Planned Obsolescence Will Probably Save Hearthstone
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 4 February 2016, 2:16 am
This week, Blizzard announced a new mode of play in Hearthstone called ‘Standard’ play.  In this mode, you can only play with the most recent set of cards.  If you want to play with every card you’ve ever collected, you can play in Wild mode.  But it’s almost certain that Wild mode will get less […]

RooshV Puts Me In the Uncomfortable Position of Agreeing With Greg Abbott
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 4 February 2016, 1:35 am
RooshV is a disgusting, sad sack of shit as a human being.  The founder of Return of Kings, almost inarguably one of the most despicable websites in the ‘manosphere‘.  Return of Kings is most notable for being so despicable that they reject the Mens Rights Activist label as not being despicably misogynistic enough.  They’re also the […]

PCs are Still the Most Successful Platform
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 27 January 2016, 5:08 pm
Maybe the MMO isn’t quite dead yet.

Seriously, Are We Still Talking About Sad and Rabid Puppies?
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 26 January 2016, 12:15 am
Allum Bokhari of Breitbart claims that bookstores are purging their shelves of politically incorrect authors. Allum Bokhari is full of shit. Just like most Breitbart so-called journalists.

Criticism is Exactly What Freedom of Speech Was Meant to Protect
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 25 January 2016, 1:23 am
A reader of ZenOfDesign sent me this thread that he started on NeoGAF near the turn of the year.  I’ve found it an interesting topic to talk about, but haven’t had time to discuss it in detail. I am very interested in creative processes and complex discussions around the creative freedom of artists as balanced […]

Donald Trump Wins Endorsement from Bus Aficionado and Inethical Journalist
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 21 January 2016, 12:49 pm
It’s so amusing when my two favorite train wrecks – GamerGate and the Republican Primary – manage to find a way to collide.  This week, Donald Trump earned a key endorsement.  Not, Sarah Palin –although that one is comedy gold.  This one: That’s right, Mark Kern – a former game developer turned GamerGate zealot with a […]

On the Matter of the Blue Checkmark
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 15 January 2016, 12:19 am
If you don’t know who Milo Yiannopoulos is, you should consider yourself lucky.  I admit, I was initially fooled by his cool, cultured accent when he interviewed me for his Podcast in the early days of the debacle that would be GamerGate.  In truth, he is the Liberace of Manufactured Outrage, a bullshit merchant of the highest […]

No, Gamers Are Not The New Religious Right
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 15 January 2016, 12:27 am
Dear Jef Rouner, Yes, there are some real shitty people in the games playing audience.  I’ve been writing about them for the past two years in particular, and beyond.  I’ve been policing them in the games I built (MMOs) for even longer. They are not the norm, as your article would suggest.  They are aberrations […]

Dungeon Boss Update
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 8 January 2016, 12:49 pm
The game that I’ve been working on, Dungeon Boss, has been doing quite well.  Shortly before Christmas, we added Guilds & the Tower of Pwnage to the game. Yes, I named the Tower.  These features have been getting solid reviews, and the game has been performing quite tidily. IGN recently did a Let’s Play of […]

“When I was nine years old Star Trek came on. I looked at it and I went screaming through the house, ‘Come here, mum, everybody, come quick, come quick, there’s a black lady on television and she ain’t no maid!’ I knew right then and there I could be anything I wanted to be.” – […]

A Follow Up, and a Note About Anonymity
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 6 November 2015, 6:43 pm
About a month ago, I wrote an article about harassment where I noted as almost a throwaway comment, that harassment has been aimed at people on both sides of the Hashtag That Shall Not Be Named. It included a link to a GamerGate girl who claimed that she had been framed by someone for sending […]

Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 28 October 2015, 2:12 pm
SXSW isn’t supposed to be a tech conference, dammit.  From its inception, it was always meant to be a music festival, dammit, and it’s a good one.  But in recent years, it’s expanded its coverage to include movies and technology.  Being the biggest con in town, SXSW frequently gets a ton of local coverage, but […]

Mad Max: It’s All About the Thunderpoon
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 3 October 2015, 12:14 am
It is the near future.  The world has been ravaged by drought and disease, leaving the human race a broken, fragile thing.  Bands of survivors are forced to abandon their lives of luxury and ease, and fight to subsist in a land of famine, violence and constant feudal warfare.  And yet, their worst fear is […]

The Ongoing Star Citizen Silliness
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 2 October 2015, 1:44 am
Derek Smart vs. Chris Roberts.  Who will win?  I’m guessing popcorn salesmen. I recently wrote about Derek Smart’s ongoing crusade against Star Citizen, You may remember, for example, this piece, where Derek Smart asks politely for Chris Roberts and his wife to resign the company. Give backers the opportunity to hire an independent forensics accountant, […]

Games Are Not Movies, And Shouldn’t Try To Be
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 29 September 2015, 2:33 pm
Yesterday, Polygon printed a book exerpt by Phil Owen that made what I consider to be the ultimate rookie mistake in the ‘are games art?’ discussion.  They suggested that game designers and developers are failing at art because games do not do some things as well, such as storytelling, as the movies.  While this is, in […]

Speaking Up About Harassment
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 24 September 2015, 12:09 pm
I started writing on this blog again largely because of the issue of online harassment in games.  My experience working in MMOs has long convinced me that online harassment in games is off the rails, and is a serious issue that is preventing the market from growing.  This is not a theory for me.  When […]

Reviewing the Review of the Reviews of Mad Max
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 21 September 2015, 5:32 pm
Today, Total Biscuit released a video titled ‘I will now talk about negative Mad Max reviews for just over 40 minutes‘, and whatever the hell else you can say about it, it is an accurate assessment of what he has to say.  It is also quite silly (although to be fair, I agree with much […]

The Sarkeesian Effect is Out!
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 16 September 2015, 2:12 am
You remember Skullboy and the Bathtub Philosopher, right?  If you don’t, then this video might offer a useful refresher.  “If Ayn Rand Shrugs any harder, he’ll fall off his dad’s fucking couch.” Yes, the white supremacist MRA douchebags who hate Anita so much that they decided to invite Jack Thompson to talk about how Anita […]

The Terrifying, Pathetic Case of Joshua Goldberg
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 13 September 2015, 4:21 pm
On Friday, a hardcore GamerGate supporter named Joshua Goldberg finally crossed over the line between shitposting and real action, getting arrested by the FBI.  Critics of GamerGate may be quick to point out that this seemed inevitable, and not a real surprise.  However, very little about Goldberg’s case does not result in the raising of […]

Dungeon Boss
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 7 September 2015, 3:06 pm
Last Tuesday, I launched a game.  It’s doing quite well. Boss Fight Entertainment released Dungeon Boss in a worldwide release on Tuesday in partnership with our publisher, Big Fish Games.  This marks my first foray into mobile gaming, and indeed my first serious work on a published title that was not an MMO of some […]

Tournament of Douchebaggery
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 31 August 2015, 2:27 pm
This weekend, gaming sleuths who care about such things discovered that DriveThruRPG, one of the largest sites for downloadable PDFs for RPGs, was selling a game called Tournament of Rapists. The Tournament of Rapists details the sadistic Rape Pure Flight circuit, expanding on what you’ve seen already and introducing dangerous new sexual predators. This sadistic bloodsport […]

Ice-T is Pro-Gamer. GamerGate Is Not.
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 29 August 2015, 4:56 pm
In what can only be described as one of the more hilarious events of GamerGate, Ice-T was Sea Lioned by GamerGaters last week. The summary of the whole event is quite hilarious, but without a doubt, this would be my favorite part. Eat A Dick…. What did that do to YOUR gamer cred.. Lol […]

SPJ Airplay
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 28 August 2015, 2:58 am
I’ve been trying to cool down on GamerGate writings.  I actually made a pact to myself to not use the word in a blog article through July, a promise made more manageable by work turning into super happy fun fun imminent shipping insanity at work.  My first recent mention of it was in the Sad Puppies article, largely because […]

Hugo Voters Reject Sad, Rabid Puppies
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 August 2015, 5:34 pm
It’s not every day that you wake up to find that the asshole brigade on the internet has been utterly humiliated beyond all expectations, but that appears to be what we have today.  Last night, the voters of the Hugo Awards utterly rejected the attempts by a conservative reactionary mob led by one of the […]

A Retrospective on the SWG New Game Experience
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 23 August 2015, 4:00 pm
Raph Koster pointed me to an article of one of the most infamous moments history in MMOdom – the moment where Sony Online Entertainment decided to entirely redo the entire game, cutting entire character classes, and replacing the core combat mechanic with ‘clicky combat’.  This event was known as the New Game Experience, commonly referred […]

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