b r 3 Press Kit

There are 1.8446744e+19 possible 8x8 one bit images! But only some of them look like water! Here are 24 of them! Hand crafted, refreshing water! Everywhere! But not a drop to drink!

Play b r 3 (Desktop and Mobile)

The basics

Who is this Pippin Barr guy?

Pippin is an experimental game developer who has made games about everything from Eurovision to performance art to dystopian post-work futures. He’s an Assistant Professor in the Department of Design and Computation Arts at Concordia University in Montréal. He is also the associate director of the Technoculture, Art, and Games (TAG) Research Centre, which is part of the Milieux Institute for Arts, Culture, and Technology.


b r 3 is a remake of my game v r 3, translating it from Unity to Bitsy. Given that Unity is a big ol’ serious 3D game engine with lighting and all that, and Bitsy is a tiny game engine that provides only a 16x16 grid of 8x8 tiles, it’s quite a translation process. In b r 3 as in v r 3 you enter a building which serves as a gallery of water. Inside, a series of plinths present different waters from existing Bitsy games and the visitor can both examine the water more closely as well as open the originating game itself. The objective, as with v r 3 is to centralize an element of (Bitsy) games that might otherwise tend to be overlooked in favour of narrative and spatial exploration. In b r 3 especially, however, the creative work of other game designers is foregrounded, as the water comes directly from other creations, rather than being a kind of commodity from an asset store as with v r 3.

Features water from: Fred Bednarski’s The World Has Been Sad Since Tuesday, halkon’s Everything Must Fall, mark wonnacott’s Flotsam, eevee’s sandcastles, chiropteram’s The Thing in the Lake, Candal’s Seven Simple Wonders, ruin’s fiddler’s island, summer 2016, Adam Saltsman and bexsaltsman’s Princess Peppercorn’s Pug Plan, lunafromthemoon’s Stranger Point, porpentine charity heartscape’s almanac of girlswampwar territory & the _girls who swim as fertilizer through the warm soil cloaking the roots of the glorious tree of eugenics (giving birth to a black hole in a walmart parking lot at 1am) (water by Ada Rook), onion’s racing…, Fladagus’s Apology Quest, Josefsen’s Lakewood Forest, LostTrainDude’s When I was a bubble I could talk with the trees, efreeteater’s Eggway Dreams, papercookies’ Talkative Plants, ducklingsmith’s Zelda? I Hardly Knew ‘Er, Emma Dee’s Randy G.’s Wild n’ Wacky Beach Adventure, Laiska’s an evening stroll, Juliette Amorati’s Once I was an Egg, Elijah One’s Stream Explorer!, Twisted Tree’s Silverybield Foss, Claire Morely’s Breathe in, and cecile richard’s beachcombing.


I started b r 3 mostly because I have needed to work on simple projects during the COVID-19 pandemic. Given I made b r 1 (a translation of v r 1) first, I started out planning to make, well, b r 2 (translating v r 2), but I ran into various conceptual difficulties with that game and so decided to skip ahead to a more “straightforward” translation into Bitsy.

The key realization in the game was really that the right kind of water to display would be from existing Bitsy games rather than attempting to create a series of waters myself. This remains true to the spirit of exhibiting the creative work of others rather than my own, and, if you ask me, is even better in that it highlights actual games from a community rather than water as a kind of technical commodity as in v r 3 (interesting though that is). As such, a huge part of the effort in making b r 3 was just obtaining and including those waters into this game. It ended up requiring writing a generator in JavaScript that could generate the data for the game, to avoid me having to hand paint and position every single tile in the game (there are many!).

Even early on, once I had a couple of waters in position, it was pretty clear to me this is a project I was going to be happy with. I think that as v r 3 shows, and as b r 3 affirms, encountering some specific element of games in isolation, with the chance to appreciate just that one piece of craft, is a genuinely valuable experience.


b r 3 was made in Adam Le Doux’s excellent Bitsy game engine. It includes a script written in JavaScript that generates the gallery itself.


All waters used belong to their respective authors. b r 3’s generator is open source software licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License. You can obtain the source code from its code repository on GitHub. Bitsy itself is a separate entity, you can check out its code repository on GitHub.



Gallery tour

Sandcastles by evee

Breathe in by Claire Morley

v r 3 and b r 3 side by side