While having terrible nerve pain in my neck and back in October, I was stuck for a whole week sitting up on bedrest. This was when I picked up watching playthroughs of the Silent Hill series. It was Halloween season after all, so what better time to visit a series I had been meaning to consume since I was a teenager? The only exposure I’d had to the series was the occasional Pyramid Head and Bubble Nurse cosplayers wandering the hallways of various anime conventions, obligatory fanart, and casual mentions of the movies, most of which were received by fans with mixed reactions. I knew I had my hands full when deciding to visit the story and lore of Silent Hill, a series with eight main titles and several spinoffs, but I started with the one that was and still is the most highly praised of them all: Silent Hill 2. (more…)
Natalia is a queer Latinx illustrator making queer horror art, comics, and zines. She runs MystoPress, a micropress that is home to her eerie and nightmarish works, and has been funding her comics on Kickstarter as of 2019. When she is not freelancing or working on new projects, she teaches classes to teens and adults in non-profit art centers around North Carolina.
When I talk to people about the need for more female, NB, and trans playable characters in video games, I tend to get the same response: “Well, what about ‘x, y, z’ game? It lets you make your own character!” This is a complete non-answer to a very real problem, and a dismissal of my feelings and concerns. It’s saying that, because a handful of games allow me to create either a male or a female main character, I should be content that the default character on the box is the same cisgender white man in every game. It’s saying that representation doesn’t matter in games so long as I’m able to create it for myself.
This mentality shifts the responsibility from the developers to the players. Rather than encouraging game developers to expand their audience and create more diverse characters, it forgives them for their short-sightedness. “It’s okay that game developers never consider you the norm,” these respondents seem to say, “because at least they let you insert yourself.” But this ignores the fact that the game wasn’t made for me, that the world wasn’t designed with me in mind, and that every part of the game will reflect that, whether the developers intended it or not. (more…)
Book reviewer, game player, writer, and editor, Heather can be found on Twitter @terminality_, where she mostly posts about her cat.
Game Enjambment is a reoccurring poetry series on games and gaming.
There is an oddness to being a woman and playing video games with male protagonists who propagate violence against women. This is especially unsettling when we traverse to Silent Hill 2, a game that uses trauma and violence against women to explore male mental health.
Ashley Miranda is a Guatemalan/Mexican poet & teacher from Chicago. Her debut poetry collection Thirteen Jars: How Xt’actani Learned to Speak was published by Another New Calligraphy. Her chapbook dolores in spanish is pain, dolores in lolita is a girl is forthcoming with Glass Poetry Press. She tweets impulsive poetry and other musings @dustwhispers and you can learn more about her work at agirlaloof.com.
This tarot-into-digital media topic will sound like a bit of a stretch. I’ll tell you right now, the art of tarot itself is a stretch—it’s an odd intersection of personal relatability and interpretation of cultural and situational symbols, either ending with you having a huge card collection or an uncanny ability to relate anything to tarot (or occasionally both).