In battle there are no earplugs

Sep 14

The Gate Misogyny Built


"#GamerGate" is not a new phenomena. Underneath a thin veneer of concern about journalistic ethics, nepotism and bias, #GamerGate is just another sexist hate campaign. It’s not about changing games media for the better. It’s about forcing progressive voices out of the industry. It’s about defending the perceived sanctity of games and "gamers". It’s about preserving the status quo.

This article summarizes events characterized by pervasive sexism, racism, transmisogyny, ableism, harassment, threats of violence, rape, and suicide. Please exercise caution when following any and all links.

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Sep 08

The significance of plot without conflict


In the West, plot is commonly thought to revolve around conflict: a confrontation between two or more elements, in which one ultimately dominates the other. The standard three- and five-act plot structures—which permeate Western media—have conflict written into their very foundations. A “problem” appears near the end of the first act; and, in the second act, the conflict generated by this problem takes center stage. Conflict is used to create reader involvement even by many post-modern writers, whose work otherwise defies traditional structure.

The necessity of conflict is preached as a kind of dogma by contemporary writers’ workshops and Internet “guides” to writing. A plot without conflict is considered dull; some even go so far as to call it impossible. This has influenced not only fiction, but writing in general—arguably even philosophy. Yet, is there any truth to this belief? Does plot necessarily hinge on conflict? No. Such claims are a product of the West’s insularity. For countless centuries, Chinese and Japanese writers have used a plot structure that does not have conflict “built in”, so to speak. Rather, it relies on exposition and contrast to generate interest. This structure is known as kishōtenketsu.

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Jul 09


Mar 06

Completely forgot to post that here, so here goes, made for the Videogame 50 compilation of shitty games in tribute to Cassette 50:

 - Dare To Win, a demake of 80s classic Who Dares Wins

 - A Russian Valentine, a statement (I guess) about homophobia in Russia.


Dec 09

(Source: tastefullyoffensive, via roserosetyler)

Nov 18

SUBMISSIONS! I want them! Give them to me! -


Writers, artists, makers-of-things: If you also play games, and you also give enough of a shit about games to be pissed when people roll their eyes and say “IT’S JUST A GAME,” I WANT YOU for IT’S JUST A GAME VOLUME 3!!!

The deadline for submissions is November 30, and I’ve already got a…

What does it mean to be “problematic”?


Because I’m frequently involved in conversations about fiction and games and fandom and what their portrayals of various types of people mean for real people in those spaces, I both hear and use the term “problematic” a lot. Lately, it seems that “problematic” has turned into a synonym for “wrong,” a conflation with which I have a few issues. 

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Oct 17


Sep 13

“Psychologists have found that people’s belief in a just world helps explain how they react to innocent victims of negative life circumstances. People become cognitively frustrated when presented with stories of victims who suffer through little fault of their own. They can deal with this frustration in two ways: they can conclude that the world is an unjust place, or they can decide that the victim is somehow to blame. Most people reconcile their psychological distress by blaming the victim. Even when we know that suffering is undeserved, it is psychologically easier to blame the victim rather than give up the idea that the world is basically fair.” —

Melissa Harris-Perry

This is also referred to as The Just World Fallacy. If the world is “good and just,” then bad things must only happen to people who “deserved it or caused it.” Except the world is not good and just. And despite individual people choosing to be good and/or just, structures, institutions and systems remain corrupt overall. Primarily through the media is the idea that bad only happens to those who deserve suffering conveyed. Add this to the manifestations of oppression based on gender, race, class, nationality, citizenship, sexual orientation, size, etc. and things like rape culture for example, thrive. And even ideologies that appear “harmless” to some people like prosperity gospel, positivity culture, the law of attraction and American exceptionalism are based on ignoring systemic inequality and focusing on exceptional cases. They stand firm in this particular fallacy.

See, it requires quite a bit from a person to be willing to challenge the world as is. It is psychologically, emotionally and intellectually easier to victim blame. It also helps people protect their psyches from the thought that something bad could happen to them or worse, that they are the causes of those bad things happening to others.

Still…it’s unacceptable. Victim blaming = unacceptable. The right thing to do is listen and support victims/survivors of anything and the oppressed of any form of oppression and work to deconstruct the structures, institutions and systems that make it possible. On an individual level, it requires accountability.

(via gradientlair)

(via porpentine)

Sep 04

I’m dying my hair today because of a video game.


A lot of this is personal, and a lot of this will contain spoilers for Gone Home, which you should play. Right now. Go. Shoo.

I don’t know if any game will mean as much to me as Gone Home does.image

There’s this thing that happens in games a lot, I like to call it the “Oh. Okay :/” moment. Yes, I put an emoticon in a quote, because the feeling is one of slight disappointment and resignation to something that makes me feel weird. Most games have it. They’re really little things, like having to navigate choice wheels where my options are “save orphans” or “be space hitler”, or the protagonist saying something so cheesily macho that Guy Fieri would jump at the chance to put it on his menu. It’s usually not anything offensive, it’s just something small that makes it difficult for me to take the game seriously in this moment that the game is asking me to take seriously, or feel like the character I’m controlling is actually acting out my will. I’ve never felt like I’ve really played any game that was made “for me”, as I’ve heard a lot of my gaming enthusiast friends praise their favorite games over.

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That’s the most beautiful thing I’ve read in quite some time.

I should probably write something clever about the power of games as emotion machines, but I’m crying, so fuck it.

Thank you for sharing this.