A Special Radio Transmission: The Cult of the New and Climbing “Mountain”

In this episode, Zolani Stewart and I discuss the hyperaccelerated culture of games writing, the preoccupation with “newness” or immediacy in videogames as a capitalist myth, the importance of historical and cross-comparative study, and how to talk about games like Mountain in that context. “Context” must be an important concept here because I’m pretty sure I say it like 900 times.

We draw heavy inspiration for our conclusions from Brendan Vance’s recent piece, “Form and Its Usupers,” among other things.

Also, I didn’t think to mention it at the time of recording, but if you’re interested in the preservation of games history, be sure to check out stuff like Play the Past, Cameron Kunzleman’s Tumblr “Reading Electronic Gaming Monthly,” and Zoya Street’s work, including zine Memory Insufficient and book Dreamcast Worlds. He’s also raising funds to write a book about mobile games pre-2008. Take a look here. 

There are some good archives of games and games writing out there too, like Critical Distance, Good Games Writing, Old Games Writing and the more obscure and scholarly Electronic Book Review.

Intro/outro music is “The Moai” by Fila Brazillia off of their One Track Mind EP. Check it out here.