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Latest Topics

5

Storytelling in Gaming

Gaming in many ways is another medium that requires writers, and yet the approach to story telling in writing is unique and quite different as opposed to traditional storytelling via books. I propose an article that might entertain looking into the deeper facets of story and writing in the gaming industry and the unique approach that is taken in completing a script as opposed to traditional writing. Focus could be placed particularly on discussing the need for adaptability in characters, characterizing empathy and emotion within a character as we follow them while also playing as them, the duality of the protagonist and the gamer etc. which while coming naturally in traditional writing, have to be balanced against what is possible within the given game dynamics

  • Love the topic! May I suggest profiling Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery as part of the article? I'm an avid player and enjoy a lot of aspects of the game, including story. But I also find that the writing is somewhat lazy, and a lot of my fellow players complain that the story has dragged out way too long (because chapters aren't released every week, so there can be 2-3 weeks that you go without information and get a side quest instead). I think HM lends itself well to analysis. – Stephanie M. 4 days ago
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  • I mostly only play video games that have a story too it. I don't game much nowadays due to school, but I always like the first and second Bioshock games. Red dead redemption is good for this too. Just wanted to throw some games to consider. – AbeRamirez 1 day ago
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12

How Has Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Impacted The Video Game Industry?

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has become a huge public health topic that has affected many facets of human life this year. One of the entertainment industries most affected by the virus has been the video game industry, which is a global, interconnected industry. A variety of conferences (like E3 and GDC) have been cancelled or postponed, cancellations of major E-Sports events and even game delays (Virtuos Studios recently delayed the Switch Port of Outer Worlds) due to complications related to the virus. Other thoughts would be to explore how Coronavirus disease will impact the production release of Next Gen consoles that are currently on the horizon.

  • Great topic. If I were writing an essay on it, I don't think I'd be able to resist somehow bringing at least references to at least one video game about epidemics or infestations. – JamesBKelley 7 months ago
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  • Oh, so timely. Love it. I think it would also be interesting to see if there have been any other big events in recent history that have impacted the video game industry -- natural disasters, other crises, etc. I can't think of any off the top of my head, but it would be interesting to see if there's any point of comparison. Definitely want to read this! – Eden 7 months ago
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  • This would be a good topic to write about. – OkaNaimo0819 4 months ago
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  • In addition to the cancellations, I'm interested in hearing how playing games has changed in the face of COVID-19. Who's playing more, or less? Who's discovering new games? What do gaming audiences want now? Why? – Stephanie M. 2 months ago
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PS5 and Xbox Series X the last generation of physical console

With the upcoming release of Playstation and Xbox’s newest consoles many are curious will these be their last physical consoles. The world is shifting towards streaming technology over physical devices. Microsoft already offers accessibility options with the Play Anywhere service, which allows you to play your digital Xbox One games on Windows 10 and vice versa. Ubisoft co-founder Yves Guillemot, believes we will soon start streaming video games like we do TV, music and film. I’m interested in how the gaming industry’s advance towards streaming will affect gaming culture. Will our favourite gaming companies go the way of blockbuster when the video streaming giant Netflix emerged.

  • It will be interesting to see how much the PS5 Digital Edition Costs Vs. PS5 Version With A Disc Drive, which feels like a step towards a streaming future. If console makers make people pay for a disc drive there are many who will opt for the cheaper digital version, which could get consumers more comfortable with the idea of streaming consoles. Additionally, not everyone has reliable internet so I wonder how people in that situation will view physical media. – Sean Gadus 2 months ago
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  • This would make for an incredible article, one that would draw in gamers, and ultimately start a much needed discussion about the future of gaming. You are definitely onto something about Microsoft/Windows, as almost every gamer I know has moved to primarily buying or building their own gaming PCs! Most of my friends who have consoles only have them to play older games with the original system. Just as a small little edit, don't forget to swap out the period in the last sentence with a question mark.! Additionally, if possible, I think the article would be more universally applicable to gamers if it was more focused on "the end of physical consoles" with brief sections about PlayStation and Xbox. From there, the writer could then focus on what that might mean for gamers, in both positive and negative lights. (: – Abie Dee 2 months ago
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  • Has the potential for an article sporting plenty of foresight. For instance, it'd be interesting, for instance, to take a gander at the different approaches Microsoft and Sony took with regards to how they make their games accessible to audiences, with Sony still banking on exclusives that require consumers to go the traditional route of buying the specific console for the job, while Microsoft's more interested in making their titles accessible across sundry platforms (which could explain the general lack of hard Xbox Series X exclusives at the moment). – Michel Sabbagh 2 months ago
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5

Grappling Hooks are the Best Feature of any Video Game

Video games have been around for nearly fifty years now. Over the past few decades, trends have come and trends have gone within video game culture. When games started utilizing open worlds, many other games followed suit. When games decided that climbing mechanics were the next big hit, many games began to replicate this feature in their own way. But there is one game mechanic that no matter how much time passes or what stage in the video game zeitgeist we are in that remains, bar none, the best feature a video game can have. That’s right, we’re talking about grappling hooks.

There is just something so wholesome, so endlessly fun, and so rewarding about being able to traverse a wild terrain by slinging a grappling hook and getting the job done; perhaps there’s only one way to cross a wide ravine surrounded by waterfalls, maybe you need to gain the high ground on an enemy and lunge your katana into their torso from above, maybe you’re being chased by a horde of undead and a quick grappling hook to the rooftops if your best escape, or maybe you just want to see what happens when you grappling hook an enemy soldier and tether them onto a moving helicopter.

Explore the top games of the last fifteen to twenty years that featured grappling hooks and discuss the value of such a useful mechanic while also discussing other games, their mechanics, and how and why those mechanics are inferior (I.e. yellow markers to indicate climbable structures, active building mechanics, stealth mechanics, dual-wielding, etc.).

  • OkaNaimo0819, I see your point, but I can assure you that there is definitively enough material and that an article can be written highlighting the grappling hook above all other mechanics. I've gone ahead and added an edit to include your suggestion but perhaps reserve judgment for the final pending article before shooting it down because what you're suggesting is a different article all together. Which you can feel free to write because I'm not going to. – FarPlanet 3 months ago
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  • Uncharted 4 and The Tomb Raider remake both use grappling item. Also, would you count the hookshot from The Legend of Zelda series as a grappling item (Wind Waker also had a great grappling hook). – Sean Gadus 3 months ago
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  • A whole article about grappling hooks? That's why I love this magazine. :) – Stephanie M. 2 months ago
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7

Escapism and The Sims

Arguably, any type of entertainment offers some form of escapism (which is why we are often drawn to it). However, The Sims seems to present a unique situation.
I suggest an article that looks at the element of escapism with regard to The Sims. In that it is just simulating life, does it really offer a sense of escapism? This could present some discussion points like, the inclusion of supernatural beings, the lack of negative consequences for life decisions, the ability to play out an idealised life.
Do people play The Sims to create what they want/are missing in life? Is it just enjoyable to escape ones own life and control someone else’s? There is an entire niche of YouTube dedicated to The Sims gameplay, this could also present content for this article, in terms of how people play.
In the first player-voted pack for The Sims 4, a pack that allows players to do laundry won. Perhaps this article could offer suggestions as to why players are so enthralled in simulating the mundane, and to refer back to the key idea, is this a kind of escapism?

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    Enter the Gungeon Slaps so Hard

    Enter the Gungeon is a rogue-like video game (procedurally-generated dungeon crawl levels featuring unique gameplay and permanent death of the player) released more than four years ago. The game features four playable characters, with three additional characters that may be unlocked through completing in game objectives, each featuring their own unique weaponry and bonus items to help the player on their journey into the Gungeon: a bullet-hell dungeon where at the bottoms lies the gun that can kill the past.

    The title alone must sound silly. The explanation, perhaps even more so, but let me tell you: Enter the Gungeon slaps so hard. It’s unique gameplay, storyline, unlimited pop-culture references, and rewards for each Gungeon run(geon) that encourage players to come back again and again make this game endlessly replayable.

    In this article, delve deep into the gameplay, why the game is so relevant, highlight its pop-culture references, why the gameplay is so much fun, why its structure makes it the perfect game for long-form gamers or those that only have an hour at a time to enjoy, and all around why it deserves as much attention today as it did upon its release.

    • This sounds really interesting, but I think the article would need to be cautious that it is not too subjective. Rather than looking at why it is so fun, this could translate to a discussion of what elements of the game play are most enjoyed by those playing it. Then, WHY are those aspects of game play so popular? (I'm not familiar with the game so forgive my generalisations, but is it suspense, or mystery, or action, that players enjoy?) I think this would need some form of evidence to avoid coming across as just opinions, whether it be reviews or statistics to demonstrate popularity, etc. – leersens 3 months ago
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    • Leersens, Thanks for the advice. As this would be an article a bit close to my heart due to my (obvious) admiration for this particular game, I would be weary to make this a subjective glorying article about the game. The highlight of the article should be about what it is about the game that makes it so enjoyable and how it's in depth pop-culture connections keep it relevant to anyone playing it as well as people of any age. (No need to forgive as no offense was given. Perhaps the article would give inspiration to want to try the game out?) I would want this to be a review piece but also touch upon why after four years it's still (pardon the repeated terminology) slaps so hard. – FarPlanet 3 months ago
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    • I'm with leersens (and am glad to see leersens' comment was so well received). Evidence is super important. I've written a couple of essays on specific aspects of video games (such as avatar and gear design in Age of Conan) and used a lot of material from game discussion boards. It's definitely work to comb through discussion boards, for example, but it's also definitely worth it. I also used evidence within the game (what does the game show and not show, allow and not allow, etc.). Both types of evidence are useful. – JamesBKelley 3 weeks ago
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    Should indie game developers exhibit at E3?

    With the growing number of independent game developers, it is becoming more challenging for smaller studios to get recognized. One of the major ways to get fans is to attend and exhibit at gaming shows. Cost is the elephant in the room regarding these shows, and the cost for E3 is insane considering it being the largest expo for gaming in the world. However, investing in a trade show proves very beneficial when done right.

    Do you think indie developers should exhibit at E3?

    • I'm not sure if you have a diverse enough topic, as you've largely outlaid already the major pro and con. This is one of the times where I think going broad might be better and talking about what options indie developers have today, and weigh up the strengths and weaknesses of the different options. – SaraiMW 2 years ago
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    • I believe this topic with due consideration to SaraiMW’s note holds special significance in the current scenario. With WFH becoming the new norm, people not on the frontlines do have some more time on their hands than before. What new steps and out of the box solutions can indie game developers come up with that will become the next trend-setting game changer (pun intended) in the market? And If successful, what impact can it have on exhibitions like E3? Writers are encouraged to propose new ideas with in-depth analysis and not just copy-paste content from other sites. – Dr. Vishnu Unnithan 4 months ago
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    Analyze the Evolution of the DOOM Franchise

    The release of Bethesda Softworks’ DOOM Eternal this year marks another milestone in what has become almost three decades of video game history for the franchise. For 27 years, the franchise has been a pioneer in FPS multiplayer games, and their fan base has witnessed an ongoing evolution of characters, graphics, and narratives. But this begs the question, why has a game that began as shareware endured with such longevity, outliving other games from the ’90s? So, analyze this evolution of the DOOM franchise, from the original DOOM (1993) to the recent 2020 release. Look specifically at the graphics, gameplay mechanics, lore, and storytelling. Question what exactly makes the franchise so popular, and what has maintained this popularity through the decades. Although the franchise includes films, comics, novels, and more, this article would seek to analyze the video games specifically.

    • Definitely a topic worth tackling, especially with the parameters you set (i.e. games only; focus on its presentation, mechanics, and how those influenced the medium; etc.). One way you could add more flair to the topic is by blending your analysis with the human elements that impacted the games' origins and development cycles. Masters of Doom's a great book you could check out to get an idea of the tone and narrative flow you could inject into your topic. – Michel Sabbagh 2 months ago
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