Hello, Escapist readers! As part of our partnership with curation website Critical Distance, we’ll be bringing you a weekly digest of the coolest games criticism, analysis and commentary from around the web. Let’s hit it!

There is a growing trend of “Critical Let’s Plays” popping up on Youtube, which take the popular format and give it a more analytical spin. This week, let’s take a look at a few of them.

First up, Killing is Harmless author Brendan Keogh has been looking at the first Modern Warfare title, showing us how the old blockbuster is more interesting than it seems on first glance.

Next, Jody Macgregor has a critical Let’s Play series of the first Thief, and Noah Caldwell-Gervais looks at the Mass Effect series. Finally, on Twitch, Stuart Arias has a critical series of System Shock 2 up on Twitch.

All of these are well worth a watch! You can check out the first video of Keogh’s Modern Warfare critique up above.

Lastly, for those interested in some long-form criticism, Dreamcast Worlds scholar Zoya Street is currently crowdfunding a book on the history of mobile games. This is a worthy subject of study and it’s one that doesn’t get near enough attention. If you’re interested in a taste of what Street’s book will be like, check out his recent article on the old Nokia 3210 brick phones on Medium.

Want more? Be sure to swing over to Critical Distance to have your fill!


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