Gamer Mom: Parenting Lessons I Learned From God of War

Gamer Mom: Parenting Lessons I Learned From God of War

I would like to retract my original votes for Geralt of Rivia as No. 1 Sword Dad after playing God of War, aka “Dad of War.” I still love Geralt, but his parenting style is kind of—well, by accident of fate, and he spends a lot of time in search of his daughter. Losing your kids on a regular basis isn’t typically the sign of a good parent. (more…)

I Have Seen Hell and it is Nickelodeon Kart Racers

I Have Seen Hell and it is Nickelodeon Kart Racers

The one thing I could never have predicted about adulthood is just how often I would relive my childhood. At this point, it’s a recursive loop of remakes and reboots, cash grabs disguised as nostalgia.
And a few weeks ago, it led me directly into the uncanny valley. The uncanny valley has fewer textures than I thought it would. (more…)

In Defense of Complex Mechanics in TTRPGs

In Defense of Complex Mechanics in TTRPGs

Narrative-driven tabletop RPGs are awesome. Being able to tell a story with your friends is one of the best things that has come out of human civilization, full stop. Of late, there has been a trend among narrative-focused game groups to look for systems that cater specifically to narrative games. Thus, more and more systems are looking to streamline gameplay by removing mechanics to increase time spent weaving narrative. This has gone from a good idea to make gameplay more fluid to a potentially stifling aversion to number or dice-based mechanics in general. (more…)

Why Now Is The Perfect Time For The Final Fantasy VII Remake

Why Now Is The Perfect Time For The Final Fantasy VII Remake

I own Final Fantasy VII on three separate platforms. That’s not really notable for me as far as Final Fantasy is concerned; I own most of the games on at least two. But with VII’s release on the Nintendo Switch a couple of months ago, and now with the announcement of Final Fantasy VII Remake, it’s been on my mind. It turns out the Switch is the perfect platform for a replay; the smaller, hand-held screen hides some of the game’s age from my own aging eyes, especially if I’m not wearing my glasses. But I’m not really here to review the game; I don’t really think there’s a point to that. I mean, we have a release date for the remake now, right? VII is beyond reviews. It’s simply a phenomenon. (more…)

June Roundtable: Pride Month

June Roundtable: Pride Month

Happy Pride Month! June is a time of celebration and contemplation, our two favorite activities here at Sidequest. This month, inspired by a tweet by Freyja Erlingsdótter, we sat down to talk about what queerness means in a gaming context. Can games be queer? What kinds of games can be queer? Find out within. (more…)

Grow Up: Gone Home is Wonderfully, Perfectly YA

Grow Up: Gone Home is Wonderfully, Perfectly YA

Grow Up is a series in which I evaluate whether games called young adult actually fit the definition and exploring why that matters.

Gone Home was really the inspiration for this column. It’s a critical darling—when it was released back in 2013, it was everywhere. At the time, it was like few other games out there; you didn’t play the hero, it revolved around two queer teenage girls, and it was more interested in exploration and atmosphere than traditional game mechanics. By virtue of being new and different (and kicking off the explosion of walking simulators), it was impossible not to talk about. (more…)