Accessibility Game culture Interactive Storytelling Music

How editing video became another form of self expression

Assassin's Creed screenshot

Last week the new game Assissin’s Creed was launched. It is a game developed by the makers of Prince of Persia and Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell. Two very popular game series, with extraordinary gameplay.

From “The setting is 1191 AD. The Third Crusade is tearing the Holy Land apart. You, Altair, intend to stop the hostilities by suppressing both sides of the conflict. You are an Assassin, a warrior shrouded in secrecy and feared for your ruthlessness. Your actions can throw your immediate environment into chaos, and your existence will shape events during this pivotal moment in history.”

Yesterday there was a music video for the game on Dutch television. It’s is always interesting when Dutch artists make music for major game releases so I searched YouTube for the videoclip. I didn’t find the videoclip I had seen on television, what I found was an enormous collection video clips made from the same trailer footage and edited on different music.

This isn’t machinima where you take a game engine and compose your own story with the game characters. The video clips don’t add anything new or extra to the game or the trailer, the clips are just forms of expression.

People are making their own video clips because they can and love it. Everyone with access can edit, like everyone with access can write. You need basic knowledge, but that’s about it. This is how people show what kind of music and games they like. It’s a tribute to a game that isn’t released yet. This is a culture that only exists around the collective waiting for a game release.

This is how we entertain ourselves, by telling stories with and about the things we like. I don’t know how to call this, it’s a mix between game culture, video clip culture, and waiting. But above all it’s cultural expression. Unfortunately still illegal (due to music copyrights), but a great phenomena.

Brainpower & Intwine (the music video)

The original game trailer

The YouTube remixes