Computational Research Center

News and updates from the CRC

Native Dancer: Journal Update

Author: Ariann Rousu – Native Dancer Digital Artist

The Native Dancer Project is still making progress, despite the blogs being a little scarce the past few weeks as I have been using my writing time a little differently. I have been researching and pre-writing to enrich my first Case study Journal entry that will be published. I am a part of a larger group of indigenous game developers and scholars that are writing for this publication. Each topic is different and highlights various gaming projects that have indigenous influence.  

My paper is in relation to the processes and steps we are taking to create a cultural VR/metaverse or game/space. Highlighting ways, we are involving native individuals and promoting industry careers for other native/Indigenous Americans. In the paper I am going through some of our processes such as seeking cultural advice from our advisory committee and what discussions have taken place to get us to where we are today with the project.  

Native Dancer Project- Male Regalia Preview In Unreal Engine
Native Dancer Project- Various Character Assets Previewed in Character Creator 4

This is my first time writing a case study journal for publication; I am nervous yet very grateful for the opportunity to use my voice further as an indigenous creator. I feel very privileged to share my experiences with, opinions of, and dreams for “The Native Dancer project” before the project is complete. I am looking forward to being able to form relationships with other indigenous game developers, creators or scholars. This past weekend, I joined the other writers in a synopsis to learn more about each other and what we are all working on. Everyone was very interesting, I learned something from each person and look forward to reading everyone’s Journal entries. 

Throughout my research, I have been familiarizing with vocabulary and working on being able to confidently use terminology when discussing sensitive topics in relation to indigenous peoples. Some of my paper will consist of justifying why we are taking the steps we are to accurately represent indigenous cultures. Such as to not repeat offensive or misleading mistakes some others have in past video games when pulling from Indigenous or Native Cultures.  

Stay tuned as I will continue to post weekly blogs as we make progress with the Native Dancer Project, and my paper research evolves to a final product.