Wrecking the Game: The Artist as Griefer

Fantacci Gemma
2018 DiGRA '18 - Proceedings of the 2018 DiGRA International Conference: The Game is the Message

This paper aims at examining the anti-game practice of artists that assume a subverting behaviour inside video games. They hijack gameplay to turn it into a space for artistic intervention. The artists discussed in this paper are Kent Sheely, Marque Cornblatt, Justin Berry, and Alan Butler. Their practice shares similarities with the artistic interventions developed by Dada and International Situationist, two artistic movements that aimed at redefining the culture of their time thanks to subversive actions. The artists featured in this paper are defined griefers, deliberate hecklers. Their works are then analysed along with the concepts of counter-gaming and ludic mutation defined by Alexander Galloway and Anne-Marie Schleiner to better understand the characteristics of their subversive behaviour.


Machinima: digital performance and emergent authorship

Carroll John Cameron David
2005 DiGRA '05 - Proceedings of the 2005 DiGRA International Conference: Changing Views: Worlds in Play

This workshop investigates the emergent online dramatic form of "machinima", the co-option of video game engines or off-the-shelf software for dramatic production in a rapidly developing digital performance form. Workshop participants will engage with short examples of popular machinima productions. There will be discussion and demonstration of the machinima production process. The nexus between dramatic conventions, gameplay and traditional video production techniques will be explored. Participants will work with a short piece of a machinima, in the form of a scene created using the Sims 2 game. Participants will improvise, script and perform dialogue to provide meaning for the action. This workshop applies the insights of process drama, a field well developed in educational settings, to the development of machinima. It includes demonstration and participation in dramatic role, focusing on how the conventions of Role Distance and Role Protection apply to this developing field of digital game-based performance.


Where have all the videogame console artists gone?

Catanese Paul
2003 DiGRA '03 - Proceedings of the 2003 DiGRA International Conference: Level Up

This paper offers insight into the brief history of those artists whose work utilizes, incorporates or subverts the aesthetics and/or technology of video games. It questions why artwork that subverts consoles is seen less frequently than other emerging forms such as sampling, modifications (mods) and machine cinema (machinima). The paper concludes by offering an examination of obstacles which face artists creating console based subversion and points to these as the reasons why this emerging form is seen with less frequency than the others.


Videogame art: remixing, reworking and other interventions

Mitchell Grethe Clarke Andy
2003 DiGRA '03 - Proceedings of the 2003 DiGRA International Conference: Level Up

This paper explores some of the areas of intersection between videogames and both digital and non-digital art practice. By looking at examples of art practice drawn from videogames, it outlines some categories and so provides an overview of this area, placing it within the wider context of contemporary and historical art practice. The paper explores the tendency for much of this work to have elements of subversion or “détournement”, whilst also identifying areas of tension in the appropriation of videogames as material for art practice


Keeping It Reel: Is Machinima A Form Of Art?

Champion Erik
2009 DiGRA '09 - Proceedings of the 2009 DiGRA International Conference: Breaking New Ground: Innovation in Games, Play, Practice and Theory

The grumpy gamers amongst us are still smarting over the important, challenging and frustrating questions made famous by Roger Ebert and Steven Spielberg; whether games could be classed as artworks, as capable of raising nobler emotions, or whether as works of art they could even be uttered in the same breath as cinema or literature. And if games cannot be art, how could machinima stake claims to being a form of art? Not only will I suggest the hackneyed question “but is it art” or “could it be seen as art” is important, I will suggest why this question is of particular interest and relevance to machinima.


Games and machinima in adolescents’ classrooms

Lacasa Pilar Martínez Rut Méndez Laura
2011 DiGRA '11 - Proceedings of the 2011 DiGRA International Conference: Think Design Play

This presentation identifies innovative educational practices when commercial video games, combined with other new or traditional technologies are present in the secondary education classrooms. The major goal of the project was to generate new knowledge about how to design scenarios, using commercial video games as the starting point, which may contribute to the development of new literacies when students work with specific curriculum contents. Our data has been analyzed exploring the machinima productions in order to analyze the relationships between the video productions, the game and, the gamers’ perspective about his/her own activity. To examine these strategies several dimensions have been considered in order to compare different approaches to machinima.


Encoding liveness: Performance and real-time rendering in machinima

Cameron David Carroll John
2009 DiGRA '09 - Proceedings of the 2009 DiGRA International Conference: Breaking New Ground: Innovation in Games, Play, Practice and Theory

Machinima is the appropriation of software-generated 3D virtual environments, typically video games, for filmmaking and dramatic productions. The creation and distribution technology of machinima tends to hide the nature of the performer, provoking consideration of a definition of ‘liveness’ that can accommodate the real-time rendering of screen content by game software in response to human input, or – at the extreme – as if there is human input in accordance with performance parameters coded by humans. This paper considers the continuum of creative modes that machinima makers work on, and the differing aesthetic/technical decisions affecting the level of liveness in the finished production. Machinima films derive from captured gameplay, puppet-like live improvisational work, cinematic or televisual on-camera performances, and totally scripted performances produced using coded commands. Often, the real-time rendering capability of the game software is only critical at the point of image capture, but once the footage has been saved as a video file it is editing and post-production that becomes the focus of much machinima production. Even live improvisational pieces – whether performed in a real or virtual venue - are generally better known via their capture and distribution as video clips to a wider post-performance audience. This paper also explores machinima making as a community of practice, that is a specific group with a local culture, operating through shared practices, linked to each other through a shared repertoire of resources. Digital performance communities of practice emerging from video games and machinima production can be seen as having levels of engagement with a range of other communities, most obviously the gameplaying, game modifying, CGI animation and filmmaking communities. Consideration is given to how, from a dramatic viewpoint, the performers within a machinima production are also operating in much the same way as in-role improvisation occurs within the community of practice associated with process drama - a strongly framed environment defined by a ‘digital pre-text’ - the common digital environment that provides the agreed fictional context for the dramatic action to unfold in.