Category Archives: Video Games

VR is here! And it’s pretty great

I haven’t bought a fancy Vive headset or Oculus Rift, but I did receive a Gear VR with my newest phone.  I was skeptical.  After all, it’s a $150 dollar piece of plastic that straps your phone to your face.  It turns out to be a pretty nice $150 dollar piece of plastic for strapping your phone to your face.  It has a nice ring of foam around the edges, adjustable straps to fit any head between the size of Marissa’s and mine, thick internal lenses, and some controls on the side. It feels good and things look surprisingly good inside.  You quickly forget that you’re just looking at a phone, …

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Posted in Media, Technology, Video Games.

Fatherhood and Gaming

I’m not a father.  I’ve checked.  In fact, I ask Marissa about twice a day in varying states of panic whether or not I’m a daddy.  Thus far the answer has been a resounding and merciful “no” followed by an “and stop asking me that!”  But that doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate one of this year’s trends in gaming — portrayals of father / child relationships.  In most cases it is a portrayal of a father / daughter relationship. I’m thinking of two of the most critically acclaimed games of the last couple of years — The Last of Us and Bioshock Infinite.  I haven’t played Shadows of Mordor, but …

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Posted in Media, Video Games.

Love2d vs Unity3d

Awhile back I wrote a little blog post talking about how I was playing around with Love2d and with Unity3d.  I didn’t expect that little blog post (read it here) to start collecting dozens of hits all from people looking for a comparison between Love2d and Unity3d.  For me it’s a pretty simple question.  They’re nothing alike.  But still there were people asking me which one they should use.  As a result I wrote a long post on the topic for OSMstudios. Read it here!

Posted in Development, Media, Video Games. Tagged with .

The “Candy Crush Saga” Saga

I know I frequently gripe about word mincing.  Recently I griped about the word gift meaning “something you paid too much for.”  I also gripe about “freemium” and “pay-to-win” gaming, though not often here.  There are a lot of companies out there that are trying to take more and deliver less.  Natural human instinct in action, I suppose. Recently, one of the worst offenders of “pay-to-win,” “freemium,” knockoffs took word mincing to a whole new level.  It wasn’t enough that they named their matching colors puzzle a “saga.”  They also decided that no other game will ever be a saga. Nor will any other game feature candy.  The company who …

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Posted in Media, Video Games. Tagged with .

Videogames as Art

I’m inclined to believe that the discussion on this topic has long since closed, far before I wasted my time chiming in, but I still want to run over it. Maybe hammer it into the ground.  Maybe I want to write about it because I have a training in philosophy and philosophy is really just rehashes of rehashes, because we never really do settle on what is right but we do eventually decide what is wrong. Speaking of wrong, the argument that videogames are not art is wrong. Now, they may be “bad” art, intended primarily for financial gain at the expense of truth and self-expression. But arguing that they …

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Posted in Media, Philosophy, Video Games. Tagged with , .

Bat-Kill

Batman doesn’t kill. Well not for awhile at least.  He did have a brief “anti-hero” stage where he carried a gun and killed as he saw fit.  That’s long past though.  It’s not the 80s anymore.  He’s “strictly” non-lethal in Nolan’s Bat trilogy and in the Arkham Asylum and Arkham City videogames. Except not really.  Let’s ignore the all the bat bashing, bat rockets, and bat hits in Nolan’s trilogy along with the very morally questionable “I don’t have to save you” and focus on the Arkham games.  Throughout the games you hang baddies upside down from gargoyles, knock them senseless with your bare fists, and choke them out.  All …

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Posted in Humor, Movies, Video Games. Tagged with , .