Tuesday, September 29, 2015

For our second project in New Media in Art, I decided to create a video within the theme of video games (shocker!). I filmed myself as I played the game Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn on my PlayStation 3. The focus of the video is on my hands as they interact with the controller while I play. Though at first I intended to simply explore this interaction between man and the conduit to the virtual world and the discrepancies between reality and the game world, I realized that I had the potential to comment on a larger societal behavior: namely, the recent popularity of watching "Let's Play" videos. For those who don't know, a "Let's Play" video is simply a video of a gamer playing a game, typically made either to function as a guide for players who are stuck at a particular part of a game, or more commonly for the entertainment of others. Such videos always feature a feed of the game and occasionally narration by or a feed of the gamer as they play.

The box art for the game I was playing

I found this recent trend to be fascinating: playing video games themselves can be considered an activity removed from reality. If this is the case, then watching another play a video game is twice removed from reality. What is it that draws so many people to this type of entertainment? What is its appeal? I decided to investigate this in my film.

In the end, my project transformed from a film about pushing buttons on a controller to a full on mock "Let's Play" video. I removed the usual elements of a game feed and narration, leaving the viewer to interact only with the physical act of playing a video game. My hope is that this video will shed some light on how and why we interact with this type of media the way we do.

Below is a link to the video:

1 comment:

  1. super cool concept, love the idea especially since i play lots of video games
    this was fun and enjoyable to watch. the idea to have it fast forward was great technique