So I’ve been absent from le blog as of late, and my only excuse is I have had Work (true), and I have been being Social (also true, but less of an obligation, so much as a pleasure). Anyway, I’ve been busy, after a fashion when it comes to writing about games. I have a review of The Maw up at Popmatters, and an interview with Francois Roughol (PoP designer who is presently working on Assassin’s Creed 2, which is rather exciting) over at GameTopius. Both of these articles have been added to the articles page up there, which I’m trying to update regularly (and have no excuse NOT to update). If you’re thinking of buying The Maw I’d tell you not to do it, but if you pressed me, I’d say check out the review. It has a lot of issues, and it doesn’t ever do enough things right to make you forget about that issues.
Honestly, though, you should check out the Roughol interview. If you like the PoP game (and I hope you realize that I absolutely adored that game), it’s great to hear him talk about designing it and changing it, and his reaction to our reception of it. If you aren’t a fan, it’s still interesting, it’s always good to listen to someone talk about what goes into making a game. They do so many things that we don’t see or don’t care about; it’s a good idea to just pay attention every once in a while and understand how that you loved (or didn’t) was created, bit by bit.
I guess this is going to be a link post, because there’s some articles I’ve been meaning to point out. Shame on me. They are all (I believe) from Rock Paper Shotgun (who are cool, and write good stuff). Sorry. The first one is an interview with the Penumbra guys over at Frictional Games. I’ve been posting about it a lot recently, and with good reason: they’re fun, scary, and about 10 times more interesting than most “horror” games that I’ve played recently. Anyway, they talk about their new game, which is set in the 18th century, and centers around a scary castle and (one would assume) interesting survival psychological horror. I’m looking forward to it.
Secondly (and lastly!) an article by Jim Rossignol about why Vampire: Bloodlines is great, and how it is great in a way completely different from the “great” RPGs of this and last year. It’s a cool read, and maybe it’ll convince yo to go pick this game up. It really is an amazing game, unlike so many games in that it doesn’t bother with a lot of what “makes” an RPG today. It’s about what it would be like to be an evil, violent creature in a fantasy version of Santa Monica, and despite its myriad problems, it should (like other flawed, brilliant games) be recognized for its accomplishments. You know what, go read the article. Trust me, he says interesting stuff, and it’s entertaining to boot. Now it’s back to work! Oh and Chrono Trigger and Burnout: Paradise are in the house. Sweet.