Too many words

March 20, 2007 - 7:38 pm Comments Off on Too many words

I’m supposed to write a 100 word review of one of the SXSW events I attended for my Pop Culture class. How the hell can I smoosh down Will Wright’s astounding keynote into 100 little words?

Will Wright Wows SXSWi

Hundreds of SXSW Interactive convention-goers braved a thunderstorm and strong winds to duck into the downtown Hilton on March 13 for a keynote speech from computer game pioneer Will Wright. Wright, who is best-known for his “Sim City” and “The Sims” series, delivered a high-intensity, fast-paced, and thought-provoking talk about the nature and future of gaming narrative.

Wright also demonstrated his upcoming game, “Spore.” “Spore” will allow players to evolve from single-celled organism to spaceship-building civilizations, and embodies Wright’s gaming philosophy of allowing players to tell stories to the computer rather than vice versa. Game play will also be collaborative, allowing players to share creatures and planets with each other.

“Spore” is rumored to be on store shelves by the end of 2007.

If you’re interested in the Wright talk, you can see it on YouTube: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, and Part 7. There’s also a partial transcript over at Wonderland.

He has some concepts that really gave me a lot of food for thought, especially in terms of ARG design. Let the players tell the story – we see this all the time, to some extent. PMs often adjust the plot in response to the players. Could it turn ugly quickly? Sure. But I think there is such a trend towards collaboration these days, where the audience wants to feel invested, that it’s very much worth exploring.

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