8-bit Makeovers


Written by Liz Cookman
31 Thursday 31st January 2013

The 8-bit obsession has spanned generations . In its early gaming days, the style of necessity saw success thanks to its associated iconic characters: Space Invaders, Super Mario, and that rubbish snake game on your Nokia 6110. Now 8-bit style is synonymous with simplistic design, minimalism and slightly bizarre Christmas presents. It's become so popular that just about everything's enjoyed an 8-Bit makeover, from fashion to the literary greats. We take a look at some of our favourites.


Claire Danes' Cry Face

“I find it very odd that it’s been sort of objectified” Claire Danes recently said about her indomitable Cry Face. “It’s been isolated from the rest of my work, like it’s a tacked-on thing. It’s not.” What a shame because, if she could untack it, we, for one, would certainly be up for a go on it.

It seems no medium is safe where the comedy meme is concerned. CollegeHumor’s Homeland RPG parody of the hit US show transforms it into a video game adventure. Danes plays Carrie Mathison, a whinging, mentally ill CIA intelligence officer who seems, like most of the actress' characters, to cry an awful lot. The game allows players to undermine Mathison by tapping A if they don't trust her, and B if they think she's crazy. We don't think our fingers could work fast enough.


 Brick Lane

This week sees the release of new Disney instant-classic, Wreck-It Ralph. To celebrate they commissioned Aden Hynes to create a series of 8-bit versions of everyday items - complete with pigeons to a leaking water pipe – in every child’s favourite hang out, the old Truman’s Brewery in Brick Lane. We believe it's called 'artvertising'.


Satire with Anthont Michael Sneed

Brooklyn-based artist Sneed takes dark themes and filters them through an 8-bit lens. This 9/11 piece was part of the Hell for Hire series which also featured such heavy topics as cocaine abuse, racism, the assassination of JFK, sexual abuse and, er, Brokeback Mountain. His work plays on the layers of our cultural landscape, highlighting them with his one dimensional twist. It also makes really cool laptop wallpaper.


Mad Men

Let’s face it, everyone wants a piece of Don Draper. Although, which piece is up to you. Doctor Octoroc’s RPG allows you to pretend, just for a little while, that your job allows you to chain smoke and down whiskey. The creator's other TV-themed games include Doctor Who, Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones.

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