Retrospex Magazine

Role

Content Curation, Layout, Print Production, AR

Tools

Adobe InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, After Effects, Spark AR

Timeframe

12 Weeks

Collaborator

Solo Project

Overview

Retrospex Magazine was created to preserve and celebrate classic games, with engaging long-form articles on retro games and systems, screenshots taken from vintage hardware and technical information to play these games with the best possible fidelity.

Challenge

Retro video games have never been more popular, with gamers of all ages, genders and backgrounds finding something to appreciate in their classic gameplay. However, these games have notoriously bad historical records, and when people try and play these classic games they often just plug them into their modern televisions, which results in terrible results. New televisions introduce control lag and upscale the resolution in an unpleasing way, which oftentimes either sullies positive memories of games or lead new gamers to wonder why these games are celebrated. How might we engage readers with historical context and technical information so these games can be played with maximum fidelity?

Overview

Retrospex Magazine creates an engaging, educational and fun collectible resource that mixes long-form articles with layouts and imagery that celebrates this artistic medium the way the game creators intended.

I began by researching existing classic gaming press and media. While there are plenty of YouTube channels, websites and small fanzines dedicated to classic gaming, there isn't one in the United States that is issued regularly.

With only four articles to be featured each month, Retrospex goes in-depth on a chosen subject matter. For instance, in this inaugural issue, there is an article about the preservation of tube televisions, and why they should matter to retro gamers.

A flatplan was developed to figure out the pacing, structure and order for the curated content.

Audience

Retrospex was created not only for those who grew up with games now considered "retro" (>10-15 years old, depending on who you ask), but younger gamers who are interested in learning about the history of the medium.

In 2018 Pac-Man, which was released in 1980, has a current audience of 49% aged 35 and above. However, the next highest audience, 27%, were aged 17 and below. Our goal is to serve both audiences, and anyone in between.

Source: https://www.funstockretro.co.uk/news/retro-games-show-their-incredible-staying-power/

Augmented Retro Reality

Most of the imagery in the magazine was captured with a CRT television, as shown in the Letter from the Editor in the beginning of the magazine.

As an added bonus, I made an interactive AR cover. I captured video of game footage from a real CRT television and then imported it to After Effects, where I adjusted the angle of the video to meet the TVs on the cover. I then used Spark AR to animate the cover when looking at it with Facebook or Instagram camera.

AR Cover Animation

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