Sunday Swatch

Come in and seek some mental shelter from the word with my picks from this week’s writing on games.

This piece outlines the importance of preserving the history of video games and the lengths these historians must go to to do so. It’s something we may not always consider but new emerging technology does makes old game systems obsolete, and threatens their survival as historical artefacts. After all, who would keep old CDs of games on purpose when conducting a spring clean?

I felt this post on Polygone about Dishonored 2 was perfect considering my thoughts on Fallout 4. Here Claire Hosking examines the systems in this game which offers the player violence but shows them consequences for doing so. It may not be perfect but it’s something I would love to see more of in games. I recently read a piece in Edge magazine about Prey, and the developers offered something similar – the player can kill any NPC they wish, but they may face consequences as anything this character could offer is now lost. The similarity in ethos between these two games is not surprising – both are immersive sims from the same studio (Arkane) and publisher (Bethesda).

It’s 2017 and I’m still dreaming about Virginia. This article by Paste examines the ways that Virginia interrogates systems of power within society. Check it out.

This is a super cool and scientific-based account of why we become obsessed with completing quests in games. It’s actually something that gives me low level anxiety in MMOs and RPGs like Fallout and Skyrim. I actually stopped playing Elder Scrolls Online in the summer because of it. It is however, reassuring to know there is a reason behind this.

Exploring someone’s old save files is fascinating to me, and if you feel the same then I have two good stories for you. The first is from Kotaku and follows the writer opening his departed father’s Civilization save files. The second is more light hearted and involves trying to guess what kind of person someone was from their abandoned Playstation memory card.

I also want to highlight this article about the writers eating disorder and Skyrim. What was really great was, not only did the game help the writer, but she also states her recovering was not due to the game alone.

I want to finish with Touch the Skyrim because anything involving at least one of the McElroys makes me laugh so much, and I think that’s something that a lot of us need. There has been a lot of good political games writing this week, but it’s the end of the week now, and I need a break from thinking about all that. I’ll probably highlight it all next week. Hope you have good weekend pals, and next week is a brand new one for us to get our teeth into.

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