Experimental game, 2012
NICOLAS MYERS [UK] & NITIPAK SAMSEN [UK]
In the short history of video games, most evolution has centred around better graphics, better sound and storytelling. In comparison, the controllers have changed little over the years and are becoming more and more standardised. Even with the emergence of innovative new controllers in the past five years, such as the Wii or the Kinect, none really explore the full potential of mechanical and physical interaction. Can we imagine games that give more importance to the controller? Can we imagine a context where the controller becomes the game itself? Re-Pong considers how the design of controllers are central to the game experience, exploring how unusual and even difficult to use controllers could become games themselves. In the form of a game experiment, the project offers five identical games of the classic Pong, attached to five uniquely designed controllers exploring different physical challenges. With the game controller being the only varying factors between each version, the visitor can experience the importance of the physical interface in video games.
“Video games have dramatically improved over time but the way we interact with them is becoming more and more standardised. Could the fun and pleasure of a video game emerge from the physical design of controllers? In Re-Pong the controller is the game. Through a series of five experimental video game controllers, our installation explores new ways to play the classic video game Pong. While the objective and aesthetic of the on-screen game remains the same, each controller offers a unique challenge: how will you use a spirit level or a microphone to win over your opponent?”
—NICOLAS MYERS [UK] & NITIPAK SAMSEN [UK]