infovore + breakout   2

David Sudnow: Pilgrim in the Microworld | The Gameshelf
"He spends a chapter meditating on the nature of practice and mastery, both in general and in its application to Breakout. Eventually, and after much frustration, he concludes that Breakout doesn’t want to be played that way. Instead, he embraces what he calls the game’s “lucratively programmed caring,” the way its few but distinct design elements work together to guide the player into getting incrementally better at it, revealing more about its inner workings, bit by bit — but only for those who fulfill their end of its contract, who agree to approach the game on its own terms. Treating it like a piano exercise, it turns out, doesn’t work." I'm reading Pilgrim at the moment, and it's an incredible book for all manner of reasons. This lovely piece is something to return to when I finish it.
davidsudnow  games  breakout  writing 
august 2011 by infovore
Grand Text Auto » The Tell-Tale Brick
"This is not a book about the VCS, nor breakout, nor video games and video game culture; it is a chronicle of the experience of that entity we might call “the player.” Oddly, there is little I can take from it in terms of approaches to video gaming or thoughts on the VCS Breakout. But it did enlarge my perspective and help me think about physiological, cognitive, and, let us say, monomaniacal aspects of video game play. Nervous, very dreadfully nervous Sudnow has been, but why would I say that he is mad?" Sudnow passed away very recently; I really ought to read his book, more than ever.
games  writing  criticism  books  arcade  davidsurnow  ethnography  breakout 
february 2009 by infovore

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