Tuesday, December 30, 2014
A theme ought to be omnipresent but subtle. If the audience can identify the theme easily then it's too over-the-top. If there's unanimous consensus about the theme then it's also over-the-top. A theme is like the body language of the work. It should give a strong impression to those paying close attention while operating on a subconscious level in most cases.
A theme is not a moral. It's an open question, not a conclusion. It needs to be an open question because an entire work of fiction needs to be created in its service.
The Game Design of Tinder & Online Dating | Game/Show | PBS Digital Studios
Extra Credits - Snakes and Ladders - How the Meaning of an Ancient Children's Game Adapted Over Time
Anti-War War Games
23 Ways Gaming Makes You a Better Person | Game/Show | PBS Digital Studios
Extra Credits - Global Games: Norway - The Challenges of Norwegian Game Companies
Why Do You Still Play Smash Bros.? | Game/Show | PBS Digital Studios
Mass Effect lost its way. It could have been a series that really explored these notions of morality, humanity, artificial intelligence, and merging with technology. And it really does hit so many amazing character and story beats—while Mass Effect has the greatest sense of world-building, I fell most in love with the cast of Mass Effect 2. And I credit Mass Effect 3 for achieving a sense of epic scale, urgency, and drama. It delivers well on its “galaxy at war” premise, making you feel like you’re at the head of a massive operation to save life as we know it. It also has some of the most stunning cinematic production values I’ve ever seen in a video game—let’s just say I was not expecting what happened on Tuchanka.
But in the end, the glue that ties a story and its characters together is the writing and the themes, the stuffing between the lines and all that hums in the subtext. And that part of it was sadly fumbled, regardless of how much fun I was having with all the side stories and character vignettes.
After four years of talking with all these versions of myself, the long-distance aspect of my relationship came to an end. My girlfriend and I moved in together. I don’t travel as much anymore—only on holidays to see the folks—and so I had no use for my passengers anymore. I didn’t need their voices or, at least, my awareness of their voices. I made an effort not to think about them.
That is, until I played Glitchhikers.