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Learn how to rotoscope with Paint of Persia, a new animation tool

Before motion capture was a thing, there was rotoscoping. Sure, it’s wasn’t quite as entertaining as strapping middle-aged actors into black bodysuits studded with various balls and gizmos, but it was a versatile technique that’s been used in everything from Disney movies to the music video for “Yellow Submarine.” Invented by Max Fleischer and put to use largely in his 1940s Superman serials, the technique involves filming live-action footage and then tracing over it to create animated characters with realistic movement. It was originally a bit of a painstaking process, with artists having to project live-action scenes onto a frozen glass panel…

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Get a load of the fluid, feminine power of Gris

As of right now, there’s not a lot of information about Gris. We know it’s a 2D game. We know it has “zones.” We know it stars a woman clad in a flowing cloak reminiscent of the main character in Journey (2012). We know it takes place in a surreal environment largely dominated by a Mars-like red, and we know it’s being worked on by a team from both Barcelona and Tokyo. More than anything, though, we know it’s beautiful as all get out. We know this because what has been revealed about the game, mostly through its social media accounts on…

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The Witness swaps polygons for pixels in its NES demake

For all its naturalistic beauty, one of the more interesting lines to come out of reviews for The Witness when it dropped earlier this year was that it didn’t actually need to be in 3D. Creator Jonathan Blow and his team may have spent eight years crafting the game world’s intricate details, but conceptually, as noted by Dan Solberg in Kill Screen’s review for the game, as well as popular YouTube journalist George Weidman in his own, it is most similar to a collection of newspaper brainteasers or a book of riddles. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Even while the player interacts with…

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Adventure game is made out of actual Renaissance-era artwork

Four Last Things is the type of game I want to leave open on the title screen for hours, just to stare at and appreciate. But that would be the sin of sloth, friend. Still… Alright, alright, I’ll move on. Created in two weeks for Game Jolt’s adventure game game jam #advjam2016, Four Last Things is a Renaissance-era adventure game made using actual Renaissance era artwork. a museum art tour in game format The premise is simple: you’re an old man at the end of his life, and you’ve just finished a pilgrimage to a distant church to confess your…

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Islid lets you enter that curious half-asleep state while fully awake

Unnatural shapes, swirling colors, inexplicable lights, droning music, and a world that is constantly changing in texture and size: welcome to the hypnagogic state. You’ve been here before, probably. And, if I can let you in on a secret, I’m just about there right now. It may sound ridiculous, but everyone you have ever known has been there: even your grandmother, and hell, even your dog. That’s because, while it sounds like something your one uncle who’s really into the Grateful Dead might try to induce on the weekend for kicks, a hypnagogic state is actually just the feeling that takes over right…

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The Sims finally loosens up its gender restrictions

Prior to last week, characters in The Sims 4 (2014) were at a bit of a paradox. They could have any skin color the player wanted—including nonexistent ones—move and present themselves in a variety of cartoonish manners, have one of dozens of slightly different styles of eyebrows or chin lengths (yes, chin lengths), and could even have different interests and life goals tailored to the player’s choice. But a man with long hair? That, apparently, was just too much. Of course, it wasn’t that the game didn’t have any options for long hair available. In fact, there were almost as many…

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How scientists are using MMOs to study sexism in videogames

For the past few years, one of the more common debates to be found on social media has been over whether women are discriminated against within videogames. This can relate to a number of factors, including skill, female presence in the community, and how women are represented within games, but conversations in these topics are often noticeably hostile and difficult to conduct. However, recent scientific studies on the topic have provided new insight into if and how discrimination presents a problem for women in and around videogames, as well as what difficulties sexism in games poses for women in tech in…

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Scale creator explains how he builds such sizey-wizey puzzles

As anyone who’s spent more than a few hours scratching their head at that damn fox-chicken-grain riddle knows, solving a puzzle can often be a frustrating, demoralizing experience. If the puzzle’s good enough, it can even feel impossible. But despite however stressed the solver feels while trying to put the puzzle together, there is always at least one other person it has frustrated more: its creator. Whereas the solver only has to find a single solution to put an end to their struggle, the creator has to anticipate all possible solutions and narrow them down to just the desired outcomes…

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If a pixel-art kitty game doesn’t turn you into a cat person, nothing will

Let’s start off with a confession that’s sure to have my friends messaging me all day: I don’t really like cats. I know, I know—I’m nerdy, I’m introverted, I write about games on the internet, I’m queer. By all accounts, I should be queen cat over here. But ever since growing up with my adorable labrador retriever, Gretchen, I’ve always been more partial to dogs. I don’t particularly have anything against cats; I just tend to have a bit of trouble finding them cute. After playing ᗢ, though, I may finally be a convert. Created by duo katslevania and takorii,…