- ARTD 282: SPECULATIVE MENU DESIGN (2 credits)
It is said that no game developer enjoys developing menus for their games. We believe this is a fucking lie, or at best, a misleading myth that reflects a developer's anxiety about framing their work. A game menu is the first thing most players see upon starting a game, it is the first second of the first minute of the first five minutes of a game.
Does the game's options menu feature a field-of-view slider? How does the game describe "easy mode"? These trivial choices in menu UI design, while seemingly insignificant and boring, constitute a powerful paratext that suggests the intended audience for such games.
To bypass unproductive fears about a menu's power, we will instead design and prototype main menus for video games that do not actually exist. What new games can we imagine into being, by simply imagining their menus?
(Only offered at Lisbon campus.)
- ARVR 601: IMMERSION INTENSIVE (6 credits)
What is immersion? In this course, we will explore immersion by immersing ourselves in immersion itself. Participants will be asked to endure extreme environmental and cultural conditions which facilitate ultra-immersion, including but not limited to: deep-sea diving, 40 foot tall vats of nacho cheese, high gravity centrifuges, methamphetamine(s), lost in foreign cities with no money or phone, secret US black-site prisons -- and lastly, virtual reality.
By the end of this intensive, students will understand immersion in the "real world" as an all-encompassing near-death state of sublime crisis that dramatically changes one's understanding of the world -- immersion as the world literally imposing itself upon you, suffocating and drowning-out any possible thought beyond the present.
Our goal is to not just view VR's immersive claims as utterly laughable, but also to literally feel uncontrollable laughter when faced with the prospect.
(Prerequisites: PHIL 201 History of Phenomenology, 1 semester of Basic Outdoor Survival Skills or equivalent)
- LEGL 1522: ILLEGAL GAMES STUDIO (3 credits)
How can a game be illegal? In this studio, we will attempt to make as many illegal games as possible. When doing so, students are hereby discouraged from sleepwalking into well-trodden notions of illegal games, such as IP violations and trademark infringement -- rather, the goal of this studio is to find new ways to make illegal art as an act of civil disobedience, and embed it directly in the gameplay itself.
Past semester projects include: LARPs that force players to actively trespass and vandalize political conventions, board games that require players to use banned drugs as game tokens, and video games which help players jam police-operated surveillance drones.
Students will consult with law students and scholars at the neighboring Audre Lorde School of Law to make sure that they don't do anything TOO illegal. The ideal learning outcome of this course involves the creation of games that are simply too dangerous to play.
(All students must sign a legal waiver absolving Radiator University of any role in planning and performing crimes.)
We know you have many options for your education, so we'd like to thank you for choosing Radiator University; "Caveat emptor!"