Shelter in Place, Pt. III: The Social Charm of Overcooked 2

Shelter in Place, Pt. III: The Social Charm of Overcooked 2

The kitchen was on fire. As a wheelchair-bound raccoon struggled to extinguish the flames, a teal shark chopped a potato, an eyepatch-wearing pirate furiously scrubbed dishes and a clumsy narwhal fell off a bridge to his (temporary) death, taking an order of fish and chips with him to an ironically watery grave. All told, a [...]

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 [...]

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 [...]

How You Get There: A Review of Subsurface Circular

How You Get There: A Review of Subsurface Circular

Warning: This post includes spoilers for Subsurface Circular. Subsurface Circular is a text-based adventure game, which is a fancy way of saying that it's an interactive short story. The player's perspective is that of a robot detective who lives on one of the subway loops that service the underground community of robots (called Teks in [...]

Let’s Mosey, Indeed: On the Value of Tim Rogers’ Slow Translation of Final Fantasy VII

Let’s Mosey, Indeed: On the Value of Tim Rogers’ Slow Translation of Final Fantasy VII

Final Fantasy VII's story is bonkers: A genetically engineered super-soldier overthrows the corporation that acts as a de facto world government and then, believing that he has a divine right to rule, summons a meteor to strike the planet so that he can merge with the energy of all living things, becoming a god. But [...]

Killing Time

Killing Time

Tomorrow evening I'll come home to find Red Dead Redemption 2 waiting in a package on my doorstep. Long awaited and highly anticipated, the game is already awash in critical acclaim. I can't wait to play it. At the same time, I'm slightly afraid that I won't actually enjoy the game at all. RDR2 promises [...]