Category Archives: 2011.09

Roundup of Unusual Size: Gamasutra peanut gallery, meet Kotaku peanut gallery. Kotaku, Gamasutra.


The much-celebrated Emily Short pokes the slumbering beast of Gamasutra’s notoriously mansplainy readerbase with the SHOCKINGLY provocative argument that Catherine, a game I described most charitably as being less offensive than it could have been (but not by much), has gender and representation issues.

“[Tea Party Republican] O’Donnell might have done better in that debate had she played a few more games.” I detect a Sassy Gaymer Friend spinoff.

What is ‘radical’ for games?

…And well, I wanted to link a design argument post here, but I can’t find it in my bookmarks now. So have the link I linked instead, which really should’ve been recced anyway as it’s own thing: “X is not a game.”

Also, choices.


What use the skill of mime to animation? Quite a great deal.


Watch Neil deGrasse-Tyson fanboy about meeting Carl Sagan.

First– we’re teleporting mice? Second– we’re scanning their brains?


Let’s start a class war. Start a nuclear class war.

Also, #OccupyWallStreet is heading after the NYPD. If only we could get NYT to stop focusing on spectacle.

Moment of Geekiness

Zachary Quinto plays Rock-Paper-Scissors-Lizard-Spock.

Roundup of Unusual Size: Videogames are dead, long live videogames.

(Corgis are the only good dogs.)

Sorry for dropping off last night again, all. It’s impressive what sleep dep and an 18 hour day can combine into.


Dan the Man takes on the Bastion.

Videogames are dead? This again?

On the other hand, David Cage isn’t too far off the mark here.

Alex Raymond, who came to visit us on the Moving Pixels Podcast a little while ago, has a new blog entry at her While !Finished responding and following on my and other writers’ Dragon Age II commentaries, and why she liked the game.

Tristan Donovan ponders on the wisdom of being both game designer and avid gamer.

Brad Gallaway’s made an attempt at a rough taxonomy of popular game criticism.

I found Laura Palmer!

Ryan Winslett profiles a free book on the ascendency and rapid descent of the rhythm game.


You don’t actually want to be immortal.

Let’s not get ahead of ourselves. More tachyonic neutrino speculation from io9.

Schroedinger’s Cat explained in 108 seconds flat.


You know those entitled white kids who felt so damn oppressed because minority groups that have historically faced centuries of debasement, denial of human rights and autonomy have an imaginary upper hand in going to A Goddamn UC? SFist has photos for your further shaming.

Well, hell. Now fish are using tools.


#OccupyWallStreet is heating up. Jeanne Mansfield, one of the peaceful protesters maced by NYPD, writes about the experience.

Nightmare Fuel

A few months back I had a dream where I was taking care of a cyclops kitten. I had magic powers in this dream, so I spread my hands to split the kitten’s one eye into two normal eyes. It went too far. I tried to reduce the number. It just got worse.

Okay, okay. Something more pleasant for the road.

Moment of Nerd

Here, have a parrot singing the Neon Genesis Evangelion themesong.

Roundup of Unusual Size: Operation closure and racist muffins.

Sorry for my unannounced absence, all! I was sick with the cold from hell. I still am, but when the feed reader gets over 1000 I need to do something about it.


Pure geekiness time: home-made Zork maps.

Here are the most recent TWIVGB and Sunday Papers for you!

Boobs! What are they good for?

Interview with thatgamecompany’s Kellee Santiago on the empowerment of “literate gamers”.

Two great articles on GAMBIT’s A Closed World, one from Gamasutra and one from GayGamer.

Faffing over Tetsuya Mizuguchi Day: narrative poetics of Rez, what Child of Eden in 3D plays like.

And why limit ourselves to Mizuguchi? Someone mentions Bastion, and I click.

GamePolitics has a nice distillation of recent reports on political grassrooting in social media and casual games.

Tadhg Kelly on the importance of intuitive controls. See also, the company-or-product paradox.

Ian Bogost has a new blog post on gamification and operational closure. Also see Levi Bryant’s response.

And go have a listen to Sdatcher with English subtitles!


Puss in Boots riffs on the Old Spice ads, surprisingly effective.


R-rated Tron (1982) computer porn and other deleted SF&F scenes.


Should women just give up on comics?


Interview with Alan Tudyk: why Firefly wouldn’t die today.


Computers on human cognitive augmentation: they need to notice what we don’t.


Culture shock, the ex-con way.

Nice lucidly written on size acceptance. As a healthy fat person (a source of befuddlement for every doctor I’ve ever seen), it’s nice to see something like this on Hathor.


This is what happens when you mace a peaceful #OccupyWallStreet protester.


Privileged white guys express their oppression with MUFFINS. Derpy Hooves is disappoint.

Moment of Wut

Martha Stewart does Lady GaGa.

Roundup of Unusual Size: You’re playing electron ping-pong with THAT spine?


Becky Chambers writes on The Mary Sue that better co-op may help bridge gaming’s gender gap.

Nothing restores my faith in my hobby-of-choice when a game blogger makes a lazy post and gets his ass handed to him.

Oldie-but-goodie recced by my game studies professor: Picaro and the “Story” of D&D.

This is just sociologically interesting for its own sake: how to write an anti-incest algorithm.

And cosmos, but I love it when Go Make Me a Sandwich breaks down just how disturbingly bad some game art is. Even (especially) when it’s Hyung Tae Kim.

(Bonus points! That last link actually comes up on the first page of results when you google his name. Ah, small victories.)


Tachyons? TACHYONS ARE REAL?! (No, stop, don’t rain on my parade, Dr. Physicist.)

Excuse me while I braingasm: digital reconstructions of real brain activity during visual perception.

Scientist hipsters have made a version of Pong so geeky, you’ve never even heard of it. Or maybe you have, because the paddles are made from soundwaves.


Homophobic politician with the logical thinking ability of an earthworm can’t believe Google won’t bow to his whims, so he calls them partisan meany-heads.


International scandal involving a questionable murder conviction, men and women in tears over a denied 11th hour appeal, a tragic wrongful execution that puts the world further in doubt of America’s commitment to justice? Sounds like excellent fodder to make into a light-hearted reference for a gaming headline.

Oh, and speaking of institutionalized systems of murder, Texas is killing so many inmates, they’re gonna stop giving them last meal requests. Atta Texas, that’ll fix the budget!

Roundup of Unusual Size: Mr Scott, prepare to animalize.

Haha, academic jokes. I so smurt.

Seriously though, now that I’m off work I need to go study. Night!


How could I resist linking another tribute to Bastion?

Did you know? Gamers can’t tell games from reality!


Why we reeeeally want the Higgs boson to exist.

So, in addition to muscle atrophy and bone degeneration, space makes you blind. Yay, space.


A history of hair fashion, in four minutes.

Roundup of Unusual Size: Pokemon Drag Adventure, Rated E for Eleganza Extravaganza!


The title tonight and the header image are dedicated to the ever-amazing Denis Farr, who has posted the first of his Pokemon drag counter-readings on Gamers with Jobs. Go read.

I love this Gears of War 3 critique. I occasionally read reviews of games I have no intention of playing, just to feel reassured in my snobbishness. Also, Tom Chick’s got a hell of a wit.

Over on Gamasutra, Thierry Brochart explores French design influences on Japanese games and animation.

Brendan Keogh blogs about anti-science in our news and fiction, highlighting two independent games with anti-scientist overtones.

Continuing on a sociopolitical bent, Scott Juster explores “good” games for change. Attention Ben Stokes.


Stay classy, Lars von Trier.


I feel like the mainstream press headline for this would be something like “Fight the Covenant, Fight Cancer” or something equally cheesy. But no, seriously, gamers are enzyme folding to cure AIDS.

I’ll take my designer baby with cat slit eyes and neon green hair, thank you.

Intuition: makes you bad at math and causes you to believe in magical skybeards.


Future logos.

The Wall Street protests continue into their fourth day. Aggressive arrests and police crackdown are starting to unfold.

Nightmare Fuel

Oh god, that alien wing-wang doesn’t go there!

Roundup of Unusual Size: To my future posthuman daughter. Or possibly clone.

(artist: tggeko)

Can’t talk, class readings to finish. DAMN YOU, DISQORD.


I’m not upset, Ben! I’m not! Anywho, here are my picks from Ben Abraham’s newest TWIVGB:

Insult Swordfighting writes on the sweatshop conditions of games writing.

Scott Juster analyses Soulja Boy’s infamous reaction to Braid.

And Jonathan McCalmont criticizes the uselessness of the term “realism”.

Moving to Rock, Paper, Shotgun’s Sunday Papers, this letter to a man’s future daughter has been getting a lot of traffic over the last week. I would be remiss in not mentioning it at all.

On to David Carlton, writing in his own blog as he digs deep on Catherine. On Game|Life, Jason Schreier laments Deus Ex: Human Revolution‘s underwhelming narrative. And over on Edge, Steven Poole has an essay up on identity in games.

Atlus, where’s my female protagonist option? :/

And Henry Jenkins has gone and updated his Aca-Fan blog with the first part of his interview with Mark Marino, the founder of code studies.


Charlie Jane Anders argues we’re closer to being cyborgs than we might think.

And via Twitter, have some breathtaking photos from the student protests in Chile.

Moment of Awwwww


Roundup of Unusual Size: Dragon ALL the Ages!


This is approaching a geek singularity right now.

And more Dragon Age: why it’s okay for Anders to be gay.


And they say the military-entertainment complex is a myth.

Hnngh [ REC 3 ] teaser.


The Southern Lights, as seen from spaaaaaace.

The search for the Higgs boson will be reaching a riotous conclusion by December.

And we now have science behind near-death experiences.

Roundup of Unusual Size: Ponycorns stuck in amber.

(fanart by crappyunicorn)


Andrew Vanden Bossche asks if a good game can be a bad sequel.

You got your alien geometries in my Aperture!

GamePolitics has a profile on how a teenage girl got female avatars into NHL 2012.


Equestria Daily has an exclusive interview with My Little Pony‘s famous former showrunner, Lauren Faust. PS Season 2 starts tomorrow!


io9 has a wishlist of things George Lucas should have fixed.


Yes, dinosaurs had feathers. We found them in amber. Deal with it, Spielberg.

Meanwhile, we’ve discovered Tatooine.

Roundup of Unusual Size: Whole queues of angry birds.


Here’s an interesting take on the art game: The Artist is Present.

My colleague at PopMatters, G. Christopher Williams, has an interesting take on Angry Birds.


John Barrowman has no shame, as usual, but at least it has people thinking about female Doctors again.


Where’s Waldo as an espionage thriller.

Why you need a little self-delusion.

Moment of Zen

Here, let’s all gawk at Anderson Cooper’s bare chest for a while.