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Thursday, Apr 3, 2014
Broken Age takes a chance by letting us feel the boredom and absurdity felt by the main characters.

The following post contains spoilers for the first part of Broken Age (part 1) and BioShock.


Broken Age is a placid experience compared to many other popular games.  As in most point-and-click adventures, action sequences and reflex challenges are minimized in favor of puzzles and conversations with other characters.  In many ways, most of what you do is mundane: collect items, combine them in goofy ways, bring them to other characters, and repeat.  However, these types of actions fit well with the game’s story of characters rebelling against the banal.  Broken Age is about quiet, yet determined struggle against an oppressive status quo.


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Tuesday, Apr 1, 2014
by Erik Kersting
Nintendo games are memorable more for their grand and difficult moments than for their easy and quick ones.

Lately Nintendo’s games haven’t been incredibly challenging.  Besides the occasional difficult game like Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze or Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn, most of Nintendo’s newer releases are easier than their forefathers. Whether it is creating more linear games like New Super Mario Bros or making less labyrinthine levels in The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, most Nintendo games have been significantly “dumbed down.”


While this sounds bad, it isn’t always a bad thing. Often by making gameplay more accessible, developers can gain a larger audience, bad mechanics are left by the wayside, and a more streamlined experience can be a tighter, more well developed one, as we can see in Super Mario 3D World. But along with the “easification” of games another mechanic has started to be introduced into Nintendo games and that is of the near invincible experience of playing in “easy mode.”


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Monday, Mar 31, 2014
On this episode of the Moving Pixels Podcast, we explore just how bad we can make the Big Bad Wolf in The Wolf Among Us.

If Telltale Games’s latest episodic game, The Wolf Among Us, was already based on the dark vision of the fairy tale universe of Bill Willingham’s Fables, this episode gets even seamier and more hard boiled.


On this episode of the Moving Pixels Podcast, we explore just how bad the game allows us to make the Big Bad Wolf.


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Friday, Mar 28, 2014
The levels in Brothers are specifically designed to convey the story of travel.

Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons captures a sense of scope and adventure that few games accomplish, but that many try. Most games focus purely on the size of a world when trying to convey that kind of scope. Big worlds are, after all, big. But that takes a lot of work. The levels in Brothers are tiny compared to games like Skyrim or Dragon Age, but what they lack in size they make up for in art. The game’s levels are specifically designed to convey—as G. Christopher Williams put it in our Brothers Moving Pixels podcast on Brothers—the “story of travel.”


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Thursday, Mar 27, 2014
An entire year has passed since I last played Journey, but the weathered ruins and scattered tombstones seem instantly familiar. I have come to this place as a pilgrim, transforming play into ritual.

I have made this crossing over glittering sand nearly a dozen times, but this time is different. Two years ago to the day, Thatgamecompany released Journey. Now on its anniversary, to relive my affection for the game and meditate on its excellent design, I glide over the dunes. An entire year has passed since I last played Journey, but the weathered ruins and scattered tombstones seem instantly familiar. I have come to this place as a pilgrim, transforming play into ritual.


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