This Year in Videogame Blogging: 2021
…from both poles, looking at how the logics of capitalism and imperialism are expressed through play, satirically and sincerely.
“The philosophy of jus ad bellum is laid bare as a farce here, in just these three minutes. War is “just” because the state says so;
…“knowing” that they wouldn’t want to play it. But how can he definitively know what they would want? How can he know that Bloodborne wouldn’t open a new and enjoyable experience for these friends? Thier cannot speak for every player, every person — nor can any critic, journalist, or reviewer.
Thier writes that game reviewers are “falling down on our duty.” But what is that duty? Is it to try speak for everyone? To be objective in our analyses? To eradicate the subjective lens by attempting to conceptualize, assume, and speak for the preferences of “everyone” in our audience?
…that these “hardcore” games are superior and that gamers who play them are not only operating at a higher level but that it is worth aspiring to such a level. Hey girls, enjoy your make-up and cooking games, but really you’ve only made it as a gamer when you’ve learned to headshot and become one of the boys… Why does it need to be this way? How is your mum’s Peggle addiction any less legitimate a gaming experience as your Call of Duty 4 addiction? Aren’t we just talking about different gaming experiences?
While we’re on the subject…
…We’re already on board. We get what we mean when we say “fun.” Speaking from “engaging” is about helping other potential advocates (or at least audiences) understand why we see so much potential in what we do. And at the end of the day, that’s what really matters.
Which is an argument that I’ve been advocating (if somewhat less proactively) since I ran into trouble discussing Call of Duty 4 in a tutorial at University. It doesn’t really make a whole lot of sense to explain the section where the player is kidnapped and killed as ‘fun’. It’s…
…the top of Google searches in ‘“Call of Duty has crippled my Googlability,” says local Cod‘, by (who else?) HardCasual. I hope you like puns.
“What is a man if not Googleable?” ponders a sullen Cod over an extra large mug of green tea. The moment exposes Cod’s existential side. Friends describe his as an open book. They say Cod never plays koi.
Also, by way of a HardCasual tweet comes word of new website Gaming Laid Bare Times, newcomers to “the fake game news scene.” There’s a scene now?
Simon Parkin talks about Frogs,…
…fundamental problem here: I’m a guy on a sofa, not a Spartan giving his life to save humanity. Indeed, the very interactive nature of the practice of playing Halo tends to emphasize, rather than cover over, the enormous gap between pretending to be Noble 6 sacrificing himself and actually dying nobly: when the game ends, we’re still on the sofa.”
The New York Times magazine has an interesting article by Chris Suellentrop, in relation to Call of Duty and the US military. While at Game in Mind, Matt Kaplan looks at the recent controversy of being able to…
…picks the low hanging fruit that is the modern military FPS, arguing that many games in the genre are part and parcel of the military-entertainment complex [mirror]. It is, however, a persuasive treatment of the issue, through the lens of Call of Duty: Black Ops and Yusuf comes across as more exasperated than excoriating:
Though Black Ops blatantly lifts scenes and lines from cinema classics like Full Metal Jacket and The Deer Hunter, it fails to communicate the same anti-war message that Kubrick and Cimino did.
Similarly, Brendan Keogh looked at the same commercial for CODBLOPS…
…things right, not even by accident.
I’ll give very good odds to anyone still wanting to bet that ME2 gets a GoTY from Krpata then.
Oh alright, let’s get all our discussion of shooters out of the way then – Pippin Barr at XugoGaming talks about ‘Theatre of War‘ [mirror and that old bugbear of scripting dramatic failures into games. Specifically, he’s talking about a scene from Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 which makes the player fail in the ‘correct’ dramatic way, not the ordinary “oh I ran the wrong way and fell off a cliff”…