The Sunday Papers

Sundays are for continually trying to acclimatise to living in a new place after more than a decade in the same city. Did you know that things are different here? And that they’re not the same as where I was before? It’s very difficult. Probably best to lower myself into my favourite chair and first round up the week’s best writing about games.

Age of Decadence has a reputation as a punishing RPG, and its developers are similarly no-nonsense in this post on how to survive the indiepocalypse. It’s a really a very straightforward breakdown of the basic things they feel you need to do in order to have a chance of success as a developer.

We’ve posted everything we had from day one. If we didn’t show something, it’s because we didn’t have it. We’ve “spoiled” every aspect of the game and answered every question about the game on as many forums as we could, giving people reasons to follow the game.

Go out into the world and engage gaming communities. Don’t hide behind moderators or “community managers”. People who give a fuck about your game don’t want to be “managed”, they want to talk to the guys making the game.

At Zam, Eron Rauch continues to write about esports (or, uh, pre-continues, since this is older than the one I linked last week), and this time urges people to pay more attention to the losers.

Our society exalts winners for their hard work and banishes everyone else—the losers—saying, “no one remembers second place.” Heaven help you if you’re third or lower. This fixation on the lone victor is especially true in the stories that we tell about the young contestants who are gladiators in the digital coliseums of esports. But if we take a broader look at the media coverage of these increasingly-popular events, this trend of hyper-focusing on stories about heroic victories ignores many of the most potentially compelling and relevant parts of esports competitions.

At Eurogamer, pal-o-chum Alex Wiltshire writes about his love of videogame credits.

I always watch the credits of video games. I’m not sure why. I tell myself it’s for professional insight, to recognise names and note relationships to better understand the industry, but there’s something else to it, too. I find them mesmerising, enjoying the sense of finality (despite presumably only having finished whichever game they’re from on Medium, not having touched infinite mode or the multiplayer). And thus I watched Uncharted 4’s credits, which seem to say much about that that game is. The great majority of the early credits are artists – first the art directors, animation leads, cinematic animators and technical art leads, and then great blocks of names: 44 environment artists, 27 animators, 11 technical artists, 12 lighting artists, 11 character artists. Their numbers overwhelm those of programmers and speak of the burden of work that Naughty Dog bore to create this stupefyingly visual game.

Also at Eurogamer, Donlan asks why Egypt spent 3000 years playing a game that no one else liked. Which includes his attempts to play and enjoy said game, and many fine anecdotes.

Senet’s not a dull game, but it is fiddly. As it’s about getting your draughtsmen off the board, there’s a sense of bureaucratic pushing and shoving to it – a bit of a packed elevator experience. With all the squares that require specific throws, and all the squares that are blocked and defended, the RNG is rather strong. And, since in many cases you don’t really have a choice of which piece to move, as the end-game approaches, it gets progressively less tactical. After an hour or two I had yet to play a game in which the likely outcome didn’t veer back and forth madly in the final two minutes. This could be exciting, but since most of the action is actually relegated to the last 5 of the 30 squares – no! houses! – there’s a fair amount of waiting to get to that point. Senet feels, more than anything, like a game that is won or lost by stragglers. It’s certainly not a game with a massive scope for heroism. Leave the heroism to the gods and the giant bathroom sinks. You can see why people may have felt inclined to bet on this.

The last Eurogamer article for the week sees Kate Gray looking at VA-11 HALL-A’s depiction of menial work and whether it satisfies.

Cocktail-making exists somewhere between alchemy and legerdemain, but here it’s something that involves tipping differing amounts of five similar-looking cans into a mixer. When I was a student, there was a lot of that kind of bartending – two parts WKD, three parts Red Bull, eight parts bittersweet, aching nihilism. In Valhalla, it’s a similar hint at the society on the other side of the bar – like students, the people of this broken, terrifying culture want to drink, now, and they don’t much care how it tastes beyond a handful of adjectives – “sweet”, “bitter”, “bubbly”. Why complicate it?

At Gamasutra, Simon Parkin works to dispel myths about “the autistic wunderkind programmer“, which is work worth doing.

Despite the confusion and misinformation that surrounds the benefits and challenges of hiring autistic people within video game companies, there are mainstream studios that, like Microsoft, are eager to specifically hire autistic employees. For them, Moore’s advice is clear. “HR departments at game companies often tell us things off-the-record about the challenges of hiring people on the spectrum,” says Moore. “Our advice is simple: relax the qualifications. We propose an apprenticeship that doesn’t require a degree. Can the candidate do the work?”

I enjoyed this article on how fiction might cope with the modern reality of China.

Fiction can no longer just tell straightforward stories about single topics following single narrative arcs; reality is providing us with all sorts of rich possibilities for experiments in fictional form. To some degree, the more true to reality fiction is these days, the more avant-garde it will seem. The way we look at things determines the way we write about them. Reality is mutable.

Music this week is the sound of a playmat bleep-blooping Frère Jacques over and over again in the middle distance while I bleep-bloop The Units’ High Pressure Days over the top.

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  1. zxcasdqwecat says:

    I liked vallhalla, and still agree with the article, but I feel the whole barteding stuff is developed just enough in that it doesn’t turn the whole thing into a drinking creation simulator, nor does the game grinds like crazy, and instead delivers all the small tales and stuff like a pub place is supposed to. The main tip to players is this game is best enjoyed with drinks and snacks.

  2. Premium User Badge

    Grizzly says:

    At Gamasutra, Simon Parkin works to dispel myths about “the autistic wunderkind programmer“, which is work worth doing.

    Yes. Yes it is.

    • Napalm Sushi says:

      As a recently diagnosed aspie who’s trying his hand at game programming and is, so far, bouncing off hard, I’d like to affirm that autism is as chock full of awkward contradictions and towering speed bumps as any other mental disorder.

      I love learning, memorising and reeling off factoids and lists of categories and I have a broad vocabulary, but I think very abstractly and I struggle to explain my thoughts or to usefully apply my knowledge. I have a fascination with technical subjects like science, maths and procedural programming, but the kaleidoscopic noise of my brain obstructs me from actually practising the nuts and bolts of such things. And despite having such a colourfully visual mindscape, I have a nasty case of dyspraxia (a common comorbidity of autism) that makes my attempts at visual art clumsy and frustrating, while also ensuring that I can’t even just settle for a manual labour job.

      It probably comes as no surprise that I’m among the 80% of autistic people who are unemployed. It really, really isn’t a superpower. There are things we can do very well with intensive support and significant concessions, but without those things, we’re square pegs in society’s round hole.

      • Drakedude says:

        Source on employment? I really wouldn’t generalise about the spectrum since it’s a fucking catch all in the first place.

        • Kolyarut says:

          A quick Google suggests the number may be even lower than that. link to

          • Drakedude says:

            “Full-time employment”. I suspect they’re drawing a distinction between aspergers and autism anyhow, if their source is reliable.

          • Premium User Badge

            Grizzly says:

            Aspergers and autism are no longer seperate diagnosis, though!

  3. RaunakS says:

    At the risk of repeating something that everyone has already probably read, I found this discussion on reddit about truly terrible MMO quest design in Ragnorak Online very interesting, especially since I have never actually played an MMORPG:
    link to

    It is strange to see people justifying unfair or downright malicious gameplay sequences since they have already put in the time to complete it. I wonder how much our psyche is changing due to gaming practices like this.

    • Caradog says:

      That was an interesting read, thanks. I’ve never faced such punishing design in an MMO, but FFXI was rife with appalling quest structure. It mostly had quests with poor rewards that were impossible to complete unless you looked up what to do outside the game. At the time I didn’t know any better, but when WoW came along I was astonished that things didn’t need to be so obtuse.

  4. Chillicothe says:

    About Eron Rauch’s article: “Dear Lord: Please don’t let me go 0-2”

  5. Phantom_Renegade says:

    I usually keep the credits on as well, but I really hate two things about them. 1. They move at a snails pace, and considering the amount of people that worked on them, this means credits take 20 minutes which I think is ridiculous. 2. They don’t use the whole screen, just the left part. This means that a whole chunk of screen is empty where there could have been names.

    You want me to sit through the credits? Then either pick up the pace and fill the entire screen with names, or start seriously limiting who gets a slot on that list. As far as I’m concerned, only the people actually involved in it’s development deserve a spot. That means no marketeers, no ceo’s, and noone in salary administration etc. Just the actual coding teams, the people who did the music, and only the voice actors and the translation team of the language I actually used.

    If I have to sit through another 20 minutes of crawling credits and read the name of some random marketeer or ceo of a subcontracter I’ll just stop watching them altogether.

    • ROMhack2 says:

      I read the article on Eurogamer at the time. If memory serves correctly there was mention of Uncharted IV, which despite praise from Alex was for me one of the worst offenders for boring credits in quite a while.

      Instead of scrolling, they’re static and move at a snail’s pace. At least half of them comprise of the various marketing teams across the world involved in the game, which does say a lot about the game but doesn’t paint it in the best ‘artistic’ light.

      I said this on Eurogamer but I think the creative director(s) should at least try to use the credits to reflect the game’s tone. They seemed unclear on Uncharted IV. Very serious and sombre. Like they might have forgotten they weren’t developing The Last of Us anymore.

      • the_rara_avis says:

        You’re spot on – credits tend to be this last-minute “oh yes we need a scrolly-screen (that isn’t user-scrollable) with gobs of text with people’s names and positions and that’s it for days”. Adventure games (Monkey Island I think?) would throw in funny little outtakes, you could get a gag reel, concept art, SOMETHING while the text rolls. Granted, nobody (??) buys a game/movie/book for the credits, but it’s still part of the whole and perhaps could be treated a bit more in that light.

    • welverin says:

      I sit through the credits of every game I finish, but I’ll grab something to read or putter around with something else while they scroll by.

      Of course I only do this in case there’s something during or after them, like the aforementioned Uncharted 4.

      • malkav11 says:

        I’d pay attention to them if there was anything going on but most of the time it’s just endless minutes of the names of people I neither know nor have any real context for appreciating, so I’ll also tend to tune them out in favor of something else. Or just skip them, if the game lets me. Which the last one I finished, Assassin’s Creed III, definitely did not, to my chagrin. (Ubisoft credits are INTERMINABLE.)

    • Zekiel says:

      I remember enjoying Dawn of War’s credits, which featured various animations of two big units duking it out.

      I feel a certain sense of duty to watch credits, but I frequently don’t finish, because I am supremely uninterested in seeing the names of dozens of localisation and marketing teams. They don’t show these guys’ names in movies, why include them in games?

    • wishforanuclearwinter says:

      Interactive credits, especially when they utilize the game’s core mechanic, are the best. Check out the credits for Splatoon, it’s like a little minigame!

  6. Baines says:

    Maybe the issue with esports is the lack of identity of and association with the teams playing.

    Sports like basketball, hockey, soccer, and American football all have bandwagoners appearing at any championship or big win, but they also have year-round and lifetime fans that will stick with teams that have accumulated years of losses. The teams all have their own identities that are both established and changed over the years, composed of history, owners (and their decisions), coaches, specific players… They have strong ties to locations, though people will as often be fans of teams that are physically no where near where they live.

    Esports don’t have that. Esports feel so much more ephemeral. The teams don’t have identity, the players don’t have much history. (Heck, the games sometimes have little history.) The location tie is largely gone, unless you choose to root for a team that is theoretically tied to your country.

    I’d say that fighting games have somewhat dodged the issue as well. Being primarily 1-on-1 matches, the players are a bit more like star players in regular sports. They establish their own histories over the years regardless of locations, team affinities, or what they play. Fighting games can be hit worse by the relevance of participation issue though, as lower tier players won’t be boosted by association with any team. Daigo remains popular today because of the fame he won many years ago. The story of Tokido being unable to beat Infiltration in Street Fighter 5 meant that Tokido was always mentioned alongside Infiltration, instead of being instantly forgotten. There are people who are known for being the best with specific characters, even though they never win the big tournaments primarily because the match-ups for their character choice are simply so poor. (Kind of a “celebrate a winner” effect, but for a case where the “winner” isn’t even winning.)

  7. GWOP says:

    Hmm, the Iron Tower Studio website appears to be down.

  8. Monggerel says:

    On an unrelated (?) note, I just finished Consider Phlebas (first novel in The Culture series by Iain Banks) and thought it was less of a downer than Use of Weapons.
    I also realized the series itself is more “Young adult fiction”, rather than sci-fi. It’s about as good as that genre ever gets, but I still feel weirded out by some of its trappings, mostly its use of language.
    Maybe that’s just because I grew up reading very different sorts of literature (and in another language, to boot), and pretty much my only contact with “Young adult fiction” of the English variety has been the last few Harry Potter books (until recently, that is), but something about it, even in Use of Weapons which I enjoyed a lot, something about especially the descriptive language and the dialogue just feels sort of… inept? Inappropriate? Even though Iain Banks was(sadly) clearly a talented writer.
    Perhaps it’s the intended audience and not the author. I noticed the opposite problem in Cormac McCarthy’s “All the Pretty Horses”, which, while an enjoyable book, made heavy use of the author’s (in)famous prose and run-on sentences (like this one) to jarring effect, and even his lavish landscape-pontification, otherwise one of the things I like about McCarthy (and which I think he did best in Suttree and worst in Blood Meridian), felt out of place.

    This “Young adult fiction language” is an issue(? maybe it isn’t, it just feels wrong to me) that I’ve not noticed with non-anglophone authors yet, even though I often felt *their* use of language inappropriate in various other ways (Robert Merle for instance loved to write from characters’ internal perspectives, which is a common enough technique, but the way he did it felt *really* awkward in “Behind the Glass” and “Madrapur”, but sort of worked out better in “Malevil” and “Death is my Trade” – and I thought it wasn’t strictly tied to the fact that many of his characters were utterly reprehensible).
    Basically, my (somewhat prejudiced, I guess) gut feeling is that English language novels (the ones I’ve read) aimed at a 12-27 age group take up a vernacular intended to placate the audiance, while at the same time condescending to them. I basically feel that what to me seems “deliberately inept” is, in fact deemed much the same by the author him/herself. Of course, writing is never perfect or even finished, it just needs to be abandoned and tied up in a bundle. But extra effort would be particularly wasted if spent on the “Young Adult” demographic.

    Why the fuck did I just write out all this, I wonder.

    Quite frankly, I dunno! Maybe there could be a “recommended literature” section in the Sunday Papers? Like with music?
    Might be a stupid idea though. Especially with me around to act vaguely offensive towards unseen targe- I mean people.

    • Monggerel says:

      I now realize that (ignoring the completely off-topic and inappropriate nature of my comment) this would have been far more efficient if I gave actual example sentences from, say the two Iain Banks novels I’ve referenced.
      I really wish you could Ctrl-F a physical copy of a book. Alas, I have no drone or knife missile available for that task.
      I do seem to recall a lot of “Circular” and its synonyms (THEMES! RUNNING IN CIRCLES! RECURRING AND SUCH! HO!) but that’s fine. A book with strong central themes tends to emphasize that with language.
      I also recall a lot of “the tall/slender Culture woman” (in reference to Balveda), or “slender hands” (in reference to Balveda’s slender hands) which was again used in “Use of Weapons” (as a weapon… I’m getting away from this thing now) in describing Diziet Sma. Also in UoW, Zakalwe was referred to as “tanned” about once every two pages. People don’t turn their heads; they have a turn their “thin, finely moulded head briefly”. They don’t sneer; their voice sneers.
      Etc. It’s like a need to fill the page, in the same way you need to do so in an essay because you’re you need to hit the word count. Then you can chop sentences when you have that.

      It feels now like my complaints are stupid and have no actual substance, but this kind of not particularly thoughtful use of language is not something I expect to find in classical literature (and when I do it’s really funny). Maybe it’s a matter of individual skill, or literary tradition (or lack thereof) within which someone operates, or maybe I’m hunting snipes.
      Even so. Had to complain somewhere.

    • malkav11 says:

      I really, REALLY don’t think the Culture books are aimed at the YA demographic. There is stuff that happens in them, especially the early books, that I don’t think anybody would consider remotely appropriate for younger readers. The climax of Use of Weapons, for example. I was pretty squicked by that and I’m in my 30s.

      • Monggerel says:

        One of the other novels I mentioned, Death is my Trade, is a fictional autobiography of Rudolf Hess (named Rudolf Lang in the novel), the man who ran Auschwitz. It’s brutal, even by the standards of my other examples (Blood Meridian, etc). I would still absolutely consider it “Young Adult Fiction”. The same goes for The Culture – my point was precisely that the Culture novels fall under this category, rather than science fiction (or space opera).

        I’d say the same for Blindsight, for instance. The sheer “brutality” of these books is, in my opinion, part of the reason why they would fall within YA literature. I honestly think Blood Meridian could be considered YA, if it wasn’t for the fact that it clearly follows a very specific literary tradition stretching from the Bible through Milton through Melville and others, with many elements (symbolism, characters, scenes, turns of phrase, etc) of Blood Meridian beind difficult to understand for someone familiar with its lineage – this is something I find uncommon in Young Adult literature.

        …as I write this, I remember that the book’s title “Consider Phlebas”, and its epigraph (“O you who turn the wheel and look to windward, Consider Phlebas, who was once handsome and tall as you.”) are taken from T.S Elliot’s most famous poem.

        I’m just gonna shut up.

        It’s still YA Fiction damnit.

        • Monggerel says:

          Or, rather, my point was trying to be that English language YA fiction treats its readers like dummies, because they won’t complain about a lack of craft in the literature they consume.

        • malkav11 says:

          YA fiction is aimed at readers between, oh, 12 and 17 or so (though sometimes it achieves some popularity with older readers if it’s actually well written). It’s a genre that is published as such and explicitly identified, marketed and controlled by publishers for the target audience. Nothing you mention would ever be published as YA fiction, at least in America and probably elsewhere, either.

          You are, of course, welcome to identify and label a commonality you perceive between these works but when you choose a label that already exists and has a specific meaning that’s very different from what you’re using it to mean, you’re only inviting confusion and argument.

          • Monggerel says:

            Hm. I may have been misled by my own “between 12 and 17” readings being… well, some of the books I mentioned and others of their ilk. War and Peace. The Brothers Karamazov. Etc.

            But I’ve discussed these books (some of them, at least) with those I grew up around, and they are not at all uncommon reading, nor would I consider all (most) of the books I read between those ages as “Young Adult” literature. Mostly just the examples I mentioned. And I’M certain that the “commonality” I see between these is not just based on my prejudices.
            But, I must concede, my argument was poorly constructed and even more poorly justified.
            I think I need to work this thing out in some form though. Probably not by dropping poorly-thought out shit on some random internet site though.

          • gunny1993 says:

            Yeah, ‘young adult’, is a pretty inflammatory way to describe a book; what I think you mean is that it is a ‘simple’ book, as in it is not overly complex. I consider Terry Pratchett books to be fairly simple, compared to say Dostoevsky and that’s not an insult, but ‘young adult’ really leaves a sour taste in my mouth as when someone says ‘young adult’ to me, all I think of is twilight and I get angry.

          • Monggerel says:

            Hm. I haven’t considered that it might simply be offensive to call something “Young Adult” X.
            (that’s a solid band name though)
            In the end, I personally identify these kinds of novels by their content and approach to a variety of subjects (violence, mostly) as well as interest in certain question of ethics/morality/philosophy. It feels to me that such subjects are most entertaining/fascinating to an age group roughly between 12-27. I’d never expect anyone I know above thirty to read a YA novel expecting to get something particularly novel out of it.
            The quality of prose thing I complained about though, is something I noticed in specific cases, even in novels that I consider decent. Just because something is not for, I dunno, the “No Longer Young Adult” crowd, doesn’t mean it should receive less attention.
            Twilight and its ilk are an extreme example, and there are shitty novels written for all kinds of people. My problem was with the good ones.

          • gunny1993 says:

            Interesting, this might simply be a generational/upbringing/lifestyle gap then tbh, I read a fair amount but I don’t think I’d be able to pick out these recurring themes or styles that you’re seeing.

            I certainly feel like you’ve got a point going somewhere, but quite frankly it looks to be rather complex and unless you’re willing to write what would essentially be a large essay, I don’t think I’m going to fully comprehend your meaning XD

            Since you seem to be a person that knows books I’ll simply do what I always do in this situation, and ask you to list a couple of your favorite books so I can add them to my reading list .

          • Geebs says:

            Banks is Space Opera, with the twist that his protagonists are communist hedonists.

            In a lot of ways that’s the opposite the tiresome and revolting exceptionalism/manifest destiny of YA. Banks’ characters don’t do stuff because they were born special, they do stuff because they want to and their society is permissive enough to just let them get on with it.

            I think that what you’re picking up on is that Banks’ plots are often either formulaic or just generally weak. “Matter” stands out as an example of a bunch of interesting locations strung together by an unimaginably tedious story.

          • malkav11 says:

            I read a lot of adult fiction as a teen (or younger, for that matter), though I didn’t necessarily completely understand or appreciate it. But that really doesn’t say anything about the -intended- audience of those books, which almost certainly wasn’t me.

          • Monggerel says:

            Re: Geebs;

            I’ve only actually read two novels in the Culture series, Consider Phlebas and Use of Weapons. From what I gather, Use of Weapons is considered Banks’ best book, and I enjoyed it quite a lot. The protagonists of these two are either explicitly or implicitly against the Culture and their ideals, both books showing a pretty damning side of the Culture. I liked that! Banks himself claimed to be a communist, which is one thing, but his portrayal of his “communist Utopia” (I never for one second thought the Culture was communist, it’s an empire ran by several thousand god-emperors with a distinctly imperial approach to foreign affairs) is pleasingly multi-sided.
            I do think Cheradenine Zakalwe is the very model of Manifest Destiny though. He’s got knowledge martial and psychological. Etc.
            So these two I definitely felt were a good fit for the “tiresome exceptionalism” (good definition! that’s definitely something I noticed in YA novels, though not ane lement I thought to complain about here) of the genre(s? space opera and YA fiction both have these characters in abundance – I guess young people like and are expected to like power fantasies).
            On a plot-and-semantic-stuff level though, I thought these two were a good fit for the Culture, because it is precisely their “heavily preferred” status as movers/shakers/breakers/fakers etc that put into start relief that the Culture itself is precisely made out of all of these things, which is the opposite of the values they claim to represent (in other words, Special Circumstances and the Minds are the de facto reasons for the Culture’s existence, not the other way around). Which is just my interpretation and really not relevant to poorly constructed sentences and the slender hands of slender people.
            I think I need Ritalin. Lots of it.

      • Zekiel says:

        I’m ni expert on YA fiction, but I agree that the Culture books don’t seem to fit what I perceive as the mild. For a start, they don’t tend to feature teenaged protagonists, which in my limited experience most YA fiction does. And they have some really horrific stuff in occasionally. I think Consider Pphlebas features The Eaters which is a really nasty section.

        It may not be as complex as Dostoyefski but I’m not sure why Ian M Banks would be considered anything but mainstream sci-fi.

    • AngoraFish says:

      You seem to be defining “Young Adult” literature as almost synonymous with bad writing – that is, condescending descriptions, excessively drawn out and laborious prose, unrealistic dialogue… seriously?

      I’m an adult who very much enjoys a good Young Adult novel and a good YA novel is none of these things. I’m also someone who very much enjoys Iain M Banks’ works, and your descriptions of the Culture novels don’t match my experience at all.

      I would agree, however, that the Culture Series is very much in the tradition of Space Opera, “Boys Own Adventure” style action-adventure. Perhaps Boys Own Adventure is the term you are looking for? In which case, sure, it’s not trying to be anything else. It’s genre, go figure.

      I’d also agree that Consider Phlebas is far from the best in the Culture series – the writing is flabby and the story takes you down a number of unnecessarily drawn out rabbit holes that don’t seem to add anything at all to the story. Banks can have a tendency to try to be a lot cleverer than he needs to be, and Consider Phlebas is certainly an example of that.

      Back to Young Adult though. It’s a term that’s often misapplied for marketing reasons (such as recently with “The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making”, which is anything but YA). But in simple terms, Young Adult books tend towards more straightforward themes with a little more tolerance for cliché and “black and white” ethics (because YA readers often haven’t the life experience); almost always have a teenage protagonist; focus on themes relevant to the mid to late teenage demographic such as coming of age stories and relationships; and tend to err on the side of simpler, easier to read words and sentences suitable for shorter attention spans.

      Writing a good YA book is as difficult as writing a good novel of any other kind. Indeed, more difficult for some because it requires one to “cut out the bullshit”, such as the belaboured poetic prose, tediously drawn out descriptions of minutiae and excessive navel gazing common to so much classic pseudo-“literature”.

      • Monggerel says:

        Interesting points about the “genre”! (it’s probably many, under a common label)
        I always assumed “Young Adult” was meant literally, rather than as a euphemism for “Teenager”.
        Also “Boy’s Own Adventure” seems way more damning a phrase to me than “Young Adult” – maybe this is an English Language thing where I being bilingual interpret things a bit more literally? Or just life experience (I don’t know if you’re native English or what and it probably doesn’t matter that much here).
        The ethics thing though… I thought part of YA was trying to introduce readers to more nuanced morality than classic black-and-white, as that would be something more appropriate to young children? So the standard YA stuff would be an exciting adventure that would make the reader think about whose side is more correct, perhaps not even giving enough pointers to make a clear (and clean) decision.

  9. TheAngriestHobo says:

    Okay, a little late to the party, but I just discovered this wonderful article about how the Westboro Baptist Church is being trolled in Pokemon Go. It includes brilliant snippets such as:

    When this was brought to their attention, the Westboro Baptist Church immediately escalated the situation. “We recruited Jigglypuff to deal with the sodomite Loveislove Clefairy for us,” the hate group Tweeted yesterday evening…

  10. mpb says:

    “And thus I watched Uncharted 4’s credits, which seem to say much about that that game is.”

    Typo? How about: “… what that game is.”

    The typo is also in the original.