Want to join the conversation?

August 22nd, 2013

Hey guys. For the past few months, I’ve been part of a game design discussion group that have weekly meetings on Google Hangout and follow up, text-based discussion on social collaboration site, Rizzoma. My good friend Richard Terrell and I set this up and I must say, I think we have an awesome collection of members. The conversation between us is nothing like what exists out there in the current swamp of shallow games writing/criticism. So if you’re interested in discussing games critically (or even just reading critical game discussion), then leave a message in the comments and I’ll invite you in.

Recommended Wario Land 4 Podcasts…for the meantime

August 5th, 2013

Coincidentally, I came across two Wario Land 4-related podcasts over the past week or so. The first one is the second episode of the new volume of Retronauts and the second one is a Radio Free Nintendo podcast from last year. The Retronauts podcast is, as always, worth a listen, but I’m not so sure about Radio Free Nintendo. Although they spend a lot of time discussing the game and go into specifics—all of which is great—I feel that they read too much into their initial impressions. Every time they criticised the game because there was some part of it that they didn’t “get”, I wanted to pull my hair out. Part of critiquing games involves separating your personal biases from what the game is. Only then, once you understand what the game is, can you make sense of your opinions of the game. In other words, just because you think a game is good, bad, whatever, doesn’t necessarily mean that it is; you have to look at things a bit more objectively first. Even though Retronauts only spent around 10-15 minutes on Wario Land 4, the discussion is much more constructive than the 50 or so minutes RFN spent on it. In saying all this, though, I’ve been listening to a few RFN episodes lately and besides the Wario Land 4 discussion, I’ve rather enjoyed the other shows.

Oh, and yes, stuff is still happening with my Wario Land 4 book and you should hopefully be hearing some exciting news soon.