The Escapist Re-Visited

Connecting the dots from past issues of The Escapist. What we missed and what we got right.

The Escapist Re-Visited

"Just about all game developers take their inspiration from B-list entertainment, the rank into which Conan falls. Amazingly, none of them seems to know why audiences love - not just like - Aliens or Star Wars or The X-Men. Developers tear off the skin of their source material but leave the flesh intact.

"What makes B-grade entertainment so enjoyable doesn't amount to a collection of explosions, semi-naked women and monsters rendered in eye-rending detail. No, a searching intelligence draws all these elements together, making them both fun and compelling. Behind every great pulp character stands a frustrated artist who tells us something important about the world, but has only swords and sorcery or lasers and lingerie at his disposal to do it."

The Escapist Re-Visited

'"The direct value of computer games in learning environments is obvious to just about anyone who looks at it - certainly, for example, to readers of The Escapist. Something that can simulate rich, complex environments at staged levels of difficulty, offer continuous feedback, allow you to "fail," then learn from that - sure. Works well for everything, from putting business students in front of Capitalism to young sportspeople in front of Madden or Rugby.'"

Colin Rowsell speaks to the Director of the Manukau Institute of Technology about videogames and education.

The Escapist Re-Visited

"It's certainly true that games have used cinema's discarded templates. Like early filmmakers, early game-makers were unable to use audible speech and so employed printed titles. As in silent films, the visible action in early games is broadly divided between long shots, in which a fair amount of material is visible at the cost of visual fidelity, and extreme close-ups, wherein the emotional state and actual facial appearance of a character is briefly evinced at the cost of everything else. The Secret of Monkey Island employs both tricks."

The Escapist Re-Visited

"McDonald's Videogame is closer to the mark. In order to succeed, players must destroy rainforests to raise feed, boost cows with hormones, fire slow employees and mask it all with public relations and marketing. It's hard enough to cut a profit the dirty way, but not employing those strategies makes it impossible.

"By all measures, McDonald's Videogame is a good anti-advergame. Players witness the restaurant's misdeeds through a set of rules, offering an explanation of the problem unlike any other medium. But honestly, it hasn't quelled my desire for the $1 McChicken sandwich."

The Escapist Re-Visited

"As an outsider to the industry whose only window into the tenuous relationship between PR companies and publications has been a few Penny Arcade posts and snippets of bygone E3 coverage, I vaguely expected The Escapist to be inundated with free games and useless swag: T-shirts, key chains, coasters, you name it. It's been two weeks, and I don't even have so much as a glossy press release to show for my newly acquired credentials. Turns out, someone has to know you exist before you get the full PR treatment."

Jordan Deam, AKA "The New Guy," opens up about his first few days at The Escapist.