Talking About Games: Categories

One thing we rely on when we talk about games is categories: those little boxes that tell us what genre a game belongs to. And yet, those categories are often vague or messy, and can lead to a lot of (often silly) debates. So in this essay I will propose some broad ideas about what categories are for and how we might rethink our use of them.

The “Choose Your Ending” Problem

Video games often allow you to choose how you want the game to end, often by quite literally asking you which ending you want. But presenting stories in this way is ultimately counterproductive. In this essay, I’ll explore the idea of how asking players to pick the ending they want generally undermines the ultimately purpose of both storytelling and interaction.

Moral Choices: The (Un)Ethics of Crunch

Crunch is an aspect of video game development that has been gaining attention in recent years. And for those who are aware of what it is, it’s horrific to even read about. In this essay I take a deeper dive to examine crunch through the lens of moral philosophy to help put into broader terms just exactly why crunch is wrong.