I’m a big fan of games without a built-in story. For my money, the best thing about games is that they can let players create and experience a story for themselves, rather than smacking them down into a linear narrative someone else has dreamt up. I’m not against linear storytellng at all, mind. I just […]Read more "Civilization: A Game in Three Acts"
Adrian has been writing a fascinating series of posts on Civilization over at mssv. I’m a massive Civ fan myself. I installed the very first version of the game from floppy disks onto my mom’s computer back in 1992. It was a beige IBM desktop, whose processing power would seem puny next to a lot […]Read more "Scale and Storytelling in Civilization"
Why do journalists focus on story so much? There are other ways of gaining and transmitting understanding. Stories are necessarily limited. A narrative has to use characters, locations, a clear plot. These are necessarily artificial – an abstraction of reality. What about complex systems? Like climate change. Like the national budget. The arms trade. Or […]Read more "news:rewired"
Yesterday evening the BBC Halo team had its second official inter-company match. Edge won, with a score of 7 to 3. Their prize will be The Shards – we’ll be crushing an Xbox controller and mailing them its remains in a jar. It’s their prize for a game well played. I’ll be sure to post […]Read more "BBC vs. Edge: the Results"
Next Tuesday night, all the chips are down. The BBC Halo team will face Edge magazine in an evening 8-on-8 game series. This all started with a challenge a couple of weeks ago: Sure enough, we found a willing partner. Edge has picked up the gauntlet: The team is getting psyched, and Edge’s Twitter feed, […]Read more "Halo – It’s the New Golf"
GameCamp 2 is done. What a rush. I’m really pleased with the way it went, and judging by the reactions I’m seeing, a lot of other people liked it, too. The unconference format makes everyone’s experience of a day like this different. As an organizer, I spent most of my time running around and making […]Read more "GAMECAMP – insert coin to continue"
This weekend I made a game about pregnancy. As you do. It was at the Rewired State hack day, held Friday and Saturday at the Guardian’s splash new offices in King’s Place. The idea of the Rewired State events is to bring together: a bunch of government people with challenges clever hackers who can solve […]Read more "The Bump Game"
The original GameCamp was the first unconference I ever went to. It was a fascinating day of discussion about games and gaming, from the tabletop to the console and everything in between. It was inspiring and exhilarating, and left me with a new idea of what was possible, as a good unconference should. At the […]Read more "Get your game on – GameCamp 2 is coming for you"
People say there’s not much good storytelling in games, but I think that’s simply not true. I think, instead, that most people are looking in the wrong place. The other day I was playing Left 4 Dead 2, and something awesome happened: a narrative of altruism, sacrifice . . . and ultimately, betrayal. The stuff […]Read more "Drama, not Prose: Storytelling in Games"
Britain’s Parliament just published a video game that’s meant to give a taste of what it’s like being a back-bench MP. It’s pretty good. WIN, in fact. MP for a Week isn’t an action-filled extravaganza or a feast of beautiful 3D graphics. Instead, it’s an innovative interactive experience that uses good, relevant gameplay and good […]Read more "MP for a Week – WIN"