Letters to the Editor

The Iconoclasts


In response to “Multiple Personality Disorders” from The Escapist Forum: Is it true that for “years, the gaming community has sought to expand and diversify, to transform its pastime from a “fringe” activity into mainstream entertainment?”

I think it’s true for game developers. Making gaming less of a fringe activity is very important for the people who want to make money from their work. More acceptability is more units sold. Even if a game dev is a bigoted person, the second he opens up the hatred to the audience, a marketing rep would have him out the door before you could say “lawsuit.”

It’s the “tribe” of game players who are throwing around the epithets. They don’t see a benefit in n00bs filling up the slots on their squad. Do they?

– gains

I’ve come to the realization that communication via internet forums, and live chat over Xbox Live is the modern day equivalent of bathroom graffiti.

– MorkFromOrk

I think the article makes an important point in that it’s not only our own fun and enjoyment that’s at stake here, but the public perception of our entire demographic (the gamer subculture). Most of us have found ways to deal with trolls online because we encounter them all the time – we ignore them, chastise them or try to have them banned. The real trouble is that the thoughtful, more socially acceptable aspects of gamer culture tend to be drowned out by loud trolls screeching hate-filled epithets at everyone who is new or different. No wonder we can’t get people to respect our hobby and stop thinking of it as the main agent of society’s destruction.

– clericsdaughter


In response to “Too Much Information” from The Escapist Forum:

A “meme” is an idea, thought or feeling that mutates and evolves as it passes between individuals and groups.

Indeed so. Which makes me wonder why you think Lara Croft’s breasts qualify. Insofar as they are a mental construct at all they are an example of one which does not evolve. There is a canonical version of the breasts in question as originally drawn by Toby Gard. This canonical version is changed slightly by Eidos from time to time but not by the millions who view Lara-related material on their consoles and the internet. Furthermore individuals’ mental versions of Lara Croft almost never transmit to other individuals. Instead, most people encounter Ms Croft in the form of material published by Eidos or via the gaming press.

Apologies – I’m in danger of raising the tone here. Here’s another point though: on those occasions during Tomb Raider and Tomb Raider II (the only versions I played) when I did look at the title character I almost invariably had an unobstructed view of her bum but there were no breasts visible. Why are her breasts considered to have special relevance?

Congrats on getting the Escapist to feature an article about boobs, though!

– Dom Camus

Am I the only person who thinks that only “outsiders” feel that Laura Croft has any actual relevance to the history of videogames? (Sorry Spanner, I don’t mean to call you an outsider but it seems like I see her referenced more in coffee table books and on network news then by gamers.)

Tomb Raider was a mediocre title that sold well however later iterations of the title did not. Even now it is a dying franchise that seems to have delluded itself into thinking that it holds any relevence in the cannon of classic titles.

Aesthetically, the design concept for Croft is bland and uncreative. A woman in cargo hot pants and a tank top… woo.. apparently Laura Dern in Jurassic Park was ahead of the curve.

– BallPtPenTheif


In response to “Politics in a Vacuum” from The Escapist Forum: Game developers and players engaged in politics? Social scientists should flock to this occurance. Hell, I should flock to this occurance. This is amazingly interesting, mostly because I would assume most parties involved have absolutely no knowledge of politics.

This would be border-edge to one of those “perfect” scenarios many social scientists are attracted to, wherein they actually get to witness the formation of society from a state of nature. Throw in the very odd consumer vs provider interaction, a democratic process based upon complex politics and a historically hierarchical clan-based structure and my intellectual juices (shhh) start bubbling. Kudos on the research, a very good article.

– dukeh016

Hardin/Cruse posts on another forum where I frequent. Let me tell you now: He knows the world of EVE like the back of his hand. I mean, really: He wrote a document the size of a very large book detailing the wars and conflict in space, and what went wrong for both CCP, the game design and the alliances respectively. When he put himself up for election on the board, he launched a full-scale, intergalactic campaign to win; something which he heartily pulled off.

Its funny, really: EVE seems to take everything to the next level; from the community to their interaction with the management. In other games, GMs are seen as nigh on Godly figures when they appear in-game, but in EVE it is expected that they get involved in the game and the community; although obviously not abusing their powers to do so. Theoretically, of course, these meetings would have not have needed to take place, for the GMs should know their game from all prospectives if they play and observe. Still, as with all things, it is open to human fallacy, which does little more than to present even greater, intriguing opportunities for interaction between developers and the customers – even if it is basically a glorified popularity contest.

– Melaisis


In response to “When Worlds Collide” from The Escapist Forum: Lets be serious though if you could get an eyepiece that only you could see what you were looking at, what are 90% of guys gonna do 90% of the time? Just being realistic, although I wouldn’t be against it (I am one of the 10%, we only look it up 80% of the time) because it would be pretty useful

– needausername

Huh. Odd, I didn’t think of sex.

First thing I thought of when reading this is that this would be a huge boon for tourists.

Imagine going to your favourite tourist spots and the augmented reality at the spot would allow for a virtual tour guide instead of those headsets for audio tours they give people now at the very least and full on re-enactments and displays that give you a sense of “then” in virtual and in reality you see the “now”. Museums with AR anyone? Finally, why not have AR graffiti art to beautify a city virtually to attract tourists?

Also, aren’t the military interesting in AR too for the use of the soldier as a future warrior weapons platform? A second or more set of eyes, added information from various scans and satellite imagery, essentially letting a soldier see through and around walls in real time, target identification and acquisition – of course, any such notion leaves open the idea of hacking or shutting down an enemies’ AR to give your side an advantage. Though, what are the chances anyone actually cares enough to load up a soldier with gear that possibly costs considerably to develop, maintain, and support when they still think of them as canon fodder?

– CanadianWolverine

About the author