• Rob George

Week 7: Proposal Rough + Project Ideas

Updated: Dec 3, 2020

Thesis: Life of A Retro Gamer


To reveal what it means to be a retro gamer in the modern day United States and to preserve the culture's current state of social interactions. It is also meant to attract younger, modern gamers and persuade them to learn about the retro gaming community. It will allow them to receive a better understanding of who the Retro Gamers are, how they socialize, what influences them, and the history of retro gaming.


Retro Gaming is considered to be any arcade game, console, or computer game that is 20+ years old and is either obsolete or discontinued. To clarify, most people think of the gaming consoles from the 1970s through 1990s such as Pong, Atari, and Nintendo 64 or even classic arcade games such as Pacman and Space Invaders. Today, retro gaming is basically the preservation of a nostalgic era that only the people who lived in the 1970s through 1990s have a pure memory of. I feel it is important to preserve their current state because this subculture of gaming in the United States has become very popular once again these past few years and younger gamers have sparked interest. Retro gaming may not be the same 20 years from now due to the newer generations growing up with next gen consoles and games. In addition, the younger generations, such as myself, don't and will never have the same nostalgic experience as the people who grew up during this era. How can one capture the essence of what it means to be a retro gamer in a contemporary gaming United States for younger generations to learn from? What part of this culture reflects these important details that could be used to explain the nostalgia of retro games? What is it about these details that should be passed on to the younger gamers who are interested in this culture?

Being someone who did not get to experience this era of gaming wonders, I feel it would be great if the retro gaming culture of the United States had something that captured the lives of its current gamers visually to share with younger generations such as myself. Through detailed research and analysis, I hope to reveal their current behaviors, language, and social interactions through social platforms to provide a documentation of what it means to be a retro gamer in the contemporary United States. It seems as though social interaction and the sharing of common interests and memories is how this nostalgia is being preserved. I want to learn more about the culture itself through these interactions and what their main influences are to provide an opportunity for others to discover these details and to share a same experience with the retro gaming generation.

I hope through a visual representation of this I can provide younger and future generations a design that not only captures the essence of nostalgia and personality of retro gaming, but connects them to the current retro gamers and their nostalgia by providing a playful and informative design.

Possible Areas of Focus:


Data Visualization

Print Design

User Interface Design

Game Design

Key Terms:

Retro Gaming

Modern Gaming





Questions To Be Answered:

What does it mean to be a retro gamer in the contemporary gaming era?

Who are the retro gamers in the U.S.?

Who are the newer generations or contemporary gamers in the U.S.?

How can I relate this subculture to the larger contemporary gaming culture?

What is the history of retro gaming?

What kind of language do both cultures use (terms in conversations and in video games)?

What are their interests?

What kind of message will I be giving through design to expand the life of retro gaming?

How will I visually explain this and capture attention?


Project Ideas

1. Online Forum Game Emulator

The idea that I have that I am going to focus on is an online forum that discusses who the retro gamers are and some major retro gaming history facts that have recently been talked about online. It will visually mimic the menus and gameplay of retro games through a bitmap (pixelated) remake of a popular modern game. There will be a retro video game controller on screen that the user can control though their keyboard or mouse. The action of using the keyboard or mouse is similar to modern computer games and online emulators for classic retro games.

The topics discussed through this forum will be the information that younger modern gamers will need, or want, to know about the retro gamers of modern day. It will consist of levels they will have to complete with achievements that they can unlock. If it is possible, it will also not only come with instructions within the emulator, but a physical manual or game magazine to help the user navigate and control the retro themed forum. This is to further enhance the experience retro gamers had by mimicking the act of reading game manuals and magazines to help them complete a game.

Possible Methods of Production: I would love to have this be an interactive software but due to time restraints I will stick to some skills that I know I can work with. For the forum itself I will most likely create it as a promotional video for a game or a YouTube gameplay. To do this, I would use my knowledge in Animation and Video Editing to create such video. If there is time, I will also include the physical manual for the game which would be a print design.

2. Retroized Modern Shooter Game

My back up idea is a modern day shooter game in the form of a retro arcade shooting game. There would be a transparent chat box that pops up on the screen like it would in a modern game. The chat would be using the language, and conversations that retro gamers use. Same general concept of the online forum idea except it's simplified to a gameplay of an arcade game. The audience will view it as a spectator which is someone who has died in an online game and is watching the other players play the game. They will watch the game and read the chat while experiencing the retro gamer's first person avatar perspective giving the idea that the viewer can see retro gaming through the eyes of a retro gamer.

Possible Methods of Production: Animation and Video Editing

< Back to Thesis Proposal Page

16 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All