Artwork 4: Pillow Talk

The Game

So the game I made with a Pillow Simulator on Twine. In the game, the player has died and they answer a few questions. The questions don’t do much except give me insight about how what would the player miss besides material objects without outright stating what or who they would miss. I added this because this a reincarnation game and these games are not

And then they become a pillow and live out their lives as a pillow. A pillow has no agency or can do anything so the game is rather linear and the player’s input doesn’t really change anything. The player as a pillow never have any actions and rather observe events around them and to them. However games are known to have choice and so I put in a wish mechanic to give players a sort of ‘choice’. The wish mechanic doesn’t do anything except allow the player to choose an ‘option’ and develop their opinions on the events happening around them or to them since there’s no reason for the player to care because… they are a pillow. Change can’t happen with out external forces.

The inspiration for this is from Yoko Ono’s Grapefruit and from her series of talks such as “Stone Talk”, “Star Talk”, and “Line Talk”. She writes about what the objects are in simple statements and the reader is only being told what the object is without a sense that they can object. It’s from a 3rd person perspective and I wanted to change it into 1st person because inanimate objects have such mundane life and exploring it interested me.

An example of this in my game is the statement, “A pillow can’t breathe”. But inside the pillow is a human soul and there’s a part where they try to breathe. It doesn’t work, but they compromise with feeling the air in-between their fibers.

The original idea for the game was to have a questionnaire and then the player will become one of three inanimate objects and a small vignette will play. However as I was writing the pillow route, I got more invested into it and realized a week later that doing three in the same scale in the time frame wasn’t possible. So I devoted my time to the pillow route and got rid of the other options and questionnaire.


The first person who playtested was rather taken back by how much was written and how realistic it was. They were expecting more of a humorous tone since the concept of the game is the player died and has turned into a pillow. Part of them thinking that, besides the ridiculous concept, is because I called the game a Pillow Simulator so one of my notes became to rename the project.

There were a fair amount of confusion with the things I was describing such as the plastic carry-on a pillow comes with or the florescent lighting through the bag. A lot of the players were confused with the ball of light in the beginning and so I had to put in the beginning that the player has died. I didn’t want to remove those parts because that is part of being a pillow, waiting to be bought so I added more reveal and realization when the player realizes they’re a pillow after they’ve been bought and taken out of their plastic prison.

I considered adding the sardonic tone and questionnaire from my 2nd Artwork. However one of my players pointed out that the tone of game isn’t sardonic and that adding the questionnaire might make others players think it’ll be funny instead of being contemplative and semi-realistic.

Another big change I made was splitting the descriptions and events more. Because a lot of the time it would be a giant block of text and one of the player would lose their place and zone out while reading the game.

Other changes were the tense changing a lot even in the same page along with a lot of typos.

Artwork 3: Intervention

What I decided to do for Artwork 3 was making a poster that says “Write down your ideas! What sort of RA/RD event would you actually go to?” and a lot of blank space underneath for in order to let people write underneath. I only did this for the third floor of WVE, which was conveniently the floor I lived on, because it was where the main RA (Resident Assistant) and RD (Resident Director) office in the building are along with the only laundry room and main common area.

It was a little hard to develop the project because I don’t like to take up space or gather any attention to myself. So inspirations of how the project came to be came from From Jen and Derek’s presentation, I noticed that Tactical Media the line ‘anger is an energy’ and ‘create spaces, channels, and platforms for power reversals’. In terms of wanting anonymity, I looked at Michael Rakowitz’s parasite and decided that it’d be less stressful to leave a platform and let others use it how they choose.

Something that always irked me was that the RAs would make events that no one would be interested in and practically no one goes to and the money they’d use for that is chipped in from every resident on their floor. The RAs are nice and always say that we should email them if we have any ideas, but it’s not anonymous and that makes people uncomfortable.

I didn’t want to show myself and keep anonymous. So I decided to make project to at give people a way to write down their ideas and not interact with a human being.


The plan was to keep the poster taped on for a few days and then collect it. I taped the poster near the door of the laundry room which is close to the other areas.

Some of the things written on the paper on the first day such as “bring back the free succulents” and “pizza night, every week. (Just for our floor)(smily face)”. There were more jokey inputs, but one revealed more about problems that needed to be solved such as “free beer, hockey tickets, (I couldn’t read the last thing)” and “return my laundry dollars”.

I kinda hoped for more things written on paper due to the foot traffic to the laundry room, but then I realized that no one carries writing utensils with them when doing laundry and probably don’t want to go out of their way to get one out of their bag when dredging themselves back to their room.

If I was to do this project again. I’d pin a pen near the paper so it’d be more accessible and maybe add the words “collected in # days” like a countdown to give people some sort of urgency to put their ideas down.

xXx Throwback 2 Quizilla xXx

xXx Throwback 2 Quizilla xXx

This game was made as an appropriation to the days of 2004-2010, when Quizilla was at its peak popularity. The website was used for mainly creating quizzes and writing stories. The site was used by many newer or popular fandoms of the time along with the emo scene. The game was made to mimic the quizzes of those times which were a series of questions and then a result in the end and the most popular quizzes had the taker get a result where they’re told that they have a certain power or end up with a handsome fictional character. The stories were all about a mediocre teenage girl who was stubborn and had attitude so instead of taking the route of those stories in which she gains 5-13 different powers, I made that all the questions would turn the player into a NPC in the interesting new world they were transported to instead of being a key player.

The game was made to mimic that style, but instead of having those happy endings or the instant suicide or cutting your wrists endings, I wanted to make the player always feel like they’re in limbo and thus never getting an end state that’s satisfactory or even considered an end state, but in respect to the medium I continuously gave the player commentary on their choices for some sort feedback even if it’s negative feedback.

The movement that I took inspiration from was the New York Dada movement because they had a focus on wit and humor using some sort of irony. However my main take away from the New York Dada movement was the movement’s criticism of forms of art by making fun of it with mimicry. Next are the works that I used to take inspiration from for my writing. The two that I used were Etant donnes and Fresh Widow by Marcel DuChamp. I used Etant donnes because Duchamp made a magical world over an impossible spanish wood door to point out war and the rise of fascism, but the viewer can only see it through a crack or peephole in the door and I used the idea of making a magical world, but only to block it off and have the players not do anything  to create a frustration in my players. Next was Fresh Widow, which was a play on French Window and was a way to point out war and the romantic idea of soldiers going to war and their wives waiting for them. The inspiration that I took from the piece was to remove the romantic idea of escapism from these quizzes and the idea that there is a happy ending in the end of all the effort of answering questions.


For my playtests, I’d ask them if they had been on Quizilla when it was still active, Or if their only experience were with Buzzfeed quizzes as it would give me some insight if the participant knew the type of humor and style of the ‘choose your own adventure’ disguised as a quiz with the appropriated general style of 2006-08.

The first person who played my game didn’t use Quizilla, but was familiar with the style of humor that I was trying to emulate and during the playtest.

Observations: There were a fair amount of eyerolls and mutters of ‘why?” Some chuckles mainly at the beginning.

Feedback: It changes too quickly from being nice to being cruel and dismissive. I (the playtester) wasn’t into the emo scene or depression scene back in the day so I guess maybe try to make it more surprising by making the first 3 questions nice and then attack the player at the drink questions

The second player is someone I’ve known for more than 10 years. They did go on Quizilla when they were in elementary school.

Observations: A bit of staring back and forth between the screen and my face. A fair amount of skepticism in the beginning then an elongated ‘oh’ when the person figured out what I was trying to appropriate.

Feedback: Called me a loser in a loving way and then called me a sell-out. The person actually asked me “Why didn’t the player commit suicide as one of the endings?”. At first I took the feedback as a joke, but then I started actually thinking about it.

I wasn’t sure what to make of this feedback because back when this style of humor was popular, it was commonplace for an abrupt end or all of the ends in the game be that the character is brutally killed or commits suicide. I wouldn’t be comfortable writing these scenarios now. However if I had to completely mimic the style in the game, I would have added it in, but since times are different and thankfully evolved past depression memes, I kept with the humor and style of the game just with minor edits.

Strolling Shadows

Strolling Shadows

Go outside with someone. On a sunny day.

Take a stroll with them in the park.

One can only walk in the light. Other in the shadows.

Alternate every 2 minutes.

Artist’s Statement

Strolling Shadows is a piece that changes the daily flow of walking by adding another factor along with another person. The piece also tests the layout of the environment and the designs behind them in terms of the how much light there is in the area vs how much shadow there is due to buildings, trees or other pieces of their surroundings. It allows the two people involved to walk together but adding a game-like quality to it using the environment around them.

This piece was originally supposed to be for one person as it was mainly inspired by two pieces in Yoko Ono’s Grapefruit. The first one is called WALKING PIECE which I liked the premise of following someone’s footsteps on any kind of terrain without making sounds and the very first idea of this was to walk only in the shadows while walking with other people and do so without letting the other person find out. I tested out this version and it tested a lot of my companion’s comfort range as for most of the walk, there were no shadows made through the buildings and since the shopping bags my companion was carrying was making a shadow, I got closer to them that I ever should.

The second one is called CITY PIECE, which really transformed my piece to the playable iteration. The instructions for this piece is to talk with a baby carriage and that gave me the idea for the piece to have a companion. It wasn’t comfortable to be walking and following the rules by myself. It felt entertaining for a little while, but the novelty wore off very soon when the strange looks got more frequent. So instead of doing the piece alone, adding another person would make the eventual odd looks less embarrassing especially when there’s someone else to share it with or another object.

Since it’d be boring for both people to stay in the shadows, one had to be in the light and the other in the shadow because that would allow for more opportunities for cooperation and in case someone gets stuck without a shadow then they can use the other person’s shadow while if there’s an area covered in shadow then the person in shadow can use the flashlight function on their phone to help the other person cross the terrain.


Go outside with someone.

Take a stroll.

One can only walk in the light. Other in the shadows.

Alternate every 4 minutes.

(This was the version used for this test)

The first usable run had two people using these rules and walking through a designated path from Northeastern campus, through Fenway park, and then through a section in the city to Target. It was hard to run this for awhile because for most of the week, the weather was filled with overcasts and so no shadows came from the buildings. This was eventually changed to specifically a sunny day and just the park in the final iteration. The time was switched to two minutes due to the venue switching only to the park and for retention time.

This was the designated path because it goes through three different styles of architecture. When walking through Northeastern, the two participants were having a hard time walking through the centennial because there we decided to test the piece right before it was time to change classes and the two people stood either in light or shadow, switching and stepping side to side whenever the timer was up, until the crowds of students cleared. The two had to find different ways to get out of campus. because the campus had one way with lot buildings whose road was completely in shadow. There was a way with a much more light so the two decided to wait until the remaining time before they switch was up and then ran away for four minutes then meet back together at some point.

When they reached the park, it went much better because the trees were more spread out, less buildings, more room, and less people so it was much easier the participants to move around the area. The feedback from this area was that the walk was much more enjoyable because it was relaxing to leisurely walk around the area and not follow rules of crossing the road or worrying about getting in people’s way.

Finally though the city section was the most stressful for the participants and there were many times they asked to stop because there were multiple groups of tourists or a rather intimidating group of people in business suits who they were going to get in the way of. The most interesting moment was that the person who had to be in shadows for a while couldn’t reach another shadow and jumped into the shadow of a shopping bag held by a random stranger. Then the person in the light had to run back and tell them to jump into their shadow. Then we all ran away, saying a quick apology.