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The Sunday Papers

Sundays are attempting to recover from GameCity 6. I was only there for a day, and I’m almost dead. That said, I did sit through a full eight hours of Thrilling Wonder Stories the day before, which meant by my brain has way too much to process. So Sundays are for digesting massive input. Here, why not try it yourself?

  • PC Gamer play Artemis, the starship bridge simulator thing: “Uhurich McCormick: I’m working the communications rig and am supposed to use the ship’s arrays to chat directly with the things hanging in space around us: to secure docking permissions, check the status of allied ships, things like that. I’d previously been wittering away happily with the station’s manufacturing teams to get some more photon torpedoes, but out in the inky blackness of the void, there’s no one to talk to. Aww. Wait, we’ve just scooted past something! Some red dots on the ship’s scanner. I call over to Graham and ask for his expert analysis on what they are. “Red dot things, over there!” he squeaks. Thanks, Graham. Are they hostile? Let’s find out.”
  • Gamasutra talk to Raph Koster about the sense of “loss” that pervades games going mainstream by moving into social media: “To me, it feels like how opera fans must have felt when people first showed them their first primitive movies,” he suggests. “The world is moving on. I feel that sense of loss, but at the same time, I’m excited by the new canvas.”
  • While at Gamasutra check out this piece, where Hecker talks about whether designers should necessarily be programmers. Raven’s Manveer Heir also comments: “The dirty little secret is I don’t like to program,” he says. “Programming is like the grinding quest I have to do to get that little piece of enjoyment and satisfaction that I like.”
  • Bob’s Gaming Page has an interview with Space Chem designer Zach Barth: “I made the mistake of testing the game with people who all thought that chemistry was a completely legitimate theme for a game. It wasn’t until we shipped the game that we realized people mistook it for educational and refused to have anything to do with it.”
  • Film Crit Hulk on the sexism of Arkham City. On the “realism” argument: “BECAUSE HULK HATE TO BREAK IT TO YOU, BUT THAT’S NOT HOW ACTUAL CRIMINALS ARE IN PRISON POPULATIONS. NOT BY A LONG SHOT. IF YOU’RE SO CONCERNED WITH REALISM THEN YOU’D OBVIOUSLY REALIZE THAT THEY ARE HUMAN BEINGS. DEEPLY FLAWED HUMAN BEINGS. SOMETIMES BROKEN HUMAN BEINGS. SOMETIMES HUMAN BEINGS WHO ARE CAPABLE OF DOING THE WORST THINGS ONE CAN DO ANOTHER. THEIR REASONS FOR DOING SO, THEIR SOCIOPATHY, THEIR SOCIAL CONSTRUCTS. THEY ARE ALL PART OF A HUMAN STORY, OFTEN TRAGEDY. AND THAT STORY EXISTS ON A GRAY SCALE OF HUMAN EXISTENCE. AND THEN THERE’S THE FACT THAT MOST OF THEM ARE THERE BECAUSE THEY WANTED TO GET HIGH.”
  • GiantBomb on When a Mostly Positive Review Becomes “Controversial”: “Thing is, I’d rather read a thousand words about why someone didn’t like Uncharted 3, so long as the author’s building a proper case, rather than trolling fans. In Parkin’s review, he outlines a grand critique against the Uncharted series as a whole, written through the lens of its latest release, and makes a credible argument for why Uncharted’s highest highs naturally create unavoidable lows. It’s a feeling that’s been with me since the beginning of Drake’s journey, but especially so in Uncharted 2, when players may miss the directorial cue from the game, such as a timed jump, and have to repeat it over and over again.” And here’s the controversial review.
  • If buying a book was like buying a game.
  • Wired talk game piracy with a piece entitled “If You Want To Fight Piracy, Make Better Games”.
  • Sinister Design has some interesting thoughts on gamification.
  • Digital Foundry on how Battlefield 3 runs across the three formats.
  • Ambient challenge discusses Metro 2033.
  • The animatronics show reel from Thrilling Wonder Stories. I’ll link the live taxidermy when they put that up…

I don’t think I’ve managed to listen to anything new this week in the ways of music. Anyone got any suggestions?

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Jim Rossignol

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