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Tsunami project shows emotional side of game design

23 May 2013

The introduction sequence of 9.03m

The emotional potential of computer game design will be explored tomorrow (Friday 24 May) at the opening of the biggest ever Abertay Digital Graduate Showcase.

Karl Inglott, a   student at Abertay, has created an interactive digital project called 9.03m based on the deaths in Japan from the 2011 tsunami.

Set on a beach in San Francisco, Karl has used game design techniques to create an emotional response of sadness and remorse, and to remember the victims of the tragedy as individuals.

Tsunami project - 1
The project uses objects on the beach as metaphors for the people who owned them, inspired by media reports of tsunami debris being washed up on American beaches years after the disaster struck.

Speaking ahead of the Abertay Digital Graduate Showcase opening on Friday, Karl said: “My wife is from a region of Japan just outside of the tsunami hit zone, and although her family were thankfully not affected, many friends of the family were.

“I researched games that have an emotional impact, but the personal devastation caused by such a catastrophic natural disaster made me want to explore how game design can create experiences that aren’t really ‘games’ at all.

Tsunami project - 2
“Many of the same skills of creating enjoyable, exciting and compelling games can be used to tell a very deep, very affecting emotional story, even if it’s done in quite an abstract way.

“I want people who come to the Abertay Digital Graduate Showcase to think a bit more about those who died, and remember them for people, and not just a statistic in a news report. For me, being able to create that emotional response shows the real power of game design.”

The interactive project 9.03m reveals objects strewn across the beach, which are clues to the people who once owned them before the tsunami struck.

As you explore the night-time scene, coloured in shades of blue and lit by moonlight, the music, sound effects and audio design all heighten the emotional impact of the work.

Tsunami project - 3
As a Game Design & Production Management student at Abertay, Karl learned how to coordinate production of a team producing interactive entertainment products like games, as well as the skills needed to run a creative business.

The Abertay Digital Graduate Showcase is open throughout this weekend:

Friday 24th May, 4pm-8pm
Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th, 12pm-4pm
Monday 27th May, 9am-12pm

Exhibits are on show in the Hannah Maclure Centre and the main Kydd Building. Entry is free and everyone is welcome.


For media enquiries, please contact Chris Wilson (Communications Manager) – T: 01382 308522 M: 07837 250284 E:

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