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Archive for March, 2009

Video Game Level Design Learned from Disneyland

what_would_walt_do

Yes, yes, yes! A belief I’ve maintained for many years — that Disneyland is an experience designer’s wet dream — has been confirmed! I’m so glad to see that THQ’s Creative Manager Scott Rogers shares my understanding. Scott worked on games including Pac-man World, God of War and Drawn to Life.

Thankfully Cory Doctorow took notes from Scott’s presentation at GDC today and made them along with photos of the slides available for all. Scott states on his blog that he’ll make his slides available shortly.

Update: The slides are now up.

This has just brought to mind the piece Cory wrote for Wired back in 2006 interviewing former Disneyland Imagineer Danny Hillis about Disneyland as an alternate world, a precursor to today’s massively multiplayer games. It all gets me wondering whether anyone else has written about or has been inspired by this topic… Some investigation awaits!

(via Boing Boing)

Tim Schafer Point and Click Adventure Mini-game

Host Master and the Conquest of Humor

Host Master and the Conquest of Humor

I love this mini adventure game starring game designer Tim Schafer created by his Double Fine studio in the distinctive style of the games he produced for LucasArts back in the day like The Secret of Monkey Island, Day of the Tentacle and Full Throttle. Play Tim as he searches, at the last minute, for jokes to use in his GDC presentation. Wonderfully tongue-in-cheek and frightfully nostalgic.

Makes me wonder why LucasArts haven’t yet re-released those classic point and click adventures on platforms like the Wii and DS. They’re made for them — and wouldn’t cost a thing to port! (via 1Up)

Antikewl Daily on Twitter and Facebook

You can now follow Antikewl Daily on various social networks. Actually, you’ve been able to do it for ages but we’ve never made much of a song and dance about it!

Follow us on Twitter to be kept up-to-date on all the latest posts, plus a few extra “Also…” links through the week. If you want to follow me personally, you can do that too. We’re also on Facebook.

“Where the Wild Things Are” Trailer

The long-awaited (for me, certainly) proper glimpse of the Where the Wild Things Are movie. Directed by Spike Jonze and based on the classic children’s book written and illustrated by Maurice Sendak.

Spike Jonze is best known for his work on the films Being John Malkovitch and Adaptation — plus the awesome Beastie Boys promo video to Sabotage.

HD version also available on Apple Trailers. (via Ain’t it Cool News)

Little Robot: Paper, pictures automata and other fanciful things

little robot

This is something I’d been meaning to share for some time and has, in fact, been sitting in the Friends’ links to the left for about a year!

I used to work with Lindsey many years ago when she was all pixels and vectors. Since then she’s moved to Scotland, branched into some rather splendid Victorian-inspired artwork and goes by the name of Little Robot.

She also has an Etsy shop.

Problem removing Feedflare ads after merge with Google

Taking a break from the usual posting of cartoons, disneyland and video games, I’ve run into a bit of a dilemma with this blog. As I’m not having much luck exploring the more official channels I thought I’d attempt one last cry for help using the very medium that causes me so many sleepless nights!

Ok, perhaps a little over the top but my problem is this:

feedflare ad problem

I can’t get rid of those ads!

I’ve been using Feedburner’s FeedFlare to add some useful links to the bottom of each blog post but something appears to have gone wrong when I merged my Feedburner account with my Google (and, consequently, Google Adsense) account. The ad doesn’t seem to be connected to my Google Adsense account and there’s no way to change it from within my Feedburner account.

Also, because Feedburner support seems to have disappeared when Google ate them up, I’m unable to get any support! I’ve tried the forums and tried emailing them direct but have no confidence that I’m ever going to get this resolved. That leaves me with a couple of options:

  1. Hope that Google one day respond to one of my support requests (very unlikely!), that, miraculously, someone from Google read this and responds or that someone who reads this knows someone from Google that can help.
  2. I ditch FeedFlare completely and find an alternative.
  3. I create an entirely new Feedburner account and start from scratch.

Anyone got any suggestions? Do get in touch, either by email or by leaving a comment below.

Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming…

Update: Google dropped me an email last night with a request for further information. Hopefully on the road to getting this fixed!

Update 2: No further contact from Google yet so I’ve removed FeedFlare and rolled my own “share” links.

Update 3: Fixed! They’re back. They really should update “del.icio.us” to “delicious” though…

Space Mountain Retrospective

Space Mountain interior

Here’s a wonderful retrospective of Disneyland’s Space Mountain by Geoff at Your Souvenir Guide.

I wasn’t lucky enough to be anywhere near Anaheim on its opening day in 1977 (nor, for that matter, old enough!) and haven’t had the opportunity to revisit since the 2005 revamp, which saw it return to the original iconic white, but this ride still holds a special place in my heart.

Disneyland’s Space Mountain is “Star Wars” and punk rock and “Saturday Night Fever” and the New York Blackout, all made one single, glorious whole. It’s all about believing, just for a moment, that you are riding the engine at the center of the universe. At that moment, you are ten years old, like me.

I couldn’t have said it better.

I’ll still miss the Dick Dale soundtrack which ran from 1995 to 2003 though!

Star Wars Imperial March Performed with a Tesla Coil

The folks at ArcAttack use Tesla coils to “produce an electrical arc similar to a continuous lightning bolt which put out a crisply distorted square wave sound reminiscent of the early days of synthesizers.”

Here’s one, with another guy wearing a “Faraday Suit” to conduct electricity away from the coil, performing the Imperial March theme from Star Wars! Check out more videos on their site.

A first look at Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland

Alice in Wonderland film concept artwork

Update: If you’re looking for the new images, you’ll find them here!

You’ll find the trailer here.

The premier issue of Disney twenty-three magazine includes an article on Tim Burton’s part live action, part CGI-animated Alice in Wonderland movie which is due for release in Spring 2010. The article features the first glimpses of some wonderful looking concept artwork and photography and the Tim Burton Collective blog has some scans of the pages.

If anyone has any better scans of the images, do let us know!

(thanks Jenny!)

Vintage Kids’ Books My Kid Loves

Gyo Fujikawa's Lets Grow a Garden

Check out this wonderful blog entitled Vintage Kids’ Books My Kid Loves of “vintage children’s books from thrift shops, library sales, book stores, online and elsewhere”. Image from Gyo Fujikawa‘s exquisite Lets Grow a Garden.

Incidentally, if you like Gyo Fujikawa, there’s a ton more images of her work on Flickr.