Crush Crush CRUSHED! A Postmortem

Crush Crush CRUSHED! A Postmortem

Nola: Should we start with introductions? Hello, I’m Nola, and it’s been fourteen days since I last played Crush Crush.

Melissa: I’m Melissa, and I don’t remember the last time I played Crush Crush, and I won’t open it again. I won’t, I won’t, I won’t.

Nola: Melissa, did I mention they’ve added new girls? (more…)

Creating a New Normal: A Recap of the Game Devs of Color Expo 2019

Creating a New Normal: A Recap of the Game Devs of Color Expo 2019

Returning to the historic Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem, New York, the Game Devs of Color Expo celebrated its fourth year on June 27, 2019.

Originally launched in 2016, the show started as a way to address the racial disparities in the games industry. The Game Devs of Color Expo’s curation centers on work by creators of color and those of marginalized backgrounds⁠—more often than not, identities that are less likely to have the outreach to show at mainstream game events like PAX or GDC. (more…)

Let Me Tell You About My OC: I Want To Be An Elven Princess

Let Me Tell You About My OC: I Want To Be An Elven Princess

Hi, my name’s Kaitlyn. I’m a transgender woman, and I love fantasy roleplaying games. What I love most about fantasy is how freeing it is: you can create your own truths. You can do anything, and be anyone. Yet there’s a simple trend I’ve found to be true: your first character is often an idealized or exaggerated version of yourself. It’s certainly true for me. Of course, like most, I didn’t realize I was doing this when I created Belegerwen Daeris, an elven princess. In fact, at the time, I thought I was making the most unoriginal character I ever had. (more…)

Jackalope’s “Cyberpunk: Night City” Made Me Cry Real (in Character) Tears

Jackalope’s “Cyberpunk: Night City” Made Me Cry Real (in Character) Tears

The date was May 25th, 2036. The place was Night City, an urban shithole located in Northern California. I was there to celebrate Night’s Wake—an annual raucous block party commemorating the assassination of Night City’s founder Richard Night, complete with a traditional truce prohibiting gang violence for one night. And the anticipation in the air was palpable.

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Grow Up: Marvel’s Spider-Man Proves We Need Real YA Games

Grow Up: Marvel’s Spider-Man Proves We Need Real YA Games

Around the time I was first kicking around the idea of this column, Austin Walker, in a 2018 Waypoint Radio episode, suggested that Marvel’s Spider-Man was the first real AAA example of young adult games, following on the industry’s obsession with dad games. After all, it follows a young man who must balance his heroics with real-world concerns like how he’s going to pay rent, his fraught relationship with his ex-girlfriend, and coming into his own as a real adult. He’s an earnest, unrepentant do-gooder, and as I’ve mentioned in previous entries of this series, that sense of earnestness, of doing good, is one of the main appeals of young adult fiction for me. (more…)