James Wallis levels with you

Posts Tagged ‘game philosophy’

Buddha buddha buddha —

When I first read this list of the games that Gautama Buddha apparently said he wouldn’t play (via Ludologist) I reckoned it was 40% likely to turn out to be an elegant practical joke on Buddhists, games theorists and historians, and those who take Wikipedia entries at face value. Well, it turns out it’s the […]

Why Games Are Not Art Yet —

A while back this blog started getting hits from a blog author called Lin Swimmer, or someone who’s called their blog Lin Swimmer, and I was mystified because, though I’m even more clueless than the average bear when it comes to the name/face remembering thing, ‘Lin Swimmer’ is the kind of name that sticks in the mind. […]

Rough Trade —

You’re alone in a foreign country, on a mission of international security. Your police escort has been killed, and you’re in the middle of nowhere, armed only with a pistol and a few rounds of ammunition, most of which you’ve already had to use on malevolent locals. You’ve been captured and injected, you’re alone, no […]

Wondering monsters —

I’ve spent the last week in the south of France, just outside Aix-en-Provence, drinking Banyuls and wondering why developers wait for a body to go on holiday before flooding him with emails. It’s been delightful apart from one evening when we were attacked by a scorpion in the house. We were in the kitchen when […]

Cahiers du Cutscene? —

Wired has suddenly got a bee under its bonnet about the idea that video games need a critical vocabulary before they can begin to be any good, or at least taken seriously. Annalee Newitz argues that film didn’t flower till the 1940s and it was the publication of French film-crit magazine Cahiers du Cinema in […]

A Hiding to Nothing? —

So Hide and Seek the pervasive games festival happened over the weekend. It was a shame it was such a rainy, vile three days for it. But people seemed to have a good time regardless. And it was interesting to see a games event organised by a group with a primarily theatrical background rather than […]

Things to do in game design #1: cheat —

(This post is a follow-up to “Things not to do in game design #2: cheat“) Because it’s not about fairness or balance or level playing fields. It’s about the user experience. Let me tell you about a game you’ve never played. It’s called StarPower. StarPower was created in 1969 by R. Garry Shirts and published […]

Michelin Web —

Since the days of yore video-game magazines have given games a numerical rating. Often it’s out of ten or out of one hundred. Sometimes it has cute star-based systems and breaks things down by different categories. Whatever the system, they all suck. Back when I was editing Crazynet we picked up a reviewing system from […]

Things not to do in game design #2: cheat —

 Yeah, I’ve been playing Puzzle Quest. The thing is, any single-player videogame actually has two roles. Firstly it provides the player with the context of the game: the setting and set-up. Secondly it provides the player with their opponents. And you, the player, automatically assume that it, the computer/game, is keeping those two things separate. […]