Violence underlies the whimsical colonizing of an island in “Animal Crossing.” But perhaps it holds promise for political repair, too.
Past Editor: Matt Margini
Like a Viking
According to Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, the Vikings aren’t like the stereotypes you’ve heard. Nonetheless, the game lets you play as those stereotypes. Why?
Why Play at Orientalism?
Games like Crusader Kings III build feudalism into their code, and in so doing assert the supremacy of the modern global North.
Why Play to Regret?
Videogames that demand female protagonists commit—and receive—violence may be captivating, thoughtful, and moral. But they are not fun to play.
“Echo” and the Problem of Chess Problems
When looking at both art and life, we recognize patterns and then we learn what those patterns signify.
Quit Playing Games with My Heart
Robert first catches my eye from across the coffee shop. New to the neighborhood, I’m looking for a friendly face. But Robert—glaring back at me from over his mug ...
A Ouija for the Apocalypse
It is no easy feat to establish a cult and herald the apocalypse. I learned this firsthand while playing the card-based videogame Cultist Simulator, set in ...
Games for a Fallen World
Last year, Nintendo released its latest gaming console, a nimble and versatile product appropriately named the Switch, which transforms from transportable LCD tablet to a standard controller with a simple click. Released alongside the ...
Ghost in the System
It’s fitting that a videogame about novels and their authorship manages to marry two media long thought to be polar opposites. Aaron Reed and Jacob Garbe’s The Ice-Bound Concordance, available for ...
How to Write about Videogames
I remember his blue-plastic hair, drawn back in a little bun that looked octagonal. I remember the pointy hat that crowned him in the eyes of other players: “Sorcerer’s petasos +1,” the “+1” ...