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.
I’ve done this review in the form of a visual poem. The game in question, by Team Tree, may be downloaded here. It can be played in minutes.
Welcome to episode 2 of Ways of Playing! Continuing my investigation into the works of Osamu Sato and OutSide Games, this episode takes a somewhat truncated look at their first ever release. Metaphysical questions abound in this atmospheric 1994 adventure game about self-actualization and spiritual growth. Eastern Mind: The Lost Souls of Tong-Nou draws from an indulgent mix of aesthetic, literary and religious influences, as well as an impish (maybe even downright mean) sense of humour to bring its themes home. Considering how much there is to discover in this game, I only hope I did it justice.
This latest guest post comes to us from writer, game developer and minister Katriel Paige. In this piece, Paige dips into her theological knowledge of Buddhism to draw meaning from her experience with Journey, and the spiritual and allegorical themes that weave their way through the gentle puzzle game. You can support Paige via Patreon and follow her on Twitter @kit_flowerstorm.
2015 was a strange and not altogether good year for games (among other things). But, if nothing else, it offered up so many great little gems that I had to stop myself from letting this year’s roundup grow to unmanageable proportions.
[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 […]
“All it takes is just a little change of perspective and you begin to see a whole new world.” -Bob Ross, The Joy of Painting The much-reported Twitch stream marathon of legendary PBS show, The Joy of Painting, introduced the perm, dulcet tones and painting expertise of Bob Ross to a new and perhaps unlikely […]
By Shonté Daniels This month’s guest post comes to us from games writer and poet Shonté Daniels. Daniels is currently an editorial assistant at RH Reality Check, and her work has appeared in Motherboard, The Hooded Utilitarian, Kill Screen and elsewhere. You can follow her at Twitter @JohnnyxH. “As is painting, so is poetry: some pieces […]
By Veve Jaffa This latest guest post comes to us from Veve Jaffa, a “bioluminescent creator of filmic and digital worlds, queering canon one beloved cis-heteronormative narrative at a time.” You can support their work via Patreon, follow them on Twitter @joiedeveve and check out their games on itch.io. In this piece, Jaffa introduces us […]
Videogame culture, by and large, still predominantly values representational spatial aesthetics. That is to say that the way spaces and the things in them look, and how we navigate them, are valued for how verisimilar or adjacent to photorealism they are. The culture even still seems to view text-based representation as somewhat radical (despite its […]