Change is scary. Sometimes it creeps up on you over the course of a century - after all, it took nearly 50 years after American women earned the right to vote before they could comfortably wear pants in public. Other times, it can be downright violent.
Perhaps superhero movies are just a natural fit for summer blockbusters, but there's no explaining why a 2300 year old military leader is a hot topic in movies, right?
This is my tribe, our tribe. We recognize each other in cultures and geographies different from our norm. We recognize the clothing, we know the entertainment media, we understand each other's interests.
Each week, we start again with a clean slate, five new articles and a fresh perspective. We do it because we love you. We do it because we care. We do it because, dear reader, it's just what we do.
A few weeks ago, The Escapist took a field trip. Our permission slips had "NDA" and "Microsoft" printed on them, our sack lunches came from Chick-fil-a and our sweaters ... we left those at home. Where's Mom when you need her? Notepads, voice recorders and cameras in-hand, we packed into the van and headed out to Epic, the Cary, North Carolina, studio that brought you Gears of War and Cliff Bleszinski. We'd be looking at both.
It is these orphan articles that cause us the most difficulty. You see, we're suckers for a great article, but we have designed, and love, our editorial calendar. It is the foundation upon which the whole of The Escapist is built. However, we have learned in our over two years of publishing The Escapist that sometimes it is best to have a little flexibility built in the mix.
One of the extremely talented comedians I worked with on that show had a theory: He believed everything was funny. Everything. The inevitable comeback to this was "Well, what about the Holocaust?" His reply: "Hilarious."
We love it when other people fail. "Tragedy," said Mel Brooks, "is when I cut my finger. Comedy is when you fall in an open sewer and die."
Stuff lives in Japan that can't exist elsewhere. Like poisonous puffer fish and tentacle porn and a megacity visible from space.
Sports are some of the top-selling videogames year after year. For a group of people who don't like/know/play sports, that seems awfully strange. Further proof the stereotype is not true.
It may be tempting to wonder why The Escapist, the bastion of high-brow cultural commentary on games and media culture, would bother with fiction. ... Why waste our (and your) time with pulp and fantasy stories? Why indeed?
I figure I may as well share a legend of my own. You probably know him; obscurity has never been his strong suit. But in a way, he's a legend for everyone. I'm referring to Mr. Keith Richards.
The title of this issue, Weird Science calls to mind the mid-80s John Hughes film in which two less-than-popular teen boys manage to create the perfect woman ... using their computer. Seems far-fetched?
What to do with a work of editorial genius that doesn't quite fit any of our molds? ... What to do with the inspired oddball that's so juicy and de-lovely we can't figure out where to put it, but don't want to let go? What to do? What to do?
Most of the time a game flops due to some critical flaw - crippling bugs, a horrendous license, excessive hype, bad timing, hubris ... . But sometimes, there's really no explanation for a game not catching on with players.