Notice: add_custom_image_header is deprecated since version 3.4.0! Use add_theme_support( 'custom-header', $args ) instead. in /var/www/html/shows/wp-includes/functions.php on line 4338 2012 ITP Thesis » Liza Singer

Genesis

Liza Singer

Genesis is a retro-futuristic virtual pet adventure game where players raise creatures to help them reconstruct their world.

http://lizasinger.net/genesis/



What happens when you give a child power over another being? What happens when you introduce them to death? What are the consequences of genetic engineering? Drastic cosmetic surgeries? Cheating death? What happens in a world where this is the normal? What kinds of personalities would accept this? Genesis' narrative and gameplay deconstruct the virtual pet adventure genre, exploring what it means to give life to an AI creature and the psychological impact on these creatures when they are used as toys or tools. Genesis subverts and pokes fun at the stark black and white moral choices found in most contemporary games, offering more realistic and ambiguous dilemmas. Common game tropes are tested, cheating is encouraged, and consequences are enacted at every turn. Set in a post-apocalyptic world, players are given AI creatures called chimera to raise, teach and train, to aid in reconstructing their world. This creates a unique and personal narrative experience as each environment adapts to the player's choices. Chimera respond to and learn from these choices, mirroring the player's true nature.

Background
While fantastic, there will also be a level of research going into more in-depth child psychology. Beyond my fascination with neuroscience, I’m particularly interested in developing creatures with personalities that feel organic and sincere based on players action. They are meant to evolve uniquely and organically, and any evolution that seems expected and played out will hurt the intention of the game. So when I speak of morality in Genesis I’m not speaking in terms of the morality that feels familiar in most contemporary games. While I adore how far games have come, I still feel that there is much to be gained in the ways of a narrative.


Implementation
A refined proof of concept with working prototypes. Due to the sheer mass of the game, my goal is to develop a cohesive proposal, a built-out bible of the narrative and it’s inner workings and a strong simulation of what the full game might feel like. To fully flesh it out, I would prospectively need a team to assist me in completing it. Being able to leave ITP with a strong business plan and a intelligent marketing strategy would be ideal.