Welcome back readers.

This week the thing I’m plugging is the Palestinian Relief Bundle over on Itch. They’ve smashed their initial goals and I hope to see them smash a bunch more. Check it out!

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

Bleeding Edge

This week’s industry-themed section focuses on the contentious boundaries between tech, labour, and the wider world.

“Samantha Béart, the actress who played Karlach, the Tiefling barbarian with a fiery golden heart from Baldur’s Gate III, recently commented on AI replacing human talent in games, during a talk with narrative designer Alexa Ray Corriea. She said that despite the games industry being decimated by speculation of overemployment during COVID-19 lockdowns and sweeping adoption of AI tools that “people really love human made games” and that if there was an argument in favour of that it would certainly be Baldur’s Gate III.”

What’s New?

Here we’ve gathered reviews, impressions, and spotlights across a spread of new and recent games.

““Grief isn’t linear,” Salim said during a Tales of Kenzera presentation junket in early April. That’s why the game is a Metroidvania, as the genre eschews linearity, forcing you to switchback over covered ground in order to eventually move forward. I am reminded of Salim’s words as I fight my way through the game’s beautiful world, as I struggle with certain enemies, and even when I turn off my PS5, head out into the real world, and find myself frozen in place by the stabbing knife that is a memory of my Gramps randomly breaking through. Just like in life, Tales of Kenzera: Zau has moments of brevity and wit and joy, intermingled with loss and profound sorrow.”

Critical Currents

Let’s keep the focus on contemporary games, but with a shift to more focused and sustained analyses covering adaptation, narrative, audience, and more.

“The truth is, a lot of people — men, women, nonbinary, straight, queer — find Eve attractive. However, the way Stellar Blade is being marketed is drawing in the new GamerGate 2 crowd, and Eve is being used as a cudgel by which to bash other feminine protagonists”

Dot Matrix

Now let’s move into some retrogaming retrospectives.

“It’s the Rocket Knight Adventures of shmups, the perfect marriage of technical skill and awe-inspiring flair, the sort of game that throws more incredible ideas on the screen—and pulls every single one of them off to perfection—in five minutes than most shmups dream of having all game long.”

Lasting Impression

Let’s circle back now to return to the influences and impacts of games on both players and wider cultures.

“The game attracted obvious controversy upon its release, including a lawsuit from the United States Postal Service and multiple cries from politicians such as Joe Lieberman decrying it for its senseless violence, calling it “digital poison.”, but the great irony is that Postal’s simulation of mass shootings are less of a misanthropic murder simulator and more of an incisive deconstruction of the era-typical shooter.”

Critical Chaser

Hot on the heels of our recent Fansite Jam, here’s a lovely historical foray into the early gaming Internet to close out the week.

“These sites weren’t just vehicles for information dissemination or marketing outreach, but dynamic, living entities that had to be tended to and fed and monitored by the devs. The result, for better or worse, was a level of intimacy and candid dorkery between players and devs that Discord can never replace.”


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