multiplayer and the machine

The standard for fun multiplayer games was set long before anything digital existed.  Playing cards around a table, shooting pool at a bar, or enjoying a board game night with friends are social activities that effectively use multiplayer design in games, while avoiding screens.  However, in a world that is increasingly online, especially for games, it seems…

a rhapsody for disneyquest

There is a nondescript blue block of a building in a corner of the newly-reimagined Disney Springs at Walt Disney World Resort. This unremarkable structure contains five floors of arcade games, virtual reality experiences and interactive exhibits. The place is stocked with free-to-play arcade games, along with Disney nods like the “Wreck It Ralph/Fix-it Felix”…

death and victory on the oregon trail

Unlike most of my friends my age, I never played The Oregon Trail when I was a kid. My first exposure to it was a few weeks ago, in card game format, and I was excited to see what all the fuss was about this so-called classic. Six of us played, and only two of…

switching up the controls, from atari to nintendo switch

I sat down with a self-professed “retro gamer” one rainy evening, and we played Pac-Man and Frogger on an Atari connected to an old TV. The difference was that this Atari was set up a little differently, connected to aluminum foil wrapped around a brick in a makeshift d-pad and around a tennis ball for the…

1,001 levels of candy crush

I reached level 1,001 of Candy Crush this weekend. At this point, you stare at me incredulously, without even trying to conceal your ridicule, and ask the burning question, “Why?” You’re not the first person to ask this question. When people find out that I play Candy Crush, I get a mixture of mockery and…

we are addicted to progress

On a car ride in the passenger seat, my friend handed me his phone and asked me to help him hatch some chickens while he was driving. He was talking about Egg, Inc., this game where you tap a red button repeatedly to hatch more chickens, which gets you more money, which buys you more…