Some games can envelope the player, drawing them completely into another world for a short, but intense, time. Tom Rhodes tells us of his recurring affair with The Longest Journey, while taking a look at game censhorship, violence, and art along the way.
"Games are addictive for the same reason anything pleasurable is addictive: Our brains give us little pats of wonderful chemicals when we do enjoyable things. Sometimes the wiring wins." Shannon Drake looks at some of the reasoning behind gaming addiction.
The industry wants to be part of the mainstream - they want the money, and they want the respect. Jason Smith details one way the current state of the industry is preventing mainstream acceptance, and how that could be changed.
John Tynes knows what he wants, and that's more choice. Join The Contrarian as he outlines the design of a new game, a game he wants to play, that falls outside the typical.
"OK, I'll admit. I only lasted a month behind the sales counter of a major gaming store. But what a month." Joe Blancato speaks with another veteran, and they share some stories from their time on the front lines.
How does a game get to the shelf you see in GameStop or Target or Wal-Mart? Who makes that decision? As it turns out, the answer is not as complicated as you might think. Nova Barlow explains.
Gaming coming into the mainstream brings many things, both good and bad. Bonnie Ruberg looks at the effects that the mainstream will have on the gamers of today, with comparisons to comics, books, and movies.
Used game sales and digital distribution are pushing towards a dramatic change in the way that the game industry does business. Max Steele tells us why, and gives his prediction of the eventual outcome.
Everyone loves Nintendogs. From the hardest of the hardcore to those untouched by gaming, the virtual puppies are nearly as addictive as their real life counterparts. Bonnie Ruberg looks at Nintendogs, and how it could change the norms and perceptions of gaming.
"According to the Chinese calendar, we are finishing up the year of the rooster and heading into the year of the dog. I suggest that for games, 2005 was the year of the vole, or maybe the box turtle." Dave Thomas looks back on the gaming industry of 2005.
"If you truly want to make a successful MMOG, you must remember that nothing draws a crowd like a crowd." N. Evan Van Zelfden looks at one of the year's biggest success stories, World of Warcraft.
"When they're fighting in the aisles at Wal-Mart because of bombardments on television, magazines, MTV and the Internet, gaming has finally arrived as a major cultural force for everyone, not just for a diverse gaggle of enthusiasts." Shannon Drake looks at the XBox 360 launch as a cultural phenomenon.
It seems that virtual worlds have reached a new level of sophistication where economics are concerned. Mark Wallace looks at Second Life and EVE Online and two major MMOG economic developments.
Sure, the holidays are about love, family, and good will ... but they're also about shopping! Bonnie Ruberg comments on gamers as shoppers, and game merchandising.
"Looking back on the history of gifts received, my Christmas mornings line up like a gallery of classic plays." Patrick Dugan relates the experience of Final Fantasy VI