Bringing things to life : understanding everyday life through the procedural representation of material culture in historical video games

Hiriart, JFV ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3022-684X 2018, Bringing things to life : understanding everyday life through the procedural representation of material culture in historical video games , in: PLAY/PAUSE Symposium, 24th January 2018, University of Birmingham, Birmingham.

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Abstract

In the last decades, the exponential increase in computer game graphics technology has made possible to virtually reconstruct historical worlds with an unprecedented level of detail and realism. This capacity, however, has not been accompanied by a comparable growth in the procedural representation of historical game worlds. To a certain extent, this unbalance can be attributed to the conceptualisation of the material world according to what Ingold (2009) identifies as the “hylomorphic model”, an organisation of the world according to conceptions of matter and form that tends to perceive objects as finished, preconceived products of the human mind. In opposition, Ingold proposes a model in which objects exist in a permanent exchange with the forces and materials from their environment, and in which the making of things follows from an intimate dialogue between the maker and materials involved in the acts of creation. In this paper, I argue that due to the programming paradigms involved in their procedural structuring, historical game worlds closely follow the hylomorphic model, and, to this extent, are unable to represent natural and human-driven processes from past realities. In what follows, I demonstrate an experimental exploration of alternative game systems designed to “bring things to life”, in which procedural encoding interlace with narratives components devised to embed social and cultural meanings into game objects and environment.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Keynote)
Schools: Schools > School of Arts & Media
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Juan Hiriart
Date Deposited: 20 Sep 2018 11:19
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2020 11:44
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/48431

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