Imagine this, you have submissions or deadlines in the upcoming days. You bring yourself out of your “I can do it tomorrow” phase. You clean up, organize your workspace, and sit down to begin, but you are blank. You have zero ideas and no clue where or how to begin. Does the scenario seem all too familiar? Creative blocks can be listed as one among the top 5 arch-nemeses of architecture students or practitioners. People try various measures to get out of the slump that a creative block puts them in. While some pen down their random thoughts or sketch, some look for inspiration through research, and some even start gaming.
For Architects, video games can be a motivator and help them unleash their imagination (while blowing off some steam as well.) The styles of architecture seen throughout different timelines, the minute details, the spatial planning, and the graphics can help unravel a design block and stimulate your creative side. Hence, given below is a list of 8 games that you can play every time you feel the need to unwind and trigger your imagination:
1. Calvino Noir by Dan Walters
The click and point adventure style game was inspired by the Neoclassical designs of the 18th-century French architect and urbanist, Charles de Wailly. The storyline of the game takes the player through the underworld of 1930’s Europe. Each level begins in darkness and gets illuminated as they move through the levels. The structures are cut open like a dollhouse i.e. in cross-section to show the visibility of characters on various levels. The realistic, detailed, and dramatic views have also gained inspiration from film noir movies.
2. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey by Ubisoft Quebec
The latest installment of Assassin’s Creed is set in 431 BCE Ancient Greece. The map for the game is enormous, with Athens as a key location. The digital version of Greece has built several historical monuments and structures while capturing the essence of the cities of Greece during its golden age. Stunning visuals, exemplary details (in terms of artifacts, texts, and monuments) and historical accuracy (to a large extent) helps communicate the awe-inspiring qualities of Greece to the players.
3. Sekiro: Shadows die twice by FromSoftware
Set in 16th-century Sengoku period Japan, Sekiro is an action game with a fantastic take on Ninja mythology. While not completely taken over by realism, the game has significant elements of Japanese Architecture throughout the game. Though it is quite fast-paced, there are times when the visuals show a quiet cinematic setting. The buildings are elegant and have an aspect of subtle majesty. However, the game also captures the aftermath of war and the destruction that follows it. It shows us how structures remain as remnants of war.
4. Cities in Motion 2 by Colossal Order
The idea of the game is to build, manage, and lead a transport network system in a city. While the game does not help build cities, it shows the artistry behind the design of a transportation system and is a great means to understand urban development. It helps understand the tangible impact of transportation on the growth of a city.
5. Just Cause 3 by Avalanche Studios
The action-adventure game is set in a fictional Mediterranean island known as Medici. The game has an open world environment and uses a color scheme of grey, yellow, and red to convey a sense of oppression. The architecture of the structures is similar to that of Ancient Greece and Rome. The ancient ruins in the game feature amphitheaters, temples, aqueducts, and more.
6. Anno 2205 Blue Byte Mainz
In this building simulation game, the player not only builds one or multiple cities but the whole planet. The players create a modern futuristic world to meet the ever-changing needs of mankind. They can also make use of the resources on the moon and colonize it. The game challenges the player to create a better environment while establishing built structures. It helps one to explore and imagine while keeping in mind the impact of their actions on the environment.
7. Grand Theft Auto 5 by Rockstar North
Los Santos, the fictional city in GTA 5 gains is based on Los Angeles. The game revolves around criminals who have to complete missions. The design of the game provides a convincing setting for its characters. The game has spectacular modern style mansions with pools, large decks, greenery, and great interior designs to spark your creativity.
8. A Plague Tale: Innocence by Asobo Studio
Set in 14th century France, the game revolves around two siblings who try to escape the Inquisition during the outbreak of Plague. The game has several city streets with buildings and structures based on 14th-century trends. The street-scape depicts the impact of the plague through the dirt and emptiness in the streets. The game contrasts the romantic use of color tones with a grim setting.