Kristian Wilson

Kristian Wilson

I'm a freelance writer from the rural American South. I write. I read. I play video games. I also sleep sometimes. Talk to me about ampersands, blankets, and the Oxford comma

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Latest Articles

Latest Topics

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Graphic Memoir as a Medium

Persepolis. Hyperbole and a Half. Fun Home. Over the last 20 years, the graphic memoir has become a popular medium-of-choice for writers and illustrators to examine difficult childhoods, mental illness, sexuality, and other marginalizing factors. What storytelling capabilities does the graphic memoir, as a medium, offer that traditional the traditional book format does not? What are its limitations?

  • Whoever writes on this topic might want to discuss the difference between a graphic memoir and an ordinary picture book of an artist's work (who focuses on making art to express their life). I for one didn't know graphic memoirs were becoming popular. Do they mostly feature real life childhood photos not taken by themselves? I think a graphic memoir and a painting expressing a past experience both have pros in the creator's ability to visually display what they may not have the skill to write or speak about. – Slaidey 1 year ago
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  • I've read Persepolis and Fun Home both in academic settings. We talked about the presentation of truth, use of color and art style, gutter narration vs. speech bubble exposition. This is a really cool and relevant topic, given the popularity of these graphic novels. – ChristelleMarie 1 year ago
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  • Palestine by Joe Sacco is also an interesting one to look at. Great topic! – Rachel Elfassy Bitoun 1 year ago
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  • Perhaps the most seminal graphic memoir in recent memory would have to be Blankets, a sprawling work of art published in a single 500-plus volume. Absolutely as essential a biography as Maus or Persepolis. I also would be remiss not to mention My Friend Dahmer by Derf Backderf, one of the scariest personal observations of a psychopath you may ever encounter in any medium. – Diogenes1138 1 year ago
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Why Arts Councils Should Lobby as often as Possible

A group of British librarians recently began legislative action against the U.K. government for its failure to protect public libraries from defunding. Argue why groups representing libraries, museums, and schools in the U.S. should do the same.

  • Very good topic. There are many libraries closing because they weren't able to get funding... But I would suggest expanding the topic by what other alternatives arts councils could use.There were few libraries managed to save themselves via lobby or other means. For example, Hillingdon Libraries in UK installed Starbucks Cafe in their facilities to gather budget for new equipment and books. Looking at cases like these and discussing the difficulty in implementing strategies as such might strengthen the topic. – idleric 1 year ago
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literature
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Have Historical Depictions Hindered Robotic Development?

Look at depictions of robots in classic sci-fi literature – e.g. R.U.R. (1921); Automata (1929); I, Robot (1940); Farewell to the Master (1940); I Sing the Body Electric (1969); The Bicentennial Man (1976) – and determine whether our preconceived notions of robots, as shaped by these texts, have hindered our development of robotics in general and artificial intelligence in particular.

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    Hardware vs. Software: Gaming's Chicken/Egg Argument

    Does hardware influence software, or is it the opposite? Think about Oculus, the Psychomantis battle, and 3rd party peripherals.

    • although the indies are making a big push today I think the AAA titles are still the biggest and first party games are what drives sales. That being said the hardware and first party support (Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo) is essential in the game industry. Right now we see a real life example with Project Cars on the Wii U. The system can't support more that 720p with 26 fps which is drastically lower than promised, so they have said it is going to be released on Nintendo's next system (which we can all assume will be the NX). This proves that hardware and more importantly hardware capability is the driving force in the industry. – jakepavao 2 years ago
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    • One of the main reasons Oculus keeps getting delayed is that, at this point, there's not much you can do with it. They're bribing people to create Oculus-compatible games because you can put out the hardware, but if there's no software to go with it, it's just a paperweight. – Andie 2 years ago
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    • So, according to Andie's post, software does have a hand in driving the industry. Can anyone think of any specific games that were delayed to next-gen systems, whose hardware was designed - in whole or in part - to support those games? – Kristian Wilson 2 years ago
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    • As a PC gamer, it's difficult for me to see how software could possibly be driving the industry when games are constantly dumbed down or held back because of console limitations. My computer isn't exactly top-end, but even though I bought it over five years ago, until very recently I could run pretty much any multi-platform game at a significantly higher FPS count, with much better graphical quality, than either of the two big consoles (the Wii was an innovator, yeah, but after a time it became a bit of a joke as well due to its _lack of hardware_--something the Wii U also suffers from). But when the next generation of consoles came out, there was a sudden boom in the quality of games being released--still nothing top-end PCs couldn't outpace with ease, if given the chance, but enough to give us all a taste of what would happen if we didn't have to wait until Microsoft and Sony got their latest box out. – Snowskeeper 2 years ago
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    Sequels in Quick Succession: How Five Nights at Freddy's Bucked the System and Won

    The entire Five Nights at Freddy’s trilogy came out in six months. Compare this to series like Call of Duty and Assassin’s Creed, whose quality went down when they switched to a game-a-year model. Also compare series that have spread games out: Mass Effect, Bioshock, Dead Space, etc. For good measure, throw in highly-anticipated flop sequels, like the newest Duke Nukem installment.

    • The guy behind Five Nights at Freddy's, as well as the teams behind Call of Duty, have a strong sense of audience. Both know exactly what their audiences want, and know how to sell their product. I think people assume that Call of Duty's lack of artistic merit means that they have diminished the quality of their product, however, I honestly believe they have been doing incredibly well, the games are seldom broken, and usually offer something new enough for their audience's to want to buy them annually. I don't play them myself, but I appreciate the dedication to mediocre-excellence that they've mastered. Assassin's Creed on the other hand, does not meet this standard. Ubisoft has been incredibly inconsistent in their quality control when it comes to their games. They do not have a strong sense of audience, but instead have big ideas with porr execution. I can buy Call of Duty every year and know exactly what I'm getting, and know that it won't be a broken game. Assassin's Creed would not give me such confidence. I can buy the game one year and be amazed, the next be disgusted. What the other series have is artistic merit. These companies don't lend themselves to annual releases, so they are allowed to release their games when they believe they are done. What Duke Nukem suffered is exactly what I fear Last Guardian will suffer: a disconnect. Duke Nukem was so far removed from its audience in regards to time that it completely lost its appeal. – G Anderson Lake 2 years ago
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    The Rise of Comic Sequels

    It’s a popular thing nowadays: your show fails to get renewed – despite a cultic viewing audience – and you inevitably wind your way around to following it up with a comic book series. Firefly did it, and Fight Club did, too. Even Invader Zim might be getting the comic book treatment. Let’s talk about this new trend.

    • A good example of how a TV show cliffhanger is made into a comic is Avatar: The Last Airbender, in the comic book The Search. It is also interesting to discuss if the comics are just as good as the film or show themselves. – Aaron Hatch 2 years ago
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    • All of Joss Whedon's shows have comic tie-ins or sequels. Buffy has season 8, 9, and 10 in comic form. – Andie 2 years ago
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    The Spider's Web: Should Book Series Continue after the Author's Death?

    Stieg Larsson has a new book coming out: The Girl in the Spider’s Web. Problem is, Larsson died in 2004. This will not be the first time a book series has been continued after the author’s death; just look at Dune and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. But should this happen: why or why not?

    • Cool article Idea, very cool. It would be interesting to see how this experiment has worked in the past. Relate the genre and reputation of this particular author and series to similar situations e.g. The Bourne series. – Thomas Munday 2 years ago
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    • You could explore how this happens in a particular style or genre which can be easily captured, perhaps most obviously, like in James Bond but how it might not make sense with books that have a more authorial voice. You could also relate it to film and TV and how universes continually get extended, like lesser problematic ones like a new director for each Star Wars film but also when a showrunner leaves a show, like in Community. Andddddd, without sounding completely boring, you could even extend it into series which would be fun to continue that haven't been so far. – Marcus Dean 2 years ago
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    • Tolkien's son help in the publication of the Silmarillion after his father's death and also published a few books set in Middle Earth as well. George R. R. Martin has also revealed his ending to A Song of Fire and Ice to several writers just in case. Maybe consider these tid-bits as well. – Christina Cady 2 years ago
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    • Would be helpful to consider the case of the Wheel of Time series when answering the question posed by the title -- Sanderson took over after Jordan passed. Reading fan blogs and professional articles before and after Sanderson's first book release would reveal fan anxieties and how those concerns were met by the "replacement". – Monique 2 years ago
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    • Unless the original author okayed it, the answer should be no, because the story could be used for something the author did not intend, and instead abuse the story idea to fit the current person's own needs thereby destroying the beauty of the original story. – Travis Kane 2 years ago
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    Jem and the Holograms: A Retrospective

    Using the new comic book reboot as your lens for perspective, revisit the original Jem and the Holograms cartoon.

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      Latest Comments

      Kristian Wilson

      I would say no, because that ending wasn’t there – to my knowledge – at the time. A lot of cutscenes were added with the PSX port, which came after the release of Chrono Cross. I’m fairly certain that cutscene was not in the original game, but was added to give the series more continuity.

      Is Chrono Trigger a Feminist Game?
      Kristian Wilson

      I don’t see anything of the sort in the second paragraph.

      The Resurgence of Lovecraftian Themes in Video Games
      Kristian Wilson

      My knowledge of Bloodborne is purely academic. I don’t own a PS4, so I have no way of playing the game for myself. However, I find it interesting that you mention the game’s Victorian setting and influences as distinct from its Lovecraftian ones. Lovecraft the man was an American product of the late Victorian era, and he was an unabashed Anglophile. These two elements combined to give all his work the dark Victorian feel that Bloodborne has captured so well.

      The Resurgence of Lovecraftian Themes in Video Games
      Kristian Wilson

      I am familiar with Lumley’s name, but not his work. I do, obviously, believe that literature and film have a connection to video game storytelling, and it’s certainly possible that the creators of the titles mentioned here discovered Lovecraftian horror through Lumley instead of Derleth. 🙂

      The Resurgence of Lovecraftian Themes in Video Games
      Kristian Wilson

      Oh yes, the Daedra are heavily influenced by Lovecraft. As others have pointed out, Bethesda’s Fallout franchise has whole missions inspired by the Mythos. In terms of expansion, I’d love to talk more about indie games, like Don’t Starve.

      The Resurgence of Lovecraftian Themes in Video Games
      Kristian Wilson

      You’re certainly correct, although I believe many creators – at least the ones we’re talking about here – are well-versed in Lovecraftian horror. I think that when we’re talking about science fiction/horror, cosmic horror is almost the only variety out there. I’m thinking here of Event Horizon, which is basically Hellraiser in space.

      The Resurgence of Lovecraftian Themes in Video Games
      Kristian Wilson

      I unfortunately never got to play Quake – it’s a long story – but I want to look into it even more after reading this comment. 🙂

      The Resurgence of Lovecraftian Themes in Video Games
      Kristian Wilson

      Anytime. Glad you enjoyed it. 🙂

      The Resurgence of Lovecraftian Themes in Video Games