Batman: Arkham Knight is a game about identity crises. Who is the Arkham Knight (and how did he become obsessed with Batman)? Can Jim Gordon reconcile his devotion to his family with his obligation to uphold the law? What really separates Batman and the Joker? Will the Riddler ever realize how annoying he truly is? If the inflated number of Riddler challenges in Arkham Knight are any indication, he is either totally oblivious or sadistically aware of how much of a pest he is.
Latest Blog Posts
Once the German mothers had submitted to the plea for overbreeding, it was inevitable that imperialistic Germany should make war. Once the battalions of unwanted babies came into existence—babies whom the mothers did not want but which they bore as a “patriotic duty”—it was too late to avoid international conflict. The great crime of imperialistic Germany was its high birth rate. It has always been so. Behind all war has been the pressure of population.
—Margaret Sanger, Woman and the New Race (1920)
The title of Massive Chalice is quite literal. There is, indeed, a massive chalice in the game.
Perhaps there is a sexual metaphor at play in the game’s title. After all, one of the central components of the game is sex and reproduction.
I’ve been spending some time away from video games as of late. It’s not a sabbatical or even something that I planned to do. It’s just that for a while now, I’ve had this growing itch that I needed to scratch. I go through phases of what catches my interest. Sometimes it’s a TV show, sometimes it’s classic cinema, or a book, whatever. At the moment, despite a lot of great games that I’ve been wanting to play coming out, video games haven’t been quite doing it for me.
I’ve missed Magic. You know, the world renowned trading card game. For a long time, almost a decade, I was an avid player of it. Then around my second year of college I stopped playing, partially because it was becoming financially prohibitive, but mostly because at college Magic tournaments were rarer. Still those times have a special place in my heart even all these years later.
With the arrival of a number of successful and interesting episodic games, this approach to gaming seems to be growing more and more common.
This week the Moving Pixels podcast discusses the possibilities and limitations of a crime drama in episodic game form, The Detail.
As an app developer, I’m interested, for self-serving reasons, in app design. But as someone with artistic pretensions, I’d like to consider apps beyond good design. What I’ve been increasingly interested in is app aesthetics in the fullest sense of that word. The other day, I did a little poking around on the intertubes in search of, for lack of a better keyword, “app as art”. I was looking for developers who design and publish apps with the specific intention of making them artistic (however they choose to define that loaded term). As it turns out, there’s not much out there.
As you know, smartphones, and accordingly, the software that makes them “smart”, haven’t been around for long. IBM made the very first smartphone back in 1992. They called it Simon. It was clunky, monochromatic, and not all that smart. It sold for US$899. The first smartphone to sell in decent quantities (at least in the States) was the Kyocera 6035, which came out in 2001. The smart part of its functionality was based on the Palm OS. It was basically a PalmPilot duct-taped to a cell phone. Setting the notorious corporate incursions of the “Crack”-berry aside, smartphone adoption didn’t explode into global consumer consciousness until the release of the very first iPhone, back in the Pleistocene epoch of 2007. The first Android device followed shortly thereafter in 2008.