Cityscape: the Game

Cityscape is a unique and first-of-its-kind attempt to bridge acoustic ecology with city planning in an applied, gamified format. The question this project seeks to address is how to use the present situation as a timely opportunity to create possibilities for a more ecological turn in city planning. Cityscape is intended to guide players to understanding exactly how the soundscape functions as a living, breathing ecology. Located across the genres of games for social change and infrastructure simulations Cityscape is a tabletop strategy game about creating a livable sonic environment. Each time a player makes a city planning decision, they will hear the change in a live soundscape mix and will be able to explore and learn about the influence that different planning decisions have not only on the soundscape but on local livability in general. Imagine moving a small model building or placing a model park in a local community and hearing the change in the local soundscape right away: each bush brings birds; each road, more traffic, each building more human density, and so on. 

The game will make explicit the profound effect that infrastructure, regulation, and policy have on urban soundscapes by having those elements realistically built into the simulation. At the same time, Cityscape will include considerations such as accessibility, inclusivity, cultural heritage, and community resilience as planning parameters.

Material outputs: Complete design document, sound effects database, and standalone digital playable game (in Max/MSP) - coming soon!