Welcome back readers.

We’ve got some good stuff earmarked for you this week, with writing spanning time periods, game genres, and industry trends. Let’s dive right in.

This Week in Videogame Blogging is a roundup highlighting the most important critical writing on games from the past seven days.


This week we open with a hybrid section bringing together concerns of industry and community across different topics.

“While many see MMOs as sites separate from their daily lives, where they play and fight and occasionally get rewarded for their efforts with treasure, the intelligence community saw (and potentially still sees) MMOs themselves as the treasure, to be continuously plundered for fresh data on potential targets. The IC doesn’t see the “magic circle” of Azeroth or Eorzea or Linden World as a barrier, but rather, as a veil from the public’s critical gaze.”

Revival Horror

Our next pairing focuses squarely on Ashley Graham from Resident Evil 4, past and present.

“If you’re a feminist, Ashley talks more, does more, is kind of semi appreciably less sexualised than before. It won’t work on everyone, but enough people will be impressed by this ostensible progress as compared to 2005 that Resident Evil 4 Remake more or less passes the look test. If you like things how they were, and you’re worried about how videogames increasingly seem politicised or driven by a liberal agenda, Ashley still doesn’t do that much, and you still get to order her around, and there’s a few decent close-ups of her and Ada.”

Start Your Engines

Next up, two careful development histories of two very different games.

“it’s difficult to fully convey today just how revolutionary the granular details of Quake seemed in 1996: the way you could look up and down and all around you with complete freedom; the way its physics engine made guns kick so that you could almost feel it in your mouse hand; the way you could dive into water and experience the visceral sensation of actually swimming; the way the wood paneling of its walls glinted realistically under the overhead lighting.”

Stories and Symbolism

Our next three featured authors dig into the narrative nuts and bolts of, again, some very different games.

“I’m the kind of person who mostly sticks with fighting games because I’m interested in their story. And no plot-via-punching shines quite as brightly as the experience found in Soul Edge.”

Climbing and Cataloguing

Here’s a pair of thoughtful meditations on new-and-recent games

“I am not, nor have I ever been, a spiritual person. I don’t think I ever will be. But Rain World helps me understand why people become Buddhists. This game was a spiritual experience for me. I mean that. I hate it, I love it, I am endlessly fascinated by it. It is an utterly singular game. I don’t think there has ever been or ever will be another game quite like Rain World.”

Critical Chaser

I’m glad we’ve begun to move past that ten-year-old 420 article on IGN.

“These cringy weed moments in games and gaming history are a reminder that, despite their connections, video games and weed are still figuring each other out.”


Critical Distance is community-supported. Our readers support us from as little as one dollar a month. Would you consider joining them?


Have you read, seen, heard or otherwise experienced something new that made you think about games differently? Send it in!