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The two cultures not quite united yet,
This review is from: Pause and Effect: The Art of Interactive Narrative (Voices (New Riders)) (Paperback)
Meadows sees the future of narrative to necessarily become interactive and three-dimensional and in this book he considers a number of case studies and discusses with practitioners in the field on what they feel are important features in bringing out engaging virtual environments.
The book is very nice to read - it has a creative yet legible layout, lots of pictures (including a couple of flipbook animations in the upper margins) and philosophises freely over the totality of (Western) culture as it pertains to narrative. The many pictures, being direct or tangential comments to the text are beautiful, but occasionally I wish it would be possible to zoom in on them to see them in higher resolution and make out the details.
Yet sometimes I curmudgeonly feel that one shouldn't let artists write about computers - there is much discussion but in the end very little concrete information on how to design virtual environments. Indeed, many of the ideas of breaking up traditional structures and moving freely in 3D space, turn out to be impractical for users of the environments as they have too few constraints to orient themselves after. Maybe new conventions will evolve which solve these problems, but one shouldn't go completely wild just because one can...
Still, if you are reaonably familiar with the area and can put the ideas in context, the book is a nice read which gives art and literature theoretical descriptions of the technical work.