Digital Future –
Dar Nothaft VS @UnlistedLeaf

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What happens when you put Dar Nothaft from Polaris with YouTube gaming personality, Ando (@UnlistedLeaf)?

As part of the Gaming Matters track of the Singapore Media Festival’s first SMF Ignite, leading international and local gamers gathered for a day of panel discussions and meet-and-greet with fans of gaming. At the event held at PIXEL Studios yesterday, we tracked down Dar Nothaft, the General Manager of Polaris at Maker Studio, as well as popular gaming personality Ando (@UnlistedLeaf) – and got them to answer three questions on the hot topic of gaming.

What’s the ultimate gaming experience you can dream up? Describe it to us.

Dar: I’m actually a huge fan of VR and alternate reality. I’ve been following Magic Leap as they were announced and I think that for me, the ultimate experience would be an alternate reality that gives me what I have been hoping for all these time – to take the real world into a game. My everyday life, like the commuting, the people I hang out with, going home to make dinner; making all that into a game such that there are points for everything and gives me a digitally interactive opportunity with my friends.

Ando: Pokémon GO is my go-to game – I love that so much. If I could have my own mini version with my own mini monsters, that would be the craziest thing of all time. But for mobile device games – I love Flappy Bird so much so maybe another Flappy Bird? It got taken off the app store, so my dream would be for it to come back on the app store and be able to that again. Something super simple on the iPhone.

If you could only choose one game to play for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?

Dar: That is a really tough question! I would say Minecraft because it’s a sandbox – It gives you a lot of avenues for creativity and you can do some competitive stuff. Usually for competitive or character games where you build a character, points or ratings, you play it over again and again with your friends because of the competitive element. But because Minecraft is about creativity, it gives me a feeling of being able to express myself in different ways.

Ando: Flappy Bird! A lot of the games we play starts at one point and you have to get to the end, and there is a story in between so you don’t really want to quit. But for Flappy Bird, you can keep playing it non-stop and it never gets boring. So probably that!

Share one aspect you love the most, and one you hate the most, about your respective roles in the gaming industry.

Dar: What I love most about my current role as GM in Polaris is that I get to interact with a lot of creative and really dedicated people. People who have a voice, who never really thought they would be professional entertainers. It is a really unique and interesting sort of excitement and exuberance that you can’t really find. I live in LA and there, people who are doing film and television are those who sort of know what they want to do for a long time and work hard towards it. Even though they are excited, it’s a little bit more expected. But in working with all my friends on YouTube, there’s a magic that this gets to become a reality.

Well I wouldn’t really say hate, but one thing I would like to see change in is the bullying and negative sentiments that is very evident in online communities because of online enmity and personalities. I don’t mean negativity towards content, but an angry hate and negative energy that is not productive to our community.

Ando: The thing I love the most is that there are some brands that will pay you to play different games and that is absolutely fantastic that they are joining in on branded content. But then, there is also the flipside that because they are paying you for it, they want to control all the creative ideas. So yes, the best part is when they come to you and say ‘I want a video like this but you can do it your way’; the worst part is when they say ‘I want it done like this and that’ because it’s not really my feel anymore and it doesn’t belong to me.