Stephen Fisher - Designer and Developer Stephen Fisher - Designer and Developer

Content ID: Brief Feelings

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All your content belong to Us


As someone who has partaken and does occasionally produce videos for YouTube it is not surprising that I am concerned regarding Goggles push or rather pushed stance regarding ‘copyright’ material mainly that of video games. The use of material such as logos, gameplay and music is one that arguably one that is not easy to resolve. In regards to gaming it is fair to state that the majority of game developers and publishers do not mind their games being in essence promoted in video form and even release press copies to channels often upon request for editorial purposes, as someone registered as gaming press I know this to be true.

The majority of these copyright claims tend to be focused not around the use of game-play itself rather the audio tracks underlining many of them with games such as Grand Theft Auto 5 specifically stating that none of its music in game is to be uploaded or streamed without consent. Taking money for content created and work put into a video is fair enough if it take into account up-loaders own workload involved i.e. why does 10 seconds of audio mean a copyright claimant can claim all the monetization profits from the video. If this was honestly something that was to have rolled out around a year ago I would have never gone near YouTube for video content sharing, all they are doing is penalising their core demographics and opening the doors for more unsupported channels to emerge.

In regards to my own channel / collaboration we are taking this stance: We will continue to roll out content as long as publishers are on a growing list of those opposing content ID practices on YouTube as for those who currently are supporting it which tend to be companies with offices in eastern countries at present video content will be handled more carefully. We do not monetize a lot of our videos cause a) they don’t get the views and b) we are not in it to make money rather just make videos and as when we want to for the fun of it. Content ID wont really effect me directly much but as a practice understanding who owns what is where the net is regarded a marred mess.

I own this and I want it all does not mean that is necessarily right, freedom of fair use acts and even negative promotion gets a product/ service into public domain. Google is really mis-stepping too much atm and all it would take is a competitor to step up to force changes in the digital landscape.

I am not gonna go into depth on this matter as there are plenty out there that understand more and are being impacted greatly. It is peoples careers this affects!

#Suspicion: Where being social is Deadly!


Over 250 million tweets are posted each day, there are around 1 billion Facebook accounts in operation and everyday we are leaking more and more information about ourselves on-line. 

#SUSPICION is aiming to place you in the most socially deadly game of who dunnit yet to be created using modern leaps in technology alongside traditional card based game play elements you will be competing to work out out who commit a series of murders with ‘live’ interactions with victims friends and families. Build up points by correctly asking and interviewing friends and family but watch out as one of you will be placed as the killer and it is there jobs to tamper with the evidence, scare witnesses and otherwise ensure they don’t get found out.

Featuring NFC technology players can actively interact with game elements and using social media keep a breast on what is occurring, each play experience will be unique. Utilizing transmedia techniques the game transcends cards to make use of twitter engagement, Facebook lore, YouTube evidence to enhance the experience whilst also being completely playable if such technology is not ready to hand.  Via the power of Conducttr acting as a middle organiser each case will feel unique with your on-line friends able to keep track on your play experience and if you so desire taking part, the long term goal is to be able to market the game as case packs with customisable options available for the price of a retail board game however development is is in the early stages at present.

How to Play – Brief

The game is designed for 4+ Players each player if playing on-line will enter there twitter ID into the checking system, each player will receive a personal message from the automated on-line system nearly instantly with one of the players being told they are the Murderer.

Each turn has a set amount of actions, these include:

  • Scouting for evidence (Evidence Cards)
  • Interviewing Alibis (Character Profile Cards)

As a team they must chose which action to take with not all evidence or alibi cards corresponding to each case. The detectives score points upon successful completion of each action HOWEVER murderer can tamper and sabotage these actions as it is all handled on-line with scores revealed after each 5 turns thus making it difficult to work out who and when espionage occurred. The team win if they accuse correct murderer or score desired amount of points within the games time-frame, actions can be bought for points which can be helpful but also serve as a risk. Murder wins if wrong person is accused or points don’t reach landmark.

WIP Template

How NFC / QR / On-line adds to game play

IF players opt to play on-line and have access to NFC devices or smart phones they can actively chose actions on-line via tweeting it through and score is managed on-line. On-line adds a level of social interaction whereby they can watch custom made videos, look at victims profile pages and find out more clues to help or hinder the case in question, cause the murderer changes all the time the game mechanically is never the same and its down to good bluffing, the goal is however to be able to remotely change cases / update but also release extra case packs at a low rate frequently to extend the games meta narrative. If players wanted to make it more engaging they could by the fact they actively can tap items which could in theory be hidden around a play space to make finding evidence more engaging.

Obviously the game works offline too with pen and paper replacing some of the on-line interactions and details stored in ‘authentic’ feel case files.  Mechanically at its core the game is simple to pick-up and play with its selling point being its interesting added elements and level of experience it aims to generate.

So where is it at presently?

At the moment it is more at proof of concept stage with narrative links,plot details and social links being finalised with a proposed test session / version desired late February this is to ensure game play works as intended and visual / interactions are appropriate.

The future

Ideally as mentioned earlier I would like to market this game / experience mid this year via an on-line funding campaign and distribute as possible, ideally would love to get this game backed by other writers and release expansion case packs adding new characters, cards and options to game play even potentially option for players to customise packs to have their own details on printed materials and such. but at the moment this is all long term hopes and dreams.

I will update you with more details shortly including character profiles, test versions and how it works at a later date. A lot of the core mechanics and secrets are yet to be revealed cant be saying it all now can I.

Twitter Profile:

Signalling the Future – Near Field Communications (NFC)

As technology has ‘evolved’ so has its demand from its users and the need for quicker access / processing of information has exponentially grown. Imagine how many processes a human brain comprehends on a daily basis with data received via sensory gathering, essentially this is similar to how NFC operates. Data is transferred wirelessly and processed via the device and an output created and as a technology has yet to make a wide spread mark in the marketplace.

NFC operates by transmitting a signal from the reader to a bundled set of data containers (coil) this ‘coil’ retains minimal input data strings, which are bounced back, read, then decoded to output a desired action. This idea is nothing new building off the ideas found in older technology material such as QR readers and barcode scanners; however, NFC tags contain information i.e. not tied to an online service or requirement of an optical reader. At this year’s CES, we saw a variety of new NFC featured devices including NFC printers, home sensors and even more mobile and PC devices with NFC as standard. The technology is new and yet to hit its mark in a wider commercial sense but as my first set of tutorials will explain its uses in gaming, marketing and ease of access showing it as a technology we all should adopt and soon.


CES 2014 NFC Lineup

This year’s CES was NFC heavy with this year even being the first one to feature NFC badges as a method of entry and security provided by NXT. Below are SOME of the NFC devices revealed this year:

  •  LG NFC enabled TV’s
  • NFC enabled printers
  • NFC home sensors
  • Rumour – New iPhones to feature NFC Chips

NFC and Trans-media – Brief exploration 

Believe it or not but NFC is already making its mark and way into the media market on a growing scale with even NFC enabled business cards now being adopted by business professionals. So why is NFC good for marketing and media? Well, it is a actually believe it or not a cheap method of sending digital information quickly without an extensive understanding of technology or programming. Take for example NFC business cards people can scan these and instantly add contact information to their mobile device instantly without having to input loads of data and this is just the start. Websites, settings and even media can be controlled and sent between NFC devices and tags in a matter of seconds.

Imagine walking down the street and seeing a poster for a film that looks interesting, imagine using your phone to scan its NFC tag and instantly being able to watch the films trailer find out more information and even being able to book tickets all from just ‘tapping’ a poster. This form of marketing means otherwise none digital media forms can allow for digital links / transfer.

Companies such as Conducttr are already exploring its potential and easily allow users to create interactive real time campaigns allowing such technology to act as an intermediary. Robert Pratten CEO of Conducttr in this video below shows us some of the ways NFC and tools such as Conducttr can change the digital landscape.

We will explore NFC and Conducttr in more detail in future outings so stay tuned.

The greatest truth is the one that people believe is a lie

So we have hit an epoch the start of a new year where the shite that was 2013 is firmly in the past and as part of my continuing series of pointless blogs today I am going to tackle the idea of truth seeing as many people will be making new year’s resolutions. The idea of resolutions I find adds pressure and goals that realistically often unobtainable, if you aim for something it can blind you aka a man blind to the world sees more than one seeing only what they desire.

The inspiration for this blog is Sherlock and the real life ‘truths’ people follow every day, If you have not had the chance to watch the first episode of this latest series then you should not read potentially. We all know that Sherlock is a genius however often lies or rather obscures some truths in order to keep the higher hand and to some degree protect him from the social criteria we are expected to follow. A lot of theories regarding how he survived his leap of faith essentially after his supposed death have racked people’s minds but to be honest did anyone truly expect a real answer cause whatever the truth is it will never live up to expectations as human nature is to question and feel own views are those that are correct. In the episode we see many ‘theories’ on how this feat was achieved even one from Sherlock himself which as we now he is not going to tell the truth however I question this the theory of the double bluff. If someone expects you to lie than the logical path is to tell the truth, as their preconceptions will over-ride their cognitive logic therefore they will believe you lied. Selling a lie is what marketing does to us every day it is about planting a seed of thought and playing on truth that has led humanity to where it is today. The survival of the fittest applies equally to that of the mind, morally to lie is wrong but to protect our views and ourselves, we lie even without realising it on an almost day-to-day basis.

I could lie and say that I aim to tell the truth but to be honest or rather sell you the idea of truth and its importance  no matter what I say or do will not change what you believe, it is only by mass belief that a lie can become truth and thus change understanding as a whole.

So we now enter 2014 a year of new starts or rather the belief we cling to cause as we all know the concept of time and changes should not be linked. We could change the world in a moment’s notice, IF enough people just believe in a common truth, sadly what this truth is can in itself be a lie as such humans have to protect themselves and the cycle of what is true and what is false will never go unbroken.

Lies are not bad; it is when we sell the truth as fact that causes the most problems.

A year in review and the future of the Meta – 2013 – 14

2013 has been a year of technological advancement with the push towards the social interaction between devices users and each other being the forefront of many of this year’s releases, be they gaming consoles that allow users to watch each other play, to cameras that have online share functions and chat. The push towards social progression is one that is getting deeper and will push the Meta scene in brave new directions. It is ironic somewhat that the meaning of Meta or μετά is after when the push towards the previous is still as evident. Technology that does not build off the principles of the past cannot realistically have a future; we are at a point where mobile phones core functions that of enabling long scale communications has changed with an increasing number of users purchasing these devices for other means. An increasing number using them for online communicative channels, the message is the same if what blurred.

This year was the first time I have experienced a cross device communicative experience (i.e. one that uses a mobile device alongside a larger device to enhance the experience, without the need for wires or reliance on each other) and I found it a unique event, one that has made me think about the scope of technology as a tool to engage users and find it one full of potential. The idea of transmedia is not a new one but is one that has until recent years been harder to obtain, nowadays with the skill of users increasing and the number of devices available it is rapidly becoming a field anyone with some fore thought can enter. However, it is the use of Meta communication i.e. that which pushes past boundaries of technology whereby the two seem indistinguishable that is difficult to successfully pull off.

An example of a Meta experience in this case a game is that of the Assassins Creed franchise, the game has spread past that of a game to a series of books, online experiences and now even a film in the works with its latest incarnation placing you the player as the titular hero in the real world setting. It even pokes fun at itself and the industry it’s in by having the player work at what is essentially a large metaphor for Ubisoft the publishers themselves in a game development experience company. It is important I feel that games, movies and even books take this as an example of successful meta lure, by parodying itself and real world situations it makes the story more inviting, by giving the user something to do be it an online treasure hunt as it were makes them feel part of something greater and rewards them via their dedication to their cause. 2013 I feel was a bold step forwards for the Meta and transmedia fields and one that will only grow throughout the coming years. It is up to us be it as developers, consumers or creative’s as a whole to push this field forwards and show how by connecting with each other and pushing past the boundaries something special can occur.

Things to remember / aim towards in the New Year:

  • Consider the demographic audiences and don’t reward just those with the biggest incomes
  • To include is not to exclude!
  • A good narrative / story does not = a successful campaign
  • Big budgets do not mean better experiences rather explore and continue down the social paths as word of mouth beats word of wallet.

“Again I may return to this topic in the future its on my list, do not worry but for now lets conclude this. “

I hope you have enjoyed reading this and have some views on the matter, 2014 will be a big year for me one where the need to get a job will over-ride nearly everything else. 2013 has been a year of reflection but one of changes for me and if it was not for the love of my friends, family and girlfriend doting on me would be one that I may not have pushed past. Do not forget if you ever want to discuss any ideas, talk about anything technical or design related I am available.

Hope you all had a fantastic 2013 and here is to a brilliant, superb 2014. Go get them creative’s!

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