Description of the Installation
The Lemuria Installation will consist of a large projection of the interface on the main wall in front of the user once they enter the space. A Kinect will be fixed above this projection to pick up the users movements. There will be a string of LED lights all along the bottom of the walls in the room, these will change color along with the dominant colour projected on the wall.
Motivation for escape; Why do we feel the need to escape?
There are many ways people find an escape from reality, some like to read a book, others play video games and some may jus enjoy sitting back and watching a movie. The question is why do we feel the need to escape?
“Escapism: The tendency to seek distraction and relief from unpleasant realities, especially by seeking entertainment or engaging in fantasy”-Oxford Dictionary.
On researching the subject we found that there is a list of reasons people feel the urge to escape from reality:
Boredom: Plain and simple, sometimes people want to escape because they feel their life is dull and they need to experience something different and new to add some excitement in their lives.
“We don’t know what to do with ourselves. The monotony of daily life gets to us and we feel we need some excitement and variety to change things up a bit.”
– Manal Ghosain, ‘Why do we Place so much value on Entertainment and Escapism’, 30-09-13, http://onewithnow.com/escape/
Loneliness: Being alone often results in boredom, and some form of escapism can also provide a social aspect, online gaming for example.
“Cole and Griffith sampled 912 self-selected players from 45 countries… What they found was that 76.2% of males and 74.7% of females had made “good friends” with someone within the game.”
– ‘Social Interaction with Online Gaming’, http://webspace.ship.edu/jacamp/psyberpsych/Gaming/social_interaction.html
Avoidance: This can be avoiding anything from a task we can’t bring ourselves to do or a felling or situation we would rather not have to face.
This is where escapism may have a negative effect as avoiding our problems or work is not productive and may leave people with feelings of guilt afterwards.
“The ultimate reality that we usually try to avoid is that we are not in control of the world. So we substitute – we try to control our escaping.”
-‘The Four Stages of Escapism’, DailyFreedom, 16-07-09, http://dailyfreedom.com/2009/07/the-four-stages-of-escapism/
To improve productivity: The will power to complete a task is an exhaustible source that can be completely used up. In order to maintain ones will power it is essential to take small breaks at regular intervals; a short escape from the work.
“Our brain actually requires a bit of rest to process and recharge. We can miss the spontaneity of thought that erupts from great conversation or a change in our surroundings. Aim to get away from your desk for at least 20 minutes — even if it is just to take a walk or get a breath of fresh air.”
– Marla R. Gottschalk, Susan Ricker, ‘Why Taking a Lunch Break can make you more Productive’, 25-06-13, http://msn.careerbuilder.com/Article/MSN-3388-Workplace-Issues-Why-taking-a-lunch-break-can-make-the-day-more-productive/
New Experience: Some forms of escapism offer new and interesting experiences that can break up the monotony of everyday life. Examples of this include a trip to somewhere new, trying out new forms of technology or even taking an evening class in something new.
“When people become accustomed to a certain way of living, their minds become closed to many other possibilities. Travelling allows the mind to expand and literally see the world in new and different way.”
– Sarah Jenson, ’10 Reasons why Travelling is good for your Health’, http://www.travelocafe.com/2012/01/top-10-reasons-why-traveling-is-good.html
Entertainment: Probably the main reason people seek escape, and something every form of escape must include is entertainment. The reason escaping appeals to everyone is because it is a pleasant and enjoyable experience.
“I consider entertainment to be very important in our culture. It’s important because much of what people want to do comes down to being entertained-watching TV, movies, and sports, playing games, amusing themselves online, going out to eat, drink, and party, etc.”
– Peter G. Stromberg, ‘Is Entertainment bad for you’, 12-03-10, http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/sex-drugs-and-boredom/201003/is-entertainment-bad-you
Project Walk Through
The user enters the room and is faced with a large projection of the games start page. The user can interact with the interface via the Kinect. Once the user activates the game by pressing the start button, the intro animation starts. The intro animation consists of a pan shot of the 3D landscape and a voice over explaining the story of Lemuria and the game play. Once the animation is finished, the gameplay begins.
The user starts off in the forest area of Lamuria, they see this through a POV view of the landscape. By using several different hand gestures the user can move forward, left or right. There is a path to follow, but the user can explore wherever they wish. There are three sections to explore, a lake and waterfall, a forest, and a cave.
In each section there are floating objects the user can collect by walking through them. It does not matter how many objects they collect, the user cannot win or loose. The LED lights running along the bottom of the walls will change colours along with the dominant colour on screen in each section.
The gameplay will last ten minutes. After the ten minutes is up, the end page will automatically appear showing the user their score (how many objects they collected). There will also be a restart button on this page so the user may start the game again if they please.
Kinect and KinectA
The Kinect is a motion-sensing device made by Microsoft for the Xbox 360. It enables the user to use their body as a game controller by using gestures
KinectA is a free software which makes it possible for us to use the Kinect with PC or Mac. It includes hand, skeletal and object tracking.
Why use the Kinect and KinectA.
As our project aims to be an escape, using a Kinect provides a different experience compared to run of the mill computer games and adds an element of fun. It is also our most affordable option as a Kinect can be provided by the college, and the KinectA software is free to download.