Monthly Archives: May 2013

UCLA Game Art Festival to present a “lightning-round” showcase of cutting-edge videogames

One night only! 7-10:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 8 @ The Hammer Museum Courtyard

Festival to feature more than 35 playable games, tournaments, machinima screenings, and other game art installations

Two giant projection screens, multiple game cabinets and live music will contribute to the festival’s cacophonous, carnival-like atmosphere

skull2013Now in its third year, the 2013 UCLA Game Art Festival is taking a lightning-round, everything-at-once approach to showcasing a curated, international collection of the year’s most cutting-edge videogames and other interactive arts. The festival returns to the Hammer Museum Courtyard from 7-10:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 8.

Sponsored by the UCLA Game Lab in conjunction with the Hammer Student Association, the UCLA Game Art Festival will feature more than 35 playable games, tournaments, machinima screenings, and more. Surrounded by game art, attendees will enjoy a cacophonous, carnival-like atmosphere: two large-screen projections flanking the Courtyard will simultaneously showcase many of the festival’s exhibits, while individual games can be played on arcade cabinets stationed throughout the area.

As with last year’s festival, which attracted more than 1,000 attendees, the focus remains on sharing an eclectic mix of cutting-edge, independent, student and professional projects that may not otherwise reach the public. Eddo Stern, UCLA Design Media Arts professor, artist, and lead curator of the festival, said many of the games selected for this year’s event will encourage attendees to think about the interplay between games and other media. “One of our curatorial goals for the festival is to examine independent games and game art within a multidisciplinary context,” Stern said. “Games and gaming culture are intertwined with other media arts—performance, sculpture, theater, music, design, film, and so on—and many of the games selected for the festival play with the relationship between media forms.”

Though still in its infancy, the UCLA Game Art Festival is already earning a reputation for supporting games that often go on to win accolades from entertainment media and other game conferences. For example, the retail-simulation gameCart Life, one of several standout games from last year’s festival, received best-game honors at the Independent Games Festival in March. The game’s creator, Richard Hofmeier, is back again this year as the event’s emcee.

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