Kimberly Kubus memorial


Kim Okkerstrøm aka Kimberly Kubus was a Norwegian Artist, best known for his video games, of which he made over 178. He also performed music and directed short films, these he distributed on his website. He was a friend of mine and an artistic collaborator. We regularly corresponded over several years. In December 2014 I received sad news that he had committed suicide.

This page is intended as a memorial for him and a retrospective on his work.


Kimberly Kubus
Kim Okkerstrøm 1986-2014




Games



Kim’s best known game series is his Johnny series, which consists of 36 episodes. It’s also spawned numerous unofficial fan games, including two by Cy5m, creator of Seiklus.

Typically these games revolve around the protagonist Johnny, Who must navigate a hostile, surreal world, in a side-scrolling platform manner.
Johnny is distinguished by his absurdly long nose, manic grin and ability to shoot an uninterrupted beam of magic bullets.
Other distinguishing characteristics are; Johnny has infinite lives and is often gifted with the ability to shrink himself at will, and to a lesser extent, to enlarge the length of his nose. His nose sometimes serves as a game-play mechanic, making it possible for Johnny to grasp far away ledges.

Most of the Johnny games are very difficult to complete and sometimes require exploiting a bug or finding an obscure secret, such as an invisible trigger, in order to complete them.

John
"Johnny" from the first Johnny game.


Kim had a large influence on my games.
His output was both phenomenal and inspirational.

He pointed out to me that nothing's perfect, and often there’s good elements even in imperfect things. By accepting this it helped to free my thoughts to be much more creative. I’m most grateful for this insight.



DREAMS



Kimberly and I regularly talked about our dreams.

" My dreams are often really good, because I am actually more alive in my dreams than I am in my real life. Too bad I forget about many of my dreams when I awaken. Who’s to know if our dreams are actually our real lives and that being awake is really what a dream is? "
"Kim Okkerstrøm"

It was during these conversations that I learnt about Kim’s inner world, a place which he called "Kubus".

Kim believed that "Kubus" was a real place and that it existed externally of him. In 2007 I started having dreams about it myself and began working on "Johnnies Lobotomy"(unreleased) a game based on Kimberly’s character "Johnny", which takes place in the Kubus universe. Kim believed Johnny and his other characters were real and lived in the Kubus universe.

" Johnny is immortalized. That's why he has an eternal amount of life in his games

"Kimberly kubus"

Around this time We also collaborated on a fighting game called "Mort Battel" which incorporated many of Kim’s characters. The game was unfortunately never finished (Kimberly finished a version of this on his own however.)

Mort Battel Mort Battel
Mort Battel Mort Battel

Mort Battel screenshots

" Nice work on mort battel, I almost got to laugh at the visual representation of Magic Jimbo Wizz, one of the main creatures from Kubus and my best friend, I think it is quite funny. "

"Kimberly Kubus:"

Mort Battel character designs.
Mort Battel





This is the first email where Kim told me about the Kubus world

Tue, 11/6/07



I wanna tell u something, Whether you believe it or not is up to you, but I believe it myself, not just because i want to escape, but because it is such a strong evidence and other stuff.

Okey
here we go


As you might know, I am an avatar from a world called Kubus. An avatar is a creature from another place/existence/world/whatever who's soul has come to earth as a human being for specific purposes.

art

As I was gonna say, I just had an out-of... body / SPIRIT experience by shanneling the energy caused from extreme tootache and channeing them to my frontal lobe in order to transfer mentally to the world of KUBUS, and it worked.
OMG what a waaacky experience.

I was back in the world of Kubus for the first time in 20 human years.
I only had a limited time there, becuz you know, it takes a tremendous amount of energy to do those things.

I used all my mind power + the feeling of pain transformed into "fuel".
art


At first I arrived at No Place, in the control tower. In here I met Magic Jimbo Wizz, there was no one else there.
I wished I could tell him more how it was like to be a human, but did not get time.
I asked him if Kubus was doing well, he said there was some trouble in Xonia, but it was under full control.

art
Then Magic Jimbo Wizz pulls open the handle to the fridge in the mini bar, well not actually a bar, but the main control station in No Place looks like it.
Mind you, No PLace is a very small place floating in the air which only consist of one building, the Kubus house.
It is very secure.

Anyway, Magic Jimbo Wizz pulls out the handle and grabs some good weed, called ice weed.
In Kubus, drugs are different than on earth.
Tho the concept of getting high is the same. Mind you, when it comes to back on earth situatuins, I am completely sober, this world travel thing is not becuz of drug use, I was sober when I travelled and am sober now.
art


but in the world of KUBUS; me and Magic Jimbo Wizz smoked this ice weed from a blue bong.
The high from this type of Kubus Drug lasts for a very short time, tho it is very intense, and it gives after effects for about maybe 30 minutes, case depeningdring very.

When I was high I went outside to the wonderful garden of wilderness wonderful, and I was flying (Yes, I can fly), I was swinging on metal clothing-dryes pipes thingy , and it was spinning.
art


Then afterwards, Magic Jimbo Wizz took me down to the basement to show me his latest hat creations.
He only got to show me 2 hats though.
The first one was blue and somewhat transparent maybe and shining, it was very big, and funny.
The other one was also big, but the brim was bigger, and it was flaming, it was a fire hat of most uber-quality.
At this time I actually told him about my game Flower Gunner and I told him the story.

art
Flower Gunner

He was surprised that I included his name there and that I also included other names from Kubus like NO PLace and Xonia.

After this and that, I went home through the portal.
When I inside it was like 1 second and POOOOF I Was back on earth.
Definitely cool experience and very good for me head. Anyways, nice to tell u about this :-)

art


On several occasions I had dreams that we met in the Kubus world. In reality, we never met in person, as
I live in Australia and Kimberly lived in Norway.
We often talked about meeting up and making a movie together. The closest this came to happening was in 2013 after I had attended the Rezzed Inde PC game festival in the UK. Afterwards I flew to Berlin where we had arranged to meet and shoot a short movie. I'd been really looking forward to it.
Unfortunately it did not eventuate for reasons which were unclear at the time.
Kimberly later told me that he had suffered anxiety from the biometric data collection at the airport. I could understand this anxiety, as I had been uncomfortable with it myself.


We Had quite a few similarities like that. Unknown to Kim when I first talked to him, my parents used to call me "Kubus" because it's the polish for Jacob. We also both liked Frank Zappa music and C64 games.


I’m of the opinion that Kim’s games held personal meaning for him, they weren't designed to be accessible (in mainstream terms). I think that he made them largely for himself, as a sort of cathartic art therapy.

For example with the game, "Nazi Fish Meets The Toilet Monster, or The Hard Tasks at Life" he explained to me in an email that this was about a bad experience in a relationship he’d had.

Kims work still inspires me. many of his ideas were innovative and original and he had a distinctive style of art. Playing his games makes me want to design new games. Few other games can be credited for having this empowering effect on me.

I wouldn't have released Revenge of the sunfish if Kim hadn't encouraged me. Originally I was worried that it wasn't a very good game, but through our friendship i developed a strong belief in the importance of being yourself.

Kimberly Kubus 2007


Kim had a colorful sense of humor and was very much an individualist - He’ll be missed.


Downloads



Please note that these links are incomplete.

Kims songs

Invisible_woman.mp3
Floating_ocean_mind_boogie.mp3
Hallelujah_Song.mp3
Dumpster_truck.mp3


Kims Games

adventures of khayk
Mare
Dr Onkebonk
Johnny 4


Collage of Kims Art

Kubus art


External links



Kimberly Kubus on the Game maker wiki
Kimberly Kubus on the indie game wiki
Roach dance on youtube
Scarceland on youtube





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