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Moving Pixels

November 2013

Playing the Gigolo: ‘Killer is Dead’ Changes the Pace of the Game

Video games always have trouble with pacing. While they focus on their game loops and crafting the right level of challenge, it might be nice for both the characterization and the pacing of the work to leave that behind briefly. Allow the player to enter a different space with different rules from the rest of the game, just maybe not these kinds of spaces.


A Colonist’s Fantasy: The Problem with the Fair Fight

Agarest illustrates just how much fun it is to be the scrappy underdog in games without actually being the scrappy underdog. It’s striking how often games suggest that the power of the victim’s moral high ground is equitable to that of the conquistador’s rifle.


Moving Pixels Podcast: Swords, Sex, and Suda51

Killer Is Dead is a little punk, a little noir, a little James Bond, and a whole lot of crazy.


Stealth is (Not Really) an Option in ‘Payday 2’

Payday 2 does everything it can to make stealth unintuitive and unattractive.


David Cage and the Evolution of ‘Beyond: Two Souls’

As a companion piece to Heavy Rain, it is easier to appreciate Beyond as an improvement for Cage and an evolution in his body of work, contentious though it may be.


Cinematic Framing in ‘Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons’

A master director can tell a whole story through properly framed and shot images alone. The camera in video games lends the medium the same ability. Designers just have to know how to use it to their own ends.


Moving Pixels Podcast: We Have No Mouths and We Must Scream

I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream's horrors develop, not so much via gore or titillating jump scares, but around the possibility of the kinds of evil that it suggests really lurk in the human heart. This game's monsters too often resemble ourselves.


Indie Horror Month 2013: ‘Catachresis’

The catachresis is a natural tool for horror since that kind of overwrought paradoxical language is often used when trying to describe something indescribable.


October 2013

And Now: A Confusing Word from Our Sponsors

My annual return to television ad exposure suggests I'm either hopelessly out of touch or that the gaming industry has spiraled off into some kind of focus group tested madness. It's probably both.


The ‘Grand Theft Auto’ Rampage: The Violence of Cultural and Subcultural Politics

Grand Theft Auto V's Trevor picks on social groups, rednecks, gang bangers, military personnel, and hipsters, and when he does so, he takes offense at one or two members of that social group before he then allows his rage to explode into a kind of murderous generalization. If one hipster offends, then kill them all.


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