Dying Light: Zombies, and Parkour, and Heart Attacks! Oh, My!

Games and Media, Journalism, Portfolio

The nighttime demo of Techland’s Dying Light proves that it is still possible to create an entertaining and exhilarating zombie game.

Zombie. Video game. Been there decapitated that. It is a given that zombies are overdone in the entertainment industry. Occasionally games like Telltale’s the Walking Dead or Naughty Dog’s the Last of US break the mold and reinvigorate the genre, but more often than not the industry has a tendency to regurgitate the same general formula.

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Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag Shines at PAX Prime

Games and Media, Journalism, Portfolio

From massive sharks, epic ship battles, and rich environments, Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag is proving to be the game that can revitalize the whole AC series… and then some.

I will be the first to admit that I was apprehensive when I sat down to play the demo for Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag at this year’s PAX Prime. As a long time fan of the series I had a slight sense of nepotism going into Assassin’s Creed III, a game that, in the end, left me with much to be desired. ACIII promised to be different; it paraded its distinctive theme set in the Revolutionary War, a profound historical event not often explored in the world of gaming. While traversing the open world of 18th century America was indeed a novelty in the series, the overall gameplay was not as fresh, featuring much of the same combat and tactics found within its four predecessors. Repetition was becoming a reoccurring problem within the series. At this point it was not a narrative makeover Assassin’s Creed needed to revitalize itself… it was gameplay.

What Video Games Can Really Teach Us: Active and Critical Learning in Gaming

Games and Media, Journalism, Portfolio

As a person who has been in the “ivory tower” of academia for quite a bit of time, I can say first hand just how traditional it is in its values. One would think that education would attempt to take advantage of technological advances — yet when I teach my composition courses (that focus on digital literacy, mind you) I often times find myself in a classroom with nothing more than a chalk board; in terms of digital literacy, this can prove to be very limiting to what we can do. Sometimes the graduate teaching assistants and professors at our university get to branch out the curriculum, leading into activities like analyzing YouTube videos, music, and pop-culture.

Catching my Breath: E3 “Hangovers,” Highlights and PAX on the Horizon

Thoughts

Holy moly. I haven’t done a personal update in forever. E3 was well over a month ago and I am finally starting to feel like I am caught up.

Or I thought I was. One of the largest things I learned from E3 this year is that when everything is said and done, it’s not really said and done.

Hands-on with the Elder Scrolls Online and Interview with Creative Director Paul Sage

Games and Media, Journalism, Portfolio, Uncategorized

Katy Goodman dances in the streets of Daggerfall, participates in a Harvest Festival gone wrong, tanks some evil bugs, and chats with creative director Paul Sage—all with her partner in crime, Robyn Miller.

**Note: Happy Sunday everyone! There may be a slight delay in my up-and-coming E3 articles, as I am currently on vacation with family; as much as I love writing, a glass of wine and the beach are calling my name. So for now, here is my quick write-up from Save Game about our hands-on time with the Elder Scrolls Online. Robyn previously wrote an article on our experience that was hosted on TESO’s official Facebook page, so be sure to check that out as well! It is fantastic and truly captures the detail of the world we explored.

WildStar: Bringing Individuality Back to the MMO (Hands-On at E3)

Games and Media, Journalism, Portfolio

WildStar, Carbine Studios up-and-coming MMORPG was at E3 this year, and it brought with it all of its mirthful and often hilarious personality. At the expo, we were lucky enough to get some hands-on time with the game and chat with Tiffany Chu, social systems director and tutorial creator from Carbine Studios.

‘Beyond: Two Souls’ How Narrative Design Can Make a Game an Experience

Games and Media, Journalism, Portfolio

In 2010, Quantic Dream and Sony Computer Entertainment reinvented video game narrative style with their critically acclaimed title Heavy Rain, a game that tugged at the heart strings of the millions that played it. Emotionally engaging and at times uncomfortably heart wrenching, Heavy Rain, written and directed by master story-teller David Cage, gave the world affirmation that video games have the capability to tell artful, intricate, and morally complex stories with a cinematic scope. Quantic Dream’s up and coming title Beyond: Two Souls, promises to do the exact same.

The Witcher 3: Wildhunt–E3 Demo and Interview with Designer Jonas Mattsson

Games and Media, Journalism, Portfolio

 The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, one of E3’s most anticipated titles, is the final installment of CD Projekt Red’s award-winning The Witcher RPG series. The first two games are renowned for their gripping storytelling, and this appears to remain true for their successor.
“The most important part of The Witcher 3 is the story,” says CD Projekt Red’s environmental designer, Jonas Mattsson, as we sit in a dark room awaiting the 45 minute long hands-off game play demo. “We are creating a branching storyline that gives true consequences to decisions.”