Friday, November 04, 2005

All Good Things ...

Congratulations to you all, you've reached the end of the course! That's right, all the assignments are done, the seminars are complete and your marks will be with you in the near future.

If you've not done so already, I encourage you to listen to each others' podcasts; they're all very impressive and well worth listening to. The comments function on this blog will remain open to you (and only to students from this course), so please let each other know what you like (and to make suggestions for future podcasts in case anyone wants to continue their fine work in another context). Anyone else reading this, feedback/comments/complaints about this blog or course can be emailed to me (or comments regarding individual podcasts can be made to the email addresses listed in the respective shownotes).

In a little while I'm going to make a final post and then let this blog become a slightly more static part of the digital realm. Andrew, Gwyneth, Hilary, Liz and Kaori, can I ask that if you've any future online interactions regarding this course, you use the comments (which are still automatically email to me), not new posts, or, even better, go forth and start your own blogs! I'll be leaving this blog and all its course material up online in case it can prove of use to other people for whatever reason (from an online resource, to a skeleton for a new course, to ... well, whatever you like as long as it respects the Creative Commons License under which this course & blog are made available).

Finally, can I end on a personal note by saying I've enjoyed running this course immensely and, as with all good teaching experiences, feel I've learnt as much from you all as (I hope!) you've learnt from me. Of course, your travels in, and productions of, participatory media by no means conclude with the end of the course. Indeed, given the talent you all possess, I'd be mightily surprised not to see some other very impressive productions in the future (be they blogs, podcasts, books, scripts or whatever else you set your minds to). Thanks for a fabulous semester and best of luck with your future endevours! (And feel free to drop by my blog and let me know how your journeys are going ...)



[Fireworks Photo Credit: Jono Kenyon (Under a Creative Commons License).]

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Thursday, November 03, 2005

Tombcast

(here's my ultra late podcast)

Shownotes

Time
[00.25] – Introduction to Tombcast
[01.18] – Feedback Email
[01.33] – Tomb Raider 2 Demo
[02.36] – Audio walkthrough (first segment)
[12.52] – Soundtrack download
[13.11] – Interlude
[20.55] – Story telling (second segment)
[30.53] – Conclusion to Tombcast

Exegesis

Participatory culture has been of one whereby the roles and relationships between producers and consumers have blurred. Consumers sought to actively participate in their favourite movies, games and so forth. This podcast is one such example. It is called Tombcast, a podcast that discuss on any interesting issues relating to the game or its spin-off movies.

On creation, the aim was to start a string of episodes to Tombcast, rather then just a one-off episode. Therefore I started by hosting the first episode. Selection of topic discussions and activities are flexible, as to keep the podcast vibrant and full of random surprises for listeners. In this episode the objective are twofold.

The first part involves the participation of the listeners, by playing the demo game with my audio walkthrough. While walkthrough guides created by fans are not new, I try to take it one step further by doing it via podcast. The second part is a story narration of the same demo game. The story satirically tackles some of the questions that are commonly asked, such as the logic of the puzzles, the restrictions in the game and what Lara (player controlled character) is thinking.

In addition, participatory culture are also involve in the modification of existing materials, and regurgitating them into something new such as those song remixes and machinima. It was said that ‘at the center of Tomb Raider was a fantasy female character’. (Kennedy, 2002) I sought to challenge this belief by narrating my own version of Tomb Raider, and how I perceived her.

The producer of Tomb Raider construct Lara as sexy, brave and agile. Changing her voice to those similar to squeaky chipmunks and narrating her as extremely clumsy and dumb was my intention to change the perception of Lara. I had also included a music remix by Tomb Raider fans for interlude, as another demonstration of fan participation.

Reference

Kennedy.W Helen, 'Lara Croft: Feminist Icon or Cyberbimbo?', Game Studies, vol.2, issue.2, December 2002

Resources

[X] A1 Free Sound Effects
[X] Sounddogs.com
[X] PartnersInRhyme
[X] Planetlara

[iLecture/Lectopia Download - Mp3 - 42.9Mb]

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