Latest Gamefilter Posts
May 23, 2015
I have killed three dogs in Minecraft. The way to get a dog is to find a wolf, and then feed bones to the wolf until red Valentine’s hearts blossom forth from the wolf, and then it is your dog. It will do its best to follow you wherever you go, and (like a real dog) it will invariably get in your way when you are trying to build something. ... I felt bad each time, while of course fully realizing that only virtual entities were being killed. Surely some of the sorrow I felt was imported from the real world, where I am fond of dogs and do what I can to avoid drowning or burning them. I could not be said to have developed a meaningful relationship with my virtual dogs, but I was pleased to see them each time they caught up with me, and I was a little sad to realize they wouldn’t be getting in my way anymore. I think I was right to feel at least a little bit bad about killing them.
May 14, 2015
Forbes offers 'A More Robust Valve-Is-Evil Hypothesis'. Kotaku responds by suggesting 'Valve understands data. Valve does not seem to understand, or seek to understand, people.'
May 13, 2015
My son Eliot was born in 2004 — the year of Half-Life 2, Doom 3, and the launch of the Nintendo DS. By the time he was born, video games were a $26B industry.
I love games, and I genuinely wanted Eliot to love and appreciate them too. So, here was my experiment:
What happens when a 21st-century kid plays through video game history in chronological order?
May 5, 2015
The pedagogy of simulation games — city simulators in particular — is worth meditating on. They are, ostensibly, about engaging with complex (though still incredibly simplified) models, coupled with rule sets that mark discrete goals. These range from the practicable (make sure there are water lines in your new residential zone so the houses can have plumbing) to the whimsical (call down an alien invasion). By being told to use a set of tools in a particular way, an individual can be taught how to engage with a system — the system that is the game.
April 6, 2015
A critique and retrospective of all eleven Call of Duty games released for the PC between 2003 and 2014 by Noah Caldwell-Gervais. (It's 2 hours long but I found it fascinating even as someone who has only played a couple of them and doesn't care much for the series in general).
April 1, 2015
2015's Game Developers Conference featured many people talking and talking about things. Gamey things. Now you can watch hundreds of those talks for free from the comfort of your own seat (assuming that you are sitting right this minute, which may be presumptuous).
March 15, 2015
GamerGate is killing video games. "There are a number of us in academia who love games, care about games, and believe games are important. We have been working for years to make games a legitimate tool for education and for study, and we were making progress. People were starting to take games seriously. And then came GamerGate. I have seen the careful progress of a decade come crashing down, and now, when I go to talk about games to industry groups or fellow academics, GamerGate always comes up as an example of how terrible and immature people who play games are. It will take years and years to repair the damage, and it is absolutely devastating to the serious study and application of the power of games to real problems. We are going to have trouble getting grants, getting foundations to fund games, and getting people to take us seriously. It is devastating and makes me very sad."
March 4, 2015
Inside The Post-'Minecraft' Billionaire Life Of Gamer God Markus Persson. "These conversations with FORBES represent Persson’s only interview about the Minecraft deal and his life after. It turns out that the most certain thing this windfall bought him was some heavy soul-searching. The only thing he has learned for sure: He was right to walk away from Minecraft."
January 16, 2015
"Wish you could make games but have no idea how you'd get started? Have you never coded a day in your life and feel overwhelmed trying to teach yourself? Can't draw anything beyond stick figures? Overwhelmed and don't know what questions to even ask? You're in luck! Sortingh.at is a tool that will give you personalized resources to help you get started making your first game, custom tailored to what you're actually making. "
January 8, 2015
The 17th Annual Independent Games Festival has announced its list of main competition finalists including (in several categories) This War of Mine, created by a team including MefightClub's hat_eater.
January 6, 2015
Roll20 is a new, Kickstarted, freemium virtual gaming tabletop for organizing and playing D&D online (any edition), Pathfinder, Shadowrun, Savage Worlds, FATE, indie RPGs, and other tabletop games that 'brings pen and paper gaming to the web the right way'. HTML5-based and runs in-browser, so no downloads or plugins or other cruft.