Archive for January, 2013
Ever since Sandy Hook, video games have been in the limelight along with guns as the center of political attention. Again. Even though I find it infuriating that old men in suits are brainwashing the general public into thinking that video games cause violence or are a threat to our children, I was particularly interested in a certain governor. This governor would be Mr. Dannel P. Malloy of Connecticut. He said, and I quote, “If we spent as much time and energy on destigmatizing mental health treatment as we do in the proliferation of these video games that destigmatize violence, we as a society would make great gains.” So, there is a conscious effort from video games to distance themselves from the issue of violence.
Ah Myst. The inescapable game. Ported to everything including your piano, lamp, and garage door, If you haven’t played this on one device or the other, HOW?! If you haven’t, Myst is this week’s game, and this is why you should play it.
Chances are, if you’re in game design, you know all of what I’m about to say. If you’re in a Game Design course in a college, you’ve also heard this lecture. But I feel a lot of people don’t know why Super Mario Bros. is so awesome. It’s not because it had a BUTT-TON of levels at the time, not the fact that for many it was the first game they had been exposed to, but for one reason. World 1-1. It’s the best tutorial anyone could possibly make, because of a few key things that I’ll draw together at the end of this piece But in the meantime, let’s act like someone who’s never played a video game before, and let’s take that person’s journey through World 1-1.
Alright, Super Mario Bros.!
First up, a disclaimer, This won’t be bashing up on Notch, and I know this topic and tweet is old and crusty, but it still provides a jumping off point for today’s topic: linearity.
Waaaaay back in April last year, Notch tweeted (and I’m paraphrasing here), “Making your game linear is artistic suicide.” Now, there are a lot of ways you could interpret it, but for my purposes here, I’ll say that he doesn’t like linearity and that it destroys any artistic value the game had. Notch, I think you’re a cool guy, but perhaps you should think before you tweet, not only for you, but for you to not dupe budding game designers into thinking in your ways. Linearity is not “artistic suicide”. Read the rest of this entry »
Maybe it’s just because I’m a gamer, and tend to gravitate towards things involved with gaming, but I saw a lot of news from CES about new means of interaction. There was Valve and Gabe Newell talking about bio-metrics and gaze tracking, there were demos of the latter, hand tracking, and a whole slew of interaction methods and devices that didn’t require a keyboard and mouse. From a gaming perspective, it seemed like everyone was dissatisfied with what we’re using now?
But why? Read the rest of this entry »
You may be wondering what this whole game if the week thing is all about. Well, every Friday, I have decided to highlight a game that I feel is either really really good, or is interesting enough where it should be at least looked at. Journey falls into the former category, and this is why you should play it.