On Uneven Comparisons

Yesterday, Ian Bogost published a piece on The Atlantic suggesting that games should drop storytelling altogether. It’s a baffling argument that talks down to the medium and its audience, suggesting that targeting teenage audiences precludes depth and excellence can only be achieved through repackaging classic ideas in novel ways. I could ask why he thinks …

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Send a Machine to Do a Goddess’s Job

I’m not sure how exactly to write this spoiler warning, because I’m not entirely convinced it’s a spoiler. Is it a spoiler to say that The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, a game that isn’t particularly story-focused, sets itself up with deep and complex themes, and never follows through on them? What does …

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Snackline Media 2017: Lemon Drink Double Feature

I won’t make any apologies for my enjoyment of the “Lime-A-Rita” family of beverages from Budweiser. To me, the taste of alcohol is both deeply unpleasant and overpowering: people offering drinks they claim “don’t taste like alcohol at all” are full of crap. I’m sure it’s true to them- their palettes cannot detect the burning …

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Snackline Media 2017: Cookies & Creme Oreos

Oreo is, by its own proclamation, Milk’s Favorite Cookie. The king of store cookies- and it is, unquestionably- defines our expectation of creme-filled cookies. Of these, there are only two kinds: Oreos and knock-off Oreos. Consider this for a moment: when you get cookie dough ice cream, it just says that. It isn’t branded by …

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Snackline Media 2017: Jen Takes on the Food

Another April 1st, another Snackline Media! Jen struck out with every item she chose, but her pain is your gain. Bai: Tanzania Lemonade Tea I honestly can’t think of a drink with a more obnoxious presentation. Before you even open the cap, you’re pelted with phrases like “Antioxidant Supertea,” “Nature’s Caffeine” and “Fan-favored flavor that …

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Proportional Response

“What is the virtue of a proportional response?” asks Martin Sheen. It’s season one of Aaron Sorkin’s political drama The West Wing, and Sheen’s character is the president of the United States. His friend has just been killed by insurgents backed by a foreign state, and the Joint Chiefs have just presented him with a …

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Jen’s Games of the Year 2016

Writers are often prone to hyperbole, but I don’t think anyone will object that 2016 was one of the wildest years I’ve ever experienced. At the tail end of September, I finally came out as a woman to the rest of the world, and the positive response wiped away one decade of fear that I …

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