Going through the archives of the past year, if I had to boil all this writing down into a single word, it would be “resist.” As far back as day one of this year I found lots of emotive and thought-provoking work in which games critics were all telling each other, in some sense, to “resist.”
Resist orthodoxy. Resist the calcification of “the way things are”. Resist the poisonous ideologies that have taken root.
For seven years, I have created Critical Distance’s annual roundup of the most important games writing. This process of reading through our archives is the main way I make sense of what the year was like. In other years, games critics have noted problems or complained about the staleness of the state of the field. This year, it feels as our collective position has evolved. We’ve become braver intellectuals, more ready to stand against the troubles we see looming ahead on the horizon.