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Geoff Birch
Works at Soton Uni
Attends Soton Uni
Lives in Southampton
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Geoff Birch

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The Expectation of Free & Paying For Digital Goods
Buying zip files full of images still feels weird to me. Something to do with webcomics normalising free & selling art on Tshirt or in book? — Geoff Birch (@Shivoa) April 12, 2014 This seems like a strange outlier as I'm to...
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Geoff Birch

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Compare with the junky shrunk, compressed version you get from the PS4share button exporting to Twitter: https://twitter.com/WhizzoUK/status/447390606500036608/photo/1/large
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Geoff Birch

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Your use of new examples is a bit strange. I would have used the established term 'Environmental Storytelling' to describe this topic and the ~20 years of examples that focus on that form. Here's a 2000 article from Gama about it: http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/3186/environmental_storytelling_.php and 10 years later here is Harvey Smith talking about it: http://www.gdcvault.com/play/1012647/What-Happened-Here-Environmental

Games, like all other forms, can use both diegesis (tell) and mimesis (show) to craft a story (worth looking up: the ludological meaning of mimesis); what makes games unique is their interactive nature. When I walk though a world in Minecraft then viewing the strange constructions of others and unwinding what possibly happened here is environmental storytelling but my battle with the skeleton or the long journey I took with my pet wolf over that desert is non-diegetic, emergent storytelling. The highly consistent mechanics that mesh with the world I experience and create new stories of my play is said to 'elevate the mimesis' of the game.

Of course there is also the option to have cut-scenes, or hidden cut-scenes (Gordon Freeman stands around when a cut-scene happens and the locked door keeps you there but it's not technically a cut-scene because you're still an agent) in games and they kinda are movies (or literally are movies if you remove the QTEs or any other interactivity). But environmental storytelling is not unique to games (that place the movie was set in, the camera can scan past interesting stories of the place that are never lingered on or part of the main narrative - that's one of the way you can make a place feel more real) and is certainly not the only diegetic form used in games. The reactive nature of worlds, the player agency: that's the unique selling point of a game narrative and it's about the mimetic, not the diegetic, tools.
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If you go out in the woods at night, remember to bring a torch. Then if Lara Croft turns up and you go after her, make sure you take it with you rather than leaving it floating in the air. You'll look really stupid if she kills you and then discovers it later.

http://steamcommunity.com/id/shivoa/screenshots/?appid=203160&sort=oldestfirst&browsefilter=myfiles&view=grid
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Difficulty Isn't the Point & Often is a Problem
Here 's something about what games are. That's a very narrow definition of difficulty, that tries to strip it from other mediums. This is the traditional narrowing of the definition of computer game to exclude things like Dear Esther, Proteus, Sim City, Gon...
Here's something about what games are. That's a very narrow definition of difficulty, that tries to strip it from other mediums. This is the traditional narrowing of the definition of computer game to exclude things like Dear...
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Have him in circles
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Geoff Birch

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Why Make Games When We Can Make Installations?
The participant signs the disclaimer and announces their safe word. They dress in the boiler suit required. They're led into a dark room with a single metallic reclining chair in the centre under spot illumination. As they sit down, the light above them sta...
The participant signs the disclaimer and announces their safe word. They dress in the boiler suit required. They're led into a dark room with a single metallic reclining chair in the centre under spot illumination. As they si...
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Big Numbers
In response to an email on the Giant Bombcast , I wrote a quick reply with some calculator spam concerning how big numbers can get very big, very quickly. Too big to really think about. By the end of it we had covered the death of the universe, why an 8 by ...
In response to an email on the Giant Bombcast, I wrote a quick reply with some calculator spam concerning how big numbers can get very big, very quickly. Too big to really think about. By the end of it we had covered the deat...
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XBOne vs PC @ 720p
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Copyright & Limited Run Works
Further to the discussion last year and the year before , here are two (potentially complementary) ideas for changing how copyright and trademarks work. This should, at least, provide direction in which there are solutions to orphaned works, hostaged works,...
Further to the discussion last year and the year before, here are two (potentially complementary) ideas for changing how copyright and trademarks work. This should, at least, provide direction in which there are solutions to ...
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Chrome update may not be the least buggy release they've ever put out.
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Have him in circles
28 people
Paul Weiss's profile photo
Yvette Beattie's profile photo
Daniel Morton's profile photo
Peej Maybe's profile photo
Dirt box's profile photo
Stephen Farrell's profile photo
Work
Occupation
Software Engineer, former Techie & Writer
Employment
  • Soton Uni
    Researcher, 2012 - present
  • Mode 7 Games
    Lead/Technical Artist, 2003 - 2006
  • GameSpy
    Writer, 2000 - 2004
  • Gamers Universe
    Writer / Server Admin, 2008 - 2008
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Southampton
Previously
Oxford - Birmingham, UK
Story
Tagline
By day I'm a Static Code Analysis researcher, by night I'm a 'bedroom' game developer.
Education
  • Soton Uni
    CompSci PhD, 2012 - present
  • Soton Uni
    Software Engineering, 2010 - 2012
  • B'ham Uni
    Maths & Stats, 2001 - 2004
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Other names
Shivoa
Geoff Birch's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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