“This is a song about FOUR pencils and TWO scissors…”

If you made it the end of EoEE, you will recognize the poetic line above from the song in the ending video.  In fact, the song, although (in my opinion) lacking relevance and preparation, was quite catchy and has stuck in my head for awhile.

Rather than focusing on one game in my blog post, I thought I would discuss some of the characteristics all the games share.  With Transparency vs. Foregrounding, Nelson’s games didn’t exactly “reveal the code” like some of Galloway’s examples.  They did “break the fourth wall” in the film-sense of the term, with Nelson making it quite obvious you were playing a game.  Aestheticism certainly overshadowed Gameplay in the four games, as the player sometimes didn’t have to utilize much skill to reach another level; in This Is How You Will Die, the player only clicks in a slot-machine manner.  Nelson certainly focused on the visual aspects of the game in order to convey his artistic message/social commentary.  Accordingly, I found that the games leaned heavily towards the Diegetic Machine quadrant of Galloway’s gamic actions.

As for his Diegetic focus, read ‘artistic message/social commentary’, was (to put it quite frankly) over my head.  I didn’t really understand what he was trying to convey most of the time.  I found that a lot of his ‘poetry’ (or what I am guessing was his poetry) was grammatically confusing and/or surprisingly uncalculated.  Many of the videos were unrehearsed and the home videos seemed disjoint from the game’s message as well.  Unless one of the artistic messages of the game was to satirize the way we consistently try to find messages in things that aren’t really there, Nelson has failed to convey his message to me.