Saturday, 18 July 2015

Like a Preah

Danger is an excellent distraction from poor detail. Because this map never plays out the same way twice, I am always too busy not dying to notice its faults.

Gamers are a spoiled bunch. They have grown accustomed to receiving detail, depth, and flow; the gamer equivalent of not having to compromise on quality, quantity, or speed. This is difficult enough to deliver even for a multi-national corporation. Only the most extreme solo developers do so, and this leads to impossible expectations when the average person like me tries to map. There is no way that I would be able to model a temple like a triple-A developer,  but whack in a firefight and I don't have to. Finding achievable goals and workarounds toward them has not ruined the magic of gaming for me. I appreciate even more the craftsmanship that went into my favourite titles.

Attention to detail goes more than one way. Being forced to explicitly manipulate elements like light bloom and soundscapes in-game, makes me more aware of them in the real world. I now marvel at specular reflections in glass panes during my daily walks.

I once returned from the Tokyo Game Show after a full day of being delighted by the future game engines on display. Sunlight was shimmering off the water in Tokyo Bay and bouncing through my train windows. At that moment, I wondered how many frames per second I was getting. If reality is a simulation, you gotta give props to the programmer.

BanGenKei 5 of 12 - Wat Preah. Inspirations: Preah Vihear, Beng Mealea, Preah Khan

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