Diversity in Video Games and the Philosophy of Technology

Activision Blizzard unveiled a new Diversity Space Tool, and it was quickly dragged online. Why did that occur? In this essay, I examine issues of diversity and representation in video games, and tie the development of this tool to problems of how we approach science and technology more broadly. In turn, these problems show why ActiBlizz’s new tool doesn’t help address these underlying problems of representation.

Video Games and Language Puzzles

Puzzles in video games involve all sorts of mechanics, and one of the most interesting is a constructed language. But while constructed languages can be cool, they can also be frustrating to engage with. Using the recent game Tunic, I examine the basic problems and explore some basic ideas of how to deal with language puzzles from a design standpoint.

Toxic Help

The ability to watch people play games on the internet has given us the opportunity to forge all sorts of communities. But in engaging with these communities there lie several problems, and one of them is the urge to be “helpful.” In this essay I explore how the desire to help others can be counterproductive, and some ways in which we can address these problems so that both players and viewers can have a more enjoyable experience.

Authenticity in Gaming

Games demand a lot of our time and energy. And with the other demands in our life – and the sheer number of games out there – it is normal for a lot of players to get help in figuring out how to play and complete games. In this essay I explore the use of guides and the concept of “authenticity” when approaching video games, and how the use of guides fits more largely into how we engage with video games as a medium.