Let’s play a game

So from my previous trope post, I talked about Horror. This lead me to wonder why do we prefer watching other people play games? I like Silent Hill series but I’ve never played any games myself completely. I only watched someone else play. This might not be a trope but let me extrapolate on this. We think its weird but it become so normal that youtube is over-saturated with this trend of gameplays.

Now, I have not played some games but watched someone else play. Why? For me, it’s because of two reasons:

1) When I was younger, I was to scared to play them or found them boring. (I’m glad that my tastes in games have broadened)

2) I don’t have the means to buy or play those games now. Time wise and money wise.

But nowadays, we see lots of people watching others play games not only horror games. Why is that? I looked around online and people watch others play video games because of many different reasons. They range from learning new skills and ways to play to not being able to play certain games because of personal preference, fear, or lack of money(let’s be honest some games are too expensive). All in all, it’s a thing! Some people even compared it to watching sports! I didn’t think about it but that makes sense! I don’t watch sports but I watch gameplays. Some people watch sports but don’t watch gameplays. You can have a great array of people that watch or don’t watch something based on preference. That’s it, it’s preference. It is something that some like doing while others don’t.

If we go back to watching people play games, there are mainly two types of commentary that you can get. (There are more but it’s on the lesser side, I guess). The really obnoxious ones that do not let you appreciate the game because of their commentary(especially in cut scenes) and the other ones that just play and no commentary is added. I don’t watch any of those. I prefer having commentary so there’s some extra input in what I’m watching but also having the person playing stop commentating when there are cut scenes and important events in the game. Obviously, that is what I like when watching someone else play.

I also feel like watching someone else play feels like you have company. Sometimes playing games by yourself seem to be mundane and I think watching someone enjoy a game is fun sometimes. Also, they allow you to multitask while getting to know the game and work on other stuff. Truly the saviors when you got a ton of assignments or work but want to get to know the story of a game.

Okay those are some reasons of why people watch games being played by others, but is there a difference in playing a game yourself and watching someone else play? I do think there is but it doesn’t bother me that much. So, I’m giving you the choice. You can play this Youtube game of escape that I made using videos and clickable labels endcards(youtube you failed me) to choose or you can watch me go through the thing without commentary.

The point of this game(if you can call it game lol) is to escape or more like leave the building without dying and in less clicks.

The beginning of the game.

(Side note: I didn’t know Youtube removed annotations/labels so I had to make do with end cards :/ They give away information about choices but can’t do much about it)

Also, it takes around 7mins (the fastest way) to finish it. It can take longer. I’m letting you know just in case.

My playthrough (this is basically the answer to get the fastest route, well I made this lol)

What do you think? Do you prefer playing or watching?

Links/References:

https://www.quora.com/What-is-the-appeal-of-watching-video-games-being-played-rather-than-actually-playing-them

Why do so many people watch others play video games? from gaming

https://www.wired.com/2016/08/why-i-watch-lets-plays/

https://www.theodysseyonline.com/why-watch-someone-play-video-game-when-you-could-play

A bit of suspense aka Horror

Nothing beats having a bit of anxiety other than some horror.

Horror has become so over-saturated with jumpscares that most media aren’t even scary anymore besides that one second scare. If you want to read what is horror you can read it here. I don’t have to explain this anyway, hopefully.

Now, you should have seen the video above that I made. My theme was horror but I tried not going with the usual jumpscare because those are boring. My approach, or at least what I tried to do, is the psychological horror. It might not be a great attempt but something is something, right?

I think that psychological horror is the best one out of all other ways to scare people. Some of my inspiration comes from games especially Silent Hill(any game from the main series). The games deal with a lot of this psychological horror which is not explaining stuff directly(symbolism) but only showing the audience pieces to assemble. The pieces are made so any interpretation can be made. It has much more depth than a short scare. The symbolism let’s you ponder for a long time and even causes uncertainty that makes you aware of your surroundings. That lingering sensation that something is bothering you but you don’t know what it is is in my opinion the best way to scare someone. Silent Hill does this. Its use of sound and visuals make the games give you anxiety and induces suspense as the player doesn’t know what is happening. Here are some pictures of Silent Hill 2.

Silent Hill 2 uses fog and gruesome imagery to create fear.
Ambience has a strong impact in causing fear.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’ll avoid spoiling the game so if you’re interested go check it out! Whether you play the game or watch a playthrough, it is worth the time.

Now in this video, I tried making full use of the time of the day and sound to create a sense of uneasiness and maybe create some fear. While making it, I noticed that making something scary is harder than it appears. Sound and visuals are really important but I think sound has the biggest impact overall. When editing, it shows that anything that is scary can be useless if sound is not present so props to sound designers and people that have to think what fits best in a scene!

If you want another site for more info about horror in films, you can go here. There they go over what the horror genre is and give some early examples with old films to modern ones(it’s not up to date). There is an extensive list of horror films in there but also, a list of great horror films.Funnily, horror films get rated a lot that you’ll always find top horror films or worst horror films. This shows how much the horror genre has been used that people need to compile which ones are the best and which ones are the worst. Nevertheless, horror is fun! It’s scary but fun in some way. Want more? Here you can see a disambiguation of the horror genre that gives the reason as to why it is hard to create a convincing scary, fear and anxiety inducing media.

 

Links and references:

https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/Horror

https://www.filmsite.org/horrorfilms.html

6 Common Horror Film Tropes

Secrets of the Horror Genre

 

LETS ENHANCE

So, I’m a fan of sci-fi and cyberpunk and every time I see that they use some kind of high-tech that allows them to zoom-in or enhance a picture, to the point of being so clear that it’s absurd, I wonder what if you could have it in real life?

Well, let’s delve into it!

I made a small video explaining how the enhance trope works and how long it has been going on. Also, I created two small clips showing how it would work if I had the enhance ability in my computer. It sounds fun, right?

Now that the trope is explained, you might be wondering if there are actual ways to have the ability to enhance picture nowadays. The answer is yes and no. If you are looking for a way to upscale or “enhance” pictures so they look clear and crisp when made bigger, then yes there are ways. There is this website waifu2x that allows users to choose a picture, anime-style only(you could try a real photo but it probably won’t work), and upscale the picture while trying to keep the clean resolution as it can. You can try it if you want.

If you want to make enhance photos to make them clearer there is an article by Robin A. Smith that talks about a developing algorithm that can make photos crisp and of higher quality. Obviously, this only works with photos that are not for recognizing human faces. Making an algorithm that can do what the TV shows do is still far away. I don’t think it might come any time soon because of the difficulty of achieving a clean and crisp face shot of a bunch of pixels.

And as you read there is no way to enhance pictures/photos like they do on films and series because they are almost impossible with the technology that we have right now. Let be honest, there is no way you can get a hint from someone’s eye. That’s far-fetched! But if you wanna see it, here is the clip of that. There is also a compilation of different shows that display this trope.

Really?! That’s not gonna happen and sounds absurd too. But as you can see, it’s a pretty popular idea that keeps on being used. If you watch anime, then you can see that in an episode of Detective Conan evidence is found from a picture that has a mirror in a magazine. If you wanna check it out, it’s episode 106 (find your way to watch it). I’ll just show some screenshots from it.

Enhancement of a picture to find evidence

It is pretty hard to even see the mirror but here you go! They manage to zoom into the mirror that is at the left of the guy jumping from the window. Impressive! But sadly this is also impossible.

Lastly, if you wanna try a game that uses voice commands based on this trope you can check Nicole He‏’s (@nicolehe on Twitter) game.

References: