Mass Effect Andromeda is Mass Effect Redux

I’ve been playing through the Mass Effect Andromeda single player campaign, though my initial excitement has been tempered a bit. For awhile, I thought of the game as the Inquisitioning of Mass Effect. In other words, Bioware built an open world with a lot of pointless resource gathering in the pursuit of making their game bigger and longer. Certainly many of the quests under the quest tab “Tasks” turn out to be pointless. As I’ve played more — I’m probably […]

Gamelock: When a Game Owns Your Life

You look at the clock and graon. It’s late. Very late. So you head off to bed, but when you wake up in the morning, you think about tactics, the right builds, leveling up, weapons configurations, story branches. Your workday blurs due to lack of sleep. You find yourself in meetings, drumming your fingers absently on conference room tables, thinking about tonight’s game. You get home, wolf down a microwaved dinner, and fire up your PC, once more immersed in […]

Morality in Games

An online friend, Robert Sharp, wrote an interesting post about moral responsibility in video games. Robert teaches university-level philosophy and loves video games, so he’s well-equipped to discuss the topic. Do the decisions we make in games reflect our inner character? It’s an interesting discussion, and David Bryant and I riff on Robert’s discussion and take it a bunch of different directions. Tools I’ve acquired an iPhone 6s+, almost unintentionally. Also, Nvidia finally releases the specs on the GTX 1070, […]

Avoiding Challenge in Videogames

I don’t play video or computer games to be challenged. There, I’ve said it. And I don’t feel ashamed to admit it. Note that I don’t typically play in easy mode, usually gravitating towards whatever the game suggests is normal. Firaxis calls this “Veteran” for XCOM 2, Fallout 4 dubs this “Normal”, and Rise of the Tomb Raider’s standard mode is called, well, “Tomb Raider”. I always default to the normal mode when firing up a new game, and most of […]

These Are My People, Not Characters

How attached do you get to your game characters? I’m speaking specifically about games which allow you to customize your characters, not about characters with predetermined names and histories (sorry, Lara Croft). That most often means RPGs, though I’ve recently become pretty attached to my XCOM2 team. I often don’t see game characters as somehow being me translated to a game character, but rather as people good at what they do. I send them out on vital, dangerous missions, and they usually […]