Easy Modes, Super Guides, and Everything Wrong With Difficult Games

An analysis of “hard” games and what should be done about them.

From a development perspective, adjusting a game’s difficulty can be, well, difficult. This is because when doing so there are a wide variety of factors that the developer must keep in mind. Firstly, recognizing the audience of your game even before its release is key; you do not want to gain a following only to alienate it due to your game being too hard or too easy. A developer must also consider his or her own personal bias; when testing your own game, you are already familiar with which obstacles to look out for and which strategies work best, because you were the one who designed it. This is where play testing is key – it allows players unfamiliar with the game to try it out for the first time.

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Women

A discussion on how we should perceive female characters in games.

Those of you who have been following me for quite a while know that I do not like writing about women. I do not have anything against women – quite the opposite, actually. It is just that I prefer to avoid writing about hot-button issues – feminism, sexism, racism, politics, religion, et cetera – because the accompanying comment section usually devolves into controversy and shouting matches. Moreover, I feel like these issues, especially feminism, have been discussed to a point where I do not feel like I have anything additional to add to the conversation. Yet, here I am right now sharing my thoughts on women in video games, for the first time ever (and, to be honest, likely the last).

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How Music Can Change the Way You Experience Video Games

A look at how music plays a major role in our games.

Yesterday was Fête de la Musique, or World Music Day. It is a day where people from cities across the globe celebrate the beginning of summer with fine tunes and delightful sounds. Unfortunately, I spent the whole day yesterday moving into my new apartment, where I shall be living for the next twelve months, and as such was unable to post a blog about one of the things I am most passionate about.

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Behind Every Internet Personality Lies Someone Human

Let’s make the internet a better place.

Two weeks ago, the last episode of Equals Three (also known as ‘=3’) aired on RayWilliamJohnson’s YouTube channel. The show was first started in 2006 by Ray Johnson in his college dormitory room, and it quickly grew to be an internet sensation, amassing over 10.8 million subscribers during the time the show aired, and at one point propelling Ray’s channel to the number one most subscribed-to video channel on the internet. And while his show has had its ups and downs in the past, it remains to this day as one of the website’s most popular shows, making Ray one of the YouTube’s first self-made millionaires and one of the earliest pieces of proof that one can indeed make a healthy living off of creating and uploading internet videos.

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