Video games occupy a liminal space, a threshold between digital and physical worlds. Our choices and actions in one directly influence the other. Video games conform to their own sets of rules, which may or may not mimic the laws of physics, morality, etc. In this sense, they share quite a bit in common with prose poems. (more…)
Katherine Quevedo was born and raised just outside of Portland, Oregon, where she lives with her husband and two sons. Her poetry has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and the Rhysling Award, and her debut mini-chapbook, The Inca Weaver’s Tales, is forthcoming from Sword & Kettle Press. Her speculative fiction appears in various anthologies and magazines. When she isn’t writing, she enjoys playing old-school video games, watching movies, singing, belly dancing, and making spreadsheets. Find her at www.katherinequevedo.com.
As a series, Monster Hunter has a lot to offer: challenging, punishing combat; fantastical, yet somewhat biologically justified creatures; and a massive selection of armour and weapons to be crafted from their body parts. Despite the games never veering far from these core elements since the first title in 2004, continuous adjustments and mechanical additions, such as Rise’s high-flying Wirebugs, have kept the series from ever feeling dated. However, one aspect of the series that often goes underappreciated is its character creator. (more…)
Harry is a non-binary freelance writer based in the UK. They can usually be found speaking at length about games, film, gender and queer life.
Find them on Twitter @HazeHeavenHazza and reach out via https://harryschofieldwrites.carrd.co/
I was eighteen when I was told I was on the autism spectrum. It was at that moment, sitting in that dimly lit doctor’s office, that many pieces of my life finally found their place. Suddenly those ‘weird’ things I did or those ‘abnormal’ reactions to things made sense, and for once, I felt a sense of acceptance for myself, by myself. Another thing that suddenly made sense was my ability to hyperfixate on things—especially video games. (more…)
Angharad Redden is a freelance games journalist from Wales who focuses on representation in video games. When she’s not gaming or writing about games, she can be found by the nearest dog.
You can find them Tweeting over at @reddens_ where she will probably be screaming over the latest Bioshock news.
Content note: This piece includes mentions of self-harm.
The holidays are a weird time for me. As saccharine as they are often portrayed in popular media, they are designed to be loud. I suppose that’s part of the whole appeal. Having the whole family together, stories new and old being shared, familiar jokes being repeated and laughter being heard—there’s plenty to appreciate about them. Holidays, I once heard someone say, are the only time family gets together (more…)
“Michelle Caldeira is a professional translator with a focus on inclusive language and experience in the video game industry as Quality Assurance. Probably better known academically as “the one who keeps insisting on studying the gender neutral” and to her friends as “the one who pulls out her childhood Gameboy Color from her backpack to avoid awkward silences while thinking about Bionicle lore”. When not reading master thesis for fun or finishing up her 200+ thousand word Pokémon fanfic epic she can usually be found sharing way too many memes on Twitter at @Mcportugalem”
Or: I struggled my way through Dark Souls and all I got was this lousy gender.
Spend more than five minutes browsing Dark Souls content on any social media platform and you’re bound to see some mention of transfeminine people being absolutely feral about (and uncannily good at) any Dark Souls game. It isn’t uncommon to see Twitter users joking about getting “girldick” by asking a transfem to explain the “deep lore” of Dark Souls or any of the games in its offshoot “Soulsborne” genre. Dark Souls is notoriously difficult, cryptic, and hostile to the player both in its mechanics and atmosphere. It’s no surprise that such a series would attract a devoted cult following. But why are transfeminine people in particular associated with this cult following? Is taking exogenous estrogen really the secret to “gitting gud” and getting past that boss you’ve been stuck on for weeks? (more…)
Evelyn Grey is a media critic, cryptid, and Forever DM. She writes at the intersection of queer experience, class, and games.
You can find them tweeting at a brick wall over at @Sidereal_Star. When not speaking to inanimate objects, she’s probably retweeting Pokémon fan art and game news.
This piece contains descriptions of explicit sexual content (aimed at mature audiences).
Predictable heterosexual smut.
Carbon copy plots.
These are some of the complaints I see people make about the mobile visual novel genre, a category which includes obviously named apps such as Choices, Episodes, and Chapters. However, as somebody who has been playing these sorts of games for years now, I am very happy with the strides that many of these apps have made to become more inclusive. If you like LGBTQ+ love stories but were disappointed in the past by apps like these, I think Choices is worth your time. (more…)
Ennis Rook Bashe is a nonbinary romance novelist, social worker, and cat dad. If you want to read books with badass queer and disabled characters who take care of each other, you can check out their Amazon author page or sign up for their newsletter. For more information about their series following disabled trans people with magical powers, you can follow them on TikTok at @RookTheBird.