with this thread I’d like to open a discussion for an idea I had for more than a year now.
Currently I work as a projectionist at a small but rather infamous and pretty cool cinema in Berlin, the Kino Moviemento which is - by the way - the oldest cinema in Germany. As you gather I really like movies, but I also like games. But as I am a dad since a year and a half now AND am trying to complete my master course there’s really not much time left to actually invest some time in seriously playing games. So I decided that I will try to bring two of my favorite things together (no, my son isn’t going to play the games I play…yet).
Watching Let’s Play videos on the Internet has become pretty common nowadays and it actually has grown into a new kind of economy with thousands of people actually making money by playing games and making others watch them play, be it in classic Let’s Play videos on youtube or competitive events like The International. Since I first played videogames, especially when they became 3D, I wanted to sit in a huge movie theatre and see and play games like Resident Evil or Silent Hill on the big screen. Back then I didn’t realize that this probably would have been looking like a soup of muddy pixels. But as technology nowadays is getting more capable by the year and games are getting more detailed, many many games would just look beautiful and amazing on the big screen. Not to mention the sound!
Modern cinemas are usally equipped with big digital cinema projectors like these, with a resolution of up to 4096 x 2160 (4k). You can easily link basically any modern device via HDMI to these machines which makes the installtion of consoles and PCs pretty easy. A few month ago we played a few games on the PS4 in one of our cinemas and it was looking just amazing!
While the format of the cinema may seem a little restricted towards the time frame in which you are able to show something (usally something between two to three hours), I think it usally reflects the time somebody would watch games on youtube or on twitch. With the cinema comes the experience of watching and experiencing games together with you best friends, grabbing a beer and popcorn and - of course - watching on a big screen with an excellent sound system.
So, with this in mind I am planning to show/play games in our cinema and open these events to the public. At first, I think, this won’t happen on a regular basis, just because I have so much stuff to do. But I hope this will develop in a regular in our cinema programm, showing games maybe on a monthly basis. There will be a fee for admission, though I have to check back with my bosses what would be the best way to handle this. There is a lot of stuff to do and to organize (such as legal questions, format, technical issues…) and I will try to document the process here.
So, feel free to discuss this idea. Of course I am SUPER curious if you guys would be interested in such an idea and would be willing to pay for it (just like regularly going to the movies). Be nice to each other as always, everybody has their opinion. Topics that might be discussed are:
- opinions and feedback on the idea
- suggestions for games to show/play
- technical questions and solutions
- references to similar projects or ideas
- Ideas of how this could work as a format
- legal issues
- whatever else come to your mind relating to the topic
With this I am hoping to establish videogames a little bit more as a work of art and entertainment, just like movies are I think games are still considered to be something that happens in your room alone or maybe with your mates, though there are some strong tendencies to alter that (like the steam machines). Games can tell stories in a way that movies can’t (and vice versa) but these stories are just as great and memorable. Many games are getting more and more cinematic (like MGS always was) so I don’t see why we wouldn’t start giving games a better stage.
In the next post I will post about the first idea I have for a game to show/play.