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Legolas_Katarn

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  1. Doctor liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in Best Games Writing of 2017   
    2017 is now behind us and I've put together a list of some of the best writing I saw throughout the year. Created with the goal of highlighting the work of some of the best writers and journalists in the industry and to share topics that can enhance understanding of the game industry, events of the previous year, and of the games themselves. Many of these have been shared in my weekly This Week In Gaming articles.
    These articles might focus on developer and game history, what working in the industry is like, what games make us think and feel, things that have effected the industry this year, the effects of games on people and culture, entertaining stories, lessons learned and connections established through games, and articles that can give you a greater understanding of game development. Links are included to author's social media account and it is worth following them and their work if you are interested in games and the industry.
     
    Previous Best Games Writing Articles
    2016
     

     
    History of the Industry, Developers, and Games
    Articles and interview that examine the life and work of developers and studios and the games and franchises that they created or worked on.
    "OK, so maybe I did kill Aerith. But if I hadn’t stopped you, in the second half of the game, you were planning to kill everyone off but the final three characters the player chooses!"
    Final Fantasy 7 An Oral History (By Matt Leone) 
    "Bamberger stayed calm. Years of prep and planning, countless conversations with the marketing gurus at TBWA\Chiat\Day, packaging and posters and commercials and magazines branded with the game’s release date—everything he had worked for hinged on this moment. “How do you get a game to sell through a million units at the time we were trying to do it?” he asked me. “A lot of that is, you build your case slowly over time, like a drumbeat.”
    How Final Fantasy 7 Revolutionized Videogame Marketing and Helped Sony Tackle Nintendo (By David L. Craddock) 
    Matt Leone gives us a look at the creation of Final Fantasy VII, told by those that worked on it, while David Craddock looks at how the game was marketed and the team behind it.
    "So, the sun was shining, with the lens flare, and Steve sort of stopped the demo right there and said: “Yeah, but you know, at Pixar, we can render dozens of suns.” Jason’s immediate reply to him was: “Yeah, but can you do it in real time?” There was this pregnant pause and Steve’s says: “Okay, you’re in.” And he picked up his Fudgsicle and walked back into his office, and that was it. So that’s how we got in, a little bit of chutzpah and an OpenGL tech demo running on what was soon to be the Mac."
    The Complete, Untold History of Halo (By Steve Haske and and edited by Mike Diver and Austin Walker) 
    Steve Haske gives us the history of the Halo franchise, as told by the people that created it.
    "[What] I remember being a huge problem was [on] Episode One, like literally three days before we weren’t allowed to touch the project anymore, Pierre comes to me — I think Guardians of the Galaxy had just come out. There’s a moment in the first episode where your friend Loader Bot can explode, and it’s based on a player choice. Pierre comes to me and says, “I don’t think we should let Loader Bot die.” I’m just like, “Well, okay. We’re 36, 48 hours away from this thing going live, what are you talking about? That choice is there.” And he said, “I think we might be blowing up our Groot.”
    Tales from the Borderlands: The Oral History (By Duncan Fyfe) 
    Duncan Fyfe tells the story of how Tales From the Borderlands came to be from his interviews with Telltale and Gearbox staff members.
    "We would send renderings of Superman, and we would get images back from Warner Bros. with his crotch area circled, 'Make this part bigger; make this part smaller.' This went on for months."
    Superman Returns: What went wrong (By Matt Paprocki) 
    Matt Paprocki learns what the development of a failed Superman Returns game was like.
    "Mass Effect: Andromeda was in development for five years, but by most accounts, BioWare built the bulk of the game in less than 18 months. This is the story of what happened."
    The Story Behind Mass Effect: Andromeda's Troubled Five-Year Development (By Jason Schreier) 
    Jason Schreier looks into the troubled development of Mass Effect Andromeda, the original ideas behind the game, cut elements, a team spread across the world, and how most of the game was made in 18 months despite the five year development.
    "While there are dozens of perspectives on whether or not EA’s decision to axe the studio was justified, many who worked at the studio say they couldn’t see this ending any other way. “Honestly, it was a mercy killing,” said one former Visceral employee. “It had nothing to do with whether it was gonna be single player. I don’t think it had anything to do with that. That game never could’ve been good and come out.”
    The Collapse Of Visceral's Ambitious Star Wars Game (By Jason Schreier) 
    Schreier looks into the closing of Visceral studio by talking to former Visceral developers and looking at studio responses, industry trends, issues with Star Wars being owned by another company, Amy Hennig’s role in the company, embracing poor decisions to impress fans and executives, problems with adapting the game engine for a new genre, problems with studio size and division, the immense scope of the project seeming more like a fever dream to some, the history of Visceral's recent projects, and how their Star Wars game partly began life as an open world pirate game. If you liked his articles looking into studio and game development, Jason also released an excellent book this year looking into the development of 10 different games Blood, Sweat, and Pixels.
    "Infocom believed that what Meretzky had created was more than just a game – it was a piece of interactive literature. To stress the seriousness of its ambitions, they held a press conference for A Mind Forever Voyaging's release at the New York Public Library. Meretzky himself desperately wanted to see the game's pointed message spark some real controversy. "I was hoping I'd get dragged in front of a congressional committee," he says."
    Flashback: How 'A Mind Forever Voyaging' Took Aim at Right-Wing Politics (By Chris Baker) 
    Chris Baker writes about the development of 80s text adventures, focusing on a classic 1985 game that offered social commentary at a time when games weren't thought to be capable of that, and on how the game inspired the writers of stories like Rogue One, Book of Eli, Telltale's The Walking Dead, and Her Story.
    "Big Bang Bar's creation is a story of pinball's near death, of one man's attempt to become a piece of pinball history, of bankruptcy, of obsession, of short-lived redemption and personal disaster."
    When pigs flew: The strange history of Capcom's Big Bang Bar (By Brian Crecente) 
    Brian Crecente writes about the history of Capcom with pinball machines and attempts to find a long lost table and the man behind its creation.
    "So, when it came to games that weren’t Ultima Origin had had to content themselves with projects one notch down from the top tier — projects which, whether because they weren’t flashy enough or were just too nichey, weren’t of huge interest to the bigger publishers. Those brought in enough revenue to justify their existence but not much more, and thus Robert Garriott continued to bet the company every two years on his brother’s latest Ultima. It was a nerve-wracking way to live. And then, in 1990, all that changed practically overnight. This article and the one that follows will tell the story of how the house that Ultima built found itself with an even bigger franchise on its hands."
    From Squadron to Wingleader and From Wingleader to Wing Commander (By Jimmy Maher) 
    Jimmy Maher looks at some of the history of Origin Systems, the hiring and early work of Chris Roberts, and the people and ideas behind the creation of the game that would rival Ultima, Wing Commander.
    "At one point he said: 'I hope you appreciate that this is the last time any of you will be able to work on games in this way. The industry is changing.'"
    Death or Glory: How 1997 Changed Video Games Forever (By Keith Stuart) 
    Keith Stuart looks at the way the game industry changed in 1997, the games that were released, the changes made by companies and developers, and losing old habits and freedoms in order to embrace the future.
    "There was a lot of internal criticism about deducting so much life gauge with one attack. SNK management said this design had to be changed, but I thought it was very interesting to have players fight under the risk and fear of fighting with weapons and feel the destructive force of the sword, so I ignored them and kept it in the game."
    The making of Samurai Shodown (By James Mielke) 
    James Mielke interviews three of the developers of Samurai Shodown and talks about how the game came to be and the ideas behind it.
    "They didn't know it at the time, but the members of Naughty Dog in that room — Kurosaki, Rafei and co-founders Jason Rubin and Andy Gavin — were looking at the system that would host the team's next game: Crash Bandicoot. They were seeing the console their company would eventually create the unofficial mascot for — the console they would develop Naughty Dog's first smash hit for. It was Kurosaki and Rafei's second day with the company."
    Crash Bandicoot: An oral history (By Blake Hester) 
    Blake Hester speaks to creators of Crash Bandicoot, a game that helped redefine platformers and that helped to turn Naughty Dog into the studio they are today.
    "My mandate to re-envision and redesign The Oregon Trail was almost overwhelming at first—the possibilities were endless, yet I had to get it absolutely right on the first release. For 13 years, from 1971 to 1984, the OREGON game had remained essentially unchanged. A few small details had been tweaked along the way, but never had the product been completely re-imagined and redesigned. Never had the underlying models been changed—the structures, algorithms, and assumptions upon which the game is based. For the very first time, we were going to throw out everything—including all of the existing software programming, which dated back to 1971—and start completely from scratch."
    I Designed The Oregon Trail, You Have Died of Dysentery (By R. Philip Bouchard) 
    R. Philip Bouchard on the history of The Oregon Trail, the original text 1971 version, and changes that were made and that weren't able to be included in the newer version that would be designed for a home market instead of a school market. 
    "Sadly, it's here the story takes a darker turn and we come to the crux of why Whittaker's achievements have gone unsung for so long. "There were issues with my name, because my christened name is Jane," he explains. "I was asked to use a male name on titles, because at the time if you were doing a macho shooting game it was thought that a female name would downgrade the brand. My dad came up with the idea of using Andrew - I think he got as far as A in a book of names and got bored. So most of my games went out as Andrew Whittaker to avoid advertising these gender issues to the outside world."
    Threats, fake names and philanthropy: The untold story of Jane Whittaker (By James Batchelor) 
    James Batchelor tells the history of developer Jane Whittaker, who moved to America to work with Atari at 16, and why he was told to use a fake name for most of his career as he worked on a large number of popular and influential games.
    "I remember when I left [the company, right before Underground was released], I sent [Joel an] email and was like, "Hey, Joel. Can we have a chat?" He said, "Yeah, come to the office." So I went to the office and I walked in. He had both feet on the table. He had a revolver in his hand and he spun the barrel, like flicked it in, pointed the gun at me and then said, "So you're quitting, huh?" …I had this speech worked out in my head, but how do you get over that?"
    From Busted Teeth to Broken TVs: The Oral History of Tony Hawk's Underground (By Blake Hester) 
    Blake Hester talks to the development team behind Tony Hawk's Underground covering topics that include the ideas behind the game's creation, the culture of the studio, working with pro skateboarders, Activision forgoing their normal greenlight process, and how they did it in under a year.
     
    Writing On Games
    Articles on the games themselves, effects they had on the industry, the stories they tell, how gameplay is used, deeper meanings of titles, etc.
    "The point is, the moment is scripted in such a way that you can’t get past the officer, and the only way to progress is to hit him. But players don’t spend time to figure out what to do next, they just do it. Because the level made players go past their breaking point just like the whole situation made Emile go past breaking point."
    How Valiant Hearts drives you to the breaking point (By Stanislav Costiuc) 
    Stanislav Costiuc writes about one of the most memorable levels and moments in Valiant Hearts and how the mechanics put you in the mindset of the protagonist.
    "The true evil in Night in the Woods is both rampant capitalism itself and the hate that is so easily fueled when people become disenfranchised as infrastructures collapse and jobs dry up. And Night in the Woods is so fiercely, justifiably angry at these things."
    What Lies Beneath: On the Love and Anger of Night in the Woods (By Carolyn Petit) 
    "Infinite Fall’s Night in the Woods poignantly and sympathetically captures the human scale of the widening millennial vs baby boomer gap. Setting aside stats and diatribes, it explores the messy, awkward nature of a paradigm shift that lives under the same roof, shares the same blood, and harbors the same deep familial love and frustration for one another."
    The Human Cost of the Millennial Generation Gap in Night in the Woods (By Jess Joho) 
    "Because its too soft to say I disagree with the notion that the last acts of NitW are out of place: the truth is I think the supernaturalism of the game is as crucial as any moment in the narrative. It cements the message of the game by prefacing the structurally crucial epilogue with this severe moment of politically charged unreality, a moment that ultimately leads the reader to conclude with Mae that as long as nothing is real or rational or fair, the best we can manage is to hang on to individual moments of social connectivity."
    The Monster at the End of Capitalism (By Trevor Strunk) 
    I've probably read more articles on Night in the Woods than on any other game this year, some of the best pieces I've seen have been Carolyn Petit's on the fierce and justifiable anger of the game, Jess Joho's on the generational themes of Night in the Woods, and Trevor Strunk's on the supernatural elements that appeared in the late game and why they work.
    "NieR, and its strange mom Drakengard, are series that accomplish this a lot: affect physical feeling in some way. Their mastermind is a masked man named Yoko Taro who loves beer and who wants Square-Enix to hire him. Mainly, he wants to surprise us players with our own feelings by reminding us they’re still in there, somewhere."
    Yoko Taro: Weird feelings for weird people (By Ruben Ferdinand) 
    Ruben Ferdinand looks at the characters and themes of Yoko Taro's games and how the main thing we learn from them are the roles of violence and silence.
    "As S.R. Holiwell explains in A Maze of Muderscapes, Metroid II is ultimately a game about genocide. It’s a singular minded push into the territory of an indigenous species to wipe out a lifeform that has been designated a threat to the galaxy, despite their inability to escape their native planet. Everything about the game contributes to that: the hostile, painful soundscapes, the restrictive corridors, and the counter that makes a permanent space on your HUD, counting down the number of Metroids left alive on the planet. AM2R retains none of that, replacing every aspect with elements that imitate the blueprint of Super Metroid."
    Picture in a Frame (By Amr Al-Aaser) 
    Amr Al-Aaser on how we talk about games, how we frame and describe them in ways that can cause us to fail to understand what an individual game says and does on its own terms. Amr uses the recent fan remake of Metroid 2 as an example for how the game completely changed the tone and narrative of the original, if you are interested in the topic of tonal changes that AM2R and Metroid Returns made to Metroid 2, Mark Brown did a video looking at all three games.
    "That’s where the extraordinary Nier: Automata comes in. This is a game that, in its own way, takes a long, hard look at the same forces of hatred, prejudice and fear that Geralt speaks about in The Witcher 3, and grimly acknowledges how tragically destructive they are. And then, in the end, when everything seems to be lost and it appears as if ignorance, fear, and hatred have all but devoured every last glimmer of hope and life and love, the game does something truly extraordinary."
    Contained in Our Moments: Ignorance and Love in Nier: Automata and The Witcher 3 (By Carolyn Petit) 
    Carolyn Petit on the expressions of emotion in The Witcher 3 and Nier Automata and Nier's more hopeful tone compared to Geralt's world weary cynicism in combating violence and ignorance.
    "Horizon is inspiring because it doesn’t boast about humanity being worth saving, it doesn’t put hope on a pedestal. Instead it deals with reality, it says mortality is coming and we’ve fucked up."
    Horizon: Zero Dawn and the beauty of annihilation (By Tauriq Moosa) 
    Tauriq Moosa on how Horizon Zero Dawn was inspiring to him and how, in dealing with reality, it makes him want to be a better person.
    "But she definitely helps, and I’m glad she’s here, because if Breath of the Wild fills me with hope and excitement for the worlds that action-adventure games may create in years to come, then Horizon Zero Dawn makes me a little more optimistic about who might populate those worlds, and the heroes who may rise to save them."
    Children of the Earth: The Limits of Link and the Promise of Aloy (By Carolyn Petit) 
    Carolyn Petit looks at what games in the future can learn from the world of Breath of the Wild and the characters of Horizon Zero Dawn.
    "Quadrilateral Cowboy is built on relationships that are recognizable, that can be mapped to real life, even though the setting is in many ways fantastical. It's based on an idea of closeness not as a sudden thing or as an object of extreme drama, but as a slowly germinating process in which people's lives and spaces blur into one another. And in portraying friendship so effectively, it highlights how rare those relationships are in game narratives."
    'Quadrilateral Cowboy' Points to a Different Kind of Intimacy in Games (By Bruno Dias) 
    Bruno Dias writes about game's struggle with intimacy and how Quadrilateral Cowboy's story is built on recognizable relationships.
    "While the situations are often overblown and bizarre, there's something at their core that still feels grounded in the era's reality: furors over hot new game releases and technology, youthful rebellion against boring corporate life, and the excitement that celebrities and media would create."
    'Yakuza 0' is A Postcard from Another Time (By Heidi Kemps)
     Heidi Kemps explores how Yakuza 0 acts as a postcard from 1980s Japan.
    "That’s the thing with fictional violence—it’s never actually representative of real violence, but instead serves as a dramatic and thematic tool to convey a feeling or idea. This plays a large part into what makes the recent video game Yakuza 0 so compelling—it takes the traditional violence of crime fiction and repurposes that into this wider idea of constructive resistance."
    The Transformative Violence of Yakuza 0 (By Patrick Larose)
    Patrick Larose on the framing of violence in Yakuza 0 and how it can be channeled into a reconstructive force.
    "This is how these games convey the purpose of taverns as interstitial spaces between the mundane and fantastic. In the Torment games, bars mean finding reflection and escapism amidst confusing worlds so vastly different than our own, yet with characters so strikingly resonant when given the chance to unwind. Speaking with characters, learning about their pasts and their cultures, what this place means to them, is valued alongside the protagonists’ player guided self-discovery."
    Hold my Beer — Why the Torment Games Have the Best Video Game Bars (By Dakota Joyce)
    Dakota Joyce on how simple taverns end up having some of the more interesting moments in two games with the most fantastical settings.
    "Especially in these dark days, the warmth and humanity of Sareh’s depiction is a much needed point of light. As a protagonist-like figure, she neatly expresses a theme endemic to all of Tacoma: that even in a grim, dystopian future, there is always hope to be found in the way people manage to simply survive."
    Opinion: In praise of Tacoma's character Sareh Hasmadi (By Katherine Cross)
    Katherine Cross on the portrayal and humanity of Tacoma's character Sareh Hasmadi.
    "If a game about Egypt's history, released in 2017, is to say anything about its setting, taking aim at the abuses of power that have oppressed its population for millennia seems more than appropriate."
    How Assassin's Creed Origins Captures the Politics, Colonialism, and Betrayal of the Real Ancient Egypt (By Reid McCarter)
    Reid McCarter on how, by diving into the past, Origin shows insight on the history of Egypt and the modern world.
    "The men are forced to deal with the bodies that society would typically let them ignore, watching them break down around them."
    Wolfenstein 2 and Mending Broken Things (By Brendan Keogh)
    Brendan Keogh on how Wolfenstein is about the fragility of two types of bodies that underpin Western values, what it takes for them to fall apart, and giving form to emotions that capture the current atmosphere.
    "Whatever we may spend our time doing, who doesn’t want to do that? And when it comes to a medium like video games, where developers are crafting interactive future visions that can sell to millions, which creators don’t have a touch of the obsessive about them?"
    Gore as Art in The Evil Within 2 (By Richard Stanton)
    Richard Stanton on The Evil Within 2 antagonists Stefano Valentini.
    "It’s an odd, ill-fitting note in a game that filled me with a strange sort of grief, because it is the moment I could feel a culture’s connection to the recent past growing weaker and fainter. The grim, driven men of this story have a coldly distant, heroic quality to them that belongs more to myth than history. It reminded me that my grandfathers with all their flaws and frailties are both gone, and so is my grandmother with her shoebox full of small, fading Victory Mail letters, a War Department telegram, and photos of her one trip outside the United States, to a military cemetery in France."
    Watching History Fade Away in 'Call of Duty: WWII' (By Rob Zacny)
    Rob Zacny on the fading memory of WWII and the portrayal of the war in Call of Duty WWII and other media that have helped us replace the truth of the past with myth.
     
    Game Design
    Articles that focus on game design and the ideas and process behind them
    "Game designers work with and for the human mind; we have to consider human experience, perception and our mindset when we are at play. Whenever you choose to play, you likely want the game to feel internally consistent enough that you can buy into the experience. You're able to go along for the ride if the game feels like it makes sense."
    Games aren’t always fair, the magic lies in making you think they are (By Jennifer Scheurle)
    Jennifer Scheurle's article on her twitter thread where she asked developers to talk about game mechanics that are hidden from players, reading this can help you understand the kinds of things developers have to do and think about in order to create an enjoyable game.
    "For Robert Yang, a game designer and professor at NYU Game Center, this prioritization is a natural outcome of the unchecked biases that lie behind the 3D technology that powers modern gaming. "When 3D artists test their new skin shaders, they often use a 3D head scan of a white guy named Lee Perry-Smith," he notes. "What does it mean if we're all judging the quality of our skin shader solutions by seeing who can make the best rendered white guy?"
    Black Skin Is Still A Radical Concept in Video Games (By Yussef Cole and Tanya DePass)
    Yussef Cole And Tanya DePass on how the technology behind film and games were never created with darker skin tones in mind.
    "That’s where glitches come in. The competitive community has always had a strained relationship with them, preferring to rely on skill instead of exploit a mistake. But they’re often the best way to push a game to its limits. Sometimes, these discoveries even have the potential to make the game more balanced."
    Finding Beauty in the Weirdest Fighting Game Glitches (By Ian Walker)
    Ian Walker writes about fighting game glitches, how some ended up helping to balance games, how they lead to popular mechanics, and how they have impacted the course of the entire genre.
    "If you work on [a] game that includes a little bit of yourself — in [the] form of an Easter egg — you treat it more personally, and you care more. It becomes your game, not only a game that you happen to be working on," says Katarzyna Tarnacka, a concept artist at Polish developer Techland. "And I think a similar thing applies to the players. When I find Easter eggs in other games, then those games become special. It's a real human touch that I can sense."
    The costs of developing Easter eggs (By Blake Hester)
    Blake Hester looks at the work that goes into adding easter eggs in games and the situations that can lead to their creation.
    "I have a firmly-held belief that to honor a medium, and for it to grow, you have to do what it does that no other media can do. When I look at what games can do that other media can't, I instantly go right to the immersive sim. That sort of real-time you are there, nothing stands between you and belief that you're in an alternate world, that is something that I guess LARPing gets a little close to, and D&D gets pretty darn close to, but we're the first mainstream medium that can actually do that. And the immersive sim is the perfect way to do it."
     
    Working In the Game Industry
    Articles focused on what it is like to work in the game industry or in fields connected to the game industry.
    "Along with my friend and photographer, Levi Ryman, I spent a month between February and March of this year in my Ford Escape traveling 9,000 miles across the United States and back, visiting families, communities and developers in an effort to create a scrapbook of sorts, full of stories and profiles showing what it's like for developers across the United States to create games. What I learned is that, just as no two people are the same, no two games are made the same way. Everyone we visited had a different story about how their location and the people around them has influenced the way they work and the games they put out."
    A month on the road: My indie developer road trip (By Blake Hester) 
    Blake Hester spent a month traveling around the United States to learn the stories of developers and how their lives and games are influenced by where they live.
    "I wrote one of the first stories about Blizzard Entertainment, when they were known as Chaos Studios. They sold their company for a very small amount of money these days, $7 million or something, to Davidson and Associates, but went on to be very successful. The president of Blizzard recently said to me, “Thank you for 25 years of good coverage.” It’s this guy, Mike Morhaime. I covered Brian Fargo of Interplay, and still cover him today. He’s about to retire. I’m not quite ready to do that."
    A life in game journalism (By Dean Takahashi)
    Dean Takahashi writes about his life and experiences as a game journalist and the events that got him to where he is today.
    "There can be a conflict when talking about what it’s like to be a woman in the industry, and how to balance being honest with how bad it can be, but also wanting to be encouraging. Most of the women I spoke to had their eyes firmly forward, looking toward the future."
    Women in Video Game Development in 2017: A Snapshot (By Lucy O'Brien)
    Lucy O'Brien interviewed 55 developers about the moments that influenced their career paths, educational institutions and the way games are marketed turning people away from development or not informing them about the kind of careers available, social stigmas and workplace conduct that prevent people from joining the industry or that causes veterans to leave it, and communities that help support and offer new opportunists.
    "A living legend was talking about what a great job that Soliani did, and in response, his eyes welled up with tears. He stood up, waved awkwardly, and tried not to completely break down in front of the theater of people."
    This E3 Was All About Men Crying Onstage, And That Is Wonderful (By Cameron Kunzelman)
    Cameron Kunzelman covers how game development can be an emotional experience and how that was shown at this year's E3.
    "Jason Brassard, owner of Trade N Games in Fenton, Mo., gives the same five-to-10-year timeframe. "I don't think this industry, in retail, is left in 10 years," he says. "… No, not in the least bit. I mean, there will be some collectibles, but paying two employees who work full time and paying a few thousand in rent, nah. No way. Not a chance."
    What it costs to run an independent video game store (By Matt Leone)
    Matt Leone looks at the costs of running independent game stores by talking to people who have done it through the 80s to modern times and talks to them about adapting to changing times, store policies and how they did and do business, and the future of retail gaming stores.
    "It's not farfetched to suggest that the implementation of the ACA in 2010 played a large role in the 'boom' of independent game studios."
    Game Developers Speak Up in the Face of Obamacare Repeal and More Stories of How Obamacare Has Affected Game Developers (By Joseph Knoop)
    Joseph Knoop talks to developers about the negative effects the ACA repeal can have on the industry, getting stories from those that needed to be hospitalized, hearing about the ways the repeal can end the careers of women, and how developers can be prevented from leaving larger studios to pursue their own passion projects.
    "As an independent video game developer, The Chinese Room lives by the seat of its pants. It is the same for so many across the video game world. If money's not coming in, you can't pay the bills. That's why developers often spend as much time pitching projects as they do building games. If there's nothing coming next, it could be hard to keep the lights on - possibly impossible."
    The doors close on The Chinese Room - for now (By Wesley Yin-Poole)
    Wesley Yin-Poole on the closure of the studio The Chinese Room and the struggles faced by independent developers. 
    "I did a public talk a couple weeks ago to a room full of all ages kids, and afterwards, a kid came up to me and was talking about stuff. And I shit you not, this kid (somewhere between 13-16 I'd guess) starts talking about how bad devs are because of a youtuber he watches. He nailed all the points, "bad engines", "being greedy", you name it. I was appalled. I did my best to tell him that all those things people freak out about are normal and have justifications. I hope I got through a bit. But I expect he went back to consuming toxic culture via youtube personalities, and one day he'll probably harass a dev over nonsense."
    Game Designer Says Developers Would Be More Candid If Gamer Culture Wasn't So Toxic (Twitter thread by Charles Randall and write up by ‏Jason Schreier)
    Charles Randall‏ writes a thread on Twitter about what keeps developers from being more candid about the way games are made.
    "In that same vein, if I didn’t want to be banned from Steam, I shouldn’t have made You Must be 18 or Older to Enter. The logic follows. If the game had monsters, or violence, or death, or used other traditional horror aspects over childhood curiosity, it probably wouldn’t have been banned from Steam."
    The Fun is Over, We Have to Get Serious about Games (By James Cox)
    James Cox talks about the need to stop treating certain subjects in games as jokes, his game being wrongly classified as porn and removed from Steam, and the cycle created by distribution platforms, streamers, and Youtubers that influence gaming culture and makes developing or even having the language to talk about new and unique experiences difficult.
     
    Life and Games
    Articles on the meaning that games can have for people, connections they help create, and why they matter.
    "I grinned, and halfway through my amusement I suddenly realised that while my mother could read up on the games news, there was another language that my mother did not speak: the language of games. For all her enthusiasm and knowledge of the medium, she had never once held a controller, or booted up a video game. We had been talking about games, the business, the people, and the stories and moments that impacted me for almost a decade, and my mother had nodded along understanding everything but the heart of it: the games themselves."
    Mom, 'Final Fantasy' and the Language of Gaming (Rami Ismail)
    Rami Ismail on teaching the language of gaming and a year spent gaming with his mom.
    "With his beloved science fiction novels to the right of the desk and a view of the garden stretching from behind his computer screen, Stephen would become enveloped first in The Flame In The Flood and then in Firewatch. At the age of 63, Stephen, recently retired, rekindled a passion that had been with him since the early '80s."
    The 63-Year-Old Retiree Who Broke A Game Looking for The End of the World (By Lewis Gordon)
    Lewis Gordon writes about how The Flame In the Flood and Firewatch helped a man rekindle an old passion.
    "It’s hard to say exactly how many women feel burdened by the responsibilities of motherhood, but from anecdotal experience I’d say it’s not uncommon. And yet we don’t feel comfortable expressing it, as if somehow, by admitting our infallibility, we’re no longer capable at all. Life is messy, yet nothing short of perfection is enough. To be a mother is to agonize over every decision, to accuse yourself of selfishness for having basic needs. Every second spent on anything other than your child comes with an extra side of shame. “If only I’d been more attentive” becomes the answer to every perceived failure. It always seems as though the second you look away, that’s when everything will go wrong. For Karen, it did."
    How I Finally Found A Mom I Can Identify With—In A Videogame (By Holly Green)
    Holly Green writes about motherhood and finding a mother she can identify with in the game Through the Woods.
    "Everyone I talked to for this story had one thing in common: games. Sometimes video games, sometimes tabletop games. But what bound them together was a sense of being thrust into the shadows of society, forced to hide themselves, and finding solace, hope, and even careers in games. While they waited for the world to change, they embraced games."
    Undocumented Immigrants Describe Life Under DACA, and How Games Helped Them (By Patrick Klepek)
    Patrick Klepek talks to DACA immigrants about how games helped them and their desire to work in and their current contributions to the game industry.
    "History has a habit of repeating itself when people forget, you see, but are videogames the right place to remind us? They’re bigger than any other entertainment medium, after all, but often the medium with the least to say."
    Videogames’ portrayal of the Holocaust does a disservice to both players and victims (By Kirk McKeand)
    Kirk McKeand talks to Jewish game industry veterans on the portrayal of Nazis and the holocaust in video games, covering topics such as how pop culture influences the appearance of Nazis in media, the way games ignore certain topics, and the portrayal of similar topics in indie and lesser known titles.
    "The hero’s own voice may be crafting a narrative to be used against them, via events and recordings that they don’t remember or maybe never made in the first place. While trapped in this location, surrounded by infinite void on all sides, the main character must either reject the horrific mistakes of their past as outright lies or accept their sins, making amends or choosing to lean into the power and freedom of their new role as the villain. This is also how it feels to be bipolar. I know that now, because I was diagnosed while I was playing the game."
    When the Void Stares Back: Prey, Post-Humanism and Mental Illness (By Brock Wilbur)
    Brock Wilbur writes about playing as an unreliable narrator in Prey and the ability to be one in your own life.
    "In part, Neo Japan Games has become a mini-power plant. A generator which Robles has been running daily since re-opening the store 14 days after the storm makes it an oasis of sorts."
    In Post-Hurricane Puerto Rico, This Used Game Store Is A Welcome Escape (By Ethan Gach)
    Ethan Gach on how a used game store serves as a refuge as the population attempts to rebuild.
     
    Game Industry Abroad
    Articles covering the game industry of different countries, mostly focused on the ones that we don't often associate with video games, or covering how the industry is growing and effecting people and places worldwide.
    "Secret gaming networks entwine utility lines, broadcast from rooftops and piggy-back phone cables over highways. Speakeasy arcades can be found in many Havana neighborhoods, locked away behind closed doors. Blocked by two governments, U.S. video games — normally priced in the U.S. at more than a Cuban makes in a month — are as inexpensive as they are ubiquitous in Cuba’s thriving black market. And the people who play these games are just as passionate about making them, writing about them, competing in them. This is a new generation of Cubans; raised on illicit video gaming, born to love everything those games offer from the ability to create interactive, moving art, to gaming’s deep social roots and frenetic sense of play."
    Cuba: Where underground arcades, secret networks and piracy are a way of life (By Brian Crecente)
    Brian Crecente gives a detailed look at gaming culture in Cuba in a series of 12 articles covering piracy, esports, development, secret networks and arcades, and more.
    "And yet, innovation within China is not dead. Thanks to the recent success of digital marketplaces like Steam and itch.io which sit outside the Chinese government’s scrutiny, in combination with the increasing accessibility of game-making tools like Unity and RPG Maker, local developers are pushing back against the stereotypical depictions of China in video games. By telling personal, human stories, these developers want to show the world that Chinese culture is so much more than Kung Fu and red dragons."
    Why It's So Hard To Make Games In China (By Matt Sayer)
    Matt Sayer on the game industry of China and difficulty of developing games there.
    "Clearly, no one pays for content in Pakistan; everything is pirated," he says. "So I looked at the biggest spenders in the space, and one of the bigger spenders in Pakistani cricket is Pepsi. So I contacted the marketing company who handles their account."
    What it’s like making games in Pakistan (By Basim Usmani)
    Basim Usamani looks at the game industry of Pakistan and how a small team of developers turned there game into a financial success when most things are pirated.
    "According to Overwatch lore, D.va is a pro gamer who serves and inspires her country. In real life, D.va’s role is starting to mirror her in-game persona, as she becomes a symbol of hope for women in South Korea."
    D.va From Overwatch Has Become A Symbol of Hope In Real Life (By Nico Deyo)
    Nico Deyo talks about how Overwatch's pro Korean gamer D.Va is used as a symbol for female gamers in Korea.
    "In Seoul, where corporate-sponsored teams live in gaming houses and play in front of packed arenas, the top players are all men. The scandal swirling around Geguri felt like a tipping point. She was a unicorn, and people didn't believe she was real."
    Game: Interrupted (By Mina Kimes)
    Mina Kimes writes about the culture and esports scene of Korea and interviews a player that became a reluctant icon for other female gamers after her talent got her accused of cheating.
    “A huge chunk of the world gets disqualified over factors they can’t control, and this game company didn’t take the effort to think about how their supposed attempts at diversity actually backfired. If they’re already fucking up this way, how do you expect them to respond to the travel ban? Preemptively ban people from applying for jobs there? Closing down offices elsewhere? Only taking in super local people? Options that are actually legal and viable get thrown by the wayside.”
    How Trump's Travel Ban Impacts the Games Industry (By Holly Green and Creatrix Tiara)
    Holly Green writes about how immigration, passports, and travel bans have impacted the life of one developer.
    "The first obstacle to PC gaming's growth is a simple one: very few people own PCs in Japan. But there's much more to it than that. There's the challenge of using Steam in Japanese. There's the frequent need for a champion—sometimes a single person in a huge company—to boldly fight for a PC port. There's the long history of 'doujin' fan games in Japan and a struggling indie scene finally beginning to find its footing. There's a genetic predisposition to motion sickness that turns Japanese gamers away from first-person games. And there's 7-Eleven."
    How Japan learned to love PC gaming again (By Wes Fenlon)
    Wes Fenlon on how PC gaming has started to make a comeback in Japan.
    "July 2017 marked the first annual Tehran Game Convention. It felt like an event that had been refined over years. It was strikingly well organized, hosted 2300 attendees, and featured speakers from 14 countries covering a range of topics from scalable game servers (Ashkan Saeedi Mazdeh), to expanding existing universes (Rayna Anderson), to meaning and ethics in games (Wolfgang Walk), to applying game design techniques to understanding mental illness (David Baron). The games industry in Iran is well-established and sophisticated."
    Making Games in Tehran: A massive market, disconnected (By Brie Code) 
     Brie Code attends the first game convention in Tehran and gives details about their growing game industry.
     
    Game Archiving
    “If it’s preserved, and if it’s accessible to the public, I hope writers, researchers, and historians will find those little gems, talk about it, and rewrite history,” he said. The history of games that’s commonly spread around—in the beginning, there was Space Invaders, which begat Pac-Man, which begat Mario—might be the history of the most successful products, but it’s not the history of the most influential art. “When you’re talking about art, you forget that it sold one million copies,” he says. “The history of video games that I’m reading every day on the internet everywhere is not the history I know. And is not the history as it was back in time.”
    Saving Japan's Games (By Chris Kohler) 
    Chris Kohler writes about the Game Preservation Society, which is dedicated to the research and preservation of Japanese games. Chris covers why games and their associated materials is important to preserve, the history of the man who started the organization, how preservation is handled, the history of older computers, and the culture and laws of Japan that can make preservation efforts difficult.
     
    Localization
    "Released that May in North America, Vagrant Story was a significant step forward for English localization. A taut, lean story of dark medieval intrigue and magic, it was a game with a depth of language still uncommonly used to this day. I recently had the opportunity to interview localization editor Richard Amtower and famous translator Alexander O. Smith over email on their breakthrough early work in the field and to reflect on the rise of localization as a craft that truly mattered."
    "Make it Biblical:" How Vagrant Story Changed Game Localization (By John Learned) 
    "One day in the late 1990s, Myria walked into the Irvine High School computer room and spotted a boy playing Final Fantasy V. There were two unusual things about this. The first was that Final Fantasy V had not actually come out in the United States. To play the 1992 Japanese game in English, you’d have to download a ROM, then install the unofficial fan translation patch that had recently begun circulating the internet. Myria knew about this patch because of the other unusual thing: she helped make it."
    How Three Kids With No Experience Beat Square And Translated Final Fantasy V Into English (By Jason Schreier) 
    Jason Schreier tells the story of the kids that translated Final Fantasy V before Square and did a better job of it. He looks at how they got started, the influence of the translation, and at how the work was done.
    "Why do fans of JRPG giants assume Japanese writers can't write?"
    Persona 5: Phantoms of Translation and Persona 5's translation is a black mark on a brilliant game (By Connor Krammer) 
    Connor Krammer created a website to explain some of the translations issues with Persona 5, give examples of a variety of problems, and to answer questions about localization and possible critiques of his observations. This was followed that up with a freelance article on Eurogamer where he talks about Persona 5 and localization. Krammer later wrote two threads on Twitter about some accusations and harassment that he had received after creating his site, which can be read here and here.
     
    Stories From Games
    Apart from the stories told by games there are the stories players create with them
    “Samantha Myth has shown me the dangers of trust, but also the power of friendship,” Tikktokk writes in a Reddit post updating everyone on the situation. “Long term friends can stab you in the back at any moment without reason or consequences. At the same time, those who have the opportunity to, but choose not, have proven [themselves] to be true friends who I hope to keep in contact with long after EVE Online shuts down.”
    How a scam in EVE Online turned into its greatest rescue mission
    Meet the most honest man in EVE Online
    How an EVE Online con artist tricked a ruthless pirate into giving him his priceless ship 
    How one mistake turned EVE Online's deadliest hunters into corpses (By Steven Messner) 
    Steven Messner has been keeping PCGamer readers updated with some of the stories from EVE Online over the last two years and these are some of the most entertaining ones from 2017.
    "I was there, embedded within an armada of more than 1,000 ships known as the Premonition Allied Coalition, or the PAC. They were there to defend a fictional character named Salomé, the invention of a science fiction author. Arrayed against them were the most deadly player-controlled fleets in the entire Milky Way galaxy."
    Elite: Dangerous' 3,000-player battle royale (By Charlie Hall) 
    Charlie Hall covers the story of how Harry Potter's betrayal would influence the future of Elite Dangerous.
    "As Allison's corpse sank, so too did my chance at finding love."
    I was drugged, forced to sing, and accused of murder in one night on an Ark roleplaying server (By Steven Messner) 
    Steven Messner sings, tries to find love, and causes a dinosaur stampede on an Ark roleplay server.
  2. Doctor liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in Best Games Writing of 2017   
    2017 is now behind us and I've put together a list of some of the best writing I saw throughout the year. Created with the goal of highlighting the work of some of the best writers and journalists in the industry and to share topics that can enhance understanding of the game industry, events of the previous year, and of the games themselves. Many of these have been shared in my weekly This Week In Gaming articles.
    These articles might focus on developer and game history, what working in the industry is like, what games make us think and feel, things that have effected the industry this year, the effects of games on people and culture, entertaining stories, lessons learned and connections established through games, and articles that can give you a greater understanding of game development. Links are included to author's social media account and it is worth following them and their work if you are interested in games and the industry.
     
    Previous Best Games Writing Articles
    2016
     

     
    History of the Industry, Developers, and Games
    Articles and interview that examine the life and work of developers and studios and the games and franchises that they created or worked on.
    "OK, so maybe I did kill Aerith. But if I hadn’t stopped you, in the second half of the game, you were planning to kill everyone off but the final three characters the player chooses!"
    Final Fantasy 7 An Oral History (By Matt Leone) 
    "Bamberger stayed calm. Years of prep and planning, countless conversations with the marketing gurus at TBWA\Chiat\Day, packaging and posters and commercials and magazines branded with the game’s release date—everything he had worked for hinged on this moment. “How do you get a game to sell through a million units at the time we were trying to do it?” he asked me. “A lot of that is, you build your case slowly over time, like a drumbeat.”
    How Final Fantasy 7 Revolutionized Videogame Marketing and Helped Sony Tackle Nintendo (By David L. Craddock) 
    Matt Leone gives us a look at the creation of Final Fantasy VII, told by those that worked on it, while David Craddock looks at how the game was marketed and the team behind it.
    "So, the sun was shining, with the lens flare, and Steve sort of stopped the demo right there and said: “Yeah, but you know, at Pixar, we can render dozens of suns.” Jason’s immediate reply to him was: “Yeah, but can you do it in real time?” There was this pregnant pause and Steve’s says: “Okay, you’re in.” And he picked up his Fudgsicle and walked back into his office, and that was it. So that’s how we got in, a little bit of chutzpah and an OpenGL tech demo running on what was soon to be the Mac."
    The Complete, Untold History of Halo (By Steve Haske and and edited by Mike Diver and Austin Walker) 
    Steve Haske gives us the history of the Halo franchise, as told by the people that created it.
    "[What] I remember being a huge problem was [on] Episode One, like literally three days before we weren’t allowed to touch the project anymore, Pierre comes to me — I think Guardians of the Galaxy had just come out. There’s a moment in the first episode where your friend Loader Bot can explode, and it’s based on a player choice. Pierre comes to me and says, “I don’t think we should let Loader Bot die.” I’m just like, “Well, okay. We’re 36, 48 hours away from this thing going live, what are you talking about? That choice is there.” And he said, “I think we might be blowing up our Groot.”
    Tales from the Borderlands: The Oral History (By Duncan Fyfe) 
    Duncan Fyfe tells the story of how Tales From the Borderlands came to be from his interviews with Telltale and Gearbox staff members.
    "We would send renderings of Superman, and we would get images back from Warner Bros. with his crotch area circled, 'Make this part bigger; make this part smaller.' This went on for months."
    Superman Returns: What went wrong (By Matt Paprocki) 
    Matt Paprocki learns what the development of a failed Superman Returns game was like.
    "Mass Effect: Andromeda was in development for five years, but by most accounts, BioWare built the bulk of the game in less than 18 months. This is the story of what happened."
    The Story Behind Mass Effect: Andromeda's Troubled Five-Year Development (By Jason Schreier) 
    Jason Schreier looks into the troubled development of Mass Effect Andromeda, the original ideas behind the game, cut elements, a team spread across the world, and how most of the game was made in 18 months despite the five year development.
    "While there are dozens of perspectives on whether or not EA’s decision to axe the studio was justified, many who worked at the studio say they couldn’t see this ending any other way. “Honestly, it was a mercy killing,” said one former Visceral employee. “It had nothing to do with whether it was gonna be single player. I don’t think it had anything to do with that. That game never could’ve been good and come out.”
    The Collapse Of Visceral's Ambitious Star Wars Game (By Jason Schreier) 
    Schreier looks into the closing of Visceral studio by talking to former Visceral developers and looking at studio responses, industry trends, issues with Star Wars being owned by another company, Amy Hennig’s role in the company, embracing poor decisions to impress fans and executives, problems with adapting the game engine for a new genre, problems with studio size and division, the immense scope of the project seeming more like a fever dream to some, the history of Visceral's recent projects, and how their Star Wars game partly began life as an open world pirate game. If you liked his articles looking into studio and game development, Jason also released an excellent book this year looking into the development of 10 different games Blood, Sweat, and Pixels.
    "Infocom believed that what Meretzky had created was more than just a game – it was a piece of interactive literature. To stress the seriousness of its ambitions, they held a press conference for A Mind Forever Voyaging's release at the New York Public Library. Meretzky himself desperately wanted to see the game's pointed message spark some real controversy. "I was hoping I'd get dragged in front of a congressional committee," he says."
    Flashback: How 'A Mind Forever Voyaging' Took Aim at Right-Wing Politics (By Chris Baker) 
    Chris Baker writes about the development of 80s text adventures, focusing on a classic 1985 game that offered social commentary at a time when games weren't thought to be capable of that, and on how the game inspired the writers of stories like Rogue One, Book of Eli, Telltale's The Walking Dead, and Her Story.
    "Big Bang Bar's creation is a story of pinball's near death, of one man's attempt to become a piece of pinball history, of bankruptcy, of obsession, of short-lived redemption and personal disaster."
    When pigs flew: The strange history of Capcom's Big Bang Bar (By Brian Crecente) 
    Brian Crecente writes about the history of Capcom with pinball machines and attempts to find a long lost table and the man behind its creation.
    "So, when it came to games that weren’t Ultima Origin had had to content themselves with projects one notch down from the top tier — projects which, whether because they weren’t flashy enough or were just too nichey, weren’t of huge interest to the bigger publishers. Those brought in enough revenue to justify their existence but not much more, and thus Robert Garriott continued to bet the company every two years on his brother’s latest Ultima. It was a nerve-wracking way to live. And then, in 1990, all that changed practically overnight. This article and the one that follows will tell the story of how the house that Ultima built found itself with an even bigger franchise on its hands."
    From Squadron to Wingleader and From Wingleader to Wing Commander (By Jimmy Maher) 
    Jimmy Maher looks at some of the history of Origin Systems, the hiring and early work of Chris Roberts, and the people and ideas behind the creation of the game that would rival Ultima, Wing Commander.
    "At one point he said: 'I hope you appreciate that this is the last time any of you will be able to work on games in this way. The industry is changing.'"
    Death or Glory: How 1997 Changed Video Games Forever (By Keith Stuart) 
    Keith Stuart looks at the way the game industry changed in 1997, the games that were released, the changes made by companies and developers, and losing old habits and freedoms in order to embrace the future.
    "There was a lot of internal criticism about deducting so much life gauge with one attack. SNK management said this design had to be changed, but I thought it was very interesting to have players fight under the risk and fear of fighting with weapons and feel the destructive force of the sword, so I ignored them and kept it in the game."
    The making of Samurai Shodown (By James Mielke) 
    James Mielke interviews three of the developers of Samurai Shodown and talks about how the game came to be and the ideas behind it.
    "They didn't know it at the time, but the members of Naughty Dog in that room — Kurosaki, Rafei and co-founders Jason Rubin and Andy Gavin — were looking at the system that would host the team's next game: Crash Bandicoot. They were seeing the console their company would eventually create the unofficial mascot for — the console they would develop Naughty Dog's first smash hit for. It was Kurosaki and Rafei's second day with the company."
    Crash Bandicoot: An oral history (By Blake Hester) 
    Blake Hester speaks to creators of Crash Bandicoot, a game that helped redefine platformers and that helped to turn Naughty Dog into the studio they are today.
    "My mandate to re-envision and redesign The Oregon Trail was almost overwhelming at first—the possibilities were endless, yet I had to get it absolutely right on the first release. For 13 years, from 1971 to 1984, the OREGON game had remained essentially unchanged. A few small details had been tweaked along the way, but never had the product been completely re-imagined and redesigned. Never had the underlying models been changed—the structures, algorithms, and assumptions upon which the game is based. For the very first time, we were going to throw out everything—including all of the existing software programming, which dated back to 1971—and start completely from scratch."
    I Designed The Oregon Trail, You Have Died of Dysentery (By R. Philip Bouchard) 
    R. Philip Bouchard on the history of The Oregon Trail, the original text 1971 version, and changes that were made and that weren't able to be included in the newer version that would be designed for a home market instead of a school market. 
    "Sadly, it's here the story takes a darker turn and we come to the crux of why Whittaker's achievements have gone unsung for so long. "There were issues with my name, because my christened name is Jane," he explains. "I was asked to use a male name on titles, because at the time if you were doing a macho shooting game it was thought that a female name would downgrade the brand. My dad came up with the idea of using Andrew - I think he got as far as A in a book of names and got bored. So most of my games went out as Andrew Whittaker to avoid advertising these gender issues to the outside world."
    Threats, fake names and philanthropy: The untold story of Jane Whittaker (By James Batchelor) 
    James Batchelor tells the history of developer Jane Whittaker, who moved to America to work with Atari at 16, and why he was told to use a fake name for most of his career as he worked on a large number of popular and influential games.
    "I remember when I left [the company, right before Underground was released], I sent [Joel an] email and was like, "Hey, Joel. Can we have a chat?" He said, "Yeah, come to the office." So I went to the office and I walked in. He had both feet on the table. He had a revolver in his hand and he spun the barrel, like flicked it in, pointed the gun at me and then said, "So you're quitting, huh?" …I had this speech worked out in my head, but how do you get over that?"
    From Busted Teeth to Broken TVs: The Oral History of Tony Hawk's Underground (By Blake Hester) 
    Blake Hester talks to the development team behind Tony Hawk's Underground covering topics that include the ideas behind the game's creation, the culture of the studio, working with pro skateboarders, Activision forgoing their normal greenlight process, and how they did it in under a year.
     
    Writing On Games
    Articles on the games themselves, effects they had on the industry, the stories they tell, how gameplay is used, deeper meanings of titles, etc.
    "The point is, the moment is scripted in such a way that you can’t get past the officer, and the only way to progress is to hit him. But players don’t spend time to figure out what to do next, they just do it. Because the level made players go past their breaking point just like the whole situation made Emile go past breaking point."
    How Valiant Hearts drives you to the breaking point (By Stanislav Costiuc) 
    Stanislav Costiuc writes about one of the most memorable levels and moments in Valiant Hearts and how the mechanics put you in the mindset of the protagonist.
    "The true evil in Night in the Woods is both rampant capitalism itself and the hate that is so easily fueled when people become disenfranchised as infrastructures collapse and jobs dry up. And Night in the Woods is so fiercely, justifiably angry at these things."
    What Lies Beneath: On the Love and Anger of Night in the Woods (By Carolyn Petit) 
    "Infinite Fall’s Night in the Woods poignantly and sympathetically captures the human scale of the widening millennial vs baby boomer gap. Setting aside stats and diatribes, it explores the messy, awkward nature of a paradigm shift that lives under the same roof, shares the same blood, and harbors the same deep familial love and frustration for one another."
    The Human Cost of the Millennial Generation Gap in Night in the Woods (By Jess Joho) 
    "Because its too soft to say I disagree with the notion that the last acts of NitW are out of place: the truth is I think the supernaturalism of the game is as crucial as any moment in the narrative. It cements the message of the game by prefacing the structurally crucial epilogue with this severe moment of politically charged unreality, a moment that ultimately leads the reader to conclude with Mae that as long as nothing is real or rational or fair, the best we can manage is to hang on to individual moments of social connectivity."
    The Monster at the End of Capitalism (By Trevor Strunk) 
    I've probably read more articles on Night in the Woods than on any other game this year, some of the best pieces I've seen have been Carolyn Petit's on the fierce and justifiable anger of the game, Jess Joho's on the generational themes of Night in the Woods, and Trevor Strunk's on the supernatural elements that appeared in the late game and why they work.
    "NieR, and its strange mom Drakengard, are series that accomplish this a lot: affect physical feeling in some way. Their mastermind is a masked man named Yoko Taro who loves beer and who wants Square-Enix to hire him. Mainly, he wants to surprise us players with our own feelings by reminding us they’re still in there, somewhere."
    Yoko Taro: Weird feelings for weird people (By Ruben Ferdinand) 
    Ruben Ferdinand looks at the characters and themes of Yoko Taro's games and how the main thing we learn from them are the roles of violence and silence.
    "As S.R. Holiwell explains in A Maze of Muderscapes, Metroid II is ultimately a game about genocide. It’s a singular minded push into the territory of an indigenous species to wipe out a lifeform that has been designated a threat to the galaxy, despite their inability to escape their native planet. Everything about the game contributes to that: the hostile, painful soundscapes, the restrictive corridors, and the counter that makes a permanent space on your HUD, counting down the number of Metroids left alive on the planet. AM2R retains none of that, replacing every aspect with elements that imitate the blueprint of Super Metroid."
    Picture in a Frame (By Amr Al-Aaser) 
    Amr Al-Aaser on how we talk about games, how we frame and describe them in ways that can cause us to fail to understand what an individual game says and does on its own terms. Amr uses the recent fan remake of Metroid 2 as an example for how the game completely changed the tone and narrative of the original, if you are interested in the topic of tonal changes that AM2R and Metroid Returns made to Metroid 2, Mark Brown did a video looking at all three games.
    "That’s where the extraordinary Nier: Automata comes in. This is a game that, in its own way, takes a long, hard look at the same forces of hatred, prejudice and fear that Geralt speaks about in The Witcher 3, and grimly acknowledges how tragically destructive they are. And then, in the end, when everything seems to be lost and it appears as if ignorance, fear, and hatred have all but devoured every last glimmer of hope and life and love, the game does something truly extraordinary."
    Contained in Our Moments: Ignorance and Love in Nier: Automata and The Witcher 3 (By Carolyn Petit) 
    Carolyn Petit on the expressions of emotion in The Witcher 3 and Nier Automata and Nier's more hopeful tone compared to Geralt's world weary cynicism in combating violence and ignorance.
    "Horizon is inspiring because it doesn’t boast about humanity being worth saving, it doesn’t put hope on a pedestal. Instead it deals with reality, it says mortality is coming and we’ve fucked up."
    Horizon: Zero Dawn and the beauty of annihilation (By Tauriq Moosa) 
    Tauriq Moosa on how Horizon Zero Dawn was inspiring to him and how, in dealing with reality, it makes him want to be a better person.
    "But she definitely helps, and I’m glad she’s here, because if Breath of the Wild fills me with hope and excitement for the worlds that action-adventure games may create in years to come, then Horizon Zero Dawn makes me a little more optimistic about who might populate those worlds, and the heroes who may rise to save them."
    Children of the Earth: The Limits of Link and the Promise of Aloy (By Carolyn Petit) 
    Carolyn Petit looks at what games in the future can learn from the world of Breath of the Wild and the characters of Horizon Zero Dawn.
    "Quadrilateral Cowboy is built on relationships that are recognizable, that can be mapped to real life, even though the setting is in many ways fantastical. It's based on an idea of closeness not as a sudden thing or as an object of extreme drama, but as a slowly germinating process in which people's lives and spaces blur into one another. And in portraying friendship so effectively, it highlights how rare those relationships are in game narratives."
    'Quadrilateral Cowboy' Points to a Different Kind of Intimacy in Games (By Bruno Dias) 
    Bruno Dias writes about game's struggle with intimacy and how Quadrilateral Cowboy's story is built on recognizable relationships.
    "While the situations are often overblown and bizarre, there's something at their core that still feels grounded in the era's reality: furors over hot new game releases and technology, youthful rebellion against boring corporate life, and the excitement that celebrities and media would create."
    'Yakuza 0' is A Postcard from Another Time (By Heidi Kemps)
     Heidi Kemps explores how Yakuza 0 acts as a postcard from 1980s Japan.
    "That’s the thing with fictional violence—it’s never actually representative of real violence, but instead serves as a dramatic and thematic tool to convey a feeling or idea. This plays a large part into what makes the recent video game Yakuza 0 so compelling—it takes the traditional violence of crime fiction and repurposes that into this wider idea of constructive resistance."
    The Transformative Violence of Yakuza 0 (By Patrick Larose)
    Patrick Larose on the framing of violence in Yakuza 0 and how it can be channeled into a reconstructive force.
    "This is how these games convey the purpose of taverns as interstitial spaces between the mundane and fantastic. In the Torment games, bars mean finding reflection and escapism amidst confusing worlds so vastly different than our own, yet with characters so strikingly resonant when given the chance to unwind. Speaking with characters, learning about their pasts and their cultures, what this place means to them, is valued alongside the protagonists’ player guided self-discovery."
    Hold my Beer — Why the Torment Games Have the Best Video Game Bars (By Dakota Joyce)
    Dakota Joyce on how simple taverns end up having some of the more interesting moments in two games with the most fantastical settings.
    "Especially in these dark days, the warmth and humanity of Sareh’s depiction is a much needed point of light. As a protagonist-like figure, she neatly expresses a theme endemic to all of Tacoma: that even in a grim, dystopian future, there is always hope to be found in the way people manage to simply survive."
    Opinion: In praise of Tacoma's character Sareh Hasmadi (By Katherine Cross)
    Katherine Cross on the portrayal and humanity of Tacoma's character Sareh Hasmadi.
    "If a game about Egypt's history, released in 2017, is to say anything about its setting, taking aim at the abuses of power that have oppressed its population for millennia seems more than appropriate."
    How Assassin's Creed Origins Captures the Politics, Colonialism, and Betrayal of the Real Ancient Egypt (By Reid McCarter)
    Reid McCarter on how, by diving into the past, Origin shows insight on the history of Egypt and the modern world.
    "The men are forced to deal with the bodies that society would typically let them ignore, watching them break down around them."
    Wolfenstein 2 and Mending Broken Things (By Brendan Keogh)
    Brendan Keogh on how Wolfenstein is about the fragility of two types of bodies that underpin Western values, what it takes for them to fall apart, and giving form to emotions that capture the current atmosphere.
    "Whatever we may spend our time doing, who doesn’t want to do that? And when it comes to a medium like video games, where developers are crafting interactive future visions that can sell to millions, which creators don’t have a touch of the obsessive about them?"
    Gore as Art in The Evil Within 2 (By Richard Stanton)
    Richard Stanton on The Evil Within 2 antagonists Stefano Valentini.
    "It’s an odd, ill-fitting note in a game that filled me with a strange sort of grief, because it is the moment I could feel a culture’s connection to the recent past growing weaker and fainter. The grim, driven men of this story have a coldly distant, heroic quality to them that belongs more to myth than history. It reminded me that my grandfathers with all their flaws and frailties are both gone, and so is my grandmother with her shoebox full of small, fading Victory Mail letters, a War Department telegram, and photos of her one trip outside the United States, to a military cemetery in France."
    Watching History Fade Away in 'Call of Duty: WWII' (By Rob Zacny)
    Rob Zacny on the fading memory of WWII and the portrayal of the war in Call of Duty WWII and other media that have helped us replace the truth of the past with myth.
     
    Game Design
    Articles that focus on game design and the ideas and process behind them
    "Game designers work with and for the human mind; we have to consider human experience, perception and our mindset when we are at play. Whenever you choose to play, you likely want the game to feel internally consistent enough that you can buy into the experience. You're able to go along for the ride if the game feels like it makes sense."
    Games aren’t always fair, the magic lies in making you think they are (By Jennifer Scheurle)
    Jennifer Scheurle's article on her twitter thread where she asked developers to talk about game mechanics that are hidden from players, reading this can help you understand the kinds of things developers have to do and think about in order to create an enjoyable game.
    "For Robert Yang, a game designer and professor at NYU Game Center, this prioritization is a natural outcome of the unchecked biases that lie behind the 3D technology that powers modern gaming. "When 3D artists test their new skin shaders, they often use a 3D head scan of a white guy named Lee Perry-Smith," he notes. "What does it mean if we're all judging the quality of our skin shader solutions by seeing who can make the best rendered white guy?"
    Black Skin Is Still A Radical Concept in Video Games (By Yussef Cole and Tanya DePass)
    Yussef Cole And Tanya DePass on how the technology behind film and games were never created with darker skin tones in mind.
    "That’s where glitches come in. The competitive community has always had a strained relationship with them, preferring to rely on skill instead of exploit a mistake. But they’re often the best way to push a game to its limits. Sometimes, these discoveries even have the potential to make the game more balanced."
    Finding Beauty in the Weirdest Fighting Game Glitches (By Ian Walker)
    Ian Walker writes about fighting game glitches, how some ended up helping to balance games, how they lead to popular mechanics, and how they have impacted the course of the entire genre.
    "If you work on [a] game that includes a little bit of yourself — in [the] form of an Easter egg — you treat it more personally, and you care more. It becomes your game, not only a game that you happen to be working on," says Katarzyna Tarnacka, a concept artist at Polish developer Techland. "And I think a similar thing applies to the players. When I find Easter eggs in other games, then those games become special. It's a real human touch that I can sense."
    The costs of developing Easter eggs (By Blake Hester)
    Blake Hester looks at the work that goes into adding easter eggs in games and the situations that can lead to their creation.
    "I have a firmly-held belief that to honor a medium, and for it to grow, you have to do what it does that no other media can do. When I look at what games can do that other media can't, I instantly go right to the immersive sim. That sort of real-time you are there, nothing stands between you and belief that you're in an alternate world, that is something that I guess LARPing gets a little close to, and D&D gets pretty darn close to, but we're the first mainstream medium that can actually do that. And the immersive sim is the perfect way to do it."
     
    Working In the Game Industry
    Articles focused on what it is like to work in the game industry or in fields connected to the game industry.
    "Along with my friend and photographer, Levi Ryman, I spent a month between February and March of this year in my Ford Escape traveling 9,000 miles across the United States and back, visiting families, communities and developers in an effort to create a scrapbook of sorts, full of stories and profiles showing what it's like for developers across the United States to create games. What I learned is that, just as no two people are the same, no two games are made the same way. Everyone we visited had a different story about how their location and the people around them has influenced the way they work and the games they put out."
    A month on the road: My indie developer road trip (By Blake Hester) 
    Blake Hester spent a month traveling around the United States to learn the stories of developers and how their lives and games are influenced by where they live.
    "I wrote one of the first stories about Blizzard Entertainment, when they were known as Chaos Studios. They sold their company for a very small amount of money these days, $7 million or something, to Davidson and Associates, but went on to be very successful. The president of Blizzard recently said to me, “Thank you for 25 years of good coverage.” It’s this guy, Mike Morhaime. I covered Brian Fargo of Interplay, and still cover him today. He’s about to retire. I’m not quite ready to do that."
    A life in game journalism (By Dean Takahashi)
    Dean Takahashi writes about his life and experiences as a game journalist and the events that got him to where he is today.
    "There can be a conflict when talking about what it’s like to be a woman in the industry, and how to balance being honest with how bad it can be, but also wanting to be encouraging. Most of the women I spoke to had their eyes firmly forward, looking toward the future."
    Women in Video Game Development in 2017: A Snapshot (By Lucy O'Brien)
    Lucy O'Brien interviewed 55 developers about the moments that influenced their career paths, educational institutions and the way games are marketed turning people away from development or not informing them about the kind of careers available, social stigmas and workplace conduct that prevent people from joining the industry or that causes veterans to leave it, and communities that help support and offer new opportunists.
    "A living legend was talking about what a great job that Soliani did, and in response, his eyes welled up with tears. He stood up, waved awkwardly, and tried not to completely break down in front of the theater of people."
    This E3 Was All About Men Crying Onstage, And That Is Wonderful (By Cameron Kunzelman)
    Cameron Kunzelman covers how game development can be an emotional experience and how that was shown at this year's E3.
    "Jason Brassard, owner of Trade N Games in Fenton, Mo., gives the same five-to-10-year timeframe. "I don't think this industry, in retail, is left in 10 years," he says. "… No, not in the least bit. I mean, there will be some collectibles, but paying two employees who work full time and paying a few thousand in rent, nah. No way. Not a chance."
    What it costs to run an independent video game store (By Matt Leone)
    Matt Leone looks at the costs of running independent game stores by talking to people who have done it through the 80s to modern times and talks to them about adapting to changing times, store policies and how they did and do business, and the future of retail gaming stores.
    "It's not farfetched to suggest that the implementation of the ACA in 2010 played a large role in the 'boom' of independent game studios."
    Game Developers Speak Up in the Face of Obamacare Repeal and More Stories of How Obamacare Has Affected Game Developers (By Joseph Knoop)
    Joseph Knoop talks to developers about the negative effects the ACA repeal can have on the industry, getting stories from those that needed to be hospitalized, hearing about the ways the repeal can end the careers of women, and how developers can be prevented from leaving larger studios to pursue their own passion projects.
    "As an independent video game developer, The Chinese Room lives by the seat of its pants. It is the same for so many across the video game world. If money's not coming in, you can't pay the bills. That's why developers often spend as much time pitching projects as they do building games. If there's nothing coming next, it could be hard to keep the lights on - possibly impossible."
    The doors close on The Chinese Room - for now (By Wesley Yin-Poole)
    Wesley Yin-Poole on the closure of the studio The Chinese Room and the struggles faced by independent developers. 
    "I did a public talk a couple weeks ago to a room full of all ages kids, and afterwards, a kid came up to me and was talking about stuff. And I shit you not, this kid (somewhere between 13-16 I'd guess) starts talking about how bad devs are because of a youtuber he watches. He nailed all the points, "bad engines", "being greedy", you name it. I was appalled. I did my best to tell him that all those things people freak out about are normal and have justifications. I hope I got through a bit. But I expect he went back to consuming toxic culture via youtube personalities, and one day he'll probably harass a dev over nonsense."
    Game Designer Says Developers Would Be More Candid If Gamer Culture Wasn't So Toxic (Twitter thread by Charles Randall and write up by ‏Jason Schreier)
    Charles Randall‏ writes a thread on Twitter about what keeps developers from being more candid about the way games are made.
    "In that same vein, if I didn’t want to be banned from Steam, I shouldn’t have made You Must be 18 or Older to Enter. The logic follows. If the game had monsters, or violence, or death, or used other traditional horror aspects over childhood curiosity, it probably wouldn’t have been banned from Steam."
    The Fun is Over, We Have to Get Serious about Games (By James Cox)
    James Cox talks about the need to stop treating certain subjects in games as jokes, his game being wrongly classified as porn and removed from Steam, and the cycle created by distribution platforms, streamers, and Youtubers that influence gaming culture and makes developing or even having the language to talk about new and unique experiences difficult.
     
    Life and Games
    Articles on the meaning that games can have for people, connections they help create, and why they matter.
    "I grinned, and halfway through my amusement I suddenly realised that while my mother could read up on the games news, there was another language that my mother did not speak: the language of games. For all her enthusiasm and knowledge of the medium, she had never once held a controller, or booted up a video game. We had been talking about games, the business, the people, and the stories and moments that impacted me for almost a decade, and my mother had nodded along understanding everything but the heart of it: the games themselves."
    Mom, 'Final Fantasy' and the Language of Gaming (Rami Ismail)
    Rami Ismail on teaching the language of gaming and a year spent gaming with his mom.
    "With his beloved science fiction novels to the right of the desk and a view of the garden stretching from behind his computer screen, Stephen would become enveloped first in The Flame In The Flood and then in Firewatch. At the age of 63, Stephen, recently retired, rekindled a passion that had been with him since the early '80s."
    The 63-Year-Old Retiree Who Broke A Game Looking for The End of the World (By Lewis Gordon)
    Lewis Gordon writes about how The Flame In the Flood and Firewatch helped a man rekindle an old passion.
    "It’s hard to say exactly how many women feel burdened by the responsibilities of motherhood, but from anecdotal experience I’d say it’s not uncommon. And yet we don’t feel comfortable expressing it, as if somehow, by admitting our infallibility, we’re no longer capable at all. Life is messy, yet nothing short of perfection is enough. To be a mother is to agonize over every decision, to accuse yourself of selfishness for having basic needs. Every second spent on anything other than your child comes with an extra side of shame. “If only I’d been more attentive” becomes the answer to every perceived failure. It always seems as though the second you look away, that’s when everything will go wrong. For Karen, it did."
    How I Finally Found A Mom I Can Identify With—In A Videogame (By Holly Green)
    Holly Green writes about motherhood and finding a mother she can identify with in the game Through the Woods.
    "Everyone I talked to for this story had one thing in common: games. Sometimes video games, sometimes tabletop games. But what bound them together was a sense of being thrust into the shadows of society, forced to hide themselves, and finding solace, hope, and even careers in games. While they waited for the world to change, they embraced games."
    Undocumented Immigrants Describe Life Under DACA, and How Games Helped Them (By Patrick Klepek)
    Patrick Klepek talks to DACA immigrants about how games helped them and their desire to work in and their current contributions to the game industry.
    "History has a habit of repeating itself when people forget, you see, but are videogames the right place to remind us? They’re bigger than any other entertainment medium, after all, but often the medium with the least to say."
    Videogames’ portrayal of the Holocaust does a disservice to both players and victims (By Kirk McKeand)
    Kirk McKeand talks to Jewish game industry veterans on the portrayal of Nazis and the holocaust in video games, covering topics such as how pop culture influences the appearance of Nazis in media, the way games ignore certain topics, and the portrayal of similar topics in indie and lesser known titles.
    "The hero’s own voice may be crafting a narrative to be used against them, via events and recordings that they don’t remember or maybe never made in the first place. While trapped in this location, surrounded by infinite void on all sides, the main character must either reject the horrific mistakes of their past as outright lies or accept their sins, making amends or choosing to lean into the power and freedom of their new role as the villain. This is also how it feels to be bipolar. I know that now, because I was diagnosed while I was playing the game."
    When the Void Stares Back: Prey, Post-Humanism and Mental Illness (By Brock Wilbur)
    Brock Wilbur writes about playing as an unreliable narrator in Prey and the ability to be one in your own life.
    "In part, Neo Japan Games has become a mini-power plant. A generator which Robles has been running daily since re-opening the store 14 days after the storm makes it an oasis of sorts."
    In Post-Hurricane Puerto Rico, This Used Game Store Is A Welcome Escape (By Ethan Gach)
    Ethan Gach on how a used game store serves as a refuge as the population attempts to rebuild.
     
    Game Industry Abroad
    Articles covering the game industry of different countries, mostly focused on the ones that we don't often associate with video games, or covering how the industry is growing and effecting people and places worldwide.
    "Secret gaming networks entwine utility lines, broadcast from rooftops and piggy-back phone cables over highways. Speakeasy arcades can be found in many Havana neighborhoods, locked away behind closed doors. Blocked by two governments, U.S. video games — normally priced in the U.S. at more than a Cuban makes in a month — are as inexpensive as they are ubiquitous in Cuba’s thriving black market. And the people who play these games are just as passionate about making them, writing about them, competing in them. This is a new generation of Cubans; raised on illicit video gaming, born to love everything those games offer from the ability to create interactive, moving art, to gaming’s deep social roots and frenetic sense of play."
    Cuba: Where underground arcades, secret networks and piracy are a way of life (By Brian Crecente)
    Brian Crecente gives a detailed look at gaming culture in Cuba in a series of 12 articles covering piracy, esports, development, secret networks and arcades, and more.
    "And yet, innovation within China is not dead. Thanks to the recent success of digital marketplaces like Steam and itch.io which sit outside the Chinese government’s scrutiny, in combination with the increasing accessibility of game-making tools like Unity and RPG Maker, local developers are pushing back against the stereotypical depictions of China in video games. By telling personal, human stories, these developers want to show the world that Chinese culture is so much more than Kung Fu and red dragons."
    Why It's So Hard To Make Games In China (By Matt Sayer)
    Matt Sayer on the game industry of China and difficulty of developing games there.
    "Clearly, no one pays for content in Pakistan; everything is pirated," he says. "So I looked at the biggest spenders in the space, and one of the bigger spenders in Pakistani cricket is Pepsi. So I contacted the marketing company who handles their account."
    What it’s like making games in Pakistan (By Basim Usmani)
    Basim Usamani looks at the game industry of Pakistan and how a small team of developers turned there game into a financial success when most things are pirated.
    "According to Overwatch lore, D.va is a pro gamer who serves and inspires her country. In real life, D.va’s role is starting to mirror her in-game persona, as she becomes a symbol of hope for women in South Korea."
    D.va From Overwatch Has Become A Symbol of Hope In Real Life (By Nico Deyo)
    Nico Deyo talks about how Overwatch's pro Korean gamer D.Va is used as a symbol for female gamers in Korea.
    "In Seoul, where corporate-sponsored teams live in gaming houses and play in front of packed arenas, the top players are all men. The scandal swirling around Geguri felt like a tipping point. She was a unicorn, and people didn't believe she was real."
    Game: Interrupted (By Mina Kimes)
    Mina Kimes writes about the culture and esports scene of Korea and interviews a player that became a reluctant icon for other female gamers after her talent got her accused of cheating.
    “A huge chunk of the world gets disqualified over factors they can’t control, and this game company didn’t take the effort to think about how their supposed attempts at diversity actually backfired. If they’re already fucking up this way, how do you expect them to respond to the travel ban? Preemptively ban people from applying for jobs there? Closing down offices elsewhere? Only taking in super local people? Options that are actually legal and viable get thrown by the wayside.”
    How Trump's Travel Ban Impacts the Games Industry (By Holly Green and Creatrix Tiara)
    Holly Green writes about how immigration, passports, and travel bans have impacted the life of one developer.
    "The first obstacle to PC gaming's growth is a simple one: very few people own PCs in Japan. But there's much more to it than that. There's the challenge of using Steam in Japanese. There's the frequent need for a champion—sometimes a single person in a huge company—to boldly fight for a PC port. There's the long history of 'doujin' fan games in Japan and a struggling indie scene finally beginning to find its footing. There's a genetic predisposition to motion sickness that turns Japanese gamers away from first-person games. And there's 7-Eleven."
    How Japan learned to love PC gaming again (By Wes Fenlon)
    Wes Fenlon on how PC gaming has started to make a comeback in Japan.
    "July 2017 marked the first annual Tehran Game Convention. It felt like an event that had been refined over years. It was strikingly well organized, hosted 2300 attendees, and featured speakers from 14 countries covering a range of topics from scalable game servers (Ashkan Saeedi Mazdeh), to expanding existing universes (Rayna Anderson), to meaning and ethics in games (Wolfgang Walk), to applying game design techniques to understanding mental illness (David Baron). The games industry in Iran is well-established and sophisticated."
    Making Games in Tehran: A massive market, disconnected (By Brie Code) 
     Brie Code attends the first game convention in Tehran and gives details about their growing game industry.
     
    Game Archiving
    “If it’s preserved, and if it’s accessible to the public, I hope writers, researchers, and historians will find those little gems, talk about it, and rewrite history,” he said. The history of games that’s commonly spread around—in the beginning, there was Space Invaders, which begat Pac-Man, which begat Mario—might be the history of the most successful products, but it’s not the history of the most influential art. “When you’re talking about art, you forget that it sold one million copies,” he says. “The history of video games that I’m reading every day on the internet everywhere is not the history I know. And is not the history as it was back in time.”
    Saving Japan's Games (By Chris Kohler) 
    Chris Kohler writes about the Game Preservation Society, which is dedicated to the research and preservation of Japanese games. Chris covers why games and their associated materials is important to preserve, the history of the man who started the organization, how preservation is handled, the history of older computers, and the culture and laws of Japan that can make preservation efforts difficult.
     
    Localization
    "Released that May in North America, Vagrant Story was a significant step forward for English localization. A taut, lean story of dark medieval intrigue and magic, it was a game with a depth of language still uncommonly used to this day. I recently had the opportunity to interview localization editor Richard Amtower and famous translator Alexander O. Smith over email on their breakthrough early work in the field and to reflect on the rise of localization as a craft that truly mattered."
    "Make it Biblical:" How Vagrant Story Changed Game Localization (By John Learned) 
    "One day in the late 1990s, Myria walked into the Irvine High School computer room and spotted a boy playing Final Fantasy V. There were two unusual things about this. The first was that Final Fantasy V had not actually come out in the United States. To play the 1992 Japanese game in English, you’d have to download a ROM, then install the unofficial fan translation patch that had recently begun circulating the internet. Myria knew about this patch because of the other unusual thing: she helped make it."
    How Three Kids With No Experience Beat Square And Translated Final Fantasy V Into English (By Jason Schreier) 
    Jason Schreier tells the story of the kids that translated Final Fantasy V before Square and did a better job of it. He looks at how they got started, the influence of the translation, and at how the work was done.
    "Why do fans of JRPG giants assume Japanese writers can't write?"
    Persona 5: Phantoms of Translation and Persona 5's translation is a black mark on a brilliant game (By Connor Krammer) 
    Connor Krammer created a website to explain some of the translations issues with Persona 5, give examples of a variety of problems, and to answer questions about localization and possible critiques of his observations. This was followed that up with a freelance article on Eurogamer where he talks about Persona 5 and localization. Krammer later wrote two threads on Twitter about some accusations and harassment that he had received after creating his site, which can be read here and here.
     
    Stories From Games
    Apart from the stories told by games there are the stories players create with them
    “Samantha Myth has shown me the dangers of trust, but also the power of friendship,” Tikktokk writes in a Reddit post updating everyone on the situation. “Long term friends can stab you in the back at any moment without reason or consequences. At the same time, those who have the opportunity to, but choose not, have proven [themselves] to be true friends who I hope to keep in contact with long after EVE Online shuts down.”
    How a scam in EVE Online turned into its greatest rescue mission
    Meet the most honest man in EVE Online
    How an EVE Online con artist tricked a ruthless pirate into giving him his priceless ship 
    How one mistake turned EVE Online's deadliest hunters into corpses (By Steven Messner) 
    Steven Messner has been keeping PCGamer readers updated with some of the stories from EVE Online over the last two years and these are some of the most entertaining ones from 2017.
    "I was there, embedded within an armada of more than 1,000 ships known as the Premonition Allied Coalition, or the PAC. They were there to defend a fictional character named Salomé, the invention of a science fiction author. Arrayed against them were the most deadly player-controlled fleets in the entire Milky Way galaxy."
    Elite: Dangerous' 3,000-player battle royale (By Charlie Hall) 
    Charlie Hall covers the story of how Harry Potter's betrayal would influence the future of Elite Dangerous.
    "As Allison's corpse sank, so too did my chance at finding love."
    I was drugged, forced to sing, and accused of murder in one night on an Ark roleplaying server (By Steven Messner) 
    Steven Messner sings, tries to find love, and causes a dinosaur stampede on an Ark roleplay server.
  3. Legolas_Katarn liked a post in a topic by Psykogrl in Sea of Thieves Closed Beta Info   
    The Closed Beta for Sea of Thieves has been announced; It will be starting on 12pm GMTJanuary 24 and run until 8 am GMT January 29. That works out to:
    · Eastern Standard Time (EST): 
    7am on Wednesday 24th January to 3am on Monday 29th January
    · Central Standard Time (CST): 
    6am on Wednesday 24th January to 2am on Monday 29th January
    · Pacific Standard Time (PST): 
    4am on Wednesday 24th January to 12am on Monday 29th January
    Anyone who was in the technical Alpha, as well as anyone who has preordered the game, will have access to the Beta. Rare has announced on their website, Twitter and Facebook that the NDA that was in place for the Alpha is lifted for the Beta; This means you are allowed to take and post screenshots and stream your play. They just ask that you tag it "Sea of Thieves" so that they can share selected ones on their social media as well. However, you still cannot share any screenshots from the Alpha; that is still under the NDA.
     
    Happy sailing, and hope to see you there!
  4. Britt liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in is gaming dying?   
    We've had some of the best years in gaming in a row, thousands of games are released every year, genres of games that were practically dead in the earlier 2000s have come back in recent years, more people than ever are playing games, there is a wider variety of games than before and people playing them, the number of people playing and developing games continues to grow in countries and regions where it wasn't as big before (or where they didn't have as much access to it due to products not being available or language), the tools to make games have gotten easier to use and learn, games writing has improved (typically both in games themselves and people writing about them), streaming is massively popular, and Esports continues to quickly grow and to reach more mainstream audiences. As much as Youtubers and Reddit with no actual knowledge of the game industry like to have tantrums and build their entire audience and persona on constantly complaining about the same company, people, imagined enemies, or thing week after week, slightly changing the names of their videos to ask the same dull questions over and over about how everything might be ruined, it's clearly not.
  5. Britt liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in is gaming dying?   
    We've had some of the best years in gaming in a row, thousands of games are released every year, genres of games that were practically dead in the earlier 2000s have come back in recent years, more people than ever are playing games, there is a wider variety of games than before and people playing them, the number of people playing and developing games continues to grow in countries and regions where it wasn't as big before (or where they didn't have as much access to it due to products not being available or language), the tools to make games have gotten easier to use and learn, games writing has improved (typically both in games themselves and people writing about them), streaming is massively popular, and Esports continues to quickly grow and to reach more mainstream audiences. As much as Youtubers and Reddit with no actual knowledge of the game industry like to have tantrums and build their entire audience and persona on constantly complaining about the same company, people, imagined enemies, or thing week after week, slightly changing the names of their videos to ask the same dull questions over and over about how everything might be ruined, it's clearly not.
  6. StraightUpMelon liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in Hello, new here   
    Welcome to the AJSA. Check the PS4 section of the forums to see how to get involved with the PS4 community.
     
    change.org petitions are generally best not being posted.
  7. Legolas_Katarn liked a post in a topic by DestinyDecade in DestinyDecade's Top 15 Best Games of 2017   
    Remember me? Remember my Top 10 Best Games of 2016? Well I'm taking it one step further with a list that's so big, I raised it up to Top 15. So here you are for your enjoyment and this is an opinionated list so you are free to disagree. Besides, there were so many games I missed out last year that I really need to get into playing them.
    Top 15 Best Games of 2017

    If you thought that 2016 was good in terms of gaming, 2017 simply tells you to hold my beer. 2017 in gaming has had some ups and downs, especially downs in the terms of behind the scenes. But regardless, this year alone has been home to a number of great games. Nintendo’s arrival of the Switch bringing the company back to providence and the PS4 bringing in games that only show why it’s the console of choice. I sadly can’t say the same for Microsoft since well this year has been a disappointing year with games either being delayed or cancelled for one reason or another. But that’s not what I’m here to talk about right?

    2017 game-wise was an awesome year and this list culminates the very best that gaming has to offer. This here is my Top 15 Best Games of 2017.

    Before I begin, this here is a list consisting of games that I have played and experienced. This is also an opinionated list so you are free to disagree with me. If for whatever reason a game you expected isn’t on this list, it’s either I haven’t played it or never knew about it. Also since many games released this year are remasters of previous games, I will be limiting things on this list for the sake of things… or not because I didn’t get to play that many games and the rest turned out to be letdown after letdown. I vote with my wallet.

    15) Gravity Rush 2 – PlayStation 4

    We start off this list with a game came out on the first month of the year, Gravity Rush 2. A sequel to the original, which had a remastered version last year, the game focuses on Kat and Syd in a new place, as they must find a way back home. Along the way many secrets are revealed, along with an origin tale for our favorite Gravity Shifter. The game is an improvement over the first, fixing many problems while adding new gameplay elements, such as the Gravity Styles. They also provide a lot not only on backstory but also on the world and its characters. It’s an amazing game that offers a lot and it also comes with free DLC, detailing a tale about Raven. The tale involving her is just as good as Kat’s tale and plus you get to play as Raven as well.

    It’s #15 on my list since I never thought we get a sequel but I’m happy that it’s now possible. The people behind it should be proud to deliver a game like this. Now if only they don’t shut down the online aspect of it because it’s going to feel a bit stale without it.

    14) Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue – PlayStation 4

    Let me explain first. It’s on this list for two reasons. First is that we finally get an HD version of Dream Drop Distance. The second is A Fragmented Passage and it serves as a sneak peek for what to expect in the upcoming Kingdom Hearts III, if it ever comes out. But regardless the game is incredible to look at. The presentation is a huge step-up with the game running flawlessly at 60 frames per second! I mean it, purely flawless. The inclusion of Chi Back Cover adds some backstory for the mobile game and it’s pretty good.

    For a compilation it’s amazing and you can get it now in a cheap price. Unlike the 1.5 + 2.5 Remix that had some problems when it came out and they had eventually been fixed, this had absolutely no issues and felt like a well deserved upgrade. I feel Square-Enix should have put a bit more time in checking before they released that. So yeah, this game is #14 since it’s a compilation that does offer new stuff alongside a remastered 3DS game from 2012.

    13) Fire Emblem Warriors – Nintendo Switch/New 3DS

    The Warriors series are best known for hack-and-slash fun and when Nintendo franchises are involved, they ultimately become fun experiences. It was like it with Hyrule Warriors and the 3DS port, Hyrule Warriors Legends. But then they decide to try their luck with Fire Emblem and the results are great. Fire Emblem Warriors is what you’d expect; it’s simple hack-and-slash fun. This game offers a lot in terms of content with a campaign, having multiple difficulties and a history mode where you relive certain moments in FE history. Elements of Fire Emblem such as the weapon triangle are implemented, adding a level of strategy for players.

    Although the game does have some issues such as the roster and the fact some characters are only unlocked in the History Mode, it does offer a lot and for a Switch title, it’s impressive. There is DLC and like in Hyrule Warriors, it’s done right offering new characters and maps to play in. The game is also released on the 3DS handheld but only as a New 3DS exclusive, probably after how Hyrule Warriors Legends fared, having it on the New line is a good alternative. Personally the Switch version is the best one.

    12) Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age – PlayStation 4

    Celebrating the 11th anniversary of the PS2 release of FF12, Square-Enix brings the twelfth entry of their beloved franchise to the PlayStation 4, in the form of Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age. It’s a remaster yes but thing is, this game uses the FFXII International Zodiac Job System. For the first time, players can experience a version of FFXII that is quite different than what they once played back in 2006.

    The visuals are a big step up, the music is great while the gameplay is just as you remember. It’s a perfect way for fans to celebrate a game that is part of a series of games taking place within the continent of Ivalice. For anyone that has never played a Final Fantasy game, it’s one place to start and for those who have experienced it, it’s going to be one ride you should relive. Why it’s #12 on my list since you know it would be obvious but hey, I enjoyed FF12 back in 2006 and I enjoy this even more now that it was given the upgraded treatment.

    11) Metroid: Samus Returns – Nintendo 3DS

    Amazing how in one year a franchise can go from have an uncertain future to a ray of hope. With Federation Force being a massive dud, fans wonder if this was the end for Samus Aran. Nope. Nintendo not only announced a new Metroid Prime game but also a remake of a Game Boy classic, Metroid: Samus Returns. A remake of the original Metroid, this game retells Samus’ journey through Planet SR388 as she’s ordered by the Galactic Federation to hunt down and eliminate all the Metroids while having to contend with everything the planet has to offer.

    If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it. That’s the old adage and it shows here. In addition to what makes Metroid great, they add a bunch of new things to help streamline the experience such as the Melee Counter and Aeion System. But the only gripe the game has is that the DLC for it is restricted to it’s exclusive Amiibo line. Despite this, Samus Returns is Nintendo saying I’m sorry for Federation Force. The fans have accepted this apology but let’s only hope that the upcoming Metroid Prime 4 can deliver on all fronts.

    10) Cuphead – Xbox One, PC, Steam

    It started as an ambitious project, made by three people who were willing to risk everything to make this possible. Three blossomed into 19 and once it got some help from Microsoft in exchange for exclusivity, their dream and ambition became a reality. Cuphead is one of the few games that is just spectacular. All you do is take on bosses while trying to study their patterns and survive. There are also some run and gun sections and it helps balance the intensity of this game.

    Cuphead is hard, a very hard game that offers a lot of challenge. It’s presentation is phenomenal, paying tribute to the 1930s and 40s era of animation. The music is some of the best I’ve ever listened to with tracks that are so addicting and the gameplay is simple but there’s a level of depth that can have you using various weapons for different strategies. It’s hard yes but it’s the challenge that makes it rewarding, as it’s a nod to old school games that were hard but rewarded you for persevering. For a $20 game that’s on Xbox One, PC and Steam, you can’t say no to a game like this. Absolutely not! This game deserves to be in your collection and I highly recommend it.

    9) Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy – PlayStation 4

    2017 is the year where classics that we grew up on in the 90s and 2000s get a needed HD makeover for a new decade. Some were well received while others were so and so. But Activision and Vicarious Visions delivered on a compilation that hit for all the right reasons, the Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy, released on the PlayStation 4.

    This compilation takes the original three PS1 games and giving it a serious facelift on all sides: presentation, sound and gameplay. It serves not only to celebrate the series but also introduces new players to the lovable marsupial Crash Bandicoot. At around $40 (or cheaper), you get three games for the price of one with trophy support and there’s even DLC of a level that is so hard, you will be pushed to your limits. It’s nostalgia kicking you in the rear end right here for all the right reasons. It’s a must-buy for anyone that grew up with the franchise or for someone that wants a first-hand experience.

    8) Splatoon 2 – Nintendo Switch

    In 2015, Nintendo released Splatoon for the Wii U, their take on the shooter genre that Call of Duty would claim popularity over. It didn’t had much when it launched but in time it would grow to be a game that people loved. Two years later, Splatoon returned for another round except this time it would be taken to the next level. Splatoon 2 improves so much on the original that it’s considered better than the first in every way.

    You have a single-player campaign with a lot of replay value, an online component that can have you going back for hours on end whether it be co-op or multiplayer and continuous updates that would add more such as splatfests, new weapons and refinements that make it feel like a complete package. Honestly what else is to say about Splatoon 2 that hasn’t been said? It’s enjoyable whether you play alone or with friends. It deserves the #8 spot and if you haven’t gotten this game, you should because it’s worth it.

    7) Pokemon Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon – Nintendo 3DS

    Wait one minute! This game at #7 and you ask why?! Here’s why!

    Pokemon Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon are considered to be huge improvements to the originals in so many ways. The story is better with the introduction of new elements such as Necrozma and the fact you travel through different worlds via Ultra Warp Ride. The game is still the same as it always has been but that isn’t a bad thing. In fact it’s good, very good. Plus since they are the last games on Nintendo’s handhelds, it’s a fitting yet beautiful way for it to end.

    The game is the same as Sun & Moon released last year but with a lot of improvements while fixing some of the problems that plagued the previous game. Not to mention the post-game is incredibly massive with you being able to catch every legendary Pokemon from the past sixth generations. It’s truly the last hurrah for the franchise on handhelds and the future for it is going to be really bright.

    6) Steamworld Dig 2 – PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, PS Vita, PC

    2017 is the year where Indie developers were able to do what Triple-A publishers can’t: deliver great games. Image & Form Games, best known for the Steamworld series of games hit this one right out of the park. Steamworld Dig 2 is the sequel to the original Steamworld Dig released four years ago. Focusing on Dot as the main protagonist, her job is to find out what happened to the previous protagonist, Rusty.

    It’s a Metroidvania-style game but it excels on it in so many ways. The presentation shows as you explore the underground, finding treasure and using what you earn to upgrade your character. It’s gameplay is solid and the music is soothing to listen to as you explore. The game has replay value but overall, it’s one you shouldn’t miss out on. Show your support and get this game! It’s available on almost every current system.

    5) Persona 5 – PlayStation 4

    This is one game that I really should put more time towards because there were so many other games that came out this year, I’ll keep it short and brief.

    Atlus has done it again with the fifth main installment of the Persona series. Persona 5 takes everything that makes the other games good and goes full throttle. Everything about Persona 5 is awesome: the characters, the gameplay, the music, the story, it has enough twists and turns that it has you on the edge of your seat. Not only that but bonding with your allies help boost your confidants’ strength and in turn makes you stronger. It’s one of the best Atlus has delivered and it’s one that makes you want to go back. Persona 5 deserves its spot at #5 and I’ll say this, you never saw this coming.

    4) Nioh – PlayStation 4

    What do you get when you take Dark Souls and combine it with the feel of Japanese tales and folklore? You get Nioh! Nioh is a game that I have spent hours upon hours on trying to be as strong as I can be. It’s that addicting. Nioh is such a marvel to play and even more of a marvel to look at. The Dark Souls mentality exists but in turn, the game is more fast-paced requiring you to be on your toes against enemies that will spare no expense in taking you down. In addition you can customize the protagonist William “Anjin” Adams however you want, adding more replay value to the game.

    Replay value for the game is through the roof with New Game+ and even after beating that, you unlock New Game++ and so on. The DLC for the game add hours into an otherwise complete package, with new weapons, guardian spirits, balance tweaks, etc. It’s incredible. Koei Tecmo and Team Ninja should be praised for giving us a game that is not only challenging but fun. If you are in a fix for a game that’s like Dark Souls but intense and action-packed Nioh is it. Take it from me. This game is awesome. Hard, but awesome!

    3) Sonic Mania – PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, PC

    A Sonic game made by fans for the fans and it shows. Sonic Mania is 2D Sonic at it’s absolute best. Sonic, Tails & Knuckles return for a new adventure, journeying to stop Dr. Eggman who has gotten his hands on a gem called the Phantom Ruby and uses it to do some crazy stuff like turning a pack of Egg Robos into the Hard-Boiled Heavies. You travel through 12 zones, eight of them being retreads of zones from previous games while adding something new and making nods to all things Sonic.

    Christian Whitehead and Tee Lopes should be praised all the way to high heaven for their contributions. Whitehead especially for the gameplay! He understood how a Sonic game should be done and it shows. Tee Lopes nailed it on the music with many tracks being so amazingly good. It’s a game for fans who grew up with Sonic and for people that want to get into it but don’t know where to start. Sonic Mania is the game of choice. The only sad thing is that this ties in to the disappointingly Sonic Forces but regardless it shouldn’t dissuade you from playing this. No way.

    The last two entries on this list is just so hard to decide. Both of them came out on a console that has become a massive moneymaker for Nintendo. If I wanted to, I would have both of them fit the #1 slot but I can’t. I honestly can’t.

    2) Super Mario Odyssey – Nintendo Switch

    People say that this banks heavily on nostalgia. I disagree. Super Mario Odyssey is the definitive 3D Mario Game taking what made the 3D Mario games good like 64, Sunshine and Galaxy and improving on them. It’s a celebration of the Mario franchise while offering an adventure like any other. The biggest addition and one that’s considered a major game changer is Cappy. Having the ability to possess anything it comes across adds a whole new layer of gameplay I have never seen. In addition the game is so much fun with exploration being it’s highest point. There is so much to do in Mario Odyssey that it’s nuts. It’s completely nuts.

    The gameplay is refined and almost perfect, its presentation is just delightful with each world being able to stand out offering something different with the Metro Kingdom being my personal favorite. The music is what you’d expect in a Mario game: a joy to listen to and combined with the fact that the game has massive replay value. It’s incredible. This here is a game that anyone who owns a Switch should have. If you have a Switch, get it. NOW! You won’t regret it.

    1) The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild – Nintendo Switch

    You all knew that this game would be on the list! You all know that this game has won numerous awards and has gone on to become one of the greatest games ever! What else needs to be said about The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild that hasn’t already been said. It’s one of the best Zelda games hands down. An open world experience that offers so much to do and it depends on what you do. You could go straight to Ganon if you want or you can pretty much take your time exploring Hyrule and getting yourself stronger. This game offers a freedom I never thought I’d see and it’s so good.

     
    I don’t have much else to say about it. Breath of the Wild is a game that says farewell to the Nintendo Wii U and hello to the Nintendo Switch. A game that earns it’s praise and the added content via Expansion Pass offers more to an otherwise incredible game. People can say I’m biased about it but no, I don’t think that way. Breath of the Wild is the definitive Zelda game that is a celebration of the franchise but also one of the best games of 2017! Hands down.


     
    Honorable Mentions

    ·       A Hat in Time

    ·       ARMS

    ·       Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia

    ·       Fire Emblem Heroes

    ·       Hey! Pikmin

    ·       Horizon: Zero Dawn

    ·       Mario & Rabbids: Kingdom Battle

    ·       NieR: Automata

    ·       Super Mario Run

    ·       Uncharted: Lost Legacy

    ·       Yakuza 0

    ·       Yakuza Kiwami

    ·       Yo-kai Watch 2 Psychic Specters

     
  8. Mladenius Maximus liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in Games Beaten By the AJSA (2018)   
    New thread for 2018.
     
    Let other AJSA members know what games you have finished this year. Post a few words about what you thought of the game, a longer review, a video review or footage, screenshots, etc. Feel free to discuss the games we've beaten or to talk to others about them. For a game to be considered beaten either finish the single player portion of the game or, for games without campaigns (MMOs, sports games, multiplayer only games, etc), play to a point where you have seen what the game has to offer. Not going to be counting DLCs as individual games (as that could get confusing) but feel free to post your thoughts on them as that is also the point of the thread. If it is an expansion that was sold separately or stand alone content like Shogun 2's Fall of the Samurai I will count that. Episodic games will count as one game, not a game per episode, but feel free to mention each one if you want to discuss each episode individually.
     
    If you want to see what people thought of a certain game or see how many people have played it you can use the search function near the top right of the page and type in the game's title, just switch the search option to be for this topic.
     
    I'll keep track of how many games we each have finished to see who has been playing the most and what our combined total is for the year.
     
    Total Games Completed: 18
     
    Games Completed By Member
    Kaz32: 13
    Legolas_Katarn: 3
    Madfinnishgamer38: 2
     
    Old Threads
    Late 2015 (Completed 225)
    2016 (Completed 626)
    2017 (Completed 371)
  9. Kaz32 liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in The time has come again: Top 10 games of 2017   
    I bought special editions or because I want to support the series I enjoy. In Persona 5's case the premium edition has more than doubled in value since I bought it.
  10. Cyborg-Rox liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in It is done: Disney bought Fox.   
  11. Legolas_Katarn liked a post in a topic by Aquila in Overwatch December updates   
    There doesn't seem to be a post anywhere to talk about current events in Overwatch, so I wanted to make one to let people be aware if there was any gameplay changes or events incoming.
     
    For the month of December there's a new event and a few auxiliary updates:
    December 12, 2017
     
    New Seasonal Event: Winter Wonderland 2017
    From now until January 1, a new Brawl is available called Mei's Yeti Hunt. I wonder if this might be a light jab at Valve's TF2 update video...
    The last year's brawl, Mei's Snowball Offensive, is also available to play. And both have the chance of winning holiday-themed lootboxes for Christmas-y cosmetics.
    http://overwatch.wikia.com/wiki/Winter_Wonderland A somewhat complete list of the various emotes, victory screens, and skins can be seen here.
     
    Player Warning Updates
    It seems like there was an issue regarding the player warning system. (If I recall, receiving a ton of warnings would make it essentially impossible to find a match in matchmaking, this was resolved a long time ago though)
    The game now makes it clear when you have received a warning, and on the opposite end when your warnings have been resolved.
    I would assume they're fine-tuning this system to make it less abusable.
     
    Custom Match Ultimates
    There's new options when creating a custom match, such as the ability to start off with an Ultimate and being able to adjust the duration of your Ultimate charges. You can set it so the Ultimates can disappear if left unused for some amount of time, or just make the whole match a mess of everyone popping their Ultimates.
     
    Bug Squish
    There was a bug in Elimination Mode that caused you to spawn as a random hero instead of one you highlighted, that's been fixed.
    Several graphical glitches have been fixed regarding character models or abilities interacting with the environment.
    Gameplay wise, Torb's hammer wouldn't interact and upgrade his turret if used from certain angles, same with Road Hog's hook. Both have been fixed. Mercy's Resurrection cooldown now resets after activating Valkyrie as well.
     
    That's about it for the most recent patch. I'll also use this page to update information on the PTR when it becomes available.
    If you want the more detailed patch rundown, check it out here.
  12. Cyborg-Rox liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in It is done: Disney bought Fox.   
  13. Doctor liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in Death Stranding   
    Definitely would help when the vast majority of the gaming community knows nothing about any aspect of game design or working in the industry and uses random nobodies on Reddit and Youtube just trying to get popular with whatever people are currently complaining about as reliable and knowledgeable sources of information. Usually we only end up hearing about development details months or years after release. Though because of gaming culture and the way things can often get reported (even more so with all the little sites that have sprung up recently that are often focused on spreading drama or slander or baseless rumors) trying to be more open can also lead to its own set of problems or you end up hyping up your game in a way that you end up not being able to deliver either from inexperience and overexcitement or pipe dreams like with Sean Murray and Peter Molyneux.
  14. Legolas_Katarn liked a post in a topic by Doctor in Death Stranding   
    Ubisoft is actually interesting because they have many francises which could potentially share lots of tech while working a new game in series; for example Far Cry and Assassin's Creed. But they also have something (announced) big and new in development which had to do from scratch and which development has took for some time already - Beyond Good and Evil 2.
    I think it is increasingly important that developers starts to talk about development process as well. The games gets more and more demanding so it would be beneficial if media and gamers would understand that the development can easily take over five years especially if the game is complicated and if the development company had to be built up first.
    What comes to Death Stranding I can't say I'm interested before I see the game play first. I'm not a huge fan of Metal Gear games so I don't have much expectations at this point. Hopefully it something huge, ambitious, versatile/complex, beautiful and will be available as many platform as possible (I guess the rumors says it will be PS4 exclusive).
  15. Doctor liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in The Making of Tex Murphy - Full Documentary   
    It's not really dead if we keep getting new ones all the time.
  16. tbolt1976 liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in Some danger and action today   
    Lucky he isn't dead in the US.
  17. SnowySnagel liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in SnowySnagel reporting in and LFG   
    Welcome to the AJSA
  18. Legolas_Katarn liked a post in a topic by Doctor in The Making of Tex Murphy - Full Documentary   
    Big Finish Games made a documentary about Tex Murphy series. A great game series which hopefully will keep its style and have a long and bright future.
    Unfortunately their last game never got a Linux-version because of middleware problems. That's the risk one has to take when they pledge crowdfunding project.
     
  19. Shows87 liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in New Member's Guide and Contacts   
    Where To Find AJSA Content and Information
    AJSA Code of Conduct
    AJSA Discord
    AJSA Twitter
    AJSA Gaming Youtube
    AJSA Gaming Twitch Channel
    Currently Active Games (Thread coming soon)
    Scheduled Events
    Expeditionary Force (PC Game Events)
    AJSA PS4 Division
    AJSA Xbox One Club
    Stream Team
    Current AJSA Admin, Moderators, and Officers

    What follows is an explanation of what you can do on the forums and how to get involved with our console divisions.
    Using the Forums and the AJSA Discord
    In order to prevent spam or people advertising, new accounts are only allowed to make two posts during their first 24 hours of membership, once the 24 hours are up you will be able to post normally. Use that first day to take a look around the forums, check out the upcoming events we are planning to run, join the AJSA Discord channel, join the console groups if the option is available to you, and to personalize your profile.
    How To: After joining the AJSA forums you can customize your profile by adding an avatar, signature, banner, and edit your about me section. By clicking on your username on the top right of the screen you can access a drop down menu where you can go to your profile or edit your account settings. If you click on profile you will be taken to your main profile page, an avatar can be uploaded by clicking on the "profile photo" button to the left of your username. To the right of your profile name is an edit profile and cover photo button, clicking on edit profile will open a tab where you can edit your information and about me setting, clicking on cover photo will allow you to upload a banner to your profile that will appear behind your banner. Choosing the account management button from your profile drop down menu will take you to a page where you can change your email, your password, and where you can edit a signature that will appear on the bottom of all your forum posts (please keep the length of your signature within reason).
    The link to join the AJSA Discord can always be found in this thread and as the pinned tweet of the AJSA Twitter account. Once Discord is installed you can edit your avatar, profile, and voice settings by clicking on the gear icon near the bottom left of the app.
    Where To: When creating threads on our forums please try to post things in the correct section, if something is placed in the wrong area a moderator or admin will move your thread to the correct place. The General Discussion forum is the place to talk about things that don't have their own dedicated section, you might talk about company news, a rumored game announcement that doesn't have an exclusive platform or genre attached to it, your favorite game mechanics, boss fights, stories, etc. Under the General section you can find sub-forums for off-topic discussions, which is where posts that have nothing to do with video games or the game industry go, and the AngryJoeShow section which is where discussions on Joe's content are to be posted. Community Content has sections for you to post your own work, this can include art, video content, written reviews, or links and schedules for times that you stream games. The Crowdfunding Campaigns forum is the place to share video game fundraising campaigns that you are interested in, these can cover sites like Kickstarter, Fig, Indiegogo, etc. Platform Gaming Central is for discussions on platform specific game events, to discuss news and updates focused on an individual platform, discussions of console exclusive games, if you want to talk about a specific version of a game, and tech help can be found in the PC section. Last Gens is the place to discuss any console or handheld games or systems from the 360/PS3/PSP era and before. Genre Gaming Central is the place to discuss PC games and multi-platform titles, if there is not a specific forum for the genre of the game you want to talk about or the game involves multiple genres use the Other Games section. Board & Role-Playing Games Central are for discussions of board and tabletop games.
    The AJSA Discord includes multiple text and voice channels. The Announcements section is only able to be posted in by AJSA Admin and will be used to let everyone in the Discord know about upcoming gaming events, new articles on the AJSA homepage, important updates, and when Joe posts new reviews. General is the place to chat with other members. We have rooms to post videos and images, a place to talk about movies and TVs, and a spoiler room if you want to discuss plot elements of recently released games, movies, or TV episodes. The AJSA_Help room is for asking for help if you need to know something about the AJSA, if you need tech help, help with Discord, or have a similar issue you want to find help with. Stream_Team_Streams are for our Stream Team members to post announcements when their streams start. The General voice chat room is a place to go if you just want to talk to other members about games or random topics, the Gaming Rooms are for people to get together to play games at any time, and the other voice rooms are typically named after and reserved for our PC gaming events.
    Joining the Console Divisions
    Playstation: The PlayStation 4 Division allows for two ways to interact with other AJSA members, we have the hub network of the AJSA Community Page and the immediate messages of the AJSA Chat Rooms. With access to both you will be able to interact with fellow AJSA PlayStation 4 members, receive community updates, and gain access to the PlayStation 4 Game Nights events. Game Nights are a weekly event series that the PlayStation 4 Division hosts, every Saturday features a different game that we encourage our members to get together to play.
    How to join the PlayStation 4 AJSA Community Page and Chat Rooms
    Submit your PSN ID over at PlayStation PSN ID List. Include games that you’re currently playing. Include games that you’re looking forward to playing. Wait up to 48 hours for your invite to be sent or accepted. If you find the Community Page and send a request to join it will not be accepted until you’ve followed the above steps. (Optional) Download the Android/Apple PlayStation Message App and Community App for your smart devices. Xbox: If you're interested in joining the Xbox One Division, no matter where you heard or found out about us there are a variety of ways for you to get involved and get started gaming with fellow members of the community. First and foremost, make sure you read and understand the Code of Conduct. This is what makes sure that we can game in a comfortable and fun environment!
    Gamertag List: To get started, please add your name (and games you like to play) to our Official Xbox One Gamertag List. This allows you to add other members right away and for people to add you as well.  Event Schedule & Gaming Activities: Check out our Weekly Events schedule. This is a guaranteed way for you to game quickly with and meet members of the community. These events are avenues for us to game, talk, laugh and have a good time in an organized group. Each event is led and organized by the 'Host'. The host is the person responsible for that event and is in charge of the group activities. They will make sure you are accounted for and get you in the group to play. Event Calendar: All AJSA events, including Xbox Weekly Events, are posted in the AJSA Event Calendar. We update the Xbox events for the week every Monday (EST). Event Messages: To receive messages to your Gamertag, consider signing up to our Mailing List. You'll receive messages once a week giving you an outline of what games we are playing, what times we squad up, and who is hosting. Join the AJSA Xbox Club: On the Xbox One we have the 'AJSA Club' that serves as a main hub of activity and interaction when playing on the console. The Club has a built in chat and party system, Looking for Group section, member roster, and social area (share your game clips and screenshots). All Weekly Event information are posted in the Club and event parties are available from the Club. Any questions? Need help? Don't hesitate to contact me on the forums, on the forums, on Discord [Rune#5424] or on Xbox Live [Gamertag: AScapeRunePlaya].
    Current AJSA Council and Commanders
    Tons0fun: Tons0fun is a member of the AJSA Council, his role is to oversee AJSA Commanders, serve as a link between Angry Joe and the AJSA, and approve or disapprove of decisions regarding the higher level management of the community and business decisions. If you are having an issue with the community always contact the Commander that oversees that area before attempting to contact him.
    DoctorEvil: Hello, as a member of the AJSA Council, I oversee the commanders and serve as a link between Angry Joe and the Command Staff.  I also run the AJSAGaming Twitter and manage things on the official AngryJoeShow Twitch Channel. Contact about most things should be directed to the Commanders below for their respective divisions, but if you have an issue with a current commander, that can be directed to me.  
    Legolas_Katarn: Apart from updating our CoC and introduction threads, my job here is mainly to oversee the forums, our moderators, and to answer questions relating to the site or moderation concerns. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions about how to do something on the site, if you need something for your account changed, want to know if we allow a certain kind of post, want to know where to post something, etc and I will get back to you as soon as I can. Do not send me messages about Lord of the Rings or Star Wars (unless it has some relevance to my role here), I don't care about either franchise, and why this is my name can be found on my profile. I also put together the AJSA This Week In Gaming articles.
    WITHASTICK: My job is overseeing and organizing all activities within the PlayStation 4 Division of the Community. Whether that be; maintaining the PlayStation 4 Rooms or Community Page, organizing/overseeing PlayStation 4 official events such as Game Nights, or providing assistants to all members of the PlayStation 4 Division when I can. I also oversee and design the majority of the Communities art assets like; article/event banners, the site logo, the ad banners, etc. If you need help with anything I have listed above don't be afraid to message me, and I will get back to you as soon as possible.
    RuneX: Hello there! My name is Rune and I'm the Commander for the Xbox One Division. It its a pleasure to meet you and I hope this document finds you well. My responsibilities as Commander involves the oversight and running the day to day AJSA operations on Xbox One. Additionally I work with my fellow Commanders and the Council on executing AJSA Community goals and initiatives. My role as Xbox Commander includes planning and scheduling our Xbox One Weekly Events, coordinating with Xbox Game Officers and Sergeants, creating and finishing community projects, playing with and interacting daily with members of the community, maintaining the AJSA Xbox Club and sub-forum, and in general being available to anyone who needs assistance. Please don't hesitate to contact me on the forums, on Discord [Rune#5424] or on Xbox Live [Gamertag: AScapeRunePlaya] if you have any questions regarding the Xbox Division and/or our events. Thank you!
    Conan: Greetings, my name Conan and no, I neither picked the name because of Conan O'Brian nor Conan the Barbarian. I am at this moment the only European member of the AJSA High Command. The Expeditionary Force is my main area of responsibility, which I oversee and organize. In that sense it falls onto me to make sure that events are scheduled regularly and are being supervised for the EF, but I also serve as the primary point of contact for it. Aside from that I am the AJSA liaison to our old allies TRAF, who currently provide an opportunity for AJSA members to play Planetside 2 in a organized manner. If you need to contact me, then message me here directly on the forum or send me a direct message on Discord. You can also message me on Steam, if you have added me there, but I might miss that message there.
    Eiousx: Eiousx works with the PC community with the job of overseeing developing communities in specific games and vetting AJSA members that wish to host their own events. He is also a member of the AJSA Stream Team.
    Brandykins1982: Brandkins1982 is both a member of and in charge of managing the AJSA Stream Team.
    Jayson's Rage: Jayson works on our AJSA Gaming Youtube channel, creating videos that can include highlights and montages of PC or console game events, AJSA news updates, and AJSA podcasts. He is also a member of the AJSA Stream Team.
  20. Legolas_Katarn liked a post in a topic by Blue_Baron in Ancient Game Dev Looking for a Retirement Home   
    Yes, most forums have moved off onto Discord.
    As for the financial model, when we were creating Xbox Live microtransactions were initially too expensive to consider until the development of virtual currency. But that wasn't the predatory part.
    Nexon of Korea had developed the so-called Free to Play model, although some more obscure companies in Germany had been using it for their building and RTS browser games, such as Travian and InnoGames had. 
    It made sense for the Korean market. Most gamers could not afford home computers or gaming consoles and played at public gaming centers, called PC Bangs (pronounced Bongs, just like one of our favorite home appliances). The subscription fee on top of the fees charged by the gaming centers excluded many potential players. So, charge nothing, fill your servers and thereby give the fraction of folks with money to spend an incentive to spend. It was, at first, time is money. But pay to win gradually achieved acceptance in Asia.
    Where it got really bad is when EA adopted the model. But I think Joe has covered that. Then the gambling crates....everywhere in every game by multiple publishers. Or as Joe humorously assaulted the concept, "But kids love to gamble."
    But if you're referring to my Glory and Shame GDC talk, the real problem I saw was in the games themselves. I was seeing a new generation of game designers who could think in activity streams rather than having to turn narrative into activities. In a monetization model that required players to spend money they had not expected to spend, the activity focus became the dopamine push and a near hypnosis that's antisocial by nature. Grinding took over and killed the MMO.
    Back in 1985, Kesmai founder, Kelton Flynn, when he created the first 4x online game, Stellar Emperor, denounced the concept of milk-run driven mechanics - what we'd later call Fed-Ex quests or delivery quests - and did away with them in Stellar Emperor, Air Warrior, Multiplayer Battletech and every Kesmai game.
    As producer and designer of Air Warrior, which was originally his design, I could be left to focus on cooperative gameplay and community building alone. But our financial model was very different. First, it was pay-by-the-hour because we were on networks that demanded it. Then by subscription which F2P and B2P did away with.
    Sorry....fuck, I'm turning this into a goddamn disquisition. On matters such as this, it's more violent agreement than a discussion really 
  21. Legolas_Katarn liked a post in a topic by Psykogrl in Xbox Black Friday Sale Announced!   
    Xbox Black Friday Sale!
    I'll post the full list of games and prices if you just want to look it over instead of going to the link:
    'n Verlore Verstand | $8.99 | 40% off
    7 Days to Die | $9.00 | 70% off
    ABZU | $10.00 | 50% off
    ARK: Survival Evolved | $38.99 | 35% off
    Agents of Mayhem - Total Mayhem Bundle | $25.00 | 50% off
    Agents of Mayhem | $20.00 | 50% off
    America's Greatest Game Shows: Wheel of Fortune & Jeopardy! | $20.00 | 50% off
    Arcade Game Series 3-in-1 Pack | $3.20 | 60% off
    Armikrog | $4.00 | 60% off
    Assassin's Creed Origins - Deluxe Edition| $48.99 | 30% off
    Assassin's Creed Origins - Gold Edition | $69.99 | 30% off
    Assassin's Creed Origins | $41.99 | 30% off
    Assassin's Creed Syndicate Gold Edition | $28.00 | 60% off
    Assassin's Creed Syndicate | $20.00 | 60% off
    Assassin's Creed The Ezio Collection | $20.00 | 60% off
    Assassin's Creed Triple Pack: Black Flag, Unity, Syndicate | $29.70 | 67% off
    Assetto Corsa | $17.99 | 40% off
    Back to the Future: The Game - 30th Anniversary Edition | $5.00 | 75% off
    Batman: The Enemy Within - The Complete Season (Episodes 1-5) | $14.99 | 40% off
    Batman: The Telltale Series - The Complete Season (Episodes 1-5) | $7.50 | 70% off
    Battleborn | $7.50 | 75% off
    Battlefield 1 & Titanfall 2 Ultimate Bundle| $40.00 | 50% off
    Battlefield 1 Revolution | $30.00 | 50% off
    Battlefield Bundle | $26.99 | 10% off
    BioShock: The Collection | $19.80 | 67% off
    Black The Fall | $11.24 | 25% off
    Borderlands: The Handsome Collection | $19.80 | 67% off
    Brothers: a Tale of Two Sons | $6.00 | 70% off
    Call of Duty: Black Ops III - Zombies Chronicles Edition | $44.99 | 25% off
    Call of Duty: Black Ops III - Zombies Deluxe | $74.99 | 25% off
    Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare - Digital Deluxe Edition | $64.99 | 35% off
    Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare - Digital Legacy Edition | $47.99 | 40% off
    Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare - Launch Edition | $30.00 | 50% off
    Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered| $29.99 | 25% off
    Call of Duty: WWII - Digital Deluxe | $89.99 | 10% off
    Cars 3: Driven to Win | $25.00 | 50% off
    Constructor | $20.00 | 50% off
    Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin | $16.00 | 60% off
    Dark Souls III - Deluxe Edition | $34.00 | 60% off
    Dark Souls III | $24.00 | 60% off
    Dead Island Definitive Collection | $16.00 | 60% off
    Dead Rising 4 Deluxe Edition | $24.00 | 60% off
    Dead Rising 4 | $16.00 | 60% off
    Deadlight: Director's Cut | $3.00 | 80% off
    Defense Grid 2 | $2.25 | 85% off
    Destiny 2 - Digital Deluxe Edition | $74.99 | 25% off
    Destiny 2 - Game + Expansion Pass Bundle | $67.49 | 25% off
    Destiny 2 | $38.99 | 35% off
    Deus Ex: Mankind Divided - Digital Deluxe Edition | $13.50 | 85% off
    Deus Ex: Mankind Divided | $9.00 | 85% off
    DiRT 4 | $30.00 | 50% off
    Dishonored 2 | $20.00 | 50% off
    Dishonored Definitive Edition | $10.00 | 50% off
    Dishonored The Complete Collection | $32.00 | 60% off
    Dishonored: Death of the Outsider Deluxe Bundle | $30.00 | 50% off
    Dishonored: Death of the Outsider | $15.00 | 50% off
    Disneyland Adventures | $19.49 | 35% off
    Doodle God: Ultimate Edition | $4.00 | 60% off
    Doom | $20.09 | 33% off
    Dragon Age: Inquisition - Game of the Year Edition | $10.00 | 75% off
    Dragon Ball Xenoverse + Season Pass | $19.50 | 70% off
    Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2 Deluxe Edition | $45.00 | 50% off
    Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2 | $35.99 | 40% off
    Dragon Ball Xenoverse Super Bundle | $50.99 | 40% off
    Dragon Ball Xenoverse | $12.00 | 70% off
    Dreamfall Chapters | $15.00 | 50% off
    Dying Light: The Following - Enhanced Edition | $20.09 | 33% off
    EA Sports FIFA 18 & NBA Live 18: The One Edition Bundle | $40.00 | 50% off
    EA Sports FIFA 18 NHL 18 Bundle | $59.99 | 40% off
    EA Sports FIFA 18 and Need for Speed Payback Bundle | $64.99 | 35% off
    EA Sports NHL 18 Young Stars Deluxe Edition | $50.00 | 50% off
    EA Sports NHL 18 Young Stars Edition | $40.00 | 50% off
    EA Sports NHL 18 | $30.00 | 50% off
    EA Sports UFC 2 Deluxe Edition | $16.50 | 67% off
    EA Sports UFC 2 | $16.00 | 60% off
    Enter The Gungeon | $7.49 | 50% off
    Evolve | $7.50 | 75% off
    F1 2017 | $35.99 | 40% off
    FIFA 18 Icon Edition | $59.99 | 40% off
    FIFA 18 Ronaldo Edition | $47.99 | 40% off
    FIFA 18 | $35.99 | 40% off
    Fallout 4: Game of the Year Edition | $30.00 | 50% off
    Fallout 4 | $20.09 | 33% off
    Far Cry 4 | $16.00 | 60% off
    Far Cry Primal - Apex Edition | $22.00 | 60% off
    Far Cry Primal | $20.00 | 60% off
    Fashionista Starter Pack | $9.99 | 20% off
    Final Fantasy XV Digital Premium Edition| $30.00 | 60% off
    Final Fantasy XV | $20.00 | 60% off
    For Honor Deluxe Edition | $28.00 | 60% off
    For Honor Gold Edition | $40.00 | 60% off
    For Honor Standard Edition | $24.00 | 60% off
    Forza Horizon 3 Deluxe Edition | $45.49 | 35% off
    Forza Horizon 3 Standard Edition | $24.99 | 50% off
    Forza Horizon 3 Ultimate Edition | $67.49 | 25% off
    Furi | $10.00 | 50% off
    Game of Thrones - The Complete First Season (Episodes 1-6) | $5.00 | 75% off
    Gears of War 4 Ultimate Edition | $38.99 | 35% off
    Gears of War 4 | $19.99 | 50% off
    Gears of War: Ultimate Edition - Day One Version | $10.00 | 50% off
    Get Even | $15.00 | 50% off
    Gigantic Starter Bundle | $7.49 | 25% off
    Gigantic Ultimate Bundle | $20.09 | 33% off
    Grand Theft Auto V & Great White Shark Cash Card | $40.00 | 50% off
    Grand Theft Auto V & Megalodon Shark Cash Card Bundle | $64.00 | 60% off
    Grand Theft Auto V & Whale Shark Cash Card Bundle | $44.00 | 60% off
    Grand Theft Auto V | $30.00 | 50% off
    Halo 5: Guardians – Digital Deluxe Edition| $25.00 | 50% off
    Halo Wars 2: Complete Edition | $50.99 | 15% off
    Halo Wars 2: Standard Edition | $20.00 | 50% off
    Halo Wars: Definitive Edition | $10.00 | 50% off
    Has-Been Heroes | $10.00 | 50% off
    Hasbro Family Fun Pack Conquest Edition | $12.00 | 70% off
    Hasbro Family Fun Pack | $12.00 | 70% off
    Homefront: The Revolution 'Freedom Fighter' Bundle | $16.00 | 60% off
    Homefront: The Revolution | $12.00 | 60% off
    Human Fall Flat | $6.00 | 60% off
    Infinite Minigolf | $7.50 | 50% off
    Just Cause 3 XL Edition | $16.90 | 80% off
    Just Cause 3 | $12.00 | 80% off
    Just Dance 2018 | $40.19 | 33% off
    Killer Instinct: Definitive Edition | $20.00 | 50% off
    Kona | $10.00 | 50% off
    LEGO City Undercover | $20.00 | 50% off
    LEGO Worlds | $17.99 | 40% off
    Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris & Season Pass Pack | $4.35 | 85% off
    Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris | $3.00 | 85% off
    Late Shift | $8.12 | 35% off
    Let Them Come | $5.35 | 33% off
    Life is Strange Complete Season (Episodes 1-5) | $5.00 | 75% off
    Life is Strange: Before the Storm Deluxe Edition | $17.49 | 30% off
    Little Nightmares | $11.99 | 40% off
    Livelock | $5.00 | 75% off
    Lords of the Fallen Digital Complete Edition | $9.00 | 70% off
    Lords of the Fallen | $6.00 | 70% off
    Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime | $6.00 | 60% off
    Madden NFL 18: G.O.A.T. Holiday Edition | $40.00 | 50% off
    Madden NFL 18 | $30.00 | 50% off
    Mafia III Deluxe Edition | $24.00 | 60% off
    Mafia III | $16.00 | 60% off
    Mages of Mystralia | $14.99 | 25% off
    Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite - Deluxe Edition | $67.49 | 25% off
    Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite | $40.19 | 33% off
    Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy: The Telltale Series - The Complete Season (Episodes 1-5) | $10.00 | 50% off
    Mass Effect: Andromeda Deluxe Edition | $20.00 | 60% off
    Mass Effect: Andromeda | $16.00 | 60% off
    Mega Man Legacy Collection 1 & 2 Combo Pack | $17.99 | 40% off
    Metal Gear Solid V: The Definitive Experience | $19.49 | 35% off
    Micro Machines World Series | $17.99 | 40% off
    Mighty No. 9 | $5.00 | 75% off
    Minecraft: Story Mode - Season Two - The Complete Season (Episodes 1-5) | $12.50 | 50% off
    Minecraft: Story Mode - The Complete Adventure (Episodes 1-8) | $9.00 | 70% off
    Minecraft: Story Mode - The Complete Season (Episodes 1-5) | $6.00 | 70% off
    Mirror's Edge Catalyst | $5.00 | 75% off
    Monopoly Plus | $7.50 | 50% off
    Mortal Kombat X | $8.00 | 60% off
    Mount & Blade: Warband | $5.00 | 75% off
    Murdered: Soul Suspect | $4.00 | 80% off
    NBA 2K18 Legend Edition Gold | $119.99 | 20% off
    NBA 2K18 Legend Edition | $59.99 | 40% off
    NBA 2K18 | $41.99 | 30% off
    NBA Live 18: The One Edition | $15.00 | 50% off
    Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 Road to Boruto | $34.99 | 30% off
    Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 | $20.99 | 30% off
    Necropolis | $7.50 | 75% off
    Need for Speed Payback - Deluxe Edition| $47.99 | 40% off
    Need for Speed Payback | $35.99 | 40% off
    ONE PIECE BURNING BLOOD - Gold Edition | $21.12 | 75% off
    One Piece: Burning Blood | $15.00 | 75% off
    Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition| $10.00 | 50% off
    Overwatch Game of the Year Edition | $30.00 | 50% off
    Pac-Man Championship Edition 2 | $6.50 | 50% off
    Path of Exile First Blood Bundle | $13.39 | 33% off
    Payday 2: Crimewave Edition - The Big Score Game Bundle | $25.00 | 50% off
    Payday 2: Crimewave Edition | $10.00 | 50% off
    Pinball FX3 - Marvel Pinball Season 1 Bundle | $16.07 | 33% off
    Pinball FX3 - Sci-Fi Pack | $4.99 | 50% off
    Planet of the Eyes | $6.49 | 35% off
    Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare 2 - Frosty Deluxe Edition | $8.25 | 67% off
    Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare 2 - Frosty Standard Edition | $8.00 | 60% off
    Portal Knights | $11.99 | 40% off
    Prey | $20.00 | 50% off
    Pro Evolution Soccer 2018 - FC Barcelona Edition Bundle | $41.99 | 40% off
    Pro Evolution Soccer 2018 | $35.99 | 40% off
    Project CARS 2 | $41.99 | 30% off
    Prototype Biohazard Bundle | $16.50 | 67% off
    Quantum Break | $20.00 | 50% off
    R.B.I. Baseball 17 | $6.60 | 67% off
    Rayman Legends | $5.00 | 75% off
    ReCore | $14.99 | 25% off
    Resident Evil 7 Biohazard Deluxe Edition | $45.00 | 50% off
    Resident Evil 7 Biohazard | $30.00 | 50% off
    Rise of the Tomb Raider: 20 Year Celebration | $19.80 | 67% off
    Rock Band 4 Rivals Bundle | $30.00 | 50% off
    Rocket League | $10.00 | 50% off
    Rush: A Disney-Pixar Adventure | $19.49 | 35% off
    Ryse: Legendary Edition | $7.50 | 75% off
    Saints Row IV: Re-Elected & Gat out of Hell | $7.50 | 75% off
    ScreamRide | $7.50 | 75% off
    Serial Cleaner | $6.00 | 60% off
    Sleeping Dogs Definitive Edition | $4.50 | 85% off
    Slender: The Arrival | $2.50 | 75% off
    Sniper Elite 3 Ultimate Edition | $13.20 | 67% off
    Songbringer | $9.99 | 50% off
    South Park: The Fractured but Whole - Gold Edition | $62.99 | 30% off
    South Park: The Fractured but Whole | $40.19 | 33% off
    State of Decay: Year-One Survival Edition| $7.50 | 75% off
    Steep Gold Edition | $30.00 | 50% off
    Steep | $20.00 | 50% off
    Strider | $3.75 | 75% off
    Sunset Overdrive Deluxe Edition | $12.50 | 75% off
    Sunset Overdrive | $7.50 | 75% off
    Super Comboman: Smash Edition | $10.04 | 33% off
    Syberia 3 | $25.00 | 50% off
    TEKKEN 7 - Deluxe Edition | $50.99 | 40% off
    TEKKEN 7 | $35.99 | 40% off
    Tacoma | $14.99 | 25% off
    The Banner Saga 2 | $10.00 | 50% off
    The Banner Saga | $6.00 | 70% off
    The Crew Ultimate Edition | $25.00 | 50% off
    The Disney Afternoon Collection | $8.00 | 60% off
    The Elder Scrolls Online: Gold Edition | $30.00 | 50% off
    The Elder Scrolls Online: Morrowind Collector's Edition | $40.00 | 50% off
    The Elder Scrolls Online: Morrowind | $30.00 | 50% off
    The Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited | $10.00 | 50% off
    The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Special Edition | $20.00 | 50% off
    The Escapists | $5.00 | 75% off
    The Evil Within 2 | $30.00 | 50% off
    The Evil Within Digital Bundle | $15.00 | 50% off
    The Evil Within | $6.60 | 67% off
    The Flame in the Flood | $8.00 | 60% off
    The Inner World | $6.00 | 60% off
    The LEGO Ninjago Movie Video Game | $30.00 | 50% off
    The Sexy Brutale | $10.00 | 50% off
    The Telltale Undead Survival Bundle | $22.00 | 60% off
    The Walking Dead: A New Frontier - The Complete Season (Episodes 1-5) | $10.00 | 60% off
    The Walking Dead: Michonne - A Telltale Miniseries | $4.50 | 70% off
    The Walking Dead: Season Two | $6.25 | 75% off
    The Walking Dead: The Complete First Season | $6.25 | 75% off
    The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt – Complete Edition | $20.00 | 60% off
    The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt | $20.00 | 50% off
    The Wolf Among Us | $6.25 | 75% off
    Thief | $4.00 | 80% off
    Thimbleweed Park | $11.99 | 40% off
    This War of Mine: The Little Ones | $7.50 | 75% off
    Thumper | $13.39 | 33% off
    Titanfall 2: Ultimate Edition | $20.00 | 50% off
    Tokyo 42 | $10.00 | 50% off
    Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Wildlands - Deluxe Edition | $35.00 | 50% off
    Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Wildlands - Gold Edition | $50.00 | 50% off
    Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Wildlands - Standard Edition | $30.00 | 50% off
    Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Wildlands and Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege | $50.00 | 50% off
    Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege Complete Edition | $50.00 | 50% off
    Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege Year 2 Gold Edition | $32.00 | 60% off
    Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege | $20.00 | 60% off
    Tom Clancy's The Division Gold Edition | $29.70 | 67% off
    Tom Clancy's The Division | $15.00 | 70% off
    Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition | $7.50 | 75% off
    Trendy Tycoon Starter Pack | $9.99 | 20% off
    Typoman | $3.90 | 70% off
    Valkyria Revolution | $23.99 | 40% off
    Virginia | $4.00 | 60% off
    WRC 7 FIA World Rally Championship | $25.00 | 50% off
    WWE 2K18 Digital Deluxe Edition | $49.49 | 45% off
    WWE 2K18 | $35.99 | 40% off
    Watch Dogs 1 + Watch Dogs 2 Standard Editions Bundle | $35.00 | 50% off
    Watch Dogs2 - Deluxe Edition | $23.10 | 67% off
    Watch Dogs2 - Gold Edition | $33.00 | 67% off
    Watch Dogs2 | $19.80 | 67% off
    What Remains of Edith Finch | $13.39 | 33% off
    Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus Digital Deluxe Edition | $40.00 | 50% off
    Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus | $30.00 | 50% off
    Wolfenstein: The New Order | $10.00 | 50% off
    Wolfenstein: The Old Blood | $10.00 | 50% off
    Wolfenstein: The Two-Pack | $15.00 | 50% off
    Worms W.M.D | $9.90 | 67% off
    X-Morph: Defense | $11.99 | 40% off
    XCOM 2 Digital Deluxe Edition | $24.75 | 67% off
    XCOM 2 | $19.80 | 67% off
    Zoo Tycoon: Ultimate Animal Collection | $19.49 | 35% off
  22. Legolas_Katarn liked a post in a topic by MadDemon64 in Currently active video game bundles/free game giveaways (Last Update 1-9)   
    Watch Dogs is free(on Uplay) for a limited time only.
  23. galateria liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in AJSA Code of Conduct   
    The AJSA Community was created as a way to organize and bring together both fans of Joe and those who are looking for a community where they can play and talk about games. It is not a problem if you do not watch Joe's content, we will still be happy to have you as a member. Currently, the AJSA consists of this website, the AJSA Discord, Youtube channel, Twitter, Twitch channel, official clans and groups in a variety of PC games, and our active PS4 and Xbox One communities.
    If you have just joined, after reading the Code of Conduct check the New Member's Guide to see how to get involved with the community.


    In order to stay a member you must abide by the following rules, which will apply in all the previously mentioned areas, and anywhere you are representing the AJSA. Members will be expected to maintain a mature and respectful attitude as your behavior fosters our reputation.
    Harassment and Discrimination
    The AJSA will not tolerate any form of discrimination, racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, or harassment towards anyone. Members will respect others of any race, sexuality, gender identity and expression, nationality, religion, age, profession, gaming ability, and community rank and will refrain from insulting anyone as having physical disabilities or mental disorders. Failure to do so will lead to you either being suspended or, more often, permanently removed from the community. Offensive stereotypes and generalizations towards the communities, countries, or organizations of others will result in moderation action against you. Making unwanted or random sexual or suggestive comments towards other members will lead to moderation. Do not share or repeat phrases, actions, icons, or memes that have been created by or that have obviously been co-opted by harassment or hate groups, doing so can see you removed from the community. Creating or sharing content made with an intent to lead to harassment of others will lead to moderation. Creating or sharing baseless or obviously incorrect slanderous content and hit pieces will see the content removed and will likely result in moderation or removal from the community. Attempting to start fights or to use the AJSA as your own personal army to attack other communities or individuals will lead to your removal from the AJSA. Threatening others will lead to your removal from the community. Sharing videos or articles from people and websites who frequently engage in any of the above will lead to the content being removed and moderation action against you if the shared piece of content included any of the above. If you are representing the AJSA (have AJSA tags or an AJSA avatar, are a ranking member of the community, a member of our Stream Team, are sharing our content or event news, or are telling people you are a member) on social media, a different forum or Discord, Youtube, Twitch, etc and you are partaking in any of the above you will face moderation and may be removed.
    If ever you are subject to personal abuse by another AJSA member in the form of a personal message you are able to add a Moderator or Admin to the conversation, this will allow them to see what was said by both sides. We encourage you to do this as we take our members being subject to abuse very seriously. If someone is harassing you on the forums or AJSA Discord report it to a moderator or admin, do not retaliate.
    Attempts to create a hostile and unwelcoming environment within the community will see you removed from the community. The Angry part of the name does not need to be taken literally, we are here so people can enjoy games and to talk and learn about them, not to be overly aggressive or perpetually outraged about them.
    Disallowed Content
    Illegal Content: We do not allow the posting of illegal content. This can include linking people to places where they can pirate games, posting links to full movies, telling people where to download roms or bios files for emulators, asking about the use of or how to acquire drugs, etc. Admitting to video game (or any other media) piracy is not allowed, apart from the legality, it could negatively affect the reputation of Joe and other community members that actively work and interact with developers and publishers. Posting illegal content or admitting to illegal activities can lead to your removal from the community. Discussing the concept of piracy and the ways that it has either positively or negatively effected the industry is allowed, but the above rules apply in those discussions. Partaking in or attempting to justify piracy in an area that has no need for it because you thought a company was mean or that their games were bad is not going to go over well with moderators or admin.
    Pornographic Content: We do not allow the posting of pornographic material, real or animated, on our forums, nor do we allow links to porn to be posted. We do not allow linking to content on a site with primarily pornographic content and advertising, even if the content that you wanted to link does not directly contain any (don't link to that funny video if it is hosted on pornhub). Discussion of sexual content in games is allowed, as is linking to something like a video game bundle deal that includes games with adult content is also allowed, just mark any such links as being NSFW (not safe for work).
    Real World Violence/Triggering Content: We do not allow posts that contain bloody or graphic real world violence or content that can be sensitive to certain viewers. Do not post anything containing real world shootings, stabbings, racist tirades, abuse, sexual harassment or assault, graphic injuries, etc. Do not post random images or videos with rapidly changing images or patterns that may trigger epileptic seizures. Warnings can vary depending on what you posted.
    Religion and Politics: Do not create threads about religion or politics, exceptions can be made if it directly relates to a game being discussed or the game industry (Here's how A Mind Ever Voyaging was one of the first games to address the politics of the time/How that Dragon Cancer addresses religious faith = Fine). Posting a thread about religion or politics will likely result in a warning but offensive statements and content aimed at an entire religion, group, or attempting to treat the morality, lived experiences of, or existence of people as a political debate subject will fall under harassment and discrimination and will likely lead to you being removed from the community.
    Advertising: We do not allow members to attempt to sell things on the forums. We have no way to verify if someone actually has a product, what condition it is in, if the seller will actually send it, if the buyer receives it, if the buyer will pay for it and not try to do a charge back, etc. Threads attempting to sell something will be removed, if you sell something in private and it doesn't work out we don't want to hear about it. Any account linking to gold farming websites for MMOs or EA Sports currency will be banned, they are also likely bots and the links should not be clicked on. Accounts that join just to promote a product, link to a survey, ask for money, or link to another community to join will be banned (there is an exception for accounts sharing video game crowd funding projects in the appropriate section of the forums). If you are someone who creates content and you have something like a Patreon, you are free to link that in your forum signature or in the community content sections of the forums along with the content that you create.
    AJSA Branding: The AJSA name and logo are part of a business and how they are used influences our reputation. They are to be used only in official AJSA groups, Discord channels, servers, wikis, merchandise, or as a clan tag for AJSA members. If an online group using the name was not created by Joe, one of the AJSA admin, or as part of an official AJSA group that has been approved of by staff and Game Officers then they are not something that we support and not something we are involved with. If a member is found to have been creating these things without our knowledge they will be told to stop and to remove the creation. Do not use the AJSA name or logo in an attempt to sell products.
    Languages: We require that everyone write in English on the forums and in our Discord, both because posting in another language is unlikely to lead to many people understanding what you said and because admin and moderators need to understand what you are saying or linking people to. Obviously, we don't expect everyone to have perfect grammar and to spell everything correctly all the time, but if a post has so many mistakes that it is nonsensical it will likely be removed and on the forums the post may even be flagged as spam or automatically hidden as potential spam.
    Alt Accounts: Alternate accounts will be banned and users who create them risk the banning of their primary accounts and any other accounts found to be associated with them. If you are having trouble with your primary account and are unable to access it please contact a moderator on the Discord or create a new account and immediately let a moderator know that you are using the new account to contact them for help. Once you have received help with your primary account and are able to access it again the secondary account will be deleted.
    Usernames and Avatars: Do not create a username or upload an avatar that breaks any of the CoC rules or includes profanity, this applies to the forums, Discord, and while playing games.
    Forum and Discord Rules
    Trolling/Don't Be A Dick: Treat other people with respect. Do not post flame-bait or personal attacks, attempt to derail another member's thread, or post in game or console specific threads just to complain about the gaming preferences or hardware of other members. Disagreements on games and topics are fine but we don't expect to see our members insulting people for liking different kinds of games or systems or making people feel unwelcome over their gaming preferences. Wishing harm on developers for making a game you didn't like or working at a company you don't like can lead to your removal or moderation, it not only makes us and Joe look bad and invites attitudes we wish to avoid having here and that kind of content damages the image of gaming communities in general. You can be a member of the AJSA even if you don't watch or like the content that Joe creates, but joining for the sole purpose of creating threads or going into existing ones to complain about him will see you removed from the community, this also applies to people that are doing nothing but complaining about the AJSA. Attempts at gaslighting (pretending like you didn't say something you obviously did, that your obvious intent was misunderstood, making an attempt to accuse other people of doing the thing you did, etc) either to try to cover your actions up, confuse people, or to try to get people to respond aggressively towards you will lead to moderation. Attempting to bring previous fights or grievances into new threads can lead to moderation. We don't mind some minor ribbing between members that know each other but unless moderators/admin are familiar with the people involved it can be easy to mistake it for trolling if it starts to go too far.
    Drama: Intentionally trying to cause trouble and create dissent is not allowed, problems can be privately discussed with AJSA Admin. Officers going on power trips will see them removed from a position of power. Do not create threads to complain about another member of the community. Attempts at grandstanding by creating "goodbye threads" when something upsets you will result in your account being banned and the thread/post will be deleted. If you have a legitimate reason for leaving there is nothing wrong with letting people know but if you try to make a spectacle of it or convince people to go with you we will help you find your way out.
    Spam: Do not bump threads just to get them to the top of the list. Do not post in discussion threads that are over a month old to bring them back from the dead (if months or years have passed and you want to talk about it again just start a new topic on the subject). Do not create chat threads (chatting can easily be done in our Discord or through private messages). Do not quote reply to massive amounts of text and images or quote chain to the point that each post starts taking up huge portions of a thread page. Do not make double posts shortly after your previous one as a form of editing or to quote and respond to multiple people, an edit button can be found at the bottom of each of your post and you can change or add to your post as needed. If you have found new information about something and some time has passed then you can make multiple posts in a row in the same thread.
    Language: We allow swearing within reason but try to keep it to a minimum, we have people that just want an environment where they can relax and unwind while talking about and playing games. If you create an entire post that is next to nothing but swearing, are constantly swearing in chat rooms, or are raging at a video game the community is playing and are making it difficult for other to enjoy themselves you will be asked to tone it down or you will be removed from the game. Profanity directed at other members can result in a warning.
    Thread Creation: Use the search feature to check to see if a thread with the same subject matter as the one you want to post has already been created, or at least do a quick look through the recent topics, duplicate threads are frequently created only a few posts or hours apart. Do not create threads with profanity in the title, with misleading titles, or ones with no discussion or informational value.
    Personal Information: Do not share the contents of private messages with other members, if you receive a message that is breaking the CoC, harassing you, etc let a moderator or appropriate admin know. Do not post the private information of other members, breaking either of these rules can result in moderation or removal from the AJSA.
    Discord Settings: The admin and moderator rank is clearly listed on the forums and their role clearly listed on the Discord, obvious attempting to block their private messages to you when they are attempting to warn you about recent CoC breaking behavior will likely result in your removal from the community, do not block all private messages from the AJSA channel as this will also prevent mods and admin from messaging you. If you have all messages blocked either by your own choice, a bug, or a mistake you will be asked to turn it back on in the normal chat, if you are obviously ignoring those messages you will be removed from the community.
    Impersonation: Do not attempt to impersonate another member of the community, either by creating an account with a similar name or by quoting a post and changing the text to make it look like something else was said in a way that is clearly malicious.
    Source Content: If you are posting the work of someone else please post a source if one is obviously available (don't copy and paste an entire article instead of just linking to the site or person that wrote it), attempting to pass the work of others off as your own will lead to your removal from the community.
    Etiquette: Do not participate in flame wars or post in threads that are clearly against the rules. If you see something against the CoC just report it and move on, drawing more attention to things that are clearly against the rules can lead to you getting in trouble as well. Liking posts that are clearly against the CoC may lead to you sharing the warning or punishment of the original poster. Do not post spoilers for a recently released video game or movie in the title of a thread and if you wish to discuss spoilers on our Discord use the appropriate chat room (spoilers_chat), if you are in a thread about a game or movie that won't obviously include spoilers based on the title then use the spoiler button (the eye icon in between the quote and emoticon button) so that your text is not immediately visible. When you join Discord you should have your account automatically set to move you into the AFK channel if you are in a voice channel without speaking for 10 minutes, please keep that on so that a game officer or moderator doesn't have to move you from channels if you accidentally remain in an active voice channel when you are away.
    In-Game Behavior
    Cheating and Glitching: If you are playing against human opponents the AJSA absolutely does not allow cheating, third-party tools, or glitches to be used to win games. In addition to ruining the game for others, it damages the AJSA's reputation and will result in you being removed from the community.
    Language/Raging: As was previously mentioned, try to keep it to a minimum. Constantly swearing to the extent that you are ruining the mood of other players or becoming hostile to others can lead to your membership or ability to participate in game events being reconsidered. Rage quitting can also lead to your membership being reconsidered. No personal attacks or offensive “shit talking” to our opposition, competitiveness is fine but keep it friendly, trying to starts fights with other people will see you removed from the game and possibly the AJSA.
    Guilds/Clans/MMOs: Many games limit the number of members that can be part of a guild (or the game's guild equivalent), therefore it might be necessary for us to remove inactive members to make room for new players. If you were removed from a guild for this reason, it is nothing against you, it is just something that needs to be done sometimes to make room for new active recruits. If you are part of a group that has these limitations and you plan to stop playing the game please let the guild leader know and leave the group to make room for new people, if you plan to return at a later date they will try to add you to the group again by replacing other inactive members.
    Leadership: Official AJSA supported games with frequent events are typically lead by Game Officers. One time events are typically run by AJSA Admin, streamers, Moderators, or Game Officers. Follow the person running the game or event's instructions, don't attempt to publicly fight with them over their decisions or the way that they are doing things. If you have a problem or ideas you want to share calmly contact the ones in charge of the game or event and work it out or contact a higher up member if you believe that they need to get involved or if the person in charge is breaking AJSA CoC. Suggestions should be welcome as we like to make sure the people we have running games are mature and capable of allowing for constructive criticism. Do not try to start fights between members, publicly complain about leadership in front of other members, or attempt to split off AJSA members into separate factions or communities, doing so will to warnings or your removal from the AJSA.
    Represent the AJSA well by playing fair and having respect for the opposition, your team, and yourself. Help new players to get used to games or to get involved in the community and work well with the people you meet that aren't part of the AJSA to give people a positive impression of us. A better reputation in games will lead to a better and more respected community that will be easier to recruit for.
    Admin and Moderation Team
    Member must respect the decisions of AJSA admin (Council and Commanders) and moderators (General, Discord, and Twitch). If you disagree with something they have said or done you can privately contact them, making your problems with them public or insulting them on the website, Discord, during game events, or within the PS4 Rooms will only add to previous punishments or cause one to be issued. You may receive a verbal warning in the form of a private message about a specific incident or trend of behavior, these verbal warnings should be respected the same as one through the warning system, to ignore a verbal warning can lead to harsher punitive action.
    Admin are able to curate the community as they see fit and reserve the right to remove content that, while not specifically mentioned by name in the CoC, has a history of or is currently used in a way that either breaks other rules listed here, would lead to the kind of membership that we want to avoid, or that would lead to the community having a bad reputation.
    Immediate Bans: AJSA staff have the right to immediately ban members caught cheating, spamming the forums with advertisements, posting pornography or hate speech, harming the AJSA’s reputation, issuing death or rape threats, or displaying other extremely aggressive behavior. If violating your local law’s the AJSA may cooperate with authorities in an appropriate manner to resolve.
    Appeals: There are higher up members to contact if you are having an issue with moderators or admin. If you are having a problem with the moderation team on the forums or Discord you can contact Legolas_Katarn, if you are having a problem with PS4 staff you can contact WITHASTICK, if you are having a problem with Xbox One staff you can contact RuneX, if you are having a problem with someone running PC events you can contact Conan or Eiousx, if you are having a problem with a Commander you can contact another Commander if the problem area falls under their job description or you can contact Council members DoctorEvil or Tons0fun. If a warning or punitive action was found to be a mistake, or was not justly issued, the punishment will be over-turned and the warning removed, if someone was found to have acted inappropriately the situation will be dealt with by whoever is in charge of that area. Acting hostile and insulting staff members during these appeals or showing no understanding of why an obvious rule is in place can lead to further actions taken against your account. Things that can lead to strong penalties against your account tend to be pretty obvious rules found in most every functional community, if your messages to us show a complete lack of self awareness, empathy, inability to understand why certain rules are in place, or some weird reactionary "debate me bro logic" your membership will likely be reconsidered. Appeals are for mistakes or misuse of power not for arguing against rules you don't like. Joe is not an appropriate person to file complaints with.
    The “Angry Joe” Policy
    If the sole reason for you joining this community is to “talk to”, “play with”, or “get personal time” with Joe, please DO NOT APPLY. It is possible to run into him in a game, on the website, or on the Discord, but do not be offended if he declines your friend request, game invite, etc. If Joe does join the community for an event, please conduct yourself in a civil and respectful way when interacting with him.
  24. FluffABun liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in WE NEED TO RISE AGAINST PAY TO WIN AND LOOT BOXES   
    You can not buy the games and tell people why you aren't but if you're implying something like we start posting or spamming all over their company/Steam message boards to try to get people to not buy their games that's not something we are going to condone.
  25. Beatmaster A.C. liked a post in a topic by Legolas_Katarn in Should video games be accessible to everyone?   
    They certainly do love their made up history to try to make themselves look special