This was a weird year for me, in terms of games. There was the release of something that I had been looking forward to for a long time, but it didn’t really hit for me. I spent the first half of the year paralyzed with fear and absorbed in old favorites, and the latter half too busy to get into anything new. So, there’s not a lot to go on here, really. But, I’ve still got Some Thoughts on a few things.
It’s that time again, for me to write up my favorite games in a somewhat unstructured article. I did not play very many different games this year, but I did find a few gems that I really enjoyed a lot. These are presented in chronological order, not in ranking.
So, there’s been a bit of Discourse going on lately in certain circles of the internet, which I happen to find myself in, regarding good ol’ Dungeons & Dragons.
Particularly, a description of orcs from the 5th edition rulebook has caught a lot of flak for being, um, pretty damn racist. There have also been people coming out and just saying that D&D has always been a racist and colonialist game anyway, so this is nothing surprising. Continue reading “Dungeons & Dragons & Colonialism”→
Lots of interesting new ideas in the space, and some refinements of old ones. Here’s a list of my personal favorite games of this year, in no particular order. Making an ordered list can be fun, but it’s ultimately pretty pointless. Continue reading “Games of the Year 2019”→
I have a hankering to dig deeper into an issue that came up in a recent Moby Dick post, but is an example of a larger issue in media.
In that post, I talked about theodicy, the practice of explaining why there is evil in the world when God is supposed to be both all-powerful and benevolent towards humanity. The one I talked about there was an ancient theodicy, from the book of Job. But today, I’d like to talk about the modern form this has taken, as best exemplified in the Stephen King novel/miniseries/film IT. Continue reading “IT and Modern Theodicy: The Big Black Blob Problem”→
Hey! Game reviews are a thing I do sometimes, when the stars align just right.
So, after many years of development, another big Kickstarter success has finally been released. Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night is directed by Koji Igarashi, affectionately referred to by fans as IGA. It is, essentially, a new Castlevania game, in the style of those that were directed by IGA back at Konami, when they were interested in making video games. Continue reading “Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night Review: A Fine Return to Form”→
The vast majority of roguelikes don’t have any sort of plot at all. Or, at least, only the most basic bare bones of one. More of a framing story, something to explain what’s going on on only the most surface level. Going all the way back to the original Rogue, where you are simply trying to retrieve the Amulet of Yendor. Often, they run along those lines, get to the end of this dungeon and either retrieve this artifact or kill this evil wizard or whatever.
I have kind of a strange history with the Yakuza series.
Back in the PS2 days, it was just sort of another game on the shelves among hundreds. I had no idea what it was about, other than Japanese organize crime, or even what kind of game it was. As a Nintendo fan going way back, the fact that it was made by SEGA was meaningless to me, and if anything made me less inclined to give it a shot. Continue reading “Yakuza Kiwami: A Strong Foundation”→
I’ve been working on developing a video game for the past year or so.
It’s something that’s very important to me, a passionate pursuit that saved me from the depths of despair, way back when. But, progress has come in fits and starts. I learned to use Unity, found that I absolutely hated it, switched to Godot, and have been messing around with that for a while now.
Most of the work I do, though, is actually just writing. Brainstorming ideas for the setting, gameplay, various sorts of intricate systems. In physical notebooks and in dozens of different documents on my computer. Writing away, planning and planning for all sorts of different things.
It’s been a while, but I feel like writing another game review.
I’m a big fan of the Souls series of video games, from From Software, going way back. Not quite back to the beginning, I played Demon’s Souls when it was released by Atlus and not the Asian version that was available in English before then. And, I must admit, I have never dared to try the old, impossibly archaic King’s Field series on the Playstation 1 and 2. But, going back reasonably far, shall we say. Continue reading “NIOH: Brought Down by Minutia”→