The Sunday Papers
Sundays are for opening the oven and setting off your smoke alarm. Before you hear the beep, let's read this week's best writing about games (and game related things).
Over on IGN, Rebekah Valentine wrote about Ukrainian developers persevering, and how game developers and event organisers in Ukraine have been affected by Russia's invasion. Such incredibly brave people.
“After a while, you’re so bummed with all of the negative things that you hear, that you have no energy to do anything,” he says. “All you want to do is lay down and hope that it is going to end soon. And some people started to cheer up other guys. They were like, ‘It's all bad, but it is going to be better. Let's do some fun things. Let's make some jokes about the war.’ And it actually helps people to get to normal … And even though [Mutant Football League] is silly, it can help people to find an emotional shelter.
For PC Gamer, Natalie Clayton wrote about Covid-19 and how it taught the games industry to be better. Interesting to hear from devs on how a shift to remote work can pay dividends.
While companies (even outside gamedev) love to boast about the benefits of in-person work, it's often understated how many people aren't comfortable with being ferried into an office every day. For disabled, neurodivergent, queer or otherwise marginalised people, the assumed productivity benefits of office work simply aren't true, and some of their best work gets done when in an environment they feel safe and comfortable in.
For the Video Game History Foundation, Kevin Bunch and Kate Willaert wrote about the woman who brought female representation to games. A fascinating follow-up to Polygon's search for Ban Tran.
However, after working on an unreleased Solar Fox conversion the following year for the Atari 5200 at MicroGraphic Image, Tran simply disappeared. And while there are many people in the United States by that name, none of them appeared to be her. The article on Polygon concluded with musings that her old coworkers may have simply mis-remembered her name - As it turned out, they were only one letter off.
Over on Vice, Patrick Klepek wrote about how preserving video game history sometimes requires partnering with the enemy. An interesting link to the Video Game History Foundation above and a deep dive into playing the preservation long game.
“A few of them [collectors] were turds too, but most of them are decent people,” said Cifaldi. “They're all driven by the same love of video game history that drives me, even if they express that love differently than I do. Private collectors are part of the preservation ecosystem for literally any artform, if you don't believe that go ask any museum curator and they'll set you straight. My fostering those relationships, my going to retro video game shows since literally the first one and having facetime and real human interactions with collectors, is what has gotten many unreleased games online, either directly from my actions or because my work inspired them.”
Music this week is Electric Connect by Milo Clare. Here's the YouTube link and Spotify link. Spotify's Discover Weekly playlist came in clutch here.
That's it for now, catch you next week folks!