After two whole years of working on this blog, I take some time to do a retrospective on research and provide some tips for those who might be interested in digging into information on their own.
Author Archives: drmabian
Talking about Games: Self-Deception
We all have our different preferences when it comes to games. But how well do we understand what’s going on in our own minds? In this essay I explore the idea of “self-deception” – how sometimes we can be completely unaware of our own likes and dislikes because we basically trick ourselves.
The Villains We Love
Video games hand us all sorts of villains to fight. And of those villains, we find some of them more or less fascinating. But what is it that really makes a villain interesting? In this essay I explore some of the aspects that help us sympathize with and understand villains so that we are able to find them compelling, and as such making them strong villains.
Video Games, Performance, and Fun
The rise of playing games as content has created a series of problems about how we think about what to play. Play as performance runs the risk of letting the performance get in the way of fun. In this essay I examine a particular facet of this problem through the idea of avoid particular games because they are “bad” for streaming. The purpose will be to show how this focus on performance leads to otherwise poor decisions on our part.
Talking about Games: Dehumanization
In talking about games, it can be surprisingly easy to forget that they don’t just appear from the sky. They’re made by human beings. And because they’re made by people, perhaps we should think about what it means to talk about games *as though* they’re made by people.
Talking about Games: The Curious Nature of Patience
Release dates for video games are so common that we almost expect them as a matter of course. But release dates also create all of these other expectations that can lead to unhealthy behavior – such as a developer receiving death threats when they delay a game. I want to examine what a “release date” really is and how we should treat it, and how this knowledge can help lead to healthier relationships with the things we enjoy.
100th Essay Retrospective
In this 100th essay special, I offer some brief reflections on the value of games media in its various forms.
What Do I Want to Watch?
With all sorts of successful streamers and YouTube channels, watching video games for entertainment is a major industry. And it’s no surprise that so many people want to get in on that, often in the hopes of being the next big success. But it’s useful to ask…why do people watch any of this stuff in the first place?
The Basis of Critique
Do you need to finish a game to review it? This is a question that has been asked over and over again by fans and professionals alike. But it’s by stepping back and asking what the whole point of a review actually is that we get to a clearer understanding of the topic.
Violence in Video Games, Part Two
A sequel to last week’s essay on the psychology of violence in video games. This essay will examine how the use of violent rhetoric by gamers ends up being counterproductive, and thus should be halted and called out.