A decade ago, the gaming world went gaga for Deus Ex, a dark conspiracy thriller with expansive ambitions and supernaturally bad dialog. Though flawed and ugly, many saw in it the future of sandbox-style gaming, and they had visceral fun playing it. Tom Chick, however, just saw crates. Lots and lots of crates. His minority report remains the perfect hype-ignorant video game review: so outraged were fans that the review's publisher ran an appropriately adulatory 'second opinion' shortly thereafter.
One angry fellow - he was a kid really - sent me a picture of himself, pointing a gun at the camera. He wrote something like "go ahead, make my day" in the email. I suppose that could be considered a death threat, but I would have preferred something more dramatic like "I will totally kill you because you didn't like Deus Ex!" I tried for a while to respond to everyone as graciously as I could, but I eventually petered out. So if you wrote me an angry email ten years ago, I apologize for not getting back to you.
Chick also explains how the notorious "7-9" scale of game review ratings works: you ask an editor if it exists, he says it doesn't. Then, when you assign something "3," it does.
This article by Holly Gramazio suggests several ideas for games you can play alone or with friends while in public. My favorite of the lot was posted by a Redditor, and seems like a great way to feel more positive about the world: When I’m out in public or driving or something, I like to […]
Paolo Pedercini compares every bee-themed game with an eye to their scientific accuracy. Bees, particularly honeybees, are often incorrectly characterized in videogames – as well as in other media. Sometimes that’s due to their similarity with with the more aggressive wasps (which make for better enemies), sometimes that is due to the alien-like complexity of […]
Enjoy this compilation of 1990s-era sprite games extruded into lowpoly 2½D extravaganzas. These are works of static art, but I’m sure I’ve seen this done “live” in-game recently, in an automated, playable way. (Note that there are a number of 2½D Super Marios already–these replicas are hand-made, like this video).
There are few intellectual exercises better than a good game of chess against a capable opponent, which is why a lot of old hands at the gameplay it online. But there’s still nothing like the tactile thrill of moving a knight into checkmate. (Or sweeping the pieces off dramatically when you lose.) That’s why we’re […]
Got a real music junkie on your list this year? It’s a good bet that they already have a solid pair of earbuds, but probably nothing quite like these Seeds Earphones. Here’s the thing: Wireless earbuds are all the rage right now, and there are a lot of good reasons for that. But for true […]
When it comes to the qualities of a good project manager, you hear a lot of talk about “soft skills” like leadership ability and confidence. And where does confidence come from? It comes from people who are dead certain they know the right steps to take. In other words, you’ve got to master the hard […]