informa
3 MIN READ
News

The Esoteric Beat: Wang, Bubble, GIMP

Welcome to 'The Esoteric Beat', the news report that provides new and unusual ways to think about games and culture. This week's column looks at Hori's gizmos, artistic m...
Welcome to 'The Esoteric Beat', the news report that provides new and unusual ways to think about games and culture. This week's column looks at Hori's gizmos, artistic modding, and something for the GIMP. Gaming Gizmos: Hori and the Wang Show We've been witness to a number of absurd and outlandish game peripherals over the years, but none quite match the recent output of Japanese peripheral tech company Hori. Their Katana sword controller for Onimusha was a particularly intimidating favourite of incredulous bloggers earlier this year, but it seems that Hori have now gone one further, with the launch of their Periborg range. The Periborg peripherals are all 'cybernetic' type augmentations of their gamer's body. The lead device is this button masher, which increases the rate of button hammering beyond that physically possible for a human being (check out this video, 1.4mb WMV, for video-proof). Meanwhile, the euphemistically terrifying 'Electric Wang Show' is actually a shoulder-mounted LED placard which can be programmed with messages for passing arcade-folk. I might have to get one of those with 'Buzzwater and Doughnuts Please' scrolling across my arm for the next time I'm playing Warcraft. Don't forget to check out the (sadly Japanese language, flash-based) Periborg website for even more obscure peripherals. We can't figure out what the horn-shaped 'Obacha-Break' is, and we're not sure we want to know... Interactive Art for the Sake of Interactive Art While browsing digital curiosity archive 'We Make Money Not Art', we happened upon some new digital artworks, this time under the name 'Mimesia', which is reminiscent of the name of a failed MMO, but is actually a rolling piece of digital artwork. From the site: "Mimesia is an interactive painting that draws the viewer into a dream-like flow of unfolding narrative. As if in a dream, the viewer can look around but cannot control what will happen next. The work incorporates paradigms from painting, film and gaming, to produce a work that incorporates aspects all of these genres whilst at the same time being something else entirely different. Mimesia is not a painting though at first glance looks like one, it is not a film, for there is no story, it is not a game, there is no quest - it is an evocation of a dream, an unfolding memory." Hi-Fi Bubblejet Bands The above WMMNA entry also lead us to a growing Wikipedia entry on Artistic Game Modification, which includes an entry for Dallas-based retro-computer musicians 'Treewave' who employ "Commodore 64s, an old PC FM sound card (OPL3), and a dot matrix printer," in the creation of their tunes. Right on. GIMPing Game Art Finally, we link to something free for the aspiring game artist. GIMP is "the GNU Image Manipulation Program. It is a freely distributed piece of software for such tasks as photo retouching, image composition and image authoring." Meanwhile a new plug-in, the GIMP Texturizer, does some impressive pixel-magic to automatically transform normal images into tileable textures. Smart enough to be worth checking out? We think so. [Jim Rossignol is a freelance journalist based in the UK – his game journalism has appeared in PC Gamer UK, Edge and The London Times.]

Latest Jobs

Xbox Game Studios

Redmond, Washington
10.5.22
Technical Lighting Artist

Innogames

Hamburg, Germany
10.5.22
Game Designer - Elvenar

Bandai Namco Mobile

Barcelona, Spain
10.5.22
Principal 3D Animator

Cryptic Studios

Los Gatos, California
10.5.22
Staff Core Software Engineer
More Jobs   

CONNECT WITH US

Explore the
Subscribe to
Follow us

Game Developer Job Board

Game Developer Newsletter

@gamedevdotcom

Explore the

Game Developer Job Board

Browse open positions across the game industry or recruit new talent for your studio

Browse
Subscribe to

Game Developer Newsletter

Get daily Game Developer top stories every morning straight into your inbox

Subscribe
Follow us

@gamedevdotcom

Follow us @gamedevdotcom to stay up-to-date with the latest news & insider information about events & more