Enter the Metaverse with Beckmans at the Museum of Technology

Beckmans visual communication

16 students from Beckmans College of Design present four games under the name "Enter the Metaverse".

The games "Tailwhipper", "Fever Dream", "Jet Eats" and "The Legendary Stardust Cowboy – In Space!" have gone from fantasy to reality for five weeks and are now becoming available to the outside world during a day at the Museum of Technology.

Stories at the center of the students' version of the Metaverse

The concepts draw inspiration from exhibitions at the museum, thoughts on speculative design and the concept of Metaverse. The term was originally coined in 1992 by Neal Stephenson in the novel Snow Crash, in which people in product design digital avatars interact with each other and different types of computer programs. Today, the term is used to partly describe the present we live in, but perhaps above all to explore the future we are heading to, where the line between the physical and digital is increasingly blurred. 

"In this particular course, we have started from the exhibition Anthropocene at the Museum of Technology, and explored speculative fabulation/design fiction with a contemporary and future lens," says Jonas Johansson, senior lecturer at the Visual Communication programme. 

"Metaverse is, for us, about the meeting where we are, and where we're going, and the stories that revolve around possible complications, opportunities, situations," he said. The games lustfully describe new work roles, AI consequences or space fantasies. The hope is that our contribution is reminiscent of how important man and physicality are in the digitization of the body and mind. 

Challenges on the road to total gaming experience

The games are designed in Unity and the controls are created with Circuit Playground, a circuit board that makes it possible to construct your own interfaces using sensors and encoding in Python. To create unique stands, students have gained access to the Museum of Technology's laser cutters. In addition, they have composed unique soundtracks and sound effects to enhance the experience.

–Creating a total gaming experience with the game, controls, booth, music, etc. requires high level of collaboration, ability to shift perspective from detail to overview, and prioritization. A good game, or any design solution, is impossible to sketch out, instead it needs to be tested and re-thought of several times, with a knowledge of how to create prototypes that help you move forward, says Jonas Johansson.

"Anything that can go wrong will go wrong"

"The big challenge has probably been right here, to develop your own methodology to effectively move towards the goal, and step into the role of designer. Since younger children will be the main players, students will need to be prepared for most things and bring with them Murphy's Law "Anything that can go wrong will go wrong".

Time & Place

When: Saturday 20 November 13.00-18.00
Where: Tekniska museet, Museivägen 7, Norra Djurgården.

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