Sundays are for buffering you against the impact of an incoming Monday morning. Nestle within its plush airbag, and enjoy reading gaming articles from the week.
- The New Yorker hosts a piece by Maria Konnikova, looking at the first-person shooter, and why it's such a successful genre. Ignore the awful title, this isn't a tedious "why oh why?" piece, but rather an exploration of the experience and science of the FPS. "As the environmental complexity, variety of opponents, and difficulty increased, the players’ [of Half-Life 2] faces registered greater positive emotion while their skin indicated increased arousal. Subjectively, they reported feeling happier and more immersed in the experience. They also felt an increase of challenge and tension—Csikszentmihalyi’s optimal match between skill and challenge—as well as a heightened sense of action as their own identity melted away."
- I know what you're wondering right now. Why isn't there a bath-based gaming peripheral? Well, there is. The Escapist's Josh Engen writes about a team of Japanese researchers who have figured a way to connect a Kinect to a... bath, to make an interactive display surface. Which is used to TURN YOU INTO A WIZARD. If you watch the video in the article, I promise you you will gasp.
- Eurogamer's Tom "Tom Bramwell" Bramwell is always worth reading, and his blog on the site is superbly honest and forward. Yesterday he put up a splendid post grumbling about the ridiculously small hard drives on the Xbone and PS4. "My PlayStation 4, meanwhile, is already home to Killzone (38.5GB), FIFA 14 (9GB), Battlefield 4 (33.9GB) and Assassin's Creed 4 (21.2GB). That's over 100GB gone for four games. Need for Speed Rivals is sitting there winking at me through shrink-wrap - 17GB of beautiful street racing waiting to take me a third of the way from zero to 60 (gigabytes). I guess it's a good thing Sony is embracing smaller indie titles, really, because at this rate there isn't going to be much room for anything else."
- Nearly two months back Sunday Papers linked to the first part of Jody Macgregor's Alice's Adventures In The Shivering Isles. It's now concluded, at eight parts long, and you can catch up on the lot here. "With the Font of Madness cleansed, we can finally consecrate this staff and technically ascend to something resembling godhood. Sitting on the throne, I don’t feel much like a god. I’m holding a stick with an eyeball on it."
- Obligatory Spider Queen decides to do some proper research into the depictions of men and women in League Of Legends, and does so meticulously. "People defended Zyra‘s addition to the cast as being okay because Varus exists, but look at the burden he’s shouldering as Riot’s token sexy man. He has to balance out 8 female characters with his washboard abs, and that’s if we pretend we’re delusional and think Udyr is supposed to be sexy. And Kayle? She has to balance the scales against a whopping 15 male characters."
- If you missed Charlie Brooker's Videogames Changed The World, and you live within a territory Channel 4 considers acceptable, you can catch up with it here. If you live outside of the places where the legitimate, legal online stream of the free-to-air programme will play, then goodness knows what you could do about it.
Music? You want music? Then you must have Ellen Save Our Energy by Windmill.