Select Your Player

We hold in our hands the game controller of our lives, and no; there is no turbo function! So what are we to do with it? Play of course :)

Molyneux does it again...saying 'sorry' that is

Peter Molyneux is a lot like Father Christmas: he pops up once a year to do one job and then he’s gone again. In Mr Molyneux’ case, his job is to say ‘sorry for overhyping the game’. This time it’s Godus, which is slowly turning into much less of the reinvention of the God Game that he promised and more of a purchasable Farmville. This, coming from the man who very recently said this:

CandySwipe Open Letter to King regarding trademark.

It’s difficult to verify this given the downed links and missing pictures but if what it says is true then this is clearly the most terrible indictment yet of ‘King’s conquest of small game makers and developers.

Smooth McGroove

Hey, here’s a thing: you should already know about this guy but if you don’t…well I’m telling you now.  He does acapella versions of videogame music with…er…himself.  As you do.  But it’s phenomenal and always worth a listen.

mindsnot asked: Some walking simulators are a million times more engaging than certain shooting or punching simulators. While maybe not a "game-game," there's so much more possible than rehashes of the same ideas. As someone else who's gamed 15+ years, it's thrilling to see the medium of video games challenge boundaries and strive to be art, and disappointing to see people bag on innovation with stale, conservative expectations.



Well, that’s true. Bioshock Infinite was the bore of the decade, and did absolutely nothing to push any boundaries forward, both in terms of gameplay and storytelling. And like I said, I thought Stanley Parable was pretty clever and and I had a good time playing with it (played through it multiple times, actually).

My specific problems with Gone Home are that not only is it really short (most people cited three hours as their first playthrough) and over-priced (20 dollars? Are you joking? I just bought Metal Gear Rising for $20!), but at the end of the day, it’s narrative is kind of boring, and I have a feeling that reviewers latched onto it either because they knew the devs of the game personally and it was a case of friends giving friends benefits (and yes, this has been proven to be true), or because they really want to show that video games are progressive and/or works of art. The latter mindset is kind of insulting because that means they don’t think video games are already art, and they’re just pushing an agenda instead of being an actual critic or wanting to move the industry forward in a more meaningful way.

So yeah, I do like that some smaller teams are willing to try more out-there ideas. It just baffles me that all the praise goes to some throwaway title like Gone Home instead of to titles like Papers, Please or The Stanley Parable.

And here’s another post that can’t seem to have its own opinion on Gone Home without questioning the ethics of game critics. Everything I said before goes to you as well. I reviewed Gone Home very positively and have absolutely no connection to the developers, and no “agenda” to push. I liked it because I liked it. Just as you didn’t like it because you didn’t like it, not because of some regressive agenda you had, right? Of course not. It would be ridiculous for anyone to accuse you of not being honest with your own opinion on a videogame, right?

I played Gone Home recently and have been contemplating a review of sorts, but this guy is saying almost what I’m thinking without the same sentiment.  I too thought it was short, but only insomuch as I wanted more of it because it was so well paced and refined that I was sad it had to end so soon.  I think $20 for a small lump of brilliance is better than $20 of a smorgasbord of hit-and-miss, and ultimately that is what it comes down to: would you rather pay for more or for better?

Shogun 2

Another new addition to my Steam library after the winter madness.  (What’s that North America?  Record-low temperatures?  How about 100 new games that I am already forgetting I have?)  I love me a strategy game, though I tend to steer clear of real-time.  I like my moves long and thoughtful, but the ability to pause in the middle of a fight to reassess goes partway to making the transition easier for me.  I played Medieval 2 quite a lot but found it to be a game of hidden statistics and unrealistic expectations (playing as England was easy until you had to invade the continent, then all of a sudden everyone decided you were weak and crushed every attempt at your landing a foothold).  Shogun 2, on the other hand, has pop-up descriptions for every unit including their strengths and weaknesses and there’s also a greater variety of perks and traits to accrue, and not just through random luck as in Medieval 2.  I have so far played less than an hour of it, but I don’t mind putting it out there: I think I will enjoy this one.


Me, Me, Mo(Su)ndayE

Here’s a little insight: I suffer from depression.  You may have already known that, and if you didn’t then you do now.  And in case you were thinking it, no it’s not like what the end of a miserable day feels like.  It’s more like the meaning has been taken out of your very existence and your vision becomes blinkered so all that you can see is the material worth of what’s directly in front of you.  This week what has been in front of me is work.

I work in the service industry and even when I’m feeling fine it can be difficult to be cheerful for ungrateful, rude and disrespectful customers, but when I’m feeling down as I have been recently then it can be just as difficult for all my customers as well as my colleagues.  I put on a smile but it’s just a piece of paper I’m holding up in front of my face.  I laugh, I joke, I even have a little dance with my work mates at the end of the day, but always, beneath it, I am sad.  Just, plainly, sad.  It can be difficult to care in such circumstances.  Yesterday morning I sat on the edge of my bed for five minutes just trying to coax myself to get up and get dressed.  I had to tell myself over and over again ‘other people are relying on you’.  So I stood up, then sat down again, then stood up, then sat down again.  I finally managed to keep myself up on the third attempt, but it was a struggle.  That is a little snapshot of one of my days with depression.

I have ways of dealing with it but when I’m at work these options are limited: I can’t sit down and read or write; I can’t go for a walk with my dog; I can’t play a game; and I can’t listen to podcasts with my headphones on.  All I can do is focus on the task at hand with all my being and hope that I ‘forget’ that I’m depressed, but of course, as soon as I realise that I’ve ‘forgotten’, it comes back.  I keep myself busy and try not to stop for too long or allow myself time to think.  But today it got too much for me, the walls felt like they were closing in, and I decided I needed to be at home.  Then comes the difficult part: my work mates don’t know I have depression, and I worry what their reactions would be if I told them: ‘rubbish excuse to take a sicky’, ‘we all get depressed, just get over it’, ‘but you were laughing and joking a minute ago’, etc.

Thankfully they could tell I wasn’t feeling well just from my behaviour and, thankfully, the question was asked:

"Are you okay?"


"Do you want to go home?"

"Yes.  Please."

I feel bad for deceiving them all, bad for rushing out and leaving them with an odd impression, bad for making someone else finish my shift for me and bad for feeling bad, because I know it’s not my fault.  I do well mostly but today was just too much and I wouldn’t have done anyone any favours by staying, but the alternative feels just as bad.  Sometimes I worry if I’m subconsciously making it up so I can stay at home but, then, it hits me like a freight train and I think to myself ‘wow, this sucks’.

I don’t know why I’m telling you this.


Where have I been?

Well firstly, let me just say that Steam will likely bankrupt me several times over if I don’t watch out.

Secondly, how great is Steam!  I know, right?  You simply must play Papers Please, it is just so wondrously complex, intuitive and unique.  I love everything about it.

What else, oh yeah!  I started playing Dota 2 after getting frustrated by LoL (That’s ‘Defence of the Ancients 2’ and ‘League of legends’) and I am finding the former considerably smoother and, dare I say it, fun.  I did once try to play it before I had even heard of a MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) but I just could not for the life of me get my head round it, naturally.  Now though I find most of what I know from LoL has translated over quite easily aside from the unique aspects.

I also got Injustice: Gods Among Us, the game that Mortal Kombat Vs DC universe should have been.  It has clearly been designed with everyone in mind, not just those players who can string together unending combos in incredibly complicated sequences.  Which is nice.

Also I got DayZ but I have absolutely no idea what I am doing so if anyone fancies tagging along with me and showing me the ropes (not the noose thank you) I’d be happy to repay the favour…somehow.

I am still here.  If you need me just shoot.


Good Cause

Holy Mother of all that is Holy!  I just bought Just Cause and Just Cause 2 and all the Just Cause 2 DLC just cause I can for £3.57!  (Thank you Steam Wallet for snipping off the upper price there)




what Germans do while waiting at traffic lights

his face at the end though

That’s pretty cool, except it wouldn’t work very well in England because then you’d have to pass them, knowing that you two strangers have shared an interaction.  Never interact with a stranger.