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The Sunday Papers

It’s RPS’ collation of thoughtful papers, posted on a Sunday hence… oh, you got it. We compile stuff worth reading and lob it in a list and then publish it, while trying to avoid putting a link to new tracks from a post-Mclusky band.

  • This was buried deep in the comments thread for Walker’s piece on Bioware’s dealing with issues of morality in Mass Effect. Patrick Weekes, the writer/designer of the section Walker took to task playfully turned up to explain the background behind it, which was fascinating reading. He’s reprinted it on his livejournal, and is well worth reading to grasp some of the difficulties of development: “Even without combat, the Citadel pushes the 360 to the edge of its memory constraints pretty hard, and at one point in playtesting, we were playing in a special game mode, “Get from one end of the Presidium to the other without crashing,” using our FPS indicators as sonar to try to figure out which way to go without our memory going splat.”. Recommended.
  • Briefly following that, Jay Barnson of Tales of the Rampany Coyote also read Walker’s piece and had a little head think about that part of game design. And he posted the results. Also, fun James T Kirk inspiration image.
  • Jim added this to our RPS document of Sunday paper stories with the note “Why no-one should play Second-life”. Which is hard, but after reading about the attempted kidnapping of an online boyfriend, you have some sympathies with the position. But – y’know – I went to the wedding of the first person I met From The Internet way back in 1997 last night. The internet is just peoples, and so is this.
  • When there’s a mass of money, the business papers will follow. As is the case with BusinessWeek looking at Blizzard after the Activision merger deal.
  • Remember the previous Sunday Papers when I linked to NoContinues’ interview with the Ex-editor of the Portuguese Arcade-esque games mag HYPE and didn’t understand a word of it? Well, they’ve lobbed up a translated version. Nelson Calvinho gives us a look through the window to the magazine culture of another country. Different countries’ scenes – and associated press – fascinate me, just because we presume it’s the same and it never is. Hearing of the sales figures a Finish games mag manages to get in a country of Five Million – comparable favourably to a UK mag like PC Gamer – just makes you think, y’know? Well… makes me think, anyway.
  • Talking about making me think, the last results of my last big ol’ brain download have been discussed all over the place. The one I’m linking to is Thom Dinsdale’s piece where he takes a marketeer’s perspective on it, saying that the system pretty much works fine and we’ll be fools to change it. While is all very well – but the biggest misreading of the piece is thinking I was arguing this is something we should do. “Should” doesn’t come into it. It’s me arguing what I think is going to happen, and what possibly desirable side-effects there would be when it does. But still, fun stuff.
  • The Future of the Left, The House That Hope Built. Scroll down to the bottom of the player for more Falco agreeable taut-shoutiness of bon mots.

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Image derived from a Creative Commons-licensed photo by Matt Callow

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Kieron Gillen

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Kieron Gillen is robo-crazy.

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