It’s a Man’s World: The Implications of Makeup in Mass Effect

“Human sperm cells were seen with the earliest microscopes in the seventeenth century. The human egg is several thousand times larger, but — despite earlier postulates — it was not visualized until 1827. […] For something to be found, it must first be imagined and sought.” (Duffin, Jacalyn. A History of Medicine, (Toronto, ON: Toronto … Continue reading It’s a Man’s World: The Implications of Makeup in Mass Effect

The Secret to Sequels

[Originally posted on PopMatters] Video games have a lot of sequels. They have for a long time (Patricia Hernandez, “What’s that? Modern-Day Gaming Has Too Many Sequels? Actually…”, Kotaku, 11 September 2013.). There are plenty of reasons why games lean so heavily on sequels. After all, reusing a successful idea makes for an easier pitch to … Continue reading The Secret to Sequels

Tighten up the Narrative in Level 3: The grammar of videogames

[Originally posted on Medium Difficulty] In the great sandwich of videogames, game mechanics are the baguette and game stories are the stuffing. Whether a game is simply a thin spread of butter on an oven fresh bun or a triple-decker steak’n’cheese with pan fried vegetables and extra dressing, a game is composed of these two … Continue reading Tighten up the Narrative in Level 3: The grammar of videogames

Gaming the Dice: How Randomness Contributes to Game Experiences

[Originally posted on PopMatters] There’s a story to Risk and Settlers of Catan and Monopoly but not in the games themselves. Sure, there’s an identifiable setting that makes them more than flat pieces of cardboard—the unconquered world, the geological absurdity that is Catan island, Britain street(?)—and the point of these games is to become emotionally engaged … Continue reading Gaming the Dice: How Randomness Contributes to Game Experiences