Declan Cassidy underlines the future role of games design
Media is rapidly consolidating. Games, movies and the internet are overlapping into more complex and immersive forms of consumption.
As AR and VR become more mature technologies, the difference between your favourite videogame and the way you interact with reality itself will soon become one and the same thing, as a layer of fully immersive digital information is superimposed over your very existence.
This new ‘digital-reality’ is being dubbed, the ‘mirrorworld’ – a term first popularized by Yale computer scientist David Gelernter – it’s discussed at length in this brilliant long-form piece by Kevin Kelly for Wired. You’ve already seen the very beginnings of the mirrorworld, from Google Maps and Tik Tok filters to Pokemon Go.
The people that shape these all-encompassing digital experiences will in part, be a new generation of game designers. These young people will face a growing moral and ethical importance to their work, as the lines between games and real life become more blurred – they will, in essence, become, ‘reality engineers’.
We know that games have the power to unite and as we progress into the mirrorworld, they will be used as machines for empathy, escapism and potentially, even control, on a scale not yet imagined.
It is incredibly important that we ensure the architects of this all-powerful new meta-medium come from a range of backgrounds and experiences. The very foundations of our new reality should be built with the very best from our current one. Empathy, equality and the support of minorities can only come from a broad range of voices, and we need to make sure they are heard.
For more information on how – visit intogames.org
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Find him on Twitter at @cassidydeclan