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July 30th

…that while your experience is personal, others will accept you for who you are and what your art says. The openness of HFTGOOM is an exercise in radical healing for someone who has gone through Ann’s experience of being forced to close themselves off.”

Gems All the Way Down

As the most recent AAA forever game vying for mindshare, Diablo IV also continues to elicit valuable critical insights. Here are two highlights I came across on my travels this week.

  • Diablo 4 teaches us that less is more when it comes to the action bar…

July 2nd

…most important critical writing on games from the past seven days.

Diablo For Answer

We’re off to a hell of a start this week with two crunchy critiques on Diablo games past and present. Sorry.

  • Diablo’s Unadorned Dark Fantasy Still Has Claws | Paste Grace Benfell peers into the minimalist charms and roads-not-taken in Tristram’s first Darkening.
  • diablo 4orse discourse | a weapon to surpass blaming yourself or god while knee-deep in the dead Chuck Sebian-Lander isn’t horsing around in this meditation on the little things Diablo IV gets right about the journey over the

July 10th

Welcome back readers.

We’re running a wee issue this week, a portable one even, so we will once again dispense with the usual format and get right to the good stuff.

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

  • The Diablo is in the details | In our first selection of the week, Brendan Sinclair unpacks the PR-speak and numbers games that further obfuscate the realities of the F2P business model, in Diablo and elsewhere. I’ve appreciated that the high-profile launch

This Month in Videogame Vlogging: March 2024

…the Center of Diablo? [A Franchise Retrospective] | Noah Caldwell-Gervais (4:05:30) Noah Caldwell-Gervais takes the deepest of dives into Blizzard’s Diablo series, from the halcyon early isometric ARPG days of its first entry to the more ignominious entries, like the pay-to-win Diablo Immortal or the microtransaction-riddled Diablo 4.

Grab Bag

Grouping up video essays into digestible subjects is sometimes like herding cats. Here are some great videos that don’t really fit into other sections.

  • My Thoughts And Feelings on Dark Souls: The Archthrones | Sputnik34 (17:06) Dom Locastro gives us his early impressions on the…

June 10th

…failed to find an audience and then how surrogate ruins the otherwise grand Diablo 3.

Ah, no no. You want something more substantial, something more meaningful, something more political? You are in luck, madam! Thanks to a shipping error I have an abundance of just such a thing from Medium Difficulty. I have a Kyle Carpenter unpacking of the polemics of Tentacle Bento and examining all of the unsaid assumptions of such a thing. Also, a certain Megan Townsend bit on where Harvest Moon goes wrong with female representation. But far more bombastic is this Adam Maresca piece on…

Kotaku UK archive

…Final Fantasy Xiv Heavensward Log One Finally 2015/06/30 Assassins Creed Creator Plans Ambitious Comeback 2015/07/01 Sources Warner Bros Knew Arkham Knight Pc Mess Months 2015/07/01 Steam Players Make Justice Virtually Imprison Troll 2015/07/02 E3 Meeting Pro Gamergate Developer 2015/07/02 Heroes Storm Makes Butcher Diablo Scary 2015/07/02 Worth Reading Trying Develop Brand New Drinking Game 2015/07/03 Games Fewer Features 2015/07/06 Destinys Lag Situation Huge Bummer 2015/07/06 Love Frustration Ambiguous Video Game Endings 2015/07/06 Relentless Champions Classic Fallout 2015/07/06 The Land Where The Spectrum Lived On 2015/07/07 Riot Tried Fixing League Legends Jungle Created New Monster Instead 2015/07/08 Creepy Website Is Stealing…

June 5th

…self-determination in the face of the wounds capitalism and broader dominant culture inflict on us even when we “win” or simply survive.

  • Conversation In The Ruins Of Interplanetary Capitalism | Unwinnable Ruth Cassidy chats with Gareth Damian Martin about the material and embodied conditions and struggles which inform the design and play of Citizen Sleeper.
  • Diablo Immortal reveals Diablo as the slot machine it always was | Polygon Maddy Myers observes that in a microtransaction-suffused environment, Diablo only becomes more the thing it always was.
  • ‘Hardspace: Shipbreaker’ Understands the Joy and Grace of Good Work | VICE…
  • July 24th

    “The deliberate design and intent behind the camera in Session is incredibly important when it comes to skating because the main way we’ve consumed skateboarding up until the Instagram age has been through street skating videos shot on these imperfect cameras with imperfect lenses and lighting. There is an endearing rawness there that Session mimics honestly.”

    • Diablo Immortal’s microtransactions aren’t an anomaly — they’re expected | Polygon Still in the present, we now turn our mechanical attenion away from the satisfying and towards the predatory. Here, then, Kazuma Hashimoto situates Diablo Immortal’s monetization model in

    June 12th

    …Maybe I just don’t like Zelda? | No Escape Kaile Hultner offers that perhaps the only thing harder than avoiding Zelda’s massive, fomo-powered gravity well is forming a unique opinion about it.

  • Diablo 4’s onslaught of MMO features hints at a questionable live-service future | Polygon Alexis Ong bears witness to a richer but colder, lonelier tapestry as Diablo continues its slow mutation into a forever game.
  • “Diablo has always been transactional, but in the best of times, those transactions were made between players without Blizzard barging in like a chaperoning nun. Today, most interactions are…

    May 27th

    …The game is now about performance, in more ways than one.

    And you may have heard that a certain long-awaited game starting with D and ending in -iablo 3 was finally released recently. Kill Screen’s Yannick LeJacq reflects how the Diablo series puts the agony in games of agon: “When I start to get exhausted, when bolts of pain shoot through my knuckles and up my arm, I have to remind myself that this is a game about hell.” Elsewhere, Unwinnable’s Jenn Frank thinks the game is just too gosh-darn cute:

    In playing Diablo III, I…