The following is a transcript of a recorded conversation over Zoom.
Q: What I’m trying to do is to to create through and that’s the main purpose of my return to academia and writing this article is to to create another history of Interactive video games. Directed experiences that is removed from you know industry and the way of making mainstream games and going back to video games as a subversive. Giving a voice to creators instead of giving it to an industry and companies.
A: Uhm, so to have this this same notion that there’s underground cinema and underground music, well, I believe there is an alternative way of making games that nobody talks about or very little. And I think your voice is one of the strong ones in that line. Uhm, and the way I want to go about it is to link up inspiration to video games, not from other games, but from other artistic and musical genre. In this case more industrial music.
Q: Because and I, I thought that your work was very relevant because there is a strong use of anti games approach and a strong use of noise and glitch in your aesthetic.
A: Yeah, my older games, not so so so much from my recent ones.
Q: Your recent ones are more arcade oriented, uh, which I thought was very interesting and I’ll get back to that. But you you release eye or eyes that was like a a a return to form to your earlier games.
A: Uh, yeah, it’s true.
Q: Those games and because they are really, uh. I think they have a very rigorous aesthetic that is constant. The first question I really want to ask is how did you start creating games? Did you learn by yourself or choose specific trainings? And would you consider your workflow as DIY deal to yourself or?
A: Well, I started like many years ago like 6 or more years ago, back when Flash was a thing. I had a copy of Flash and I was trying to do animations and then I learned that you could actually program games and. Stuff, so I was just copying code from here and there. I had no idea what I was doing. Drawing stuff, Yeah, I was making games then. I had a really big break because of school and stuff, university stuff. And then I was just experimenting with game engines and experiences and whatnot.
As for the. The approach, uh, you said. This study, this experimentation, like my I don’t have a specific workflow or idea. Uh, most of the times it just open the program and just throw things at it. Try different art styles, different effects and see if anything catches my eye and then I start building a concept from there. Uh, or maybe I have like a very vague idea, like a sentence or something that I try to build upon it. Lots of experimentation, lots of instinctual stuff, just doing things and see if they. If they feel right, basically.
Q: That’s interesting, the way that you say about being more instinctual and trying stuff and instead of planning ahead what you what you will be doing because a lot of people will plan ahead. They will have those designs, and then they will start coding and try to reproduce what they had in mind.
A: Yeah there is some basic planning when I maybe I’ll make the levels what will appear in its level or what I’ll do some basic stuff so I’ll have it on record in case I forget anything but all of that is subject to change because I will be playing the game over and over and see if even my original ideas fit. And if they don’t just scrap it altogether. It’s not a a rigid process, it’s what I’m trying to say.
Q: To every creator I talked with, they never use the same title. So how would you call your game creating practice? Do you consider yourself game designer or an artist?
A: Ah, it’s kinda hard because there is elements from every category, even though I’m making more subversive, more experimental thing. There’s still elements of game design that, uh, I have to incorporate, so so to construct a specific experience for the player so. I’d say developer above all else because I think it encompasses all those elements of game design and art. And that’s really the most important thing trying to balance and mix both of those things, because if you have too much art so to say, it’s like, it’s more of an experience than a game, and that might irk some people if you have too much design, then it’s something formulaic, so it’s important to mix and balance.
Q: I find this interesting because I was under the impression that most of your earlier games on Itch, they come with very cryptic text and references, and, uh, I felt that you know, in a certain way I was wondering if it was like a strategy to limit the reach of your games to make sure that only a specific audience will play them. The reason I’m asking this is that sometimes when we talk about it, more experimental games there’s this clash with gaming community, but from your last answer you seem to have a a preoccupation to balance, experimentation and gaming so that there’s still a a gaming experience behind it.
A: At least for me, I think that’s my personal experience. I think something that. Uh, take for instance Shadow of the Colossus or the movie They Live, for example. it has standard game design elements, but it’s at the same time a very artistic game, and in that sense It’s more emotionally heavy because through that game design you are more immersed. And They Live as a movie. It’s a standard action movie with some very interesting political and social messages. And through the action and the plot and the characters standard movie stuff, it conveys its message is much better. Which is why I said that stuff was.. I forgot the question though, I’m sorry.
Q: Well, the question is that in the description of certain of your games are very cryptic so I was wondering if you wanted to limit access to your game. Like if you’re looking for something more traditional, don’t look here.
A: No, no it wasn’t, uh, about that. At all, it’s more of a. How to say something without saying it? Because, uh, I think when you try to hide something under a certain layer. Uh, it invites a person that is interested to look into it further, and by looking at it further, it. becomes more meaningful, so to say and I think it improves the methods of the game. For example, if you had text in the game, I’m sad and you just blurt it out. It would feel silly. It would feel crazy so to say because it’s so out there. It’s so in your face. When you obscure it I think it adds in a first of all in. That’s an extra layer of mystery and I think it becomes more compelling that way. And it’s also a fun little thing for people who, like, you know, ARG and digging stuff up.
Q: Can you define the role you give music and noise in your games? Because there’s a strong use of noise, element noise, music, and being your musician yourself. What’s the the role of sound in your work?
A: Definitely it’s very important. I would say sometimes that sound is even more important than graphics. For example, in my latest game eyes I had very minimal graphics and I was more focused on the audio samples. And I think that music is pivotal in creating an atmosphere, because, uh, I myself, I am more inclined towards music, and I give more of a stronger emphasis on hearing than seeing. As for noise, I’d say that for games that have to do with sensitive matters and very strong emotions and stuff like that, that noise is much more appropriate because it is something chaotic. It is something, and I think that, uh represents very accurately the human psyche at this at its most primal level.
Q: Are you yourself a fan of industrial noise music? Does any band or artists inspired you in your game design? Or is there relationship with those music jar and what you’re doing in video games?
A: I’d say a very big fan of power Electronics. Uh, one of my games was a tribute to one of the songs from Whitehouse. The game was Isn’t life disappointing and it was a tribute to the song Killing Hurts Gives you the secrets, lots of lyrics and feelings from that song. Surprisingly, I don’t listen to a lot of noise. I prefer more of a power electronics and I like rhythmic stuff. No easy but rhythmic stuff.
Q: Yeah, because I felt from your music certain of your albums are more smooth or more ambient, but certain tracks are very closer to death industrial like Brighter Death Now. It’s interesting you mentioned Whitehouse because certain of your games made me feel like when I’m listening to Sutcliffe Jugend, Whitehouse , all those power electronics band. And I incorporate power electronics in noise industrial. I use it in the broad general sense, so it’s absolutely relevant. So if you could like further, go into that direction, like if there’s any other inspiration you get from this, I’d really be interested in that hearing about it.
A: Ah yeah, Whitehouse was a huge difference and Brighter Death Now. Now I totally forgot about them. Uh, I don’t know if there is other musical.influences I’d say that. There are some video game or videogame developer influences, but I can’t think anything about music right now. Maybe if I think of something, I’ll I’ll message you about it.
Q: Just make me think that for me personally, this is something I asked everybody my my first contact with noise music was through Silent Hill. Uhm, when I was a teenager and I played that game and the he industrial soundtrack kicked in.I was blown away. I had never listened to anything like this and I had the chance to have a Chinatown near me so I I could buy the soundtrack on CD and this was my first noise album and I was wondering if this was something that this is an experience you had also.
A: Yay, I remember playing Silent Hill three, which was much more brutal in everything. Uh, but I don’t remember. The music definitely. Was something that I I paid attention to, but I didn’t. It didn’t stick with me. I think what made me choose the that path. As far as music is concerned, was like random videos from Nurse with Wounds. Another artist that I really like, maybe an influence as well, like a. Yeah, come to think of it, Nurse with Wound was a big influence too. Various music videos have found on YouTube.
I don’t know it’s phrase this question, but although those, uh, those videos come from YouTube and that music inspired your games, you wanted to capture the same mood. I think, uh, some of my games have images directly from those videos because they left such an impression on me.
Q: We’ll get back to this later, but I wanted to ask as a as somebody who makes games, do you consider what you’re doing as labor as work, or is it for something more like personal expression, more therapeutic, more emancipatory?
A: Well, technically speaking, I’m not getting paid for it, so I wouldn’t say it’s work or labor. But the terminology isn’t really important. I would say, at least in the past that it was definitely a personal experience. Very focused on personal expression nowadays, uh, it’s not so much about my feelings, but more so my ideas. So it’s definitely an expression throughout. It’s just the thing that is being expressed, that is that has changed. So it’s like I just want to rephrase that and just to make sure I understand.
Q: So your games, in a way, are, let’s say, your ideas are your philosophy about life versus a specific subject matter. There’s this term we call reify to materialize or to to communicate those abstract ideas through a concrete object that people can experience.
A: Right right yes yes. In the past it was my feelings that I was trying to uh, materialize? Now it’s more of my way of thinking. My thoughts, ideas, and so forth.
Q: That’s interesting, and what are those ideas you want to project for your games?
A: Well in the past, most of my games were coming from a place of very negative feelings. Depression and. general sadness and oppression and anger and all that stuff. Uh, nowadays it’s more of my worries about certain stuff, for example, Eyes,was about certain worries I have about being watched, certain psychological effects that may exist on media or so forth. I hope I’m not being too schizophrenic about all that.
Q: No, not at all. It’s I think it’s interesting., This is why Eyes really feels like you return to form because you did Cosmos, Beyonder and Tenebris and you have this very rigorous structure, usually in your games : 3D mazes so that this first person experience that is cut hit those rough images and rust sounds and something. Then A clicker game throughout and I was wondering why you came back to that format, and as a second question, what are the audio samples being used?
A: Oh oh boy, I’ve gotten a few questions about those samples. Uh, first of all, the game was sort of an experience and retelling of the weird experience I had. The description of the game says that I was walking down the street and someone winked at me, and I’ve never seen that person before, and so on. Something similar happened to me. Sort of similar. I I was watching some video of the game with the first person game and one of the characters, one of the companions of the character was just standing there and the camera was having him on the side at at some point he was looking straight on the camera and just winked and I knew that game and I knew that there wasn’t an animation for such a thing and it was just a very weird clip. And that’s just stuck to me. And the the other. The experiment I was talking about how to do with one of the audio samples and what it was talking about. The first audio sample was from believe it or not, as far as I know, at least it was from one of Hunter Biden’s leaked files. I don’t know if you know that somehow they stole Hunter Biden’s laptop and we found the whole bunch of stuff.
Q: No, I haven’t heard about that.
A: Uh, yeah. And supposedly this was an audio file from back doing some kind of demon ritual. And the second. Audio file was from a video I found from 4 Chan. A paranormal board, of course, but it was talking about how Satan works and basically Satan operates in the sense that it creates characters.And the characters through movies through media in general. And these characters dazzle the audience and ever away from the truth, and that was sort of my experiment because my previous games weren’t. We weren’t having any negative connotations. We didn’t have a negative aura, so to speak, and they went very popular, so to say. So it was an experiment to see if something more negative, more cryptic, more occult was going to be more popular because of how Satan works. The third udio sample was a a song I found on YouTube called my house walkthrough.
Q: Did it confirm your hypothesis? Was it more popular?
A: Oh yeah, by a very wide margin too. Oh, I think it got featured on Itch for a few a day or two.
Q: What we’re seeing in like the last 4-5 years is really an exponential increase in games- I I was looking at itch like games in 2015, 2016 and we’re talking not two times more. Every year we’re talking exponentially more games being published. Two things I was wondering. Does it have an impact on your reach with games do? Do you feel you have more players or you’re being flooded? And concerning what you were saying about the devil – I think it’s very interesting, but, uh, more like how can I say profane explanation would be that you know, with method with the tagging right now, you need to make horror games that people will show on YouTube.
A: Yeah, definitely definitely.
Q: So it will. They will play more horror games than anything else, because this is what will sell on YouTube. That there’s a 2 for two full question. Well, first of all, this idea of tagging. Do you feel like you need to adapt what you’re doing creatively to be seen with your games, because now there’s those standards and do you feel being flooded by that?
A: I’d say it’s not only about tagging, it’s also about the general feeling of the page do because I think in almost all of my games I put the horror tag and whatever, but it’s those games that have the more weird or cryptic almost a occult quality student that get more views. And as far as the influx of games go, as a gamer, I don’t really pay too much attention to it because I don’t play many games, at least not anymore. I I play very rarely and play some popular stuff lately. Or maybe I’ll just go hunting for some easy games, but I’m not really feeling you know that flooding because it’s just the have specific things that I’m looking for them and if I find something that I like. I download it. That’s pretty much all there is to it. And I think it’s a good, not so much of a quantity because there is a lot of mediocrity you have to wade through, but I think it’s good that everyone can express themselves and have a creative outlet, even though some are amateurs or don’t have the best intentions or whatever else.
Q: Do you feel the term video game is still adequate or too limiting for for more experimental forms of games like do do we need a new term to define that?
A: I don’t think we need a new term per because we have our media such as books or paintings or movies that have managed to become like, very transcendental experiences and we’re still called what we’re called. Movies, books and whatever. So I don’t think terminologies are very important. I think the meaning of it’s creation is much more important. Terminologies are more for people that like to categorize stuff like the filter stuff and get off on that sort of thing.
Q: I understand and that the reason I am I was reading an interview with with Natalie Lawhead from Handmade Pixels. And what she was saying is that when what she was doing was considered net art. Like it was very well accepted, but when she was a when it was tagged as video games, then she received flak from, you know, the gamers. So that’s why I was wondering because the term video game. Some people will be rebutted by the terms like I don’t play video games even though it’s a it’s more ofaI feel it’s interactive, but it’s an experience unfortunately. I was just doing it the other and then if you do something too experimental then you you you get problem from the gamers.
A: I’d say it’s the same with all communities. You can tag something as black metal or whatever metal, and someone will complain that. It’s not the right or electronic music or whatever people that. People that complain about this sort of stuff care more about what something is called and are missing the point of it because we are more focused on. What it’s called. So I find it silly to cater till that sort of thing because it’s all about. Categorizing and chasing trends and whatever it was the same deal with Dark Souls, likes or Doom likes or roguelikes and whatever. It was just the trends.
We definitely need structure, but we must treat it as a tool and not as the main point of the creation.
Q: Uhm, your games deal with very uncomfortable subject matter. And then there’s mental health, domestic violence, depression. Your early game was really about, you know, expressing feelings. Now it’s more about ideas. What do you feel makes video game an efficient medium to communicate those themes.
A: I’d say interactivity above everything else. Although I’d say it’s a double edge sword because interactivity is a very powerful tool because through the actions of the player they can get very immersed and feel what, uh, you’re trying to convey and so on, but on the other hand I have found out for myself at least that for someone to be truly immersed in something that talks about personal experiences and so on they have to have some personal connection to it as well. If someone who has never been depressed or is always happy or everything has gone right in their lives or whatever plays a game that is about. Depression, I think they’re going to find it stupid or. It’s like the the classic thing people say. Why be stressed, just stop stressing out or stop being sad. Yeah, you have to come from that place to understand the message and what it’s trying to convey too.
Q: I personally I’m not somebody who suffers from depression but, by playing Recluse. Personally, it made me feel a certain way that I think could create personally a certain empathy to understand, like what could depression could be like to live through. Is that the object of the types of game you’re making in that sense.
A: Funnily enough, Recluse wasn’t Just my idea. It was also the idea of one of my coworkers from a previous job I had so kudos to him as well. Yeah, if you have some sort of empathy, you would understand the the point of the game. Above all else I’m I was making these games to express my feelings at the time they weren’t. Very plays and feelings, but what can you do? Uh, for someone to connect to these experiences I I think they at least have to have some sort of. How to say it? Some sort of stake ? Some sort of? Like they, they must have had some sort of a feeling that was expressed in the game for them to connect at least that’s how I view it.
Q: If we’re taking like Recluse for example, uhm, when you made that game, was it more for you? Did you have a preoccupation that this would be understood by other people? What I mean is that, like by making games, you know you’re always revisiting the same stuff by fixing it and improving on things, etc. So I was wondering, since you were working on, you said had those dark feelings that you projected in the game was like the was there a therapeutic aspect by reacting to swimming and did did you understand something about yourself or it was there preoccupation about people playing the games or was it more for you&
A: On the one hand, it was therapeutic because I was expressing those negative feelings I had with some sort of exorcising my demons. But on the the other hand it was something that was leeching off of me because. It was those games were liked by people and so I felt compelled to make more games that were about such negative feelings I had. And that made me pressure myself too be more negative so to say. Like draw more of my negative side and that’s why I’ve kind of stopped making these kinds of games because I felt like I was trying to make myself more depressed, for instance, just so I can use that energy to make a game.
Q: That’s interesting. Is that the extremity of your games a feedback between you’re expressing something through your, your your games. It’s a feedback loop. And because there’s two feedback loops I’m seeing like there’s the feedback loops with the people playing your games and appreciating them, and there’s also the feedback loop that is making a game and the testing and the retesting, et cetera.
A: Right, right? And that’s why you can’t have the very gamey game. I mean you can have like are all those game design systems in the game that is very personal or experimental. I think it it would be kind of weird if if you were talking about depression and you were making a RPG out of it. Not that it can’t work, but uh, for me. I think it’s weird too. Trying to immerse yourself in a certain way of feelings and thinking and at the other hand you’re trying to like think like a gamer “I’m going to equip one of my best stats and all that”
Q: So the feeling you’re pushing out is is what guides the game mechanics basically.
A: Well, yeah, if you’re talking about personal stuff and the experimental stuff, and that’s the focal point of the game. It’s not so much about game design in the traditional sense, like how long the level is going to be, or how many enemies or what it’s about. Everything that you place must convey certain feelings. And yes, it’s the feelings that guide the whole process and how can I make the player feel a certain way.
Q: Thinking about noise in a larger sense, not just noise music or noise sound. In your there’s textual saturation, you have glitch art and you have also those brutal switches in game mechanics. Uh, so you’re always jumping from one thing at the other, and there’s a lot of information that is thrown at you through your games, but it’s impossible to get all of it. So how would you define like as a game mechanic?
A: I think noise in all of its aspects is something that makes the one who experiences it uncomfortable.I think that’s the most basic feeling. It makes you uncomfortable. It makes you uneasy because it is something that doesn’t have any structure and it’s something very striking. And you’re just not used to it. And yeah, when you have the noise music playing, it’s usually not just noise.Music as in static and all that with lots of other elements overlaid to like screams or reverse talking. All that so it’s not just the noise.I’d say the noise is like a carpet that hides the layers underneath because you have the layers of the people talking or the screams, and you’re trying to pay attention to that.And because you pay attention to that, it becomes more important. And as far as graphics go, noise represents a degradation. Which is a a theme that many of my games have. You start with something somewhat normal, somewhat mundane, and then it degrades to the point that it becomes unrecognizable, that it becomes uncomfortable to experience. And yeah, that’s basically the whole point of noise. It’s to portray something raw, something powerful, striking and above all else, uncomfortable.
Q: This brings me back to what we were talking earlier, because I always felt for noise and even power electronics. Uh, there’s this notion of empowerment. There’s this notion of, you know, like in Greek theater this notion of catharsis. And this is something I feel in your games that are so extreme. Suffer for instance, or She is all yours. Even though it’s dark, but it’s when you play, there’s something in its subversiveness that’s freeing, but I find it interesting what you said earlier that for you making those games was actually kind of like, uh, a prison where you needed to always push further and further. Uh, so for you as a creator was there a point where it was freeing and then stops being it?
A: It never was something liberating. It’s definitely liberated when I’m done with it in every sense of the word, because the testing is over. The debugging is over and all that. So in that technical sense, yes, finishing a game is liberating. Suffer for example, the goal was to make the player as uncomfortable as possible, so. There was liberation in trying to convey my message. For that particular, for some games, that was the liberation trying to see how effective I was at conveying my message in other games such as There is a dark voice in my mind the liberation was more in expressing my feelings and seeing how much those feelings resonate with other people.
Q: So there’s an aspect of communication in some kind of way. Where you know you’re sharing your games and do you look forward to communicating with people to interact with people playing your games.
A: Uh, the as far as communication goes through comments and stuff, I’m not really good at that sort of thing. I reply to to messages and stuff, but not so much to comments. And in general, the whole communication part takes place in those hidden messages. For example, the description of suffer is an encrypted message that serves some very personal feelings I had about someone and that’s basically why they are hidden too, because those things that I’m sharing so personal I want to obscure them in at least a layer so as to not be so out there. I want them to be for those who are willing to search things further because we are so personal.
Q: How do you know that your message went through? This is what I was wondering.
A: Oh is there videos or let’s plays like they used to call them or streams or whatever? I’ll most of the time I’ve I watch them and see what people think about them. Their reactions, the reactions of the comments. Although through videos I don’t know how genuine those reactions are to be a little bit of a stick in the mud.
Q: Most of your games goes from first person to point and click, exception is Flesh of the Fallen Angel where the maze was 2D topdown. I wondered why.
A: Ah, because I want to make a roguelike above all else. But the the whole implementation of that idea was kind of scuffed. Yeah, I wanted to make a roguelike. I wanted to experiment with procedural generation as far as mazes go and enemies and all that, but my programming abilities were kind of limited, so I kept at a very basic level. And and sometimes I’ll just experiment, you know, with different genres to an extent like. The beyond it was sort of a puzzle game. I’ve made some RPG games in the past. But yeah, mostly platforms and first person stuff.
Q: This brings me to the religious aspect of most of this leg behind your game, Your games deal with feelings, self harm, mental illnesses, but there’s always like a sense of the sacred. And some of your album titles like Faithless. This kind of concept of the secret and those themes also comes back a lot in your music. Where does the sacred comes from?
A: Uh, I would say there is a lot of lots of spiritual spiritual aspects. Like yeah, feeling so faithful or greater powers or so forth. Uh, lately I’ve been researching things about, uh, spiritual and whatnot. I think from 2020 there was some sort of shifting to my shift my attention towards that kind of stuff? And in the past I was using spiritual aspects in my games and stuff from a more shallow perspective, I would say. But now I think I’m using these aspects to incorporate them Into myself in a sense.
Q: You also are prolific musician. You had several album released on Bandcamp. And the sacred is also ver present in your sound and titles. Games versus music. What’s the difference in the approach?
I think music approaches me more than I approached it, if that makes any sense. It’s sort of like a trance, I would say because the way I make my music is I plug my guitar and I just play. I I just improvise and then I take that improvisation and chains it and not filters it to the point where I say yes that that will do so. It’s a process that doesn’t have any planning and it’s almost. Still, I’d say not almost entirely instinctual because of improv improvisation just come to me. And I just record the overall thing. It’s even more instinctual than making games, because with making games you have all those different elements. You have the game design elements. The rigorous testing you have to do and all that and that kind of takes out of the experience of it, but music manages to stay. Sort of magical to me because. And there is much less interaction. It just sort of happens on its own.
Q: Do you feel that video games can in itself be a carrier of a of a sacred experience because we always, you know the sacred in the music. Is kind of linked together, especially even in noise music that Merzbow Do you feel that new games can have that possibility also?
A: Oh, definitely. There’s been many games that I’ve played that have made me feel very strong emotions. Uh, feel happy or feel sad or make me feel about. Think about lots of different things. They could definitely be a very transcendental experience. I don’t know if I’m saying that correctly.
Totally. something like closer to what we some may call this sublime, because I feel like with video games you always need, due to interactivity you always need like to be conscious of the control etc. while in music you can let go. So this is where I was seeing maybe a difference.
But there comes that concept of the flow state like when you are very immersed in a game you do not perceive it as a game anymore. You think you are your character? You don’t think in the strictly game terms like I gotta pick up my ammo I have. 20 health I’m OK. Uh, yeah, and you get very immersed and it’s sort of like a meditative state. For example, when you’re playing a rhythm game and you are so very focused on it, it’s like ameditative state and there’s games like. There is Flow and there is Rez that incorporate a combination of audio and interactivity. And create that feeling of synesthesia.
Q: And is that something You’re trying to achieve with your own games?
A: For some games, yeah, yeah, like, uh Cosmos for example. I want it to be a very meditative experience. That’s pretty much it.
Q: This is another thing that’s really, I think, interesting, and we didn’t talk about that, but there’s a strong sense of rhythm in your game. The way the games cuts from one mechanic to the other, the visuals, the sound design. It’s very rhythmic. So is that something that where do you get that sense of rhythm?
A: I don’t know. I’d say it’s something that folds in the game design category because I’m trying to approach the game like I am someone that plays it for the first time. And so I’m thinking, OK, I’m I’m walking down this corridor. When will I get bored? When will I need to pop something to pique interest again? I’m trying to approach it that way and see how it goes.
But it’s kind of like a in music – tension and release. You create a certain tension and then you release through, like for instance in dubstep the notion of dropping the bass. This is a like this is a pure example of tension and release, but your games work with that energy, so this is where something that maybe I thought there was a link with music and extreme form of music.
They related, at least in my experience, because they make ambient most of the time, and ambient isn’t very structured at all, I would say.