Photo Blog

Photographs of stuff from my library, collections and my daily life as a designer and educator.

PLAY13 Exhibition Interfaces

I found and played these systems at http://www.creative-gaming.eu/play13/ in 2013.

The Gaudy Woods

alternative interfaces

Leaning left and right to steer and rolling the log to go forward or backward. Plus stereoscopic 3D. The Gaudy Woods: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FzXZO0tPNb0

Let It Grow!

play13d

QR code based adorable plant watering minigame with actual pots and can. By Anna Wonner http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xldOBPajVCw

Tobias Othmar Hermann

play13c

play13b

Ping Pong to defeat space invaders and actual spacial movement with PC rigged walker by Tobias Othmar Hermann. http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZUH7zcvJg_bIbgW7EBnMTw

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I Gave Classes On The History Of Video Games

Last week I was giving my first classes in “the history of video games”.

My focus was on cataloguing the evolution of gaming technology (platforms, interfaces, distribution) and how it enabled designers to create more and more complex and deep gaming experiences. Then I walk my students through the history of the democratisation of game creations tools, from early map editors, independent publishing platforms and game jams to more recent milestones like Twine.

For all this I brought some objects from my game collection, hoping to make the classes more interesting by allowing the students to actually touch some of the relevant things instead of just showing slides.

I think it worked out well. I was talking for literally like 6 full hours and nobody was napping. ;D Was a load of fun.

history-of-video-games

history-of-video-games2

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I Feel Abraham Lincoln Fighting Game

BMO action figure adventure time

BMO from Adventure Time action figure with flippable face piece. Cartoon Network, produced by Jazwares.

Zoom in on any picture:
BMO action figure adventure time

BMO action figure adventure time

BMO action figure adventure time

BMO action figure adventure time

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Started Collecting Famicom Cartridges

I just started a new retro collecting obsession…

nes famicom cartridges collection

moar coloarrrrrs!

Famicom cartridges are much more fun, than the standardised grey NES cartridges released in the US and Europe. Even though I have a system to play these Japanese games, my Japanese language skills are not even enough to recognise a “press start” if I see one… …so I’m mainly collecting for the value of the objects themselves.

These babies come in all sorts of colors, so that is definitely a collection criteria. Several publishers produce their own custom cartridges, so there is a ton of shapes as well. Sweet! And there is tons of games that never found their way to the west, where franchises and themes are specific to Japanese culture and popculture. …also cute and fun illustrations.

Looking forward to share my findings.

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Kotobukiya – Mogwai Playing Donkey Kong

kotobukiya-gremlins-donkey-kong-head

Check out this gorgeous figure by Kotobukiya. What makes this Gremlins collectible special is the unlicensed knock-off replica of a Donkey Kong machine. Hilarious copyright avoiding cabinet art ahead.

Iconic Shot Kotobukiya focusses on giving us iconic shots from the 1984 Gremlins movie. Every figure gets a unique prop related to their appearance in the film. I happen to have stumbled upon this Mogway playing with a Donkey Kong version of the popular Coleco Mini-Arcade series.

coleco mini-arcade and kotobukiya gremlins toys

Left: original Coleco Mini-Arcade via // Right: full set of figures including other iconic scenes via

Kotobukiya – Mogwai playing Donkey Kong gremlins

Still from the movie ©Warner Bros via

Kotobukiya – Mogwai playing Donkey Kong gremlins

Monkey BusinessApparently, while Kotobukiya was able to get the Gremlins license, Donkey Kong was not so easy to obtain. So what we have here is a tiny replica of a Donkey Kong mini-arcade with knock-off cabinet art. Check out how bad it is and how off-model. This is not due to poor production quality – it’s Kotobukiya, people – this is copyright avoidances. And it is super fun (yeah, I have a thing for knock-offs).

Kotobukiya – Mogwai playing Donkey Kong gremlins

Kotobukiya – Mogwai playing Donkey Kong gremlins

Kotobukiya – Mogwai playing Donkey Kong gremlins

The overall quality of the product is top notch. Painting and sculpting are stellar as per usual. I really dig the fact, that you can display the mini-arcade and the figure independently and that they did not mount both things to one base. The figure stands around a bit awkward without the machine, because the Mogway is posed to be playing it.

Kotobukiya – Mogwai playing Donkey Kong gremlins

Kotobukiya – Mogwai playing Donkey Kong gremlins

Stay tuned for more pieces from ym collection in the future.

photos @ Anjin Anhut, except otherwise stated

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Amazingly Off-Model Super Mario Cufflinks

super mario toys

Did you ever dream of super ugly cufflinks made in slight resemblance to one of your favorite video game heroes? Nothing spices up a festive tuxedo, like these rubber abominations do.

super mario toys

Each cufflink is between 0.5 and 1.5 inches high.

I have no clue,...…where they are from. It was an ebay listing and the seller had no clue either. There are no manufacturing or licensing infos on the things themselves, which leads me to believe, that they are bootleg products. But, man, are they glorious.

They are not painted. The way they are made is by pouring differently colored rubber into a mold. This method is of course super imprecise, leading to astounding production mistakes and off-model colors. Also, since the sculpting needed to provide individual molding compartments for each color – instead of painting the different colors onto an cohesive mold later – the details are really lacking.

But small mistakes, like a blue colored button here or a skin colored mutton chop there are nothing compared to some of the more weird deviations.

super mario toys

super mario toys

super mario toys

Some seriously lazy sculpting going on here.

super mario toys

Muigi? These three pieces are my absolute favorite. The mold is decent, fairly on-model considering the size of the cufflinks. But the you have a Mario color scheme in which a pale skin color is used for his skin and his gloves and emblem. The second one is amongst the best pieces concerning production quality, it uses a lot of different colors and is colored fairly cleanly. But it Luigi’s color scheme. I love it.

super mario toys

To me as a collector, finding those bootleg type pieces is always super great. There is friction to those goodies, a story behind it and they somehow expand the universe of the franchise they knock off.

super mario toys

super mario toys

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