The Birthplace of Ossian
“[The landscape] is more real than the people who inhabit it. Drowned in eternal mist, illuminated by a decrepit sun or by emphemeral meteors, it is a world of greyness.”
-Henry Okun, Ossian in Painting, 1967
Killscreen reviews Connor Sherlocks Birthplace of Ossian game. @CPriestman interviews Connor here (“Birthplace of Ossian Explores the Artificiality of Videogame Landscapes.”)
“The mountainous terrain in Connor Sherlock’s exploration game Birthplace of Ossian isn’t of this world. I don’t mean that rather than being real, it is virtual—its disconnection has many more layers than that. For starters, its colossal landscape is based on Glen Coe in Scotland, a place that Sherlock has never been but feels connected to through media like Highlander (1986)—he’s actually named after the main character, Connor MacLeod. Sherlock wanted his recreation of Glen Coe to reflect his physical distance from it. “I wanted the space to be as distant an echo of the real thing as I could make it, like a garbled game of telephone,” he told me.
“Now not only did I have my memories of Highlander, but also early romanticism’s take on 3rd century oral tradition, as well as a whole subgenre of landscape paintings inspired by the Macpherson version,” Sherlock said. “I dug into all these as I made the game, though I haven’t yet read the entirety of Macpherson’s work (which is free online!).”
Read the full piece here.
Go here to play / buy and watch walk-through: https://connor-sherlock.itch.io/ossian
The pronunciation and commentary may crack you up but we loved the re-appearance of Ossian in a new medium and the detachment / immersion of the creator.
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