MIND THE GAP

Ex­per­i­men­tal art col­lec­tive Koko­romi makes the most of vir­tual ge­om­e­try

EDGE - - KNOWLEDGE SUPERHYPERCUBE -

Su­per­hy­per­cube might be one of the van­guard of games lead­ing Sony’s PlaySta­tion VR charge, but it’s ac­tu­ally been in ex­is­tence for seven years in one form or an­other. Orig­i­nally con­ceived for 2008’s Gam­ma3D – a game de­sign event cu­rated by Su­per­hy­per­cube cre­ator and art col­lec­tive Koko­romi as part of the Mon­treal In­ter­na­tional Game Sum­mit – the game re­quires you to ro­tate com­plex shapes so that they can fit through a se­ries of open­ings.

The brief for par­tic­i­pants was to cre­ate games that ex­plored whether or not stere­oscopy could be mean­ing­ful to a game’s de­sign, long be­fore 3DTVs strug­gled to find pur­chase. The col­lec­tive an­swer to those ex­per­i­ments was ‘no’.

But Koko­romi pushed its own de­sign con­cept fur­ther with the in­tro­duc­tion of rudi­men­tary head track­ing, and in the com­bi­na­tion of the two el­e­ments found that it had alighted on some­thing spe­cial. When the prospect of af­ford­able, pow­er­ful home VR gained mo­men­tum, Koko­romi im­me­di­ately saw the tech­nol­ogy as a per­fect fit for its game.

Drop­ping stereo­scopic glasses in favour of Sony’s HMD has un­shack­led the col­lec­tive from its orig­i­nal greyscale aes­thetic, some­thing Koko­romi has made the most of with an explosion of neon colour. The look of the game was heav­ily in­spired by early com­puter art, clas­sic sci-fi, and the min­i­mal­ist, ab­stract Light And Space art move­ment that orig­i­nated in ’60s Cal­i­for­nia.

The orig­i­nal version of the game was en­gi­neered by Fez pro­gram­mer Re­naud Bé­dard, a re­sult of an on­go­ing col­lab­o­ra­tive re­la­tion­ship be­tween Polytron and Koko­romi. That con­nec­tion has led to Polytron be­com­ing the pub­lisher of the up­dated version of Su­per­hy­per­cube, which will launch along­side PSVR. We’ll take a closer look in E290.

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