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Latest Articles

Latest Topics


The draw of idle games

On flash game websites (such as Kongregate), there is an abundance of idle games, and every time I look there seem to be more. They seem to be very popular, despite the lack of gameplay (hence the ‘idle’). So what is the draw behind idle games, and why are they so prolific? Examples to consider could be cookie clicker, anti-idle, crush crush, etc.

  • I like the idea of investigating this further, however, I think maybe there needs to be more suggested for the discussion. A lot of these games have a psychological impact on the player of achieving and collecting so exploring these player motivation models would be a good foundation. Then building it out into a wider context with similar systems in other games. So using something like City Skylines or other sim/management games as these have a capacity of idle gameplay to support further, more active gameplay later on. – CAntonyBaker 5 years ago
  • Expand, please? I'm not familiar with this term. You might compare/contrast with whatever the opposite of an idle game is, and define what the opposites are as well. – Stephanie M. 8 months ago

The power of words in The Book Thief

I’d be intrigued to see an analysis of themes in Markus Zusak’s ‘The Book Thief’. It covers a delicate time period in an engaging way, with strong themes of death, hope, and importantly, writing & stories.

Obviously writing is a powerful tool, and the ways it is used to bring hope in such a situation perhaps holds implications (and analogies) to modern day issues – and how writing shapes people reactions to them.

I’d love to see an analysis of this, and how it can be connected with today’s tenuous political climate.

  • I would really appreciate an analysis of how and why the author used German words in a predominantly English written book. – bmaan 5 years ago
  • This is a fantastic topic! I would also love to see an analysis as to why most of The Book Thief was narrated by Death, and how that impacted the story considering the subject matter and time. – M. L. Flood 5 years ago
  • I'd love to see how words literally give Liesel her power. As someone who does not have a lot of power at the beginning, how does learning to read and acquiring more pieces of writing give her more power as the novel unfolds? – IElias 5 years ago
  • I have nothing to add here except that this was one of the few books I've read that successfully did a unique narration style that was engaging but not gimmicky. As M. L. Flood pointed out, Death as a literary device alone is worthy of an article. It's also worth asking--in the age of the Internet, how do we relate to Liesel? What empowers us with knowledge in similar ways, and who or what are we fighting against? – Eden 5 years ago
  • Concerning languages uses and powers, as well as the perks – the necessity even – of being multilingual (here, I'd link it to the fact that the author kept german words in an English written book), there is the work of the philosopher George Steiner, that, to me, might be enlightening and useful to substantiate on the power of words in Marcus Zusak’s "Book Thief"! (I know G.Steiner works a lot on words and languages, though I only read "Errata: An examined life" very recently for a philosophy class (and for this topic, I’m particularly thinking about the seventh chapter, French edition), but I look forward to read more of his work!) – Gavroche 4 years ago

Why do light novels have such long titles?

Perhaps a less philosophical topic, but I’d love to see just a short article analysing various light novel titles. I’ve noticed a trend in which many of them have excessively long titles, some overly descriptive, but some not so much? I’d love to know why, or even just read about some common themes in them.
A lot of them, as a result of their overly-wordiness, also tend to have nicknames, which could also be interesting to look at.

There are plenty of examples to look at:
Danjon ni Deai o Motomeru no wa Machigatteiru Darō ka (DanMachi) (Is it Wrong to Pick up Girls in a Dungeon?)

Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai Kara Kuru Sō Desu yo? (Mondaiji) (Problem Children are Coming from Another World, aren’t they?)

Ore no Nōnai Sentakushi ga, Gakuen Rabu Kome o Zenryoku de Jama Shiteiru (Noucome) (My Mental Choices are Completely Interfering with my School Romantic Comedy)

  • This sounds like an interesting article for the light novel enthusiast. Perhaps research popular and cultural trends within the Japanese publishing industry. Titles with more than a few words (books, film, TV, music) are exceptions in the West rather than the norm so it’d be cool to get an understanding of why the Japanese like long titles so much. – Tanner Ollo 5 years ago

The appeal of death game manga

A trope I’ve seen quite commonly in manga is that of the ‘death game’. Usually, a group of students wakes up in some closed-off area, with mysterious instructions to either kill each other, perform acts that might end in death, vote people to die, etc.

I’d love to see an analysis of why this genre is so prolific. Perhaps a look at the themes it deals with, and how despite the large number of manga, there are still so many unique ideas.

Possible example to look at could be: Ousama Game, Jinrou Game, Tomogui Kyoushitsu, Doubt, etc.

  • As I am a Manga lover thats why I really like to have this topic on this site. All the Articles Published in this site in Manga Section are helpful and are really interesting to read. – soulmate 3 years ago

Representation of Transgender Youth in Hourou Musuko

The manga Hourou Musuko (Wandering Son) is about two transgender youths, and their struggles with adolescence. I’d be interested to read an analysis of the manga and how it handles these themes. Perhaps commentary on the influence of Japanese culture on the way the representation is handled, and also how times have changed in that respect too (as the manga began in 2002).


    Why is there such a strong dichotomy in support for the MCU?

    I’ve seen nothing but severely conflicting opinions on whether the Marvel films are going in a good direction or not. Audiences appear to be either diehard fans of the entire franchise, or completely disillusioned about the direction of the films. Despite this, there’s a continuously large following, and I’d be interested to know why.

    • This is definitely interesting division to explore. It might be worth digging into why a similar but largely more negative split is occurring in the DCU as well. Is there something about these comic book worlds that especially lend themselves to diehardness and division? – JustinMoir 5 years ago

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    Latest Comments


    Thank you for your kind words! I’m glad you liked the article 🙂
    I liked your article too (I can’t believe he has so many stories!).

    The Horrifying Appeal of Junji Ito

    It will be interesting to see where this kind of storytelling goes in the future!

    The Emergence of New Media Writing

    I’ve never thought of this show as postmodern detectives, so this is an interesting take!

    No Game No Life: Post-Modern Detectives

    You know I’ve never thought of Ouran as slice of life, so this is an interesting take!

    Slice of Life Anime: Insane Sanity

    Its interesting to note how normalised the harem trope has become, even despite criticism.

    Harem Anime and Manga - Expectations vs. Reality

    That point on stillness is definitely true. Miyazaki himself stated once that lots of Western film was scared of ’empty space’, and had to pack it full of action. Whereas Miyazaki was happy to allow these still moments, as they were more realistic, and emphasised other moments further.

    The Magic and Artistry of Studio Ghibli's Films

    And this is only going to increase, given globalisation, I think!

    Why Western Culture is Beginning to Embrace Anime

    This is super detailed, nice work! It kinda makes it obvious why this show is so popular, if it contains this much symbolism.

    The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya: The Journey of The Hero