September Roundtable: Beginnings

September Roundtable: Beginnings

September often feels like the year is winding down, but, if you’re anything like Sidequest’s editor in chief, it’s also one of the most exciting times of the year. No, not because pumpkin spice is here. No, it’s not even because Halloween is right around the corner and it’s the perfect time to pick up “seasonal decor” that just becomes year-round decor. It’s because it’s the beginning of the school year, and nothing fills us (okay, me) with joy like new pencils and books and a bunch of learning to do.

But we already did a back to school roundtable, so we’re not talking about school. We’re talking about beginnings. What makes a good beginning? What makes a bad beginning? Let’s find out.

(more…)

The Definitive Ranking of Game Fashion Icons, Part I

The Definitive Ranking of Game Fashion Icons, Part I

We play games. We eat games. We also dress games, because gaming is absolutely packed with fashion icons. This month, we’re taking stock of some of gaming’s sharpest dressers.

Read our arguments as to why our choices are the greatest fashionistas in gaming history, and, if you’re a Patreon supporter at the $5+ level, vote in our poll to determine which character will be the subject of a Patreon-exclusive art piece! If you support at the $10+ level, you can nominate your own fashion icon to join the fray. And if you don’t support us on Patreon, you simply get to enjoy the height of sartorial insight from us, your favorite game critics. (more…)

August Roundtable: Alternate Endings

August Roundtable: Alternate Endings

Summer is drawing to a close. We’re all thinking about alternate realities, so the Sidequest crew got together to discuss alternate endings. For example, consider the alternate ending of August where we had managed to get this up on time! (more…)

April Roundtable: Games and Social Connection

April Roundtable: Games and Social Connection

Since we’re all in social isolation/distancing/shelter-in-place mode, the Sidequest team decided to reminisce about games and social connection: how we’ve used games to foster and grow friendships and relationships in general. (Some of us discuss how we even do that now, all while staying safe!) (more…)

Where Do We Go Next: Kentucky Route Zero’s Anxious Approach to Hope

Where Do We Go Next: Kentucky Route Zero’s Anxious Approach to Hope

Sometime during the several hours that I played Kentucky Route Zero, I began to resent 5 Dogwood Drive. For the first four acts of the game, Dogwood Drive is mere legend—impossible to drive to, real enough that non-player characters offer directions to it, and important because it’s where the player characters need to make a delivery. But while getting to 5 Dogwood Drive is the goal of the game, it isn’t the point of it. Kentucky Route Zero is a game about the odyssey of merely existing under the inherent, subtle violence of capitalist systems. Financial instability keeps the characters forever caught in the liminal space that stretches between one stage of life and the next. The uncertainty makes each choice feel weighty yet meaningless at the same time. Ultimately their fates are shaped—some more bluntly than others—by capitalism’s hand, which lends the narrative a unique anxiety. (more…)