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The Ballet game Bound is already sashaying into our hearts

There is a certain ballet to game design. Perhaps not in the visual sense, but in the dedication—the blood, sweat, and tears it takes to pull off even a simple movement. Like a game designer, a ballerina must work night and day, while knowing every aspect of what goes into the beauty of her art, both inside and out. From the high level concepts to the granular, from the emotion of the piece to the soles of the shoes that help her execute it. A ballerina must make a world erupt from the rigid structure of her body, creating by pushing the natural limitations of her canvas. Just…

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New exhibit hints at a future for low-poly art outside of games

The unfortunate thing about low-poly art, the aesthetic of simple shapes and abstract images seen in games like Final Fantasy VII, is that it never got much of a chance to take off as a legitimate art style all its own. In a medium where big companies are constantly competing over realistic graphics, low-poly art has been quickly phased out for more and more detailed visuals as technology has become increasingly powerful. And while the similarly retro-born pixel art has had a resurgence with the rise of independent game development, low poly-art has yet to see the same sort of…

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The surreal, vaporwave harmony of Executive Towers

Can an album also be a videogame? Last year, chiptune artist George & Jonathan did it, with an interactive experience for their synth-pumping, hyper-colorful third album III. So did pop producer bo en, curating his own interactive accompaniment to his debut pale machine with a host of mini-games based on songs from the record, which notably included a collaboration with Arcane Kids’s Ben Esposito. Vancouver-based musician Jade Statues’ new album, Executive Towers, follows this videogame-album trend, the game itself programmed by first-time developer daffodil. Jade Statues dreamed up the concept for the dual videogame-album approach to his official Dream Catalogue…

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Skyrim mod turns its highly-detailed fantasy world into a cartoon

Skyrim, the fifth installation of the long-running Elder Scrolls series, is known among other things for its intensive, high quality graphics and level of visual detail. Even then, it’s common for players on PC to install several graphical enhancement mods for even more realistic lighting, water, and textures. To run Skyrim on max settings is a badge of honor for those who spend a lot of money on their rigs. Less frequent, but still just as awesome, are mods like Toon Skyrim from UniqueUses, a “potato texture mod” that turns the game’s highly-detailed environments into cartoonish landscapes. According to the…

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Feast your eyes on the lovely low-poly art of Traces of Light

“She belonged to a different age, but being so entire, so complete, would always stand up on the horizon, stone-white, eminent, like a lighthouse marking some past stage on this adventurous, long, long voyage, this interminable—this interminable life.” – Virginia Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway Sometimes, a videogame’s art style makes you sigh like you’re a Disney princess with a serious crush. Traces of Light, a 3D maze game, is exactly that kind of beautiful. Created by German designer Mikhail Pigichka, the game’s style was born out of some experiments with 3D tools where the main idea was to “colorize the whole scene by different points…

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Jamie xx’s solo album is made of polygons and dance music

Feeling starved for layered electronic beats and primary-colored shapes? Well, you’re in luck. In Colour, the debut album by Jamie xx, is here to fill that rectangle-shaped void in your heart. Like the music of his other project, The xx, Jamie’s solo work is low-key and beautifully simple, but In Colour feels very much its own thing. Informed by the dance music traditions of UK DJs, Jamie xx takes beats that would feel at home in the 90s and re-skins them for 2015. beats that would feel at home in the 90s  Since his solo work is based in a…