Twenty-Seven

Even when you’re older than the dead, musical idols they seem the more experienced adults. Why? They did things in their lives you haven’t and are increasingly unlikely ever to do – two years my junior, forever, Tupac Shakur could nevertheless boast a quantity of living three times my own. Or not, because like Kurt Cobain, Jimi Hendrix and the […]

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HITMAN, YAKUZA ZERO AND ASPIRATION

Rarely do videogames give us characters to whom we can aspire. Coolness, of the fictional kind, should, of course, be impossible for us to attain – James Bond endures because, although he is tied to our world, he is also its inexplicable, unscrupulous controller, whose suaveness overwhelms even the most immovable rules of reality. But […]

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LADS ON TOUR IN THE WILDLANDS

Reid McCarter, my colleague at Bullet Points, and I recently took a trip to Bolivia. It was just the two of us. Doing guy stuff. No wives. Something about that fresh South American air, those verdant fields, the roaring engine of a compact utility tractor (this year’s 4 Series really is a class leader) puts […]

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THE CRITICS FOR GAMES IN 2017

Erik Twice, who wrote the best and most searching review of This War of Mine, is right that the audience for games has reasons to distrust critics which extend beyond personal bias. An article recently published on this site explained that suspicion of contrary opinions, deployed automatically by the gaming audience, is a result of that […]

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THE AUDIENCE FOR GAMES IN 2017

When criticism that is against consensus is inherently distrusted and favourable reviews of games are considered, uniformly, more honest; when contrary opinions are always suspected to be fake, and part of a self-satisyfing attempt by the writer to gain internet celebrity, get more hits and ultimately earn more money, then it is clear that videogames are over-commercialised, […]

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COLE PHELPS

A simple concept, still seemingly lost on the writers of videogames: if a character is to be interesting he needs to have flaws. And “flaws” meaning genuine flaws. Not flaws like Nathan Drake, who clumsily, endearingly bangs his head, or makes frightened noises whenever he performs some impossible feat of freehand climbing. Not flaws like […]

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