Topic One: The arcade industry

Arcades
were everywhere in the 80s from the sandy beaches of America to bustling cities
of our very own Limerick city. The industry boomed mostly in America with
companys such Atari and Sega or games such as pac man, Time crisis, Metal slug
and Dragons Lair. Arcades were in abundance back then and saw the introduction
of many video games that we still play today such as Mortal Kombat, Tekkan and
street fighter.

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Figure
1
Arcades machines

 

Figure
2
Mortal kombat

 

 

 

 

 

 

Topic Two: Video game industry

The
video game industry is a constanly changeing environment that is always looking
for next innovation to inovate on, for example now it Virtual reality with HTC
Vive and the the Playstation VR and changes to the home console experiencne
with the Nintendo Switch. But there are issues with this industry that I will
go into further detail in the Backgound section. The industry started as a
simple entertainment option but now it has turned into a juggernaught that has
events such as E3 and award show such VGA’s, it had humble beginnings as a
simple hobby but now its become a culture with people attaching themselves to
game characters, developers and studios.

 

Games
in all forms is something I find hugely fascinating and I find the development
of games a very intruging propect, as the industry uses the latest tech to
create beautiful graphics and amazing gameplay innovations.

 

Figure 3 Nintendo switch

 

 

Figure 4 Playstation VR

 

 

Background

What is my documentary?

For
the final year project it will be a documentary on arcades and ask the question
are they a relic of the past or is there any future for them? Also a brief
history on the gaming industry as both industries is connected. I will be not
only going into arcades to get footage and to get first hand info on how these
arcades survive. My interviewes are connected in someway to the industry of
either arcaes to interacting with either the arcade machines or the video game
industry, from John Campion who owned an arcade back in the day and now owns a
private distribution service of arcade machines, Nathan who lived above an
arcade for 5 years and finally Micheal Gavin who worked in VR which might be
seen as the future with the VR arcades opening like Fury VR.

Mode of documentary

The mode of documentary my documentary is
expository (“word of god”) and participatory. The first word of god is where I
tell the viewer in info through my voice and tries conveying a scerarino and
participatory is where I am within the documentary interacting with it. This is
where I interact with the interviewes also there may be scenes where I talk to
you the viewer.

 

 

 

 

Research

The rise and fall of the Golden Age

The arcade industry like any other industry
has had “golden age”, this is when games were at their most profitable. During
this time the industry was seen a huge amount of growth, the revenue was approximately $2.8 billion in 1980. Also the
amount of arcades doubled 1980 and 1983. 
What was apart of this Golden age was the games and the gradual
advancement in the genra such as graphics imporving, Colour TVs being
intergrated and new ways to intact with games such as joysticks or even stering
wheels.

 

Also this time saw the
mascots such as Mario Brothers and Pac man coming into the fold it was a time
of great advancement.

 

Ref: http://auctiongamesales.com/the-golden-age-of-arcade-games-a-brief-history/

 

But the industry did not prosper for long
as with arcades been for the most part left in the dust with the coming age of
home consoles such as N64 or Xbox. It happend slow at first most consoles at
the time could not match the arcade capibilites but as advancemtns kept coming
more people began to take notice.For most people these were seen as a better
investment as most of the games looked better or were more complex then what
you would find in your typical arcade. Also the ease of set up was a
considerable factor as they were litteraly plug in, insert the disc and your
off to explore distant lands. Another contributing factor was most arcades were
seen as unsafe for young children to be alone as these claims began to raise so
did the image of friendly arcades fall.

 

In a business article on January 12 2012,
the industry had consiberaly large revenue of up 7 billion dollars a year but
with these new systems coming in the industry dropped to about 2 billion
dollars a year.

 

Ref: http://www.eastvalleytribune.com/news/video-killed-the-arcade-star/article_9b22d9ea-1810-5465-8bd9-a4e3204de569.htmlm

 

According to this article the amount of
arcade machines from many locations dropped from 860,000 in 1994 to 333,000 in
2004 along with that income from the machines fell from 2.3 billion dollars to 866
million. The only reason the games still had a considerable amount money is
because the cost of play increase what would normally be seen as only a few
cents turned into euros, dollars or pounds what ever way you take it they
increase but why did they increase? It’s very simple as more and more left the
arcades the owners had to find any ways to increase revenue but it would be
seen as another blow to this industry.

 

Take funworld for example there is a
bowling alley there that seems to pull in more bussiness then the arcade
itself.

Locations

Block 15 in LITwas one of the
locations I shot one of the interviews in. from the production side the reason
I choose this location is because the studios are acoustically treated which is
good so there are no reflection for audio and hopefully no editing. From a
sense of narrative this was the location for the Micheal Gavin interview and
the reason I choose it is because not only is it his place of work but also I
feel giving a snese of his work in audio work would be better shown there then
anywhere else.

 

Cratloe
is another location for the documentarie, the interviews in this location are
Nathans and John Campions interview. This location is used to give a more
holseome feel to those interviews in particular. Unlike block 15 this place is
not acoustically treated so will require either some editing or some audio
treating. But the one thing that this location has over Block 15 is the large
windows which require more light to come into the image which will make a more
appealing image also there are more brighter colours within the room as the
walls are yellow which works well with the light coming into the image.

Research on interviewees

 

Micheal Gavin

Micheal Gavin studied in
LIT in Music technology and production. His current work is with binaural audio
and reverb layering in data streams. He works with the Interactive systems
research group. He also works with Virtual reality systems. Although he has no
connection to gaming in particular he is working in what can be seen as the
possible future of gaming. I have interviewed Gavin before when it comes to his
work in Virtual Reality. Even with no connection to video games Gavin
understands the implantation of Virtualy Reality when it comes to giving an
immersive experience. He would know more about the tech side then that of the
games themselves and the business that really started it all.

 

Ref: https://youtu.be/Y4Gk7NsQxZQ Gavins work

 

Ref:http://www.interactivesystems.ie/

 

 

John
Campion

John Campion works as a private bussiness man who installs and
maintains entertainment facilities in pubs. He lived above the arcade I linked
bellow for five years with his son Nathan. But he then left that arcade to open
his own arcade, what I want to discover is why he closed left his arcade and
why it tunred into a Casino, was it a change of the times or was it that there
was more in said bussiness.

 

Ref: http://roscreaonline.ie/content.asp?section=15 John Campions old arcade

 

 

 

 

Nathan
Campion

Nathan
Campion is a Student in audio and video technology in LIT. He is currently in
his third year of study much like me. His connection to gaming industry is that
of a customer he plays games but is no where near as much of a gamer as I am.
He is the son of my other interviewee John Campion, he lived above an arcade
for five years along with his dad so his connection to arcade business is very
interesting to live above a arcade isa thing of dream for most kids at that
time. I will be very interested to know his aspect on the topics I want to get
answers for.

Outline

My work process

When it came to how I worked on certain
objectives. In my FYP I did the research as the FYP was being worked on over
the Summer of 2017. Over that time I was able to nail down 3 interviews for
production not only in the New Year but also at the beginng of the academic
year. So far I have completed the filming in Ballybunion, filmed in the
Funworld arcade done most of the voice over and completed 2 out of three
interviews. In my opinion my work process has been incredibly well as I never
take a break I am constanly working on scritpts for the interview and constanly
making up shot lists for the interviews. The music has been completed to good
pace so far 2 songs have been completed with a possible total of four to be
completed

Workflow – Software used for editing

When it comes to my software I will be
using for editing of the documentary is Avid media composer as last year I had
a lot of practice with the use of it and already edited a documeantary using it.
I will also be using photoshop for the production of my documentary poster.
Avid media composer is used a lot in RTE to produce many of the projects.

Photoshop is also a great editing tool when
it comes to the visual aspect of my documentary but I will be mostly using it
to produce the documentary poster.

 

As you can see from my screen shots I have
filmed a ton of footage and a lot of audio. I have started my sequence until I
had the arcade footage and thanks to some filming dates being done much earlier
I was able to transfer in the footage. Starting from 23rd of January
I will constanly make small edit to the project and should have a full edit
done very early, which should be good as it will leave enough time to correct
any issues that may arise.

Figure 5 Avid
sequence

 

Figure  6 avid bins

Visual Style

Colour Pallet

The colour pallet of my documentary will be
a very basic colour pallet noting too vibrant. If i was to say any documentary
I could compare mine too I would have to say the indie game movie. When I look
at this documentary its not only the interview and the personal lives of the
game developers that make it a fantastic documentary, if I was to say one
colour that is incredibly prevalent is white from the shots of skylines , to
the foggy exterior of Penny arcade expo.

 

For the fonts I will try and simulate the
gaming style of early 80s so a lot of green and puples maybe make the text look
like its going through a CRT monitor just a thaught but a possibility. Each
section of the documentary is split into levels such as boss level. I will
style text after each section with different style types.

 

When it comes to at least some of the
interviewe the background is completly out of focous with the interviewee in
focous basically making them the centre of attention and their world.

My documentary will have a lot scenery
shots of the city of Limerick and buildings that my interviewees live or work
in. The color pallet of my documentary will also be made to have some
consitiancy with its color grading as to not take the viewer out of the
experience. The weather of Ireland will be a big influence on the colour pallet
as its dreay days can capture the feeling of

 

Influence

 

 

Atari Game over

 

Figure 8  Atari Game over

 

A  aspect that this documentary influences my
documentary is how the documentary structures its parts of the exvation to dig
up landfill to the long lost hole where Atari buried its huge supply of ET
games, each section is called a phase in mine I structure it like levels of a
video game such as level one: tutorial/history and use elements or in jokes
that gamers will understand to better the experience.

 

In the documentary they ask people who are
going to this event why are they going and their connection to not only Atari
but the game itself and the industry. One of my interviewees Nathan Campion
will fill that sense of someone who has connection to both sides of the
industry from his dad who worked and lived above a arcade to now delivering
arcade machines to places around the country to the game industry today with
its big budget game and next gen councles.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The
Jinx the life and deaths of Robert Jurst

Figure 10 jinx

 

 

 

In this documentary it explores the history
Robert Durst who was the prime suspect in an unsolved mystery of the
disspearence of his wife and the murders of Susan Berman and Morris Black over a six part series. It has
an interview with the main suspect Robert Durst. This may seem like an odd
influence to help with the production of my documentary but its how it
influences the narrative of documentary but also how it structures its own over
arching narrative. One such example is how it grips the viewer but bringing in
the viewer through either using the re creations or the interviews how I would
adapt this for my documentary is the very end of each interview I ask the
question do you belive the industry is dead? But I don’t show their answer
until the end of piece in the last part of the documentary. That way I hold the
viwers interest until the end as I don’t get the answer till the end so it’s up
to viewer to use the imagination unitl then to come up with a possible answer.

 

A
lot questions of their memorys of the victums and with Robert Durst so in a
sense one of my questions what were your memorys of the arcade? And whats does
an arcade mean to you? In my terms I am trying to capture a sense of nostalgia
and to try and see what has been lost with how the industry has become.

 

Audio

 

Software Used

The softwares I
will be using for the audio production will avid media composer but for more
extensive editing I will be using Pro Tools. I will be using Pro Tools because it
is the industry standard and I can do so much with this edit suite such as
bring the audio in different tracks and edit each of them indivuidally.

 

Soundtrack

The soundtrack has gone through some
drastic changes from the original proposal originally the soundtrack was meant
to be a 8bit soundtrack with a mix of more electronic tracks.

 

Ref: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y63fr6wciDY=182s

Indie game movie
soundtrack

 

My music is
being composed by my friend Nathan he has designed music before and I trust him
to design a great soundtrack. The music is supposed to be inspired by the music
from the indie game movies soundtrack which was mostly a 8 bit soundtrack with
one guitar track. While with my soundtrack there will be a mix of both and for
sections of the documentary I have requested specifc tones such as for the
future part of the doc it’s meant to be accompined by a more optismic music and
for the fall of the industry a more depressing tone.

 

Audience

Age profile

The age profile for my documentary the age
profile of my audience will be students and adults between the ages of 21 up to
their mid 30s as these are the people who would be seen as the gaming
demographic. Another demographic would be people born during the 1980s when the
arcade industry was at its peak and also the time when the video game industry
crashed.

 

Gender

When
it comes to the gender I will be selling my documentary to every gender I can
when it comes to mass appeal. If I was to sell my documentary to a specific
gender it would sort of narrow the scope of my documentary and also to sell to
one gender would also narrow the audience of the piece and when it comes to something
like this I want to make it so anyone can watch it and enjoy it.

Interests

When it comes to the interests the documentary
will appeal to that would have to be of course first and fore most gamers as
they would be seen as the main demographic of a piece such as this, but mostly
gamers who were born around the time the arcade industry was big because to
some of them it would hold a sense of nostalgia to reminse of thing long gone.