[Gamers] might seem alone, sitting at their computer desks or staring at the television screen. They may even seem so absorbed in what's happening in those places they appear in another world. Well, they kind of are: the world of group play.
For 136 weeks we've been bringing you our enlightened view on games and media, each week tackling a different angle, casting the light through the prism in a slightly new way, attempting to capture the image as a whole. And yet sometimes we miss something. I know, it's hard for us to believe as well.
"The themes the genre tackles - fascism, love, war - are beyond your average 8-year-old. I was in high school before I really got back into speculative futures, due in part to the new Star Wars movies. And even though they sucked, they sucked in the right way: I didn't give up on the series, I just thought there was more out there. And there was."
"People are beginning to live the entirety of their lives in a virtual space. Some scoff at them for doing so, but let's take a look at many people's daily, real life. The larger our cities grow, the more spread out they become, making commutes longer. We have less time to make contact with people - the after work cocktail scene has all but died."
One of the dirty secrets of the entertainment business is most of us who make entertainment think you, who consume it, are idiots. We muse that without us, the hustlers of your candy, you'd be lost. We're wrong, of course.
That's right: MacGyver has cost me, to my estimation, over $50,000, and I don't even have the DVDs. From the day that Phoenix Foundation crusader used his Swiss Army Knife to save the world from terrorists, oil barons, corporate criminals and inner city drug trafficking, I've been hooked on the sheer possibility gadgets have.
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 into the mix.
And then it occurred to us: Who better to explore those issues than the gamers themselves? Why not cut out the middleman and let you, our readers, speak for yourselves? Seemed like a good idea to us, and we hope you agree.
"We've played kick the can, hide and seek, and tag since time immemorial, and as we've grown as a species, so has the way we play. Hunting parties evolved into sports teams. The educational games of our prehistory are playground games today. And if you think beer pong is new, you're sorely mistaken. "
Before we all packed our bags and boarded our planes, we searched through our archives for our favorite articles over the past few months. We pulled them off the "shelf", dusted them off, and tied them up in the pretty package of this week's issue of The Escapist. So, grab some cocoa and a warm blanket (or a lemonade for you Aussies) and relax into some great articles you may have missed the first time through.
With videogame production budgets surpassing even Hollywood's grossest excesses, the market is rapidly out-pricing small developers, and even the big guys are feeling the pinch. Indie development is one route, but there are only so many games one can produce in one's bedroom. So what's a developer to do? Why, raise the price, of course. But in spite of Adam Smith's notions, it's not as simple as all that.
Assassin's Creed, BioShock, Halo 3, Mass Effect, Call of Duty 4. This was the Year of the Console. Maybe the first of many. I know this year, maybe the first of many, was the year I found myself coveting my neighbor's games.
"I am finding myself having, for the first time ever, negative feelings toward the holidays. Instead of searching out the radio stations that have gone All-Holiday, All the Time, I find myself skipping them. I see holiday decorations popping up, and I grumble. In short, I am something of a Bah Humbug this year. These things happen."
In the past there was E3, and then there was ... well, no one cared, really. E3 was everything to everyone, but, like all good things, it had to end. In its place we now have a rainbow of game conventions spanning the globe and serving all manner of industry needs, some good, some bad.
In this week's issue of The Escapist, Issue 125 "Conventioneering," we bring you the many sides of the convention story.
This week, Nathan Meunier interviews Atari Teenage Riot's Alec Empire about his solo work with a Game Boy, Jim Rossignol takes distributed computing and crowd sourcing to new levels. Our own Russ Pitts talks to the game industry about the dreaded escort mission. Kyle Orland touches base with independent game storeowners. And Joel Gonzales talks about how failure cascades in EVE Online apply to communities everywhere.