gameover zombienation

Gameover zombienation


This work was a response to ClearChannel's censoring of the Mario Trilogy videos in Transmedia 29:59. It was both amicable solution and frustrated commentary.

In 2006 three of my games were curated into an exhibition called Controller at Interaccess Media Arts Centre that includes other artists who are also hacking, messing, exploiting elements, glitches in games – Tasman Richardson, Alex Galloway, Yumi & Co., and RSG. Concurrently, I was invited to show them as single channel one minute videos in Transmedia 29:59 to coincide with the exhibition. Transmedia 29:59 is is curated by Michael Alstad and Michelle Kasprzak and is a year long programme on the pedestrian level advertising video billboard at Dundas Square in Toronto. http://www.year01.com/transmedia2959 In Transmedia 29:59 one minute videos works are broadcast 24/7 every half hour on the 29th and 59th minutes for a month. Clear Channel, the media company that donated the advertising minutes, at the last minute refused to show the mario trilogy video dumps, for fear of violating Nintendos copyright, trademarks, and patents. I offered to sign a waiver, and encouraged them to put in a disclaimer before airing the videos but they were not willing.

To address Clear Channel's refusal to play it, while still referencing the inevitable death of the game character, I played ZombieNation and screen captured the final “Gameover” screen. I played the game to lose, to achieve a score of 000000. Which strangely, can be quite difficult to do. In Zombie nation the premise of the game is Darc Seed, an evil alien creature with horrible powers has taken power over the people of the United States and turned them into helpless zombies. Only you, the great head of the samurai can free the U.S from the evil clutches of Darc Seed.

I dumped the Gameover – score of nothing - screen capture to single channel video, where it fades to black/nothingness over a one minute period. It was the only way I could think to quietly protest their censorship, without inviting too much legal attention from the sleeping giants – Nintendo.

In a world where companies can patent, copyright, trademark ideas, images and experiences – it becomes increasingly difficult when engaging with your culture, to not become a criminal.

In the documentation - a bagpipe player is playing during the gameover one minute countdown to nothingness.

Gameover Zombienation from Myfanwy Ashmore on Vimeo.