Game related articles, write-ups, blog posts, etc. that people should read

I just read a cohost post from past guest of the insert credit show Laura Michet and I wanted to share it. I love stories of people like this who are really dedicated in making niche user generated content in video games.

[So there's a person who uses Planet Coaster to make "movie coasters" containing the entire plot of classic movies]( https://cohost.org/lmichet/post/1181434-so-there-s-a-person )

Thought about putting it on the show me anything but I instead decided to create this thread.
There wasn't a thread to share writing about video games that isn't related to anything on any thread so this is now the thread for that.

Share articles or whatever form of written stuff about video games that you want people here to read.

I‘ve been stockpiling and curating a collection of these so I guess now’s as good a time as any to unleash some of my favorites:


___

**Websites**: ---

[Emilie M. Reed's website](https://emreed.net/writing)
Emilie's writing is often personal and focused on the artistic value of video games, always extracting meaning by thoroughly exploring any given work and her personal experience with it. Emilie's work has been featured across many publications, and she has generously catalogued all of her involvements on her personal website. For the purposes of this thread, her game writing comprises the bulk of her output, though her fiction and miscellaneous blog posts are also included here and are just as worth reading.

[InvisibleUp's website](https://invisibleup.com/articles/)
Viz's writing on this website is more around the culture of the internet (and, by association, video games) as opposed to the more typical video game reviews or editorials I'm linking here. Her fascination with user experiences and technical functions is a unique and valuable perspective that I'm shocked we don't see more frequently.

[Ephemeral Enigmas](https://ephemeralenigmascom.wordpress.com/)
This is a wordpress account dedicated to exploring quieter, stranger games that don't often get looked at critically. Their writing is less personal than Emilie's and more focused on history and mechanics, but is similarly insightful by treating every game with the same level of respect and consideration regardless of any preconceived notions of value or significance.

[The Rise and Fall of Final Fantasy](https://socksmakepeoplesexy.net/index.php?a=patff)
Fueled by a burning dissatisfaction with how Square Enix treats its own history, Pitchfork has taken it upon themselves to document the true, meaningful history of the entire _Final Fantasy_ franchise. Each game up to _Final Fantasy XIII_ has been meticulously picked through to pull out as much historical and mechanical value as is possible for a single hyper-dedicated superfan, all presented in a charmingly casual and personable writing style.

[canon fire: an alternative history for games](https://canonfire.net/)
Similar to Ephemeral Enigmas, canon fire is interested in sharing lesser-known stories and perspectives from gaming culture. While canon fire does often dabble in the odd game review like Ephemeral Enigma, the heart lies more with its interest in the people behind the games – developers and players alike.

[Alec Robbins' website](https://alec.land/gamewriting/)
Alec is not primarily a journalist or critic and comes forward immediately to say so. This website is to help him develop stronger critical faculties, but personally this is exactly what I find valuable about his perspective. Alec is someone who has lived a different kind of life and found a different form of success from many other game critics, which grants him a unique angle to approach games analysis from.


___

Articles ---

[The Royal Road - The Japanese "Hit-Making" Chord Progression](https://joshuataipale.gumroad.com/l/royal-road-guide)
A phenomenal 27-page dissertation on a four-chord progression found constantly across countless video games. This one's for the musicians who are more theoretically minded, and frankly the $5 entry fee is a steal for the sheer depth of understanding and extrapolation offered. A must-read for anyone with a background in music theory who is interested in video game music composition.

[Extrinsic Motivators in Game Design](https://cohost.org/pangburn/post/1115713-extrinsic-motivators)
A shockingly dense exploration on the structure of games and the nature of player involvement. I'd especially be interested to see what other game devs think of this piece.

[adaptive writing and the apotheosister](https://cohost.org/ItsMeLilyV/post/1272589-adaptive-writing-and)
This is a short and sweet little peek behind [BOSSGAME](https://lilyv.itch.io/bossgame). I have not played the game myself, but Lily offers some interesting insight regarding the necessary flexibility of narrative concepts throughout the development of a game, especially when working with collaborators.

Melos Han-Tani wrote about some of the reaction to the trailer for Angeline Era and I thought it was interesting:

https://melodicambient.substack.com/p/screaming-in-the-applebees-on-negativity

I guess gamasutra became game developer, and nothing redirects so you have to find stuff by searching for it

https://www.gamedeveloper.com/audio/a-maze-of-murderscapes-metroid-ii

https://forums.insertcredit.com/d/389-a-maze-of-murderscapes-by-sr-holiwell-favorite-review-of-a-video-game

CritPoints

Blog focused mostly on mechanics based analysis and fighting games. I know it‘s a loaded word, but maybe I’d call it “objective”? It‘s just that it’s rarer than it should be to see people going beyond simply describing a mechanic and saying that it‘s good or bad, and that’s why I appreciate Celia's work. Matthewmatosis is a good comparison.

[that's not fun](https://thatsnot.fun/)
Recommendations/reviews of obscure games by Bennet Foddy. They actually are fun.

@“穴”#p108843 I have no idea why, but I expected the coaster movies to be feature length lmao which might have literally been dangerous to the riders' health.

Great article about ‘trauma games’ by Natalie Lawhead

https://www.gamedeveloper.com/blogs/real-talk-games-about-trauma-art-caught-between-everything-is-horrible-everything-is-survivable-and-this-is-too-hard-to-talk-about-

Wrote up an analysis of L.O.L.: Lack of Love‘s opening music. I tried to write it in a way so anyone unfamiliar with music theory jargon would still be able to properly enjoy and appreciate it, beyond just following along. There’s a couple threads this could be posted in but figured it made the most sense here.

https://cohost.org/funbil/post/2996259-the-best-piece-of-vi

Jenn Frank is back after 8 years

https://www.pastemagazine.com/games/alan-wake-ii/the-audacity-of-alan-wake-ii

I may not have played any of the Pathologic games, but I've gotten a lot out of this article on the first one.

Liz Ryerson just published a novella length blog post!

http://ellaguro.blogspot.com/2024/03/lets-play-life.html

Just saw a really cool thread by bowloflentils about Paranormasight's main guy Takanari Ishiyama

I transcribed it for archival purposes and for people who don't want to click on a twitter link.

>

Square Enix‘s Paranormasight may just seem like another random release by the Final Fantasy company but the title actually marks the return of a veteran to the ADV genre named Takanari Ishiyama. His career is totally unknown in the West so I thought I’d make a thread about him.

[URL=https://i.imgur.com/7BIR28g.jpeg][IMG width=300]https://i.imgur.com/7BIR28g.jpeg[/IMG][/URL]

>

Ishiyama began his career at Konami in the 90s as a sound designer, working on series like MGS and Tokimeki. He eventually joined a company called Genki in the 2000s where he worked on dozens of games for Japanese mobile phones, many of which have now been lost to history.

[URL=https://i.imgur.com/Tbj5cui.jpeg][IMG width=200]https://i.imgur.com/Tbj5cui.jpeg[/IMG][/URL]
[URL=https://i.imgur.com/M671oZL.jpeg][IMG width=300 ]https://i.imgur.com/M671oZL.jpeg[/IMG][/URL]

>

Early 2000s mobile games are an often ignored segment of Japan’s game history but this is where Ishiyama shined, spearheading all kinds of different experiences from RPGs like Eternal Labyrinth to even writing scenarios for a series of novel games called Movie Adventure.

[URL=https://i.imgur.com/oHKfI8V.jpeg][IMG width=300]https://i.imgur.com/oHKfI8V.jpeg[/IMG][/URL]

[URL=https://i.imgur.com/AZJG766.jpeg][IMG width=300]https://i.imgur.com/AZJG766.jpeg[/IMG][/URL]

>

Ishiyama was a fan of ADVs on the Famicom such as Portopia. However, due to the rise of novel games, traditional ADVs had fallen out of style for a few years. Inspired by his love for the genre, and perhaps the recent success of Ace Attorney, Ishiyama made his own ADV in 2002.

[URL=https://i.imgur.com/EuaH7kS.jpeg][IMG width=300]https://i.imgur.com/EuaH7kS.jpeg[/IMG][/URL]

>

The title would spawn the Detective Ryosuke Kibukawa series which stars a video game writer, a stand-in for Ishiyama himself, that ends up helping a detective and his assistant solve various cases. These range from the death of a game developer to the murder of a cult leader.

https://youtu.be/S_V80NBfa98

>

Ishiyama thought the first game would only appeal to older men nostalgic for Famicom ADVs like himself, but was surprised when the series began gaining popularity among many different kinds of players (particularly women in their teens and twenties).

>

Over time, the series spawned 10 installments that were planned, written, and composed by Ishiyama. He even produced a DS entry in the series. Later Ishiyama joined Square Enix in 2005 where he helped create FFXII: Revenant Wings, Blood of Bahamut, and Schoolgirl Strikers.

[URL=https://i.imgur.com/M6EOZAZ.jpeg][IMG width=300]https://i.imgur.com/M6EOZAZ.jpeg[/IMG][/URL]
[URL=https://i.imgur.com/YVEVPtV.png][IMG width=300]https://i.imgur.com/YVEVPtV.png[/IMG][/URL]
[URL=https://i.imgur.com/5xQMToO.jpeg][IMG width=300]https://i.imgur.com/5xQMToO.jpeg[/IMG][/URL]

>

Genki continued the Kibukawa series until 2012, but the first 10 titles created by Ishiyama remained the most beloved. In fact, decades later, G-Mode began re-releasing old mobile games for the Switch and Ishiyama’s ADVs were some of the most highly requested games to be ported.

[URL=https://i.imgur.com/8B9mKxZ.jpeg][IMG width=300]https://i.imgur.com/8B9mKxZ.jpeg[/IMG][/URL]

>

This led to G-Mode re-releasing the first 10 entries in the Kibukawa series for the Switch in 2021 which caused a resurgence in interest for Ishiyama's ADV work. I can’t say for sure, but this is what perhaps led to Ishiyama returning to the genre to create Paranormasight.

[URL=https://i.imgur.com/J99fB05.jpeg][IMG width=300]https://i.imgur.com/J99fB05.jpeg[/IMG][/URL]

>

So while Paranormasight may just seem like yet another smaller release by SE, it actually has a surprising legacy behind it. If you want to learn more, here’s a lengthy interview with Ishiyama from 2022: https://www.gamer.ne.jp/news/202207150007/

On a side note it was cool to see the original thread had a reply by [Britta Food4Dogs](https://www.youtube.com/@Food4Dogs). I want to be like her when i'm old lol

this write-up is how I found out they recently basically gutted Destructoid, removing the community blogs section and turning the front page into a faceless content farm the same way they are doing with every other website. I hadn’t read it in years but I used to check it daily many moons ago. you’d think at least there would be an archive, but no, 15-20 years of community-created stuff just disappeared into thin air. looks like whatever was left of games journalism is quickly crumbling.

1 Like