two things on games I read today
As I might’ve mentioned to you or to the public, I’ve got a few projects going. Sort of going. The only writing I’ve gotten done in this realm today involved dumping certain stray thoughts into Notepad or Evernote, to be assigned to their respective characters when I code those parts. Here are two things that might inspire me a bit to do so.
“Indie Game: The Mixtape”: There’s been plenty written about the glut of free music and the tug-of-war of attention that results; this is that, for games, plus the mix of the title.
An interview with Christine Love, who has written/designed several fantastic things, on relationships in games, a topic that’s not explored as frequently as you’d think partly because of market demands and partly because it turns out humans are complicated and non-deterministic, two things that don’t lend themselves easily to code. (But then, neither do fire or ropes or liquids….) Pull quote:
“I don’t know why people don’t write games about social interaction and relationships,” she reflects, when asked to theorize. “…I don’t know about you, but I kinda figure that making sense of human relationships, or showing the ways in which romance is mediated by technology, is a whole fucking lot more relevant to my life than shooting space marines, you know?”
The latter link here is particularly interesting to me. I loved Digital and Analogue (and don’t take it personally was… interesting). The concept of Digital appealed to me enough to overcome my aversion to PC gaming and I’m glad it did. I guess post-Coldplay-week it may be clear why the idea of a love story told via message boards was particularly appealing to me, but the earlier stages of it are wonderfully done as well. Also I completely agree with the quote and would love to see more games be more ambitious in this.
Even the very limited and flawed way that Persona 4 went into relationships alongside the stuff for ‘more traditional lifetime players’, was enough to make it a much more compelling experience than it ever could have been otherwise. Also why I was really excited by the concept of the same company going on to make Catherine, which in practice was a clusterfuck in oh so many ways but hopefully will inspire some more, better moves towards doing interesting things with relationships and gameplay (yes, this is me being hopelessly optimistic).
Other best pullquote:
“I’ve read a lot of comments on video game websites, and man, I think those people sure could stand to learn a lot about social interaction.”