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Gamer Dreams of Creating Playgrounds

Keita Takahashi, a man widely considered to be one of the most imaginative and creative figures in the world of video games has bad news for his fans. He cannot see a long-term future in making games. Instead the creator of the bizarre, surreal Katamari Damacy game wants to design playgrounds.

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While speaking at the GameCity festival October 28th, Katamari Damacy creator, Keita Takahashi apparently confirmed that he's designing a playground in Nottingham. No really, it's something he's alluded to before, but now this is actually going to happen. From tweets coming out of Game City, it looks like the plan is for something suitable for both adults and children. And dogs...

The iconoclastic and much-loved game designer is spending a month in Nottingham where he will consult school children, local communities and the NCC Landscape Architect to discuss and develop ideas for the playground.

Councillor Dave Trimble, Portfolio Holder for Leisure, Culture & Customers at Nottingham City Council said, "We're delighted to have Takahashi-san on board and very much looking forward to working with him on this unique collaboration."

After considering several sites NCC has selected Woodthorpe Grange Park for the Takahashi-created playground. The site's natural rolling hills may add to the design and enable some interesting and playful landscapes.

Takahasi has often made comparisons between game design and architecture, and certainly there are parallels to be drawn between play areas and games - they're both constructed environments designed to enclose, direct and facilitate enjoyment. But could he be starting a new trend? What would happen if more designers took his lead?

I think I could knock up a cool, if rather dangerous, quake-themed adventure playground - all multi-levelled enclosures and trampoline jump points. And how about a Super Monkey Ball one, in which kids are bundled into huge hamster balls and allowed to explore at will?  Any others?

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October 17, 2019, 6:31 am PDT

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