Episode 6 – 2010 in Review

December 28th, 2010 | Posted by Eric Swain in Critical Distance Confab:

And so comes to pass the resurrection of the Critical Distance Confab podcast. We’ve been away for almost a year and a half.  We decided to return in a big way. We gathered our panelists to review the year 2010: the biggest stories, events and of course games of the past year. We discuss them, from Bayonetta to Cataclysm. You can download it here or wait the few days till it gets up on iTunes.

Being this is the first time I’ve done audio editing on this scale I hope you all enjoy it.  Please critique and give an suggestions you feel can improve it in the future.


Eric Swain: The Game Critique

Ben Abraham: i am Ben Abraham

Ian Miles Cheong: Stillgray

Kirk Hamilton: Gamer Melodico

Denis Farr: Vorpal Bunny Ranch


Rhetorical Questions

Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter (and Why They Don’t Matter More)

Hills and Lines: Final Fantasy XIII

The Ebert Response

Critical Compilation: Jesse Schell, ‘Design Outside the Box’

“No Cheering in the Press Box” and Other Rules Game Journalism Needs (Link is Defunct. Updated link is here. Thank you PCWorld -ed 2012)

Why Are So Many Indie Darlings 2D Platformers?

Part 1: Direct Download

Part 2: Direct Download

Part 3: Direct Download

Opening theme: ‘Close’ by The Alpha Conspiracy

Closing Theme: ‘Wishing Never’ by The Alpha Conspiracy

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6 Responses

  • Pingback: The Confab « kirk hamilton .com

  • G. Christopher Williams says:

    Hey, guys. I enjoyed the podcast, especially the discussion of the year in review in terms of games criticism itself. (I should probably chime in on the “Rhetorical Questions” topic at some point, as I have a few thoughts on that of my own). I appreciate that you guys are interested in keeping abreast of what discussions are going on. Critical Distance is a really useful resource as all of these words can so easily be lost in the hubbub of cyberspace.

    I think 2010 was a really good year for games in general (much better in my estimation than 2009). While I hear you on the notion that this year was a lot of sequels and the like, I do think that games in some way benefit from sequels in ways that other media don’t (story sequels in novels and movies are often unnecessary but more refined mechanics in games are often very worthwhile–the GTA games tend to improve, for instance).

    What I saw this year is a lot of good ideas from previous games that were better crafted. There’s a lot to be said for quality even if innovation sometimes gets a little lost in the shuffle. I thought the discussion over at the Brainy Gamer (“The action is in the margins”) about this was interesting in light of your discussion of quality and innovation (I actually read it just after listening to you guys, so it seemed almost like a dialogue to me about what we should or maybe shouldn’t value in game design).

    All that said, Deadly Premonition, Red Dead Redemption, Angry Birds, and Enslaved all seem like games that also will “hold up” even if “sequel-itis” was the dominant this year–some of these in a more “culty” way (Deadly Premonition and Enslaved) and some in a more overt and mainstream way (Red Dead and Angry Birds).

    However, I did just want to say thank you again for keeping up this site. I don’t comment at people’s blogs very often, but I do read a lot of folks. This site makes finding interesting stuff to read much easier. Also, thanks for all of the links to my stuff and my colleagues at the Moving Pixels blog over at PopMatters this year. It is nice to see that work featured among so many other good and intriguing pieces of writing about games.

    See y’all in 2011.

  • Is there an RSS feed that I can use? The RSS feed listed on the sidebar doesn’t work for me, and the iTunes link only goes through episode 4, with 5 and all parts of 6 missing.

  • Eric Swain says:

    Michael said he will fix the RSS, among other things when he gets some free time. Ironically iTunes needs a working RSS feed to process the podcasts.

    We also have to fix the categories, so that the critical distance confab one displays all of them, not just the first one.

  • Pingback: standpoints, lists, and selection | malvasia bianca

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