game over

In this performance, a clarinet player navigates a character in a computer game with the help of a wireless motion sensor, exploring various game worlds and interacting freely with their surrounding and other actors. The game worlds are collages of well-known vintage video game genres, juxtaposing contradictory ‘game modes’, like side scrolling, top-down dungeon crawler, NES ‘Mode 7’ and isometric pseudo 3D to create bizarre and confusing scenarios).

The possibilites for musical interaction are manifold: objects trigger specific sounds when touching them; AI agents play sounds autonomously and will react on collisions or musical information such as pitch, volume or attacks; certain regions in the game enable distinctive audio effects; ‘pickups’ trigger special events causing drastical changes in picture and sound.

The game can be either linear and action-driven or slow and explorative. Either way, ‘winning’ the game is not the purpose , on the contrary, the performer is encouraged to make spontaneous, even irrational decisions if it serves the musical outcome. They can purposefully exploit the game mechanics to shape the piece the way they want. As an artwork, the piece is open-ended, a continuous reflection on the nature of computer games and their impact on the human psyche.

game over was developed within the artistic research project GAPPP at the Institute of Electronic Music in Graz, Austria and is founded by the österreichische Wissenschaftsfond (project number AR364-G24). It has won the Student Award for Excellence in the Application of New Technologies in Sound Art and Sound Design at the international symposium klingt gut! Symposium on Sound in Hamburg, Germany.