This has been a big week for gaming in the U.S., with the Supreme Court ruling 7-2 to strike down the California law censoring the sale of violent video games to minors. You can read the opinions here. Michael “Brainy Gamer” Abbott discusses both the good and bad of the ruling. Dan Apczynski at Gamer Melodico riffs on the writing itself by making poetry out of it. And the last piece we’ll link to is Adam Sessler’s video explaining in detail some of the implications of the case.
Two pieces from PopMatters this week. G. Christopher Williams looks at auteur Suda 51’s newest work Shadows of the Damned and the relation to his punk like aesthetic. And Nick Dinicola explores the effect of the many different genres Nier incorporates.
We also have two pieces on Tetsuya Mizuguchi’s newest game Child of Eden. The first, from Brendan Keogh at Critical Damage, compares the themes contained in it and its spiritual predecessor Rez. The other, from our own Kris Ligman at her blog Dire Critic, discusses how she sees the game as a spiritual experience.
Two more pieces from Kate Cox at Your Critic is in Another Castle, finishing up her series on the Gamer Gaze: part 2 and part 3.
And two pieces at the German blog Titel. The first has Christof Zurschmitten writing that the comedy genre best fitted for games is slapstick comedy. It’s also about Octodad, Sumotori Dreams and Minotaur China Shop. And Dennis Kogel looks at a new type of critic that has become more prominent recently, the “Troll critic.”
Darius Kazemi on his blog Tiny Subversions writes “How not to write a college essay about videogames.”
Tadhg Kelly at What Games Are weighs in on the concept of perpetual crunch at game studios. He explains why it doesn’t work as a method, and claims that studios that resort to it generally have a failure in leadership. He concludes with:
Some developers regard their time spent crunching as a badge of honour, but it’s not. All it is is abuse tolerance. Exist in the bunker mentality that crunch brings for long enough and you will only be able to think defensively.
At Play the Past, Katy Meyers looks at “The Adventuring Archaeologist Trope” and how it supports outdated thinking in its drive to create adventure.
Adam Ruch writes about Saboteur and how the world failed to convey the story it wanted to tell. He ruminates on a few encounters and how they were or at least could have been more meaningful than the story missions.
Perhaps if Pandemic, and other studios with similar designs, were to trust their worlds rather than their narratives, I would have saved those civilians. I would have, if I thought that it would matter.
Vanya at split/screen co-op, when discussing on war games and the effect it has on our thinking rather than our actions, says “It’s all fun and games until someone plays it for real“.
Matthew Weise continues his podcast/interview series with former Looking Glass studios members. This week he sits down to talk with Ken Levine.
Emily Short writes about the protagonist in Don’t Take it Seriously Babe, It Just Ain’t Your Story, and thinks that protagonist may be why it feels incomplete.
Brain Taylor opens his new column, Paratext, at Joystick Division by explaining why it is called that and what is to come.
Tevis Thompson looks at Portal 2 as a game about point of view and how the game literally makes you see things from a different one by thinking with portals.
Finishing us off this week, the Extra Credits crew at the Escapist have returned to their inclusively series by looking at Race in Games, presenting L. A. Noire as an example that used the theme well.