Choose Your Character

Choose Your Character

Simone de Rochefort's wonderful essay about playing Stardew Valley as Ernest Hemingway offers exactly the type of unique insight that makes me love reading video game criticism while also offering exactly the type of weird cross-genre mashup that I often attempt. (I also fall squarely into the overlapping portion of the Venn diagram of people [...]

There’s Still Something Special About Listening to an Entire Album

There’s Still Something Special About Listening to an Entire Album

We live in the age of the playlist. Spotify, today's most important tastemaker for the discerning audiophile, is known not for its catalog of beloved albums or ability to accurately recommend esoteric ones but for its algorithmic generation of satisfying, customized playlists for each user. Pop stars are citing "the playlists [they] grew up with" [...]

Secondary Characters with Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

Secondary Characters with Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

Spoiler Alert! This post discusses key plot points of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. In the middle act of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, Greez—a squat, four-armed pilot who functions as the game's primary comedic relief—sits down with Cal Kestis, the player character, and has a serious conversation. In the moments leading up to that [...]

A Gaming Origin Story

A Gaming Origin Story

During a recent episode of Kotaku Splitscreen, the concept of gaming origin stories was discussed, the general idea being that every gamer can point to a singular gaming experience that convinced them that video games were a worthy use of their time. Co-host Maddy Myers made the important distinction that this experience doesn't have to [...]

Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving

Everything is complicated and Thanksgiving is no exception. Setting aside the impacts of colonialism and systemic inequality—which are quite a lot to set aside and deserve more attention than I'm allotting here!—the idea of dedicating a day to reflection, to consideration of those people, things and circumstances to which we are grateful, is a good [...]

List Season is Coming

List Season is Coming

The year is drawing to a close and taking the decade with it (because, for some reason, we use zero-based numbering for that kind of thing). That means that we're approaching list season, when every denizen of the internet will bombard the digital void with lists of movies, albums, books and whatever else they have [...]