impressed by your planned scope for this project, and look forward to seeing what you create!