Elly Williams' Weblog

Caught Between Industries

Size Matters

According to the BBC

“A survey carried out by Jupiter Research has found that almost all the consumers questioned were storing no more than 1,000 songs on their home PC…..digital music players with capacities of 5,000 songs will provide too much space for most people.”

I find this suprising. I have a digital music player with space for 5000 songs. I do not find it too big. I would find a digital music player with space for 1000 songs too small.

Quick sum…. on an average album there are probably about 12 songs… 1000 songs is therefore about 80 albums. My CD collection far exceeds this. And that’s before we start looking at singles and *gasp* filesharing.

I’m also worried that less than half (49%) of the people surveyed felt that hooking a digital music player up to a computer was a necessity….

Getting the Celluloid Treatment

There’s a piece on BBC – collective talking a bit about games being adapted into films, with specific reference being made to the forthcoming adaptation of Metroid.

The basic thrust of the argument is that games tend to get mangled when adapted for film…. this is not a new argument. In the same way that films tend to get mangled when adapted for games, or books tend to get mangled when adapted to film or game. And I’m not even going to start on the mess that can happen when you start adapting comics (*cough* League of Extraordinary Gentlemen *cough*)

The way I see it, it all comes down to separation of style and content. There was a piece on OK/Cancel a while back asking whether style and content were really inseparable.

“Take a book for example. As a media, a book affords for lengthy prose. It is portable and its pages can be turned at the user’s pace. Once published its content is static unless the user marks it up, and physical pages afford dog-earring of the juicy parts. As a result of these characteristics, one writes differently for a book than they do for the web. A skilled author might take 400 pages to get things going in a book, but on the web, this just doesn’t fly. No one reads a 400 page anything on the web.”

So how does this relate to games and films… well, in exactly the same way. If you go to the cinema the longest you are probably expecting to sit there is about 3 hours – probably less. More is certainly an exception and probably involves Leonardo diCaprio drowning. However many games take that long just to START getting into the plot/proper action – and the same goes for books. So stuff is going to get compressed and rejigged and potentially quite horrifically mangled.

So is there an answer… well….as long as there are people who stick fanatically to the original, probably not. And lets face it, with video games the ones with a following (and hence fanatics) are probably the only ones that are going to get adapted.

“One of these days, someone has just got to make a decent video game movie. How about Peter Jackson doing Zelda?”

Thought for the Day

Where is the 51st state of America?

UK? Canada? Iraq?

I think it’s The Moon….if they went there at all

List of Links

I don’t have time to write a proper piece at the moment so here’s a few links that Meri sent me during the week.

Mouse and friend – Two handed input particularly for drafting and graphics. (also on Slashdot)
I for one would love more detail on how this works… or even what it looks like, the only images of it have peoples hands in the way…

Game industry facing creativity crisis
“The video game industry is facing a hardening of the creative arteries as aging gamers’ tastes increasingly shift toward sequels and games based on movies…..With more and more titles chasing the success of their predecessors …. the industry is faced with a question more serious than rhetorical: What’s new?”

Gaming prowess in your pocket: The move towards handheld consoles.

First look at PSP software
… and some interesting spec details:

is an Architecture Student and Web Designer based in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, (UK)