Imagine engaging current digital and traditional artists to conceive and produce visual content based on future events that may or may not even happen? Abstract right? Not so much as it turns out…
Welcome to Meta Olympia, which is described as a unique media property that provides a glimpse into the future through the combination of digitally simulated sports, arenas and athletes of tomorrow.
Meta Olympia, in simpler terms, is a mash-up of sports, news, science fiction, art and technology co-conceived from minds of Chris Cheung (below) and Bing Lin who each have decades of experience high-tech services.
Meta Olympia seeks to design a framework where journalists, artists and creators can report on a future where ‘we’ve made it’… and the game plays on.
– Chris Cheung
Cheung and his team use rule driven simulators that generate non-deterministic outcomes creating an arena that predicts and plays out a vision of tomorrow. This is not a plot-driven story in the sense that the outcome is linear or pre-deterministic. A real world multi-platform SIM running live using an editorial clock that runs parallel and in sync with their 60-year forward clock.
Conceptually, the narrative which drives the interaction is quite simple. The year is 2077 and humans have been colonizing Mars for 46 years. After decades of advancement and additional settlements, the Martian population exceeds 100,000 with 22% of that being naturally born citizens. There are dozens of settlements ranging in population from 400 to 19,000 people each with its own infrastructure and life support systems.
The MAFL (Martian Aero Football League) is formed and an official season is underway consisting of 8 clubs and a governing body, it is the first professional athletic organization on Mars.
The attraction to this concept is that the matches are decided by their customized generator which takes into account not only predefined rules but external factors as well. This in turn affects the character player profiles and personalities which are then interpreted by real-time journalists and illustrators who bring the actual results to life. So you get to follow and cheer for your favorite players and teams in a real time format, updated daily, for events that haven’t even happened yet. Whew…
And since the lives and politics of the players and citizens are in play, think of this as a real time digital comic book only updated daily as opposed to weekly. Pretty cool stuff and we could be looking at the future of comic books. Its fantasy football meets nerd culture.
Chris is hoping to tap into the science fiction aspect as well as ultimately it plays as a glimpse into a possible future…
I want to believe that others will find this non-disposable approach to science fiction appealing. There are no sequels because it happens following real-time, just 60 years in the future, day by day.
This is obviously an abstract idea but one that relies an old adage. It needs consumers who enjoy character driven narratives but have not much interest in gaming or interactive story building. It is in the truest sense a spectator driven property.
Who knows, one day this could be the way we consume all digital media, through real time world building sims bringing us that much closer to the future of humanity and civilization.
It seems Chris and his team have their eyes on the prize and maintain a level of fun and imaginative exploration. Interesting how knowing “how it ends” in a non-linear structure hasn’t killed the buzz…Cheung says:
What matters most is that we get a kick out of working on this. All the contributors love this ride. Not only do we all find, in our own way, something we love about the subject matter… we’ve all experiences being a little amazed by where the world takes our imagination.
Till next time…
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