I'm in the middle of writing my review for the Wii's Fragile Dreams. It's a difficult piece to write, since on the one hand I find it to be a fairly refreshing effort conceptually, and quite unlike most of the other games available for the Wii. On the other hand, I have to be brutally frank in saying that it's extremely tedious and not much fun at all. Ideas and artistry only go so far...
I know that this post's title may make it seem like I'm taking a page from Espen Aarseth's 2005 article of a similar name and Roger Travis' 2008 response to it. Trust me when I say that I'm casting my net a little wider than the design vs. scholarship vs. play disciplinary debate... not that that debate is irrelevant, but I'm simply responding to a different exigency.
When I was writing my Heavy Rain review, there were a lot of specific things concerning the plot that I wanted to talk about, but couldn't due to the spoilerness. So those qualms are going to go here, safely hidden behind that big bold spoiler warning you see below. So, shall we?
(Warning: The rest of this post contains Heavy Rain spoilers)
Jim Sterling gave Deadly Premonition a score of 10 points out of a possible 10, easily the highest score the game received among major gaming review sites. In his review, he makes it plain that this game does not deserve that score in any "objective" sense. The graphics are dated, the gameplay is limited, and its systems pay too much attention to irrelevant details. This is to say nothing of its absurd plot and characters. In comparison to almost any other game, Deadly Premonition is awful, but within the bounds of a certain kind of sensibility, that does not preclude it from also being good. Sontag identifies that sensibility as Camp, and it's an idea worth thinking about in connection to games.
The other day, the subject of BioShock 2's recent Downloadable Content (DLC) came up and spurred a lively debate between a few people and myself on Twitter. As any tweeter knows, it's difficult to carry on an in-depth conversation with a limit of 140 characters, and trying to jump back and forth between several people at the same time is an even greater challenge. As a way of continuing the chat without the technical barriers, this post.
Game Description: The original 2-D classic Mega Man returns in the all new Mega Man 10! Mega Man 10 continues to bring the series back to its old-school roots, with retro platforming action and classic 8-bit graphics and sound. Rediscover Mega Man with new, classically-inspired boss characters, each with unique weapons and vulnerabilities. The year is 20XX and Robotenza - the Robot Flu - has spread like wildfire, incapacitating robots everywhere. One month after the outbreak, the situation worsens. Infected robots have gone out of control and have destroyed the city! It's up to Mega Man to get to the bottom of this viral mystery.
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