“What’s in a game..” Thoughts on indie game trends
I recently went to my second Screenshake, an indie game festival in Antwerp, Belgium, together with my fellow PhD candidate colleague Francisco. It’s a nice initiative that, among other things, tries to give the Belgian game scene a bit of exposure and attempts to bring a diverse crowd together: a good balance in gender (both talks and audience), and the most diverse crowd on pretty much any level you can imagine. It’s.. impressive.
As a computer scientist, the event tends to get a bit too artsy for my taste. Choosing talks was difficult due to the limited information (only a short, sometimes very cryptic biography), and I couldn’t get to the Industry Talks on Saturday, which, I’m sure/I hope, were not artsy at all. So I chose the talks of Annamaria Andrea and Pietro Righi Riva on Sunday morning, based on the fact that they’re academics as well, expecting very clear and fact-based presentations. Sadly however, they were both in a casual mode, presenting a lot of ideas and thoughts but lacking structure and a general clear message to take away (I have a feeling this blog post is heading in a similar direction). Okay, maybe that’s a bit too harsh, both were interesting talks. But it made me wonder where they want games to head. (Disclaimer: I might have completely misinterpreted these talks or their points being made, because everyone seemed to nod in agreement while we both looked confused. That’s what the comment section or @svencharleer is for).
I saw two trends, opposite extremes as you will: one towards too much freedom, and one towards too many restrictions in video game design.
Read the rest of the article on my personal blog: http://svencharleer.com/blog/2017/02/19/my-experience-screenshake-2017-the-indie-game-festival/