Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Social Networks: the more we are connected, the more we are split appart

One of my part-time jobs is to teach English as a foreign language, so I often ask my students about what do they do in their free time in order to fetch some examples we can work in class. In one of these sessions I asked a group of teenagers how often did they check their e-mail; their answer was basically “Nah, no one checks their e-mail anymore”.

That response surprised me quite a bit. Of course the reason behind that answer was obvious; instant messaging applications such as Facebook, Skype, or WhatsApp have rendered e-mails obsolete. Later on, when I had a group of adults on class I asked them about this very topic, and found out that –despite all these new means of communication– they still check their e-mails regularly, as well as they expressed my own concern toward how the youth is losing the skill of writing letters (or e-mails); something they will eventually require in order to procure and/or conserve a job.

I made sure to include that for later classes, but that’s another story.

Keep reading >>>

Saturday, March 1, 2014

River City Pixels: Arkham City

I don’t miss the “time limit” we used to have imposed on us in early videogames, but sometimes I have to stop suspending my disbelief during a game when it tries to convince me that videogame world would be a lot better if I did my saving ASAP. We all know that nothing will actually happen no matter how much time we waste.

Such thing happens when you’re playing Batman Arkham City; Doctor Strange keeps reminding everyone that something huge called Protocol 10 will happen in a few hours, but then, his countdown repeats itself every time you’re procrastinating the main objectives of the game in favor of one of the many subquests this title has.

I guess there’s no place for a real sense of urgency in a non-linear game; I surely would regret not being able to explore everything that Arkham City has to offer if I were pushed to finish the game within a time limit.

On the other hand, The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask did an excellent job at implementing and running wild with this idea; every moment is a constant reminder that you and everyone around you is in danger; actually, it did it so well that I don’t need another game throwing a damn psychedelic moon on me if I don’t hurry the hell up!

First published on CultureMass.

Monday, February 24, 2014

My take Into Shooting Games

There was a time not long ago when I used to like shooting games more than most other videogame genres, and it’s not that I stopped enjoy them; at heart I still like them very much, and that’s pretty much the impression I give whenever I talk, whenever I write, or whenever anyone watches my Xbox Live’s Avatar (pictured left).

I enjoy the sheer excitement current shooting bring to the table: they’re usually fast-paced, and franctic fun the moment you start playing; while some people might consider them dumb or brainless, knowledgeable players know that overcoming in shooting games require strategy and mental prowess processed so damn fast that can’t be seen with bare eyes; also shooting games offer some of the most replayable experiences out there, one playthrough will rarely go the same way as another.

But I noticed a trend in my latest articles for CultureMass, I tend to talk as much about shooting games, as I complain about current games and the state of the videogame industry.

This is what I'm talking about?

Friday, February 21, 2014

Halo 4: The Tale of the Teabaggin Mantis

This is a guest comic I did for —another of my favorite webcomic series— when they gave me chance of making a pixelated interpretation of its characters. Since their comic series covers more recent videogame news, I used this opportunity as a vehicle to rant about my exact feelings toward the Mantis Trailer prior to Halo 4's release date.

You can read the full comic here.

[After this comic had been published, I still needed to talk about the reasons why I ended up doing it, which I post at GamesBeat, but you can also read it right here:]

Monday, February 17, 2014

Don't be that Guy

Now that this blog is officially moving again, I’d like to talk about the things that you’ll frequently find in here, and the first thing I need to tackle is the Column that gave such much joy, and the beginning of my writing career: Don’t be that Guy.

It started as a funny flowchart I did for (now called GamesBeat) back in 2011, when I was really into Online Gaming; that article would end up being edited, posted on the main page, and read by tens of thousand viewers; one of them: a curious fellow called Paul Franzen.