Brisbane-based digital poet Jason Nelson has created one of the world's first — and certainly the biggest — speculative fiction games ever built for large, public touchscreen displays as part of his digital writing residency at Queensland University of Technology.
Part video game, part puzzle, part electronic literature and all-interactive, Cryptext invites you to uncover the details behind a secret government program building advanced alien and supernatural technologies.
And it can be played only on the world's largest interactive, digital display space, QUT's The Cube.
"It was a real challenge, as an artist, to create interactive artwork for a truly unique space," said Dr Nelson, by day a net art and electronic literature lecturer from Griffith University College of Art.
"As a public space, I could realistically expect to capture people's attention for only a couple of minutes at a time, so I made something that provides an immediate experience and gives the player that real 'wow' moment. The art had to be monolithic — giant.
"This residency was new territory for me as most of my interactive art and poetry are usually works that can be sent to and shared on any screen simply by sharing the files. But you can't simply take this 8 by 3-metre screen home in your pocket to play later - this forced me to completely rethink my practice."
Working closely with Brisbane digital artist and game designer and previous QCA student Matt Horton, Dr Nelson mastered a number of challenges to bring his science fiction works to life.