palm:

untitled by yuhi+ on Flickr.

palm:

untitled by yuhi+ on Flickr.

(via rekall)

tastefullyoffensive:

Cat Buttwiggles [x]

Previously: Cats Giving High Fives

(via laenij)

bunnyfood:

Tiger Taxi

(via laenij)

prrb:

"Oh look, it is an human! I must do something cute for them.
 /BLARRRGFH/
Did you see it? 
/BLEERHG/
:D….
nailed it.”

(Source: nicetooth, via laenij)

(Source: alxbngala, via laenij)

what even are these things?

(Source: thecutestofthecute, via laenij)

It’s incredible what level designers managed to accomplish 12 years ago with a lot less technology than we have now. Sure it’s blocky and low-res, but this bedroom in Clive Barker’s Undying still speaks volumes about its former inhabitant…

Metagame

Finally picked up this month’s Hyper mag. My Metagame article, featuring Eric Zimmerman, is in it - I’m super proud of the job the layout team did with this one.

iOS review round-up

Oh, and yeah, I freelance for TouchArcade now. Yeah! I’ve always wanted to get into coverage of mobile gaming! So go check out my first two reviews, won’t you? Gravity Duck is a somewhat underachieving gravity-based platformer, while Knitted Deer is stylish like a Christmas sweater (literally).

"You don’t want to be a good gamer. You want to be a good person."

An interview with Sean Plott, aka Day[9], for Games.on.net.

I’m not a StarCraft player. I’m not even much of a competitive online gamer any more - I much prefer the social dynamics of MMOs or co-op games. Still, I make an effort to drop in on Day[9]’s videos here and there, because I learn so much from them that can be applied to all areas of life - not just gaming. There’s something about Day[9]’s emphasis on mental balance and approaching everything with humour that really speaks to me.

I’ve watched on and off for a couple of years and I still don’t know jack about StarCraft, but damn, I feel like a much better person. I know myself better and I’m less harsh on myself when I make mistakes.

That’s why, when I really got into this games journalism thing, I pinned him down as my number one dream interviewee. That I got to interview him relatively soon after starting my career makes me so, so incredibly grateful. I learned a lot from being able to speak with him in person, and I hope you get something out of this interview, too.

Goodbye, GameSpy.

I was doing okay for most of today, even after finding out about the GameSpy closure from my workmate, Taylor. It’s only now, at 10:30pm on a Friday night when I’m thinking of getting ready for bed (because yes, I have no life lol), that I’ve realised just how sad I am I won’t get to wake up tomorrow morning and post some news.

Being the weekend news blogger was a bit brutal sometimes, especially if I had a shift following a particularly draining or eventful night. I really grew to love the oddball structure it gave to my week, though. I find it deeply depressing that tomorrow, I’ll get a weekend to do whatever I want with. Just like some kind of… normal person! But really. As a freelancer, I really appreciated that GameSpy was the backbone to my week. A pointy, razor-like backbone, because man did it sharpen up my writing skills.

I want to thank all of my fellow writers there. It was a little scary working for Dan Stapleton, whose work I used to read as a teenager in PC Gamer, but I learned a lot under his no-nonsense approach, and I’m really happy about how much I improved in the nearly-a-year I was with GameSpy. I really appreciated Mike Sharkey’s patience when training me up, and all the Free Agents he commissioned me for - man, were those fun pieces to write! I also really enjoyed working alongside Taylor Cocke and Mike Nelson, two very distinct writers with a hell of a lot of talent. Huge props must go out to Nathan Grayson for encouraging me to go for the news gig in the first place, and finally, I want to thank everyone who ever read my work there. I hope you enjoyed it as much as we did putting it all together.

What now? I’ve got some freelance articles lined up, and I’ll be working on Freeplay stuff all year. I’ve just moved into a gorgeous new apartment at the waterside, and you think I’d be concerned with keeping up the rent for the place. And I am, but that’s just something I’ll have to figure out before the next month’s is due. For now, what I’m really struggling with is the idea that I don’t have GameSpy news shifts to comfort me any more. I really loved combing the net for interesting tidbits, and writing news up in a way that’d appeal to my fellow gamers. Hopefully I land another gig like that soon. Till then, though - I don’t know. GameSpy meant a lot to a lot of people, and it’s kind of distressing that it just… doesn’t exist, now. This is probably why wine and late nights playing MMOs were invented.

Goodbye, GameSpy. I loved my time with you.

ANTICHAMBER! RELEASE DATE!

OMG. I’ve been waiting for this forever. When I first laid eyes on Antichamber (and Alex Bruce’s shocking pink suit) I was a games student that didn’t know anything. Two and a half years later, a lot has changed for me, and it’s crazy to think that this has been in development the whole time, too.

I’ve been playing with a preview build of Antichamber and I’m curious to see how people respond to it. Score one for the Australian games industry, and for Melbourne in particular - for all the inoffensive mobile stuff we churn out, we still sure do produce some fantastic work. Yay Antichamber!

In Profile: Chris Avellone

First published in Atomic magazine, republished in PC & Tech Authority. I tracked down Chris while he was in Melbourne for GCAP, and asked him for his thoughts on Kickstarter, his design philosophies and goals, and Australia’s largely stagnant development scene.

Is the Cyberpunk 2077 trailer sexist? No? What about the gaming community, then?

image

Tim Colwill at Games.on.net asked twelve women, including myself, whether they thought the Cyberpunk 2077 trailer was sexist. While the opinions voiced are diverse and mostly thoughtful, I actually find response to the article itself to be far more interesting.

PC PowerPlay writer Meghann O’Neill pointed out that it sort of turns this into a popularity contest for the women involved, though, while my friend Leena van Deventer expressed concern that this would allow for people to say, “See, a woman says it’s okay, so it’s clearly NOT a sexist trailer!”

And yep, the comments section proved both of them right, with commenters saying things like, “Well, obviously Girl X is the correct one here.” I realise now that the article format lends itself to another form of dismissal, which isn’t a problem in itself; I don’t think there’s anything wrong with all-women panels questioning issues of interest to women. What’s unfortunate is how the popularity contest angle actually only serves to further prove sexism in the industry.

I was a teenage sexist once, too, and here’s why: it made it easier for me to fit into a man’s world. To know that men would have my back, because at least I wasn’t one of those annoying screechy girls causing trouble about imagined sexist injustices. It made me more likeable. It made me more popular with people whose opinions I knew held more weight than my own.

In gaming, the “my girlfriend didn’t have a problem with it so I don’t know why OTHER women are complaining” argument should not hold as much weight as it does. Holding up a single woman’s view as the “correct” view is deeply dismissive; anyone who does so while claiming not to be a jerk is essentially saying that it’s okay for women to have an opinion - so long as it’s one that in line with a man’s. Come on - that’s pretty sexist.

[Edit to add a link to a tweet I received literally just as I posted this. “I’m siding with that other lady on this issue.” LOL.]

Err… did no one notice this creepy line in the Boob Torso apology?

You know, every time another stupid misogynistic thing happens in gaming, I get less angry and more exasperated. I’ve stopped devoting time, tweets, energy to expressing my disdain over whatever the latest controversy is. The Dead Island “Boob Torso” thing exploded as I was getting ready for bed last night, and I was hoping to just sleep off the grotesque image of that dismembered woman so I could wake up the next morning and get back to playing crappy MMORPGs or something.

Instead, I awake to find that Deep Silver have issued an apology that, personally, I’m finding as disturbing as the limbless statue itself. I mean, yeah - Boob Torso is incredibly misogynistic, there’s no question. But did nobody notice that one massively disturbing line in the “apology”?

For the limited run of the Zombie Bait Edition for Europe and Australia, a decision was made to include a gruesome statue of a zombie torso, which was cut up like many of our fans had done to the undead enemies in the original Dead Island.

Whaaaat. The description is inaccurate, for one thing - that’s a woman’s torso, and we can’t dehumanise the thing by suddenly deciding it’s a “zombie torso,” especially not when she comes as part of the “Zombie Bait Edition.” Because zombies ate her, guys.

But that’s not even the worst thing about this apology. Look at the last half of that line. She was "cut up like many of our fans had done to the undead enemies in the original Dead Island." This completely undoes whatever the apology was trying to achieve. By pushing the torso into the hands of fans with a cry of “But we were just giving the fans what they wanted!”, Deep Silver are shirking responsibility. They didn’t willingly design this monstrosity of a limited edition gift, oh no. Gamers made this happen! Deep Silver were just trying to be the good guys, trying to give their fans what they asked for! Can’t fault a business for that, can you?

When gamers are constantly trying to prove to the mainstream media that we’re not serial killers in the making, it really doesn’t help to have a developer blame the content of their game on their consumers, making us out to be body-mutilating creeps who somehow manipulated them into designing this gruesome figurine for us. Come on. Take some goddamn responsibility.