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Old 12-03-2009, 11:11 AM   #1
cnutt
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Default Game Design Challenge: The New Sound

Our latest game design challenge is live -- we ask you to create a game that puts music at the forefront, but which is more than just a mimicry of performance.

Edit - results are live...
http://gamecareerguide.com/features/...me_design_.php
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Old 12-03-2009, 03:38 PM   #2
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I like this challenge.

Cnutt, I know I kind of sound like a douche, but could we get some declared standards for use in judging, so that we know actually know how our entries will be scored? I think it will also help the judges be consistent. I know I sound like a whiny loser, but still, it would definitely improve this contest.
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Old 12-03-2009, 03:40 PM   #3
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It's a fair question. I'll ponder it and will discuss it. Based on some of the feedback from the last challenge I have been doing some thinking.
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Old 12-03-2009, 04:46 PM   #4
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One of my first thoughts with this prompt has been linking the sound gameplay with a "vibration" system. Nothing naughty, just like the player must use appropriate sounds to cause liquid ripples of the right size. This video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EZT4F3J4LxA kind of shows what I'm thinking of.

It could be like a GarageBand type setup where the player can use any notes and composition they wish, but the music has to have certain frequencies at certain moments to solve puzzles.
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Old 12-03-2009, 05:33 PM   #5
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*furiously brainstorms ideas for a naughty vibration game*
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Old 12-04-2009, 01:58 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bob View Post
*furiously brainstorms ideas for a naughty vibration game*
http://www.gamegirladvance.com/archi...zvibrator.html
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Old 12-04-2009, 06:04 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bob View Post
I like this challenge.

Cnutt, I know I kind of sound like a douche, but could we get some declared standards for use in judging, so that we know actually know how our entries will be scored? I think it will also help the judges be consistent. I know I sound like a whiny loser, but still, it would definitely improve this contest.
That doesn't sound whiny or douche-y... it's very easy to say "My game is an RPG where you play the entire life of a character, and the ups and downs of his story are then translated to music" without explaining how and why this concept could possibly work.

That sort of entry, with no real design theory behind it, is exactly the sort of thing that gives poor Tom Sloper nightmares; idea men, coming for him in his sleep!

As for the challenge itself, I had a concept for a game a few years ago that might work here, but since it's more "sound-based" than "music-based", I will probably work on something different (if I work on anything at all, this month is going to be unusually busy for me). That said, it may get people thinking, so here it is;

http://level-1-design.blogspot.com/2009/05/dopplar.html

Edit: Good god, I must have copied and pasted that from an old document, because the writing style is completely terrible. Apologies in advance for anyone who's curiosity is rewarded with horrible grammar. Looks like I have another project this month; re-writing that post.

I suppose the various pitches of radar could 'form' music, in their own way, but that was never the intention. Instead, I wanted a game that utilized a surround sound system that would enable the blind to gather the data they need to beat the game. Of course, my expansion upon that concept made the game much less playable by the handicapped, but it was a good jumping off point.

I still think a "stealth / rhythm / shoot-em up" hybrid would be fun, just... probably not a solid entry for this challenge.
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Last edited by Retro : 12-04-2009 at 06:16 AM.
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Old 12-04-2009, 07:49 AM   #8
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Forgive the double post, wanted to comment on my direction for this challenge. Wasn't really planning to enter this one, but an idea hit me that's just too interesting to ignore.

I'm a huge fan of Ambient music (it's especially good when you're working), and the 'Father' of Ambient music is Brian Eno, who defines Ambient Music as existing on the "cusp between melody and texture."

The story goes that Eno, while crossing a street, slipped and fell into the path of an oncoming taxi. While recovering from his injury, he was laid up in bed with very limited mobility, and would spend hours listening to records his friends would bring him on their visits. One day, a friend left a record of Harp music playing, but the volume was turned so low that it was barely audible. Too weak to cross the room, Eno was forced to listen to the record just barely audible.

"At first I thought, 'Oh God, I wish I could turn it up,'" Eno remembers. "But then I started to think how beautiful it was. It was raining heavily outside and I could just hear the loudest notes of the harp coming above the level of the rain." As he listened, Eno decided that this "melted-into-the-environment quality" was what he wanted in his music and his life.

So, what I'm kind of playing with now is a game that blends music with the quantity of space; maybe you define the size and shape of a room by dropping musical tones into emptiness, the colors and textures of the space by the pitch, and the furnishings and decor by the various melodies that weave subtly through the space.

Ambient music is meant to be very subtle; it's the concept of giving a space a harmony and mood via sound. So... I'm toying with ideas in that respect.
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Old 12-04-2009, 09:49 AM   #9
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This challenge looks really interesting. Just thinking about it makes me hyped up. It kinda reminds me of an old entry I sent for a previous GDC.

http://www.gamecareerguide.com/featu...gn_.php?page=3

I'm looking forward to seeing the great and innovative ideas that will spring forth from this particular design challenge
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Old 12-04-2009, 08:15 PM   #10
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Okay, okay, I'm gonna design the first musical MMO. It will be called "ORCHESTRA."

Also makes me wish that the bard really became a WoW class.
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