Friday, 5 February 2016

Pinball: Theme Concept Development

Since writing about the Three Theme Concepts, I have developed two. I chose to take 'Never!' and 'Wrecking Ball' to the next level, I couldn't see how the other idea was going to work in the end.


Basing a theme around a word is an unconventional pinball theme, and I think this is what I'm going for. It's opening out to different ideas and has potential for storytelling through many different avenues instead of boxing into one potentially very visual idea.

It's often a good place to start to just start to research, never is such a well known word I don't think anyone has ever (never ever) looked up it's definition before.
nev·er /ˈnevər/ adverb
1. at no time in the past or future; on no occasion; not ever.
"they had never been camping in their lives"
synonyms: not ever, at no time, not at any time, not once; literary ne'er
"his room is never tidy"
2.not at all.
"he never turned up"
synonyms: not at all, certainly not, not for a moment, under no circumstances, on no account,
Then when you start Googling never you can play the game were you let google guess the search phrase...  (oh related, have you seen Google Feud)

Hold on, who puts a sock in the toaster?

I'm not sure if you just start to notice things more when you are working on something, or if it's some sort of sign (woooaw lets not go there, it's a fucking coincidence). Yeah; but I start to pick out the word "Never" in more things.

Never remember my passwords

The Glasgow Coat of Arms This could be a theme in it's own right!

There's the tree that never grew, 

There's the bird that never flew, 

There's the fish that never swam, 
There's the bell that never rang.

I could go on for ever finding references to never. But I decided to sit and think about how this could relate to actually retheming the game Supersonic I had know I was going to use the parts for the Supersonic before but never really thought about approaching more like a retheme of the existing game.

For example in the game Supersonic, you must collect numbers 1-2-3-4-5 to open up bonus points. So in Never, I would replace the numbers with the letters of N-E-V-E-R, is it coincidnce it's a five letter word?

Five is a magic number
As well as being lucky with the number five in the letters and numbers, there is a drop target bank of five targets - the idea suddenly hit me that each target could relate to a finger on a hand. And the drop targets could be a toaster for 'Never put your hand in the Toaster'.

Are there any other sparks of inspiration using five as it is important to the game?

The symbols
From the original lino cuts I thought it was worth digitising and cleaning up the designs, theres a chance these will be digitally cuts via cnc or lasercutting so be ahead of the game by getting them ready.
Never a Better Time
Never a Quick Fix
Never Say Never
Never Forget
Never Been Kissed
Never A Dull Day

In sketching I developed a logo for the Never!

Like the symbols the logo can be translated to digital, ready for whatever I do next.

I have never been content with my handwriting. I've been a fan of designer James Victore, who often uses his own handwriting in his work. The handwriting is sketchy and bold and very much rough around the edges, which reminds me of my own.

James Victore - make work that matters

Victore is an educator and often speaks about letting yourself trust your instinct and embrace imperfection.

I should practice writing more, but just go for it in final work! I think including my handwriting in the final work gives away a piece of me, a bit of my personality, something I probably don't give away enough. The logo becomes unique something that nobody else could do.

With the Never! Theme I feel like it's opening so much potential and excitement. I can't really imagine it not going forward further at this point.

Wrecking Ball 

Printmaking with plaster of paris was inspired by Diode Press and the excellent tutorial he shared

I took some timelapse of making my cast:

I had already done a fair bit of work on this idea, so I wanted to mock up digitally what it would be like to actually play something like this.

It's a fairly basic setup, I want to work out a rough layout that's fairly easy to work with. 
Blender Game
Blender has a pretty handy built in game engine. I had done some tutorials using Unity which I really enjoyed but since I've been working a lot in Blender I thought it would be good to learn a bit about the built in engine, even if just for mocking things up.

I thought there would be more tutorials on making a pinball game in Blender but they aren't many, I quite like this one although it is in German (however you can follow along with the software in English)

The concept is breakable pinball, how would that actually work? With lots of broken chipped off bits of plaster lying around the play field, it has potential to cause issues with mechanical parts. There may be a fire risk from dust too. I think going forward with this idea the pinball machine would be completely manual style, using springs and levers for the flippers - theres too much to go wrong using electricity!

If you haven't guessed, I've made my decision on the final theme! NEVER!

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