Virtual reality with purpose

So virtual reality is officially back! With Facebook's Oculus Rift acquisition offering the potential of a mass-market Head-mounted display (HMD) device and Sony's innovation strategy focussed very clearly on Project Morpheus, consumer HMD devices and the VR experience are set to soon be part of everyone's everyday lives.

Sony's Project Morpheus HMD

As a games studio focussed on helping people look at, and feel differently about, the world around them, VR presents some hugely exciting opportunities to improve the engagement, drama, authenticity and resonance of what we do. Perhaps, maybe, even the efficacy. 

Back to the Future

Whilst it feels like a new thing, VR has actually been around for over 25 years.  

Back in the 1980’s the term Virtual Reality was popularized by a researcher called Jaron Lanier who founded VPL Research which created some of the very early HMD-like devices. Subsequently the idea ...

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Counterplay keynote - Beyond Entertainment

Two weeks ago we had the pleasure of attending Denmark's inaugural CounterPlay festival and giving Friday's opening keynote.

The festival explores the role of play in culture, learning and business, and our keynote outlined principles which guide the creation of Preloaded's Games with Purpose.

I've uploaded the deck to slideshare here. You can also download a high quality PDF here.

Where is the innovation?

The middle section of the presentation showcases a range of games which we feel represent exemplary games with purpose. They tackle head-on a wide range of issues not traditionally associated with games and they underline the positive role games can play in making society a better place. They show what games can do, and represent the reason we do what we do.

So many people asked for a list of these games, I've broken these out with links below:

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The art of Story Cards

Story Cards is our tablet-based collectible card game (CCG) featuring famous authors and characters from classic literature.  As the students read books pre-installed on an ebook reader, new cards become available for use in the game, creating a virtuous circle between playing the game and reading itself. 

For this first release of Story Cards we created illustrated cards from the books in the Gutenberg Press back catalogue. This post focuses on this art task, and our approach to bringing to life some of the most famous characters in literary history. 

The brief

The brief for art was to create characterful, charmingly-rendered illustrations that would make the cards both memorable and collectable.

We needed a high impact 2D style that steered away from anything too cartoony whilst remaining fun and characterful. It needed to accommodate characters and authors that wouldn’t necessarily translate well to illustrations, and be flexible enough to ...

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February’s mini jam

At Preloaded we occasionally find ourselves with some time in which we can create something outside the normal constraints of project work. Last week we had two days to create something completely different to our normal remit and decided to have a mini game jam. 

Small team? Make small games

We orientated the jam entirely around the team members available. We had two artists, two developers and a producer. We considered doing one large game, but during idea generation we decided that two small teams creating a game each would be the strongest loadout. Not only do the participants get to produce games they can call their own, but it meant we could create two incredibly contrasting games and thereby learn much more than we would with one, bloated product.

Mixing up roles

A great part of the jam process is team members flexing muscles they may not usually get ...

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Game localisation checklist

With the hyper-competitive nature of mobile gaming and web portals, there's never been a better time to expand your potential audience internationally by localising your games.

To help make that process easier and to highlight potential pitfalls, here's the internal checklist we've developed over the past few years while localising games such as Disney Fairies: Lost & Found.

Note that we’re using Localisation as a generic term to cover both the act of allowing a product to be localised - a process generally called Internationalisation - as well as the implementation of specific localised content.

Planning & Content

The more time you spend planning your localisation process and getting to understand your content, the simpler and more robust the implementation should be.

  • Identify expected locales, if possible including those that aren’t necessary now but may be desirable in the future. The addition of subsequent locales can have significant impact ...

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