Games of 2020: Umurangi Generation

In a year of unrest, a game about documenting it.

Umurangi Generation is a first person game where you explore a near-future world through the lens of a camera. There are gameplay elements, but they are secondary to the act of trying to understand the world around you.

When I first moved to NYC, it was through the lens of a camera that I was able to contextualize the city’s shape and heartbeat. That sense of anxious discovery and witness comes across strong throughout Umurangi.

It is impossible to ignore the profound societal challenges of 2020. Umurangi – released in May, with an expansion released in November – may be the game that best reflects the state of the world in its release year.

Umurangi Generation (and the expansion Umurangi Generation Macro) is available on Steam, with a Switch release in the works. I logged around 6 hours.


The First Digital Presidential Portrait

From today:

Today we are releasing the new official portrait for President Barack Obama.
It was taken by Pete Souza, the newly-announced official White House photographer.
It is the first time that an official presidential portrait was taken with a digital camera.

The EXIF data, as provided by Spotlight:

A more complete list provided by Flickr:

Camera:	Canon EOS 5D Mark II
Exposure:	0.008 sec (1/125)
Aperture:	f/10
Focal Length:	105 mm
ISO Speed:	100
Exposure Bias:	 0/6 EV
Flash:	Flash did not fire
Image Description:	Official portrait of President-elect Barack Obama on Jan. 13, 2009.
(Photo by Pete Souza)
Orientation:	Horizontal (normal)
X-Resolution:	300 dpi
Y-Resolution:	300 dpi
Software:	Adobe Photoshop CS3 Macintosh
Date and Time:	2009:01:13 19:35:18
Artist Name:	Pete Souza
White Point Chromaticity:	313/1000, 329/1000
Primary Chromaticities:	640/1000, 330/1000, 300/1000, 600/1000, 150/1000, 60/1000
Copyright:	© 2008 Pete Souza
Exposure Program:	Manual
Date and Time (Original):	2009:01:13 17:38:39
Date and Time (Digitized):	2009:01:13 17:38:39
Metering Mode:	Pattern
Sub-Second Time:	04
Color Space:	Uncalibrated
Tag::EXIF::0xA500:	22/10
Compression:	JPEG
Caption/Abstract:	Official portrait of President-elect Barack Obama on Jan. 13, 2009.
(Photo by Pete Souza)
By-Line (Author):	Pete Souza
Credit:	Pete Souza
Date Created:	20090113
City:	Washington, D.C.
Province/State:	DC
Keywords:	obama, official portrait
Copyright Notice:	© 2008 Pete Souza
Time Created:	173839-0500
Tag::IPTC::0x02DD:	1:0:0:008876
Image Width:	1916 pixels
Image Height:	2608 pixels

The first ever official digital presidential portrait was taken by a Canon EOS 5D Mark II. Surely this will settle the Canon/Nikon conflict.

Addendum: Jason Specland notes that the copyright date is set to 2008, which means Pete Souza probably needs to re-work his processing workflow.