Aviv Heilweil

I am a design and technology generalist — a multidisciplinary, creative technologist, product designer, strategist, experience & interaction designer, mixed reality developer and overall digital age enthusiast, Currently I am designing virtual worlds and virtual experiences.

Killem all. A unique VR experience

FROG 2021 – Talk

Dina Levy
Erez Mor

…from early days video games are obsessed with death. In many games we kill and in many games, we die. Why does death take such a major role in games, and is it actually death? In his Magic Circle Huizinga introduced games as suspension of reality. As such games are suitable candidates for people to experiment with the boundaries of morality, mortality, and death. In games, you are allowed to go beyond, play with fire, touch the sublime, hurt, destroy and kill anything you want, But this idea also has a small catch. Since the game sphere is a safe haven, with no real consequences or implications, dealing with death and killing loses its essence – for “it is only a game”. Game designers put a lot of effort into their games to create believable convincing life-like death-like experiences, (some are portrayed in this essay), but the suspension of disbelief always ends up heating the “Game Over, Please start again”, anticlimax. So as gamers we strive to play with death and games do offer the promise, but on the same hand also deny us the “true” essential experience. But what happens when the blood-gushing festive yet impotent magic circle is introduced with the “ultimate empathy machine” – the VR? Will the always failing in-game death experiences manage to somehow manifest differently as an embodied virtual experience? Will killing be different when it is your (virtual) hands doing the killing? Will dying feel different when it is your head that is decapitated? This essay will try to examine these questions through a unique VR experience – where you get to Killem all.


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