Category Archives : Notes on…


Notes on Desert Dreamer: Guilt-Free Fun

Desert Dreamer is a short and sweet musical game by Derek Andes, made for the Mystical Western Game Jam hosted by Juegos Rancheros on itch.io. Or, to be more accurate, Andes describes his piece as a describes his piece as being more of a “musical plant toy”. In that sense, it’s reminiscent of other kinds of […]

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Screenshot - Sacramento

Notes on Sacramento: Dreaming in Watercolour

Sacramento is a little game by French developer Dziff that, for simplicity’s sake, I’ll call a walking simulator. As far as I’m concerned that’s a perfectly convenient, non-pejorative designation that at least lets us imagine the broad strokes. But, as with most videogame genre labels, it files the game away into a category entirely too […]


Notes on Thoughts and Prayers: The Problem with An Empty Gesture

Thoughts and Prayers: The Game  is a political satire game that does exactly nothing, which is what it’s supposed to do. Brought to us by GOP Arcade, a newsgame development studio co-founded by Brian Moore, Chris Baker and Michael Lacher, Thoughts and Prayers: The Game was released in 2016 following the Orlando shooting that left […]

Screenshot - Thoughts and Prayers title screen

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Notes on Military-Industrial Complex: Finger on the Button

REPVBLIC’s Military-Industrial Complex attempts to pull off the notoriously difficult task of creating a trenchant, coherent and funny political satire in the context of a videogame. It resembles, in some ways, a Mason Lindroth game: aesthetically, it reflects that grainy black-and-white palette and texture typical of Lindroth, but in more of a topical, pop art […]


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Notes on An Evening of Modern Dance: Deliberate Gestures

Joseph Parker’s An Evening of Modern Dance presents itself, at least at first glance, with all the self-serious trappings of the real form on which it’s based. The stage before you is dark, stark, with a mise en scène that’s empty save for the dancers and the spotlights trained on them. There’s a classic red curtain and an apron, and the wall-to-wall smoothness of Unity textures make the place feel unreal, serene, and ghostly, as if carved from clay and finely sanded.


Screenshot - Homesickened

Notes on Homesickened: Back for the Holidays

[TW: This piece contains a reference to suicide and self-harm.  Also, spoilers abound as always.]  Homesickened is a cruel and beautiful game. In it, the player must embody the fixed, first-person role of an unnamed protagonist visiting their hometown for the first time in what I interpret to be a long time. The player begins with a […]