Archive for December, 2010

Kill or be killed in Mushroom Kingdom

Maybe video games really are getting too violent.

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Talkin’ bout Jason Nelson’s art games

Right before I started playing Jason Nelson’s games, I had been reading an article by some neurobiologist about the connection between agoraphobia and “spatial estrangement” and modernity and urbanity. I was in exactly the right mental room already.

Then Mr. Nelson emailed me about his “odd art games,” many of which you can play right in your web browser by visiting Arctic Acre. (In his email, he also suggested that I visit Jason Nelson’s School of Games. You should probably go watch his video lecture series, too, because it is hilarious. There are currently 16 episodes, each only seconds long.)

Maybe ‘odd’ is almost the wrong word for his games: they’re straightforward 2D platformers, with moving and jumping and spatial circumnavigation and an end destination in sight, so that the way to play is immediately discernible even to your mom. But as you run-and-collect, the screens become cluttered with prose noise, taking on the likeness and verve of treated text. Everything feels very inaccessible and obfuscated despite the mechanics’ simplicity.

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Daily Linksplosion: Thursday, December 09, 2010

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Daily Linksplosion: Saturday, December 04, 2010

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Garth Marenghi’s ‘Darkplace’ for Intellivision

For the uninitiated, Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace was produced for Channel 4 in the mid-80s—don’t you correct me—starring the esteemed horror novelist, Marenghi himself, in the main role. As Dr. Dagless, Marenghi will very quickly discover that there is something sinister lurking beneath Darkplace Hospital’s cheery exterior.

OK: the “charming anachronism retro demake cover art” trend is getting tired, but there is something appealing about a show-that-doesn’t-exist spinning off into a game-that-doesn’t-exist. It’s so postmodern! Here, illustrator and noted retro gamer John Calcano accompanies his box art with a pixel-perfect, Intellivision-quality screenshot.

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Daily Linksplosion: Friday, December 03, 2010

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Daily Linksplosion: Thursday, December 02, 2010

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