Creativity, it turns out, is a bit of a loaded word.
In game industry terms, I’ve always thought of it in relation to unique art styles and mechanics. Things that take games out of their comfort zone, or show them from new perspectives.
But a few months ago I started asking around to brainstorm ideas for this month's cover, and I found everyone has a slightly different definition. To some, it’s a plot twist. To others, it’s a nice way of explaining why something sold poorly.
I realized it’s the kind of thing you know when you see it. So for our latest cover, we decided to celebrate creativity in games by giving you things to look at and play with. We reached out to indie developers known for their creativity and asked them to put together projects showing their games in nontraditional ways.
What you see here is the result. We’re calling it an indie developer science fair. Flip through the next 17 pages and you’ll find a mixtape, an augmented reality game, screenshots that work with 3-D glasses, a Twine game, a short story, two stereograms, shadow puppets, papercraft characters and more.
And for the cover art, we tracked down Rodney Alan Greenblat — the artist behind PlayStation classic PaRappa the Rapper — and asked him to give his interpretation of creativity in the game industry. He thought up 16 alternative game ideas and presented them on a solid-colored background as a nod to a recent series of canvas paintings he’s done.
He’s currently working as an artist in a variety of mediums, with a game called Thunder Bunny’s Rainbow Slide out on iOS and Android, an art show scheduled for June 6 at BCB Gallery in Hudson, New York and a book on the way in 2016 called Dharma Delight. You can find him at Whimsyload.com.
Hope you enjoy the issue.