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February 28th

…be repaired.

  • The man who made ‘the worst video game in history’ | BBC News The rather sad story of how the Atari ET game was made and what happened next for its creator.

“I’m not sure exactly what I was full of but whatever it was, I was overflowing with it.”

  • Solving XCOM‘s Snowball Problem | Tom Francis Tom Francis gives some suggestions on small changes that could make XCOM more fun while remaining true to the fiction.


Final word

As always, I want to remind you that we are community-supported, and that you…

Kill Screen archive

…lists about gta v we decided not do

  • 5 most underwhelming apologies 2013
  • top 5 michael brough games 2013
  • how xcom taught me i dont matter
  • new pbs gameshow asks would it matter if master chief were gay
  • twisted pixel lococycle night trap and sordid history fmv
  • how zen videogame tengami destroys fps culture
  • anti snoozing game turns waking competition
  • quest sequel weirdest game ever made over
  • playlist 121 peggle 2 rekindles flame datajack hacks inside and radial runner colorfully infuriates
  • look back last great console war
  • oculus rift installation lets bikers cycle through virtual worlds
  • real reason were still…
  • Abstract image evoking bird silhouette

    January Roundup

    This month’s Blogs of the Round Table received the biggest response ever: a cavalcade of contributions so intimidating, I can feel my wrists hurting in mere anticipation of the impending writeup. “Don’t do it Alan”, the sentient tendons whisper, but that would be a disservice to all of the writers who took part. Also, I’ve already written this paragraph and so may as well finish. Here we go.

    January’s theme was Challenge:

    “The past few years have seen a resurgence of challenging games: Dark Souls, Spelunky, FTL: Faster Than Light, XCOM: Enemy Unknown to name but a few. Do you

    October 14th

    …informed a particular aesthetic and mood of darkness. He sums it up pretty neatly in his opening words: “Darkness isn’t what it used to be.”

    In light of the new XCOM: Enemy Unknown releasing last week, Eurogamer’s Alec Meer delivers an unflinching retrospective on the original and how it stacks up– or doesn’t. Meanwhile, as part of the latest issue of the Games Studies journal, Carly A. Kocurek takes us on a look back at 1976’s Death Race, “the United States’ first video gaming moral panic.” In doing so, she asks a pretty pointed question: why do some kinds of…

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    October Roundup

    …Stephen King novel? Does your skin crawl at the mere thought of being scared, or do you relish the surge of adrenaline? Have you ever been scared or felt uncomfortable in a game that wasn’t intended to make you feel that way?”

    Christopher Floyd writes about the fear of death, specifically dealing with the consequences of death Silent Hill: Downpour and the tangible loss of a squad member in XCOM: Enemy Unknown rather than the death of the player character.

    Peter Shafer talks about how horror games force us to look on, unable to cover our eyes unlike if we…

    November 4th

    …Dishonored is all about how poorly you treat those you choose to treat poorly. Cameron Kunzelman, in a moment where he chooses to promote his own writing, puzzles out the ethics of the world of Dishonored and finds them painfully and artfully sad. Oh, and Scott Juster thinks that river krusts are creepy.

    One second. Let us check ourselves lest we wreck ourselves. Joe Martin wants us to pause of a minute and realize that Dishonored is a lot like Thief. XCOM is back, too, and we’re all drooling and the thought of a new Sim City. Are we…back in…

    January 2013 – ‘Challenge’

    It’s 2013! A new year and a time for resolutions, and I’m not talking about ‘1080p’ here. New Year’s Resolutions can be fun and inspiring, but there’s a balance between setting a formidable challenge and an unrealistic goal. Videogame players are no strangers to challenge of course, and that’s the theme of this month’s Blogs of the Round Table – Challenge.

    “The past few years have seen a resurgence of challenging games: Dark Souls, Spelunky, FTL: Faster Than Light, XCOM: Enemy Unknown to name but a few. Do you think videogames have more value in providing a stern challenge

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    January 6th

    You’re reading this week’s edition of This Week in Videogame Blogging, which is kind of the whole purpose of Critical Distance. I’ll be taking over curation duties from Kris Ligman this week to bring you another fresh pile of good reads for you to peruse during your commute or from the comfort of wherever it is you like to read profound, and well-written articles about videogames.

    Firing off the edition is an article by Jonathan McCalmont on Arcadian Rhythms, who writes about the stylistic differences between the original UFO: Enemy Unknown by Microprose and XCOM: Enemy Unknown from Firaxis.


    January 13th

    …I have no idea what’s going on in here but I bet these two pieces by Gus Mastrapa will be the best XCOM fanfiction you read all week.


    If you’re craving a bit more, pop on over to Rock, Paper, Shotgun’s Sunday Papers for a spot of tea.

    That’s all the links that’s fit to print for this week! Join us again next Sunday for more of blogging’s best writing about games. In the meantime, be sure to send us your recommendations by email or by @ing us on Twitter, and drop by this month’s Blogs of…

    March 10th

    …games criticism’s most prolific. Yours truly poked curiously at Sleep is Death and the female monsters of Silent Hill: Downpour, but my personal favourite? Denis Farr’s exploration of gender in XCOM: Enemy Unknown and The Sims. There’s enough material in this mag to fill its own TWIVGB post, to be honest, so definitely pick it up if you just can’t cram enough criticism into your cranium.

    Meanwhile, over at Indie Game Magazine, Marc Isaacson describes the dangers of in-app purchasing. While this editor is not 100% sure she agrees with the idea of IAPs being scammy generally – I am…