id you know that the word “Apocalypse” actually means “unveiling?” It’s true! It’s from the same Greek word that gives us our word “Revelation!” Every time I post a new column, it’s my intention to
id you know that the word “Apocalypse” actually means “unveiling?” It’s true! It’s from the same Greek word that gives us our word “Revelation!” Every time I post a new column, it’s my intention tounveil something new to you! So get ready for some serious Apocalypse…ing! Or something.
1. “That was dumb.”
Okay. Yeah, Sim City’s release was a disaster. In case you haven’t been on the internet at all this week, here’s the rundown: The game launches, requiring an internet connection to play. The servers couldn’t take it. Most people had incredible difficulty and long waits to connect to the game. Many people drastically altered their opinion of the (admittedly great) game, and cry death to the E(A)vil empire. Amazon eventually just stopped selling the game. Finally, EA announces what a mistake they’ve made, offer a free game to anyone who purchased Sim City, and keep working on getting their servers up to 100%, (though they still aren’t quite there).
2. “The Damsel in Distress”
Last year, Anita Sarkeesian made waves when she tried to raise $6,000 on Kickstarter in order to create a Youtube series about the ways that videogames have reinforced sexist stereotypes over the years and still continue to do so. She was rewarded for her efforts with numerous threats of violence against her person, but was able eventually to raise far more than she originally anticipated.
Finally, the first episode of her new series is out. It’s definitely worth a watch. A very informative look at how the “Damsel in Distress” trope has evolved over the years.
3. Games and God
Our Managing Editor, Richard Clark, reviewed a book called “Of Games and God: A Christian Exploration of Video Games” for The Gospel Coalition. It is one of the first books that explores the significance of videogames from a Christian perspective.
4. But they’re just pixels…
Do you think that videogames is JUST pixels on a screen? If so, G. Christopher Williams would like to have a serious word with you! He recently wrote for PopMatters about the shortcomings of such a view.
But I do worry about you guys, sometimes. You do know that all those pixels on a screen mean something, represent something, communicate something, right? You do know that the flickering images on a screen make you feel something, make you laugh, make you cry because, you know, they’re familiar, not real, but they remind you of real circumstances, real moments of joy, real moments of tragedy?
5. Fallout was fair to Mormons
We occasionally like talking about religion and videogames here. So an article from this past week caught our attention. Skip Cameron, writing for Kotaku, wanted to let the world know that he was a Mormon, and Fallout did alright by him. It’s an interesting read, as he delves into the way the game depicts several Mormon characters and treats their history with respect. He concludes:
Rather than taking the safe route in the entertainment industry of making Christianity, and especially Mormon Christianity, a punching bag or the butt of a string of jokes, Obsidian has shown that at least in post-apocalyptia, Mormons can get a fair shake.
6. The horror of Year Walk
Here’s a creepy little game you might want to check out. Year Walk, available for iOS devices. The beauty of Year Walk is that it comes in two parts, a creepy adventure game, and an app, full of actual historical research about the cases that you are trying to solve. But are they actually historical? As you advance further in each, the lines between game and “reality” will begin to blur, creating a one-of-a-kind experience. Joseph Leray did a great write-up on the game over at Bit Creature.
7. Mr. Ekeroth Goes to Washington
Last week I had the privilege of travelling to Seattle, WA, and helping the Gamechurch team run the booth at Emerald City Comic Con. I had a blast, and more importantly, I got to see firsthand what it’s all about, as we handed out Bibles, free swag, and had some great conversations with some cool people.
The way I see it, we’re all about building a bridge. On the one hand we’re really interested in helping Christians to understand the beauty and potential of videogames. On the other hand, we want gamers to know about Jesus and the things he stood for: grace, love, and inclusion.
The best part is, you can come to a show with us too! If you’re a Christian interested in being a part of this really exciting thing we’ve got going on, just check out this link.
If you come, you get to see crazy stuff, like this Harlem Shake video that was made directly in front of us. (Okay, I get it, you’re sick of Harlem Shake videos, we all are!)
Til next time, go have a party! Do something awesome! As long as it doesn’t involve making more Harlem Shake videos! Seriously! Those are so over! Bye!