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New Leaf, pt 1: A Departure And Several Arrivals

One of those days in which I’ve been up so long and crossed so many timezones and have had so many disorienting naps as to be confused as to what day I woke up in and whether or not this is still the same one.

Purchased some last-minute power outlet convertors, threw some things in a bag, and got on a plane to London. Talked about the game which is bringing me to Britain with my seat mates, Majestic Dinosaurs, and they were very excited about it. For clarification, my seat mates were midwest relocatees to Seattle and the Majestic Dinosaurs will appear at Now Play This in my game of the same name.

Landed, rode the tube and thought about Vancouver, walked up to Somerset House where I’ll be running the game this weekend. Admired its soaring stone walls and grid of fifty five dancing water fountains in the stone courtyard.

While peeking into the beautiful old rooms being used for Now Play This, I was hit by a that lovely backstage feeling of anticipatory energy. Various video game controllers were being unwrapped and assembled, a charming pair of humans were painting letters onto the walls of a room-sized word search.

I got to meet Sophie Sampson, game designer with Matheson Marcault. Heard wonderful stories of runaway ARGs and how she would frantically write stories and puzzles into the evening, hoping the global players wouldn’t have solved them all by the time she woke the next morning. We bonded over curry with her friend Eugene, a theoretical physicist.

If my calculations are correct, this has been Wednesday. Big day tomorrow, and yet bigger days thereafter. I hope I threw the right things into the bag.

1. Eat
2. Visit an underground excavated Roman coliseum.
3. Go play in a different fountain at a different old building which is an art centre or museum, and this other building’s fountain creates “rooms” of water blasts- do you jump through the wall as it closes in, or hope that it ceases constricting and opens a door? I’m so happy I packed my swimsuit!
4. Visit Novelty Automation, a collection of a wonderful man’s self-designed and fabricated coin-operated automations. Sort of a cross between a museum and an arcade?

(The above occurred on April 4th and 5th, 2017)