Improvisation Framework

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Emma's presentation on improvisation

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Improvisation Framework

  1. 1. Game Design Workshop META THEMES Day 2 - Pleasure in games Day 3 - Games as performance art Day 4 - The play of identity
  2. 2. Game Design Workshop Expressive game play … the term ‘ f irst-person actor ’ and a major theme of the studio ’ s activities was to look at ways to support the performative and playful aspects of the player character. Often this was not necessarily core to game progression per se but tried to look at extending the range of expression within the game context. For me this is an interesting area, especially as the player is not always self aware as a performer in the public sense, more exactly players know they are engaging with a game system but do they know they are performing?
  3. 3. Game Design Workshop Play and performance <ul><li>all gameplay is performance </li></ul><ul><li>all gameplay is theatrical </li></ul><ul><li>performance is improved by gameplay's theatrical magic &quot;as if” </li></ul><ul><li>performance is scary, games are safe </li></ul><ul><li>play is autotelic, performance is telic, & gameplay can be both </li></ul><ul><li>performance makes gameplay systems legible </li></ul><ul><li>richard schechner &quot;playing is at the heart of all performance.” </li></ul><ul><li>jane mcgonigal &quot;performance is at the heart of all play&quot; </li></ul>
  4. 4. Game Design Workshop Chris Johnston’s Elements of Improvisation <ul><li>ROLES </li></ul><ul><li>Improvised performance necessitates a re-framing of formal roles. In improvisation this can be achieved through construction of trust relationships between performers and use of archetypical character types, these archetypes allow a freer interpretation. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Game Design Workshop Chris Johnston’s Elements of Improvisation <ul><li>TENSION </li></ul><ul><li>We engage through the tension created from uncertainty over outcome. As opposed to theatre (where there is pretence of uncertainty) improvisation and game form offer authentic tension. </li></ul><ul><li>Structural action: </li></ul><ul><li>1. Anticipation </li></ul><ul><li>2. The relief of it happening </li></ul><ul><li>3. The payoff at the end </li></ul>
  6. 6. Game Design Workshop Chris Johnston’s Elements of Improvisation <ul><li>RESPONSIVENESS </li></ul><ul><li>The ability to react to sensations and emotions received within the experience of performance. </li></ul>
  7. 7. Game Design Workshop Chris Johnston’s Elements of Improvisation <ul><li>JOURNEY </li></ul><ul><li>Not just the hero’s journey (traditional frame for character driven game form) but a sense of travelling from surface to depth. What the performer experiences as journey, the spectators experience as form. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Game Design Workshop Chris Johnston’s Elements of Improvisation <ul><li>RESTRICTIONS </li></ul><ul><li>Limits yield intensity. Structure is the imposition of restrictions (rules), it is the pushing against restrictions that makes performance fascinating. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Game Design Workshop Chris Johnston’s Elements of Improvisation <ul><li>POETICS </li></ul><ul><li>As designers we build a specific vocabulary for our art form, this allows precision. However this vocabulary is simply a means to an end, the end is a desire to take recipients to an experience beyond the literal appreciation of the work. </li></ul>

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