Games and Gaming

Innovated Too Much

“Dungeon Keeper suffered from a few things. I don’t think we did a particularly good job marketing it or talking to fans about their expectations for what Dungeon Keeper was going to be or ultimately should be. Brands ultimately have a certain amount of permission that you can make changes to, and I think we might have innovated too much or tried some different things that people just weren’t ready for. Or, frankly, were not in tune with what the brand would have allowed us to do. We like the idea that you can bring back a brand at EA and express it in a new way. We’ve had some successes on that front, but in the case of Dungeon Keeper, that just didn’t connect with an audience for a variety of reasons.”

EA Mobile boss and brand-fetishist Frank Gibeau, positively dripping with contempt for his customers

Games and Gaming, Gaming Culture

Inside the disintegration of a game jam reality show

“Every side was pulling for what they wanted, and in the end the side that mattered most got burned. We can’t have that,” Rosen writes, in a post that details the behind-the-scenes evolution of a modest game jam into a “terrifyingly enormous spectacle.”

Inside the disintegration of a game jam reality show at Gamasutra

Gaming Culture

Lord of The Flies

This is where things can get unpleasant. You can handcuff people. You can break people’s legs with axes. You can force them to eat tainted food or drink bleach. These are mechanics coded into the game with the presumed intention of making the game more fun for players.

Let’s think about that what that means for a moment. The game designers believed that their game would be improved by the ability to kill other player characters by forcing them to drink bleach.

The New Statesman worries about the Meaning of DayZ.

News

Defending The Bait-and-Switch

We didn’t design this as a “pay to play” or “pay to win” game. It is designed as a free-to-play title where players can commit time or money towards their play experience, and every piece of content in the game is accessible without having to spend a dime.

So what could you pay for in the game, then? If you’d like, you can pay to expedite wait times, dig times, unit production and upgrades, cosmetic enhancements, and bolster defenses for a period of time.

Jeff Skalski, senior producer of the execrable bait-and-switch, pay-to-play new iOS version of the venerable Dungeon Keeper, valiantly attempts to defend the indefensible.

Gaming Culture, News

Whore comma Orient

“It’s the use of the word ‘Orient’, more even than the word ‘whore’, that is the issue,” Lo said. “The O-word is very similar to the N-word for African-American communities. It’s a 19th century racial-colonial conception and it’s especially painful for older people in the communities. That was a very bad time in China, and people don’t want or need to have that dragged up.”City of Monash councillor Jieh-Yung Lo

It is my personal opinion that this man is an overzealous dolt, but you know: red media meat makes politicians’ pants moist, and then they start to say stuff.

Games and Gaming, Gaming Culture

Adults Only

Works like Lula 3D, an adventure game that touted a physics engine called “Bouncin’ Boobs Technology,” or Riana Rouge, an FMV-based game that stars a Playboy Playmate, has porno-level acting and is predictably littered with T and A, aim to do nothing more than tell low-brow jokes and show nude women prancing around. Others like Singles: Flirt Up Your Life or Playboy: The Mansion are naughtier derivatives of better games.

Others are basically just porn.

The present and future of adults-only games.

Games and Gaming, Retrospectives

I Asked And They Made It

About three years ago, I made a Modest Proposal.

We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too.

I dreamed of a Minecraft where you had a tech tree that would allow you to slip the surly bonds of Voxelstan and roam off into space. Well, it seems like somebody went and (kinda) made it. How about that?

Games and Gaming

Psychology

“We feel mental inertia to keep our thoughts in line with our behaviors, and if one changes we’ll often nudge the other so that they match. This means that faced with the fact that you’re a Marketplace user (even just that once), you’re more likely to change your attitude about how dumb the whole thing is.”

The Psychology Behind Steam Trading Cards

Games and Gaming, News

Not Contributing

So I admit the fact that I have to accept a certain level of frustration with the way my money goes to places I don’t like. But the age of Kickstarter brings with it a certain amount of transparency and intimacy that games coming from big companies don’t have. That means that we as consumers and gamers can curate the kind of art and artists we want to succeed—and withholding support in the form of not contributing to Kickstarter campaigns means that we have more direct control over what kind of art populates our world.”

Games and Gaming, Hardware

Bullet The Blue Foot

Microsoft walked back on restrictive provisions it had put in place for the sale and distribution of new games for the Xbox One, but now it’s added a new rule that limits developer access to Kinect.”

‘Corporations may be people, friend’, but by god they are people who are dumb as hammered dogshit.

Games and Gaming

Kill Screen Magazine

Kill Screen is the natural extension of a maturing games industry. Far from the sensationalist juvenilia that dots the web and more accessible than the lofty rhetoric and gamespeak of academics, we’re approaching a beloved medium on its own terms as fans and as critics.

Ludicrously expensive, but at least it’s aimed at thinking adults who also play games, and they may be right that the ‘premium product’ model is the way forward for print publications. [via]

Games and Gaming

Masterpiece: Robotron 2084

“It’s no wonder that many of us often find solace in the high-concept games of the classical arcade era, that beautiful time in the 1980s when Pac-Man was god and Defender was thought to be too damn confusing. There is one game that towers above even those in my—admittedly minority—opinion: Robotron 2084.”

I could not agree more.