Event[0]
Review

Event[0] will break your humanity

The ‘80s linger on today through the afterglow of throwback culture. Stranger Things is probably the most-discussed TV show this year, likely due to the fact that it feeds purely on our nostalgia for ‘80s cinema classics from the likes of Spielberg. Then there’s Everybody Wants Some, which is essentially Dazed and Confused (1993) but set in the ‘80s—based on college yearbooks and films from the era, it almost serves as a guidebook for vintage fashion. Now there’s Event[0], which feeds off this same energy, even if it doesn’t involve disco dancing and cute aliens on bicycles. Most of your…

Event[0]
News

The challenging design of Event[0]’s insecure AI

One of the big games coming out this week is Event[0]—available for Windows and Mac on September 14th. It’s a sci-fi game set in an alternate retrofuture reality in which humanity built a starship in 1985 and has since embraced artificial intelligence even more than we have now. The events depicted in the game take place in 2012, on board a starship, where you, the player, are left alone with an insecure AI known as Kaizen. The idea is to explore the ship (which requires completing some hacking puzzles) in order to gather items and information. With this, you can then talk…

The Fall Part 2
News

The Fall Part 2 promises to plummet further into its AI nightmare

We were exposed to the first part of the sci-fi videogame trilogy The Fall over two years ago now. It’s about time some more info on the second part arrived—and that it has, and with a trailer to boot. You can expect it to arrive during first quarter of 2017 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Wii U, Windows, Mac, and Linux. The Fall Part 2: Unbound, as it’s called, will continue the journey of ARID, the AI onboard a high-tech combat suit that players will control. The trailer for The Fall Part 2 picks up right where the first game left off,…

ECHO
News

The most dangerous enemy in ECHO’s futuristic Palace will be yourself

Most videogames are a battle of sorts between the player and the creators. Horror games use tone, aesthetic, sound, lighting, to scare and unease you. Carefully placed enemies and arenas offer challenging conflicts. Gauntlets of chasms and hazards await to test the player’s platforming prowess. But these challenges tend to be static; once the player has learned the needed skills, survived the terror, run and jumped through a game, you’ve bested the developer’s design. But some games aren’t so … passive. Some can learn and adapt, turn the player’s skill into their weakness. The bosses in Warning Forever (2003) would swell with…

Event[0]
News

Get ready to build a relationship with an emotional AI this September

Last time we heard about Event[0] was back in February 2015 with a 20-minute playable demo. That was a while ago, so it’s understandable that we now have a new trailer and a confirmed September 2016 release date (plus, it’s being backed by Indie Fund now). Léonard Carpentier, the producer of Event[0] said that the team has used that old demo to help flesh out the responses from Kaizen, the AI operator on the game’s spacecraft, so the experience can be as convincing as possible.    To recap, in Event[0], you play the sole crew member of an AI-operated spacecraft named Nautilus. Kaizen…

Untitled-8
News

Short sci-fi film written by an AI is absurdly human

Artificial intelligence is a common topic explored within the science-fiction genre. Sunspring, a new sci-fi short, instead of using the theme of artificial intelligence in its narrative, used AI to actually produce the narrative in the first place. The film, which had its online debut on Ars, had its screenplay written by an AI which goes by the name of ‘Benjamin‘. The film was submitted as part of the 48-Hour Film Challenge at the Sci-Fi London film festival by Oscar Sharp, a BAFTA-nominated filmmaker and Ross Goodwin, a creative technologist and former Obama administration ghostwriter. Sunspring comes to life through the acting and production.…

Humani: Jessie's Story
News

Humani: Jessie’s Story turns the sitcom into a chatbot game

Jessie came into my life a couple of weeks ago. She was announced by her creators at PullString at the beginning of April as part of a conversation-based narrative game called Humani: Jessie’s Story, which you play on Facebook Messenger. You only need to say “hi” to meet Jessie, who is a 20-something girl who is not only experiencing a quarter-life crisis, but also looking for a job, a boyfriend, and a new apartment — all in the same day. You go along for the ride. As Jessie gives you the lowdown on how to get to a job interview, how to find the best shared house, or how…

HOUND
News

Videogame lets you command neural networks to manipulate evolution

“It took 4400 million years for the first life to appear on Earth,” is the opening line to the website for HOUND, a recently announced game project by its 18-year-old solo creator, Nikita Shesterin. And if, on reading that, you just thought, “hang on… that’s not right,” then Shesterin believes you’re the right audience for his game. HOUND hands you a universe replete with evolving creatures and ecosystem, and then gives you the controls to fiddle. You can create a physical model, perhaps of something as simple as bacteria, and then watch it evolve into a variety of new species—billions…

Rembrandt
News

Computer algorithm mimics Rembrandt, creates his next painting

I’ve never seen The Starry Night (1899). I mean, obviously I’ve seen it. Pictures of it are everywhere; in textbooks, on t-shirts, and just about everything in between. But I’ve never actually been to MoMA and seen the physical painting The Starry Night itself. Art has been at odds with replication for centuries, all the way back to when the very earliest printing technology suddenly made art cheap enough that common (see: not rich) folk could own it. When art is no longer confined to a museum, the line between what is and isn’t art gets more and more blurry. The…