Monthly Archives: November 2012

For Clementine: The Walking Dead game series

Can a video game make you cry?

It’s a question I’ve seen asked a number of times recently as the mainstream gaming media collectively takes in the dismal state of video game writing. While I feel it’s a bit trivial to boil the issue down to something so simplistic- poorly written, sappy melodramas can make a viewer cry just as easily as truly excellent writing – I can understand where the sentiment is coming from. In an era of sub-one dimensional characters and dialogue that sounds like it was written by throwing the script of Aliens and Black Hawk Down in a shredder and then pasting the pieces back together, in a landscape where even titles lauded for their excellent writing barely attain the minimum standard expected for a mid-level TV movie, a game that can illicit such a strong emotional response has become something of a symbolic holy grail. People are waiting for that shining paragon, that Great Game of Our Time.

Wait no longer.

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Daughter of Smoke and Inessential Penises

Errand requiring immediate attention. Come. The note was on vellum, pierced by the talons of the almost-crow that delivered it. Karou read the message. ‘He never says please’, she sighed, but she gathered up her things. When Brimstone called, she always came. In general, Karou has managed to keep her two lives in balance. On the one hand, she’s a seventeen-year-old art student in Prague; on the other, errand-girl to a monstrous creature who is the closest thing she has to family. Raised half in our world, half in ‘Elsewhere’, she has never understood Brimstone’s dark work – buying teeth from hunters and murderers – nor how she came into his keeping. She is a secret even to herself, plagued by the sensation that she isn’t whole. Now the doors to Elsewhere are closing, and Karou must choose between the safety of her human life and the dangers of a war-ravaged world that may hold the answers she has always sought.

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