Could we agree to call Bioware "EA" now?
To avoid confusion for future historians.
@studnoth1n: it wasn't clear to me neither why I felt the desire to jump on this in the first place. But now I remember, why I reacted almost allergic. It's the old art debate, repeated in literary criticism & lit theory in the 1960s and 1970s (French Structuralism, French Deconstruction (mostly Derrida) turned into American "gender studies" before it was even called that). I've read too many of these.
In Art History, all the way to the Italian Renaissance, the artist was seen as not important. He (maybe there were she's we don't know of today, aside from a few names) had a 'gift', a talent, given by the Gods or God. The Gods "spoke" through him, so to speak, in his work. The work was "divine". Individualism really only started with the painters in Tuscany alongside the greater movement during these turbulent times in Italy.
Same goes for writing. Jean Jacques Rousseau. His "Confessions" can be seen as the most prominent work in this line. It was not the first autobiography, but it sold itself as the revealing, intimate work, putting his own biography in the center of a book.
I remember all the endless debates and discussions in academic papers about the philosophical constructs and how the authors always 'shined' through. How the work was spoiled, just like Derrida deconstructed Tristes Tropiques in his La Différance. Basically: the author is always 'present' in the work. The work is never 'pure' of it's creator.
Yet, not everybody likes Rousseau, or Philip Roth, or Taylor Swift.
I am on the Nabokov side of life. I find it vulgar. Tasteless. The indiscretion of telling your personal story in public, in full consciousness that it is used to sell units. The next step is some kid saying soon: "my mom died of cancer, so I made this video game, I donno. Please like my PayPal button..." - am I the cynical one here? The personal story is in the way of the work. People use it for attention hacking. It becomes a sales pitch. A bullet point, tailored for emotional response. Just like advertisers - aside from the Sony Blog (he wrote his own blog article, so what? It's NOT advertisment anymore??) - use cute babies & dogs to sell you stuff on TV. Honesty, disclosure, becomes the Mother Theresa of marketing weapons, if you cannot score with, let's say, really innovative gameplay.
It comes down to personal taste - something the debates from the late 1960s to even the mid and late 1980s wouldn't agree with. It is also a part of cultural differences. Talking about yourself in public. Seeking attention for your work through your personal pains - I find it frankly disgusting. "Listen to this band, man. They sound like crap, but they lost their bassist, who OD'd, so they're like cool." Too many stories like this.
So, in the end, I felt the desire to defend "the work" vs "the author" concept - although it was not even clear to me, early on. Again, a very old debate - fought more eloquently in your native language by PhD's of all nature, in many articles, papers and books.
@Doomshine: exactly! You should give a rat's ass about what I say or think about a game (especially, since we don't know each other in person!).
What many don't realize - there is this 'meta-game' going on in recent 'video game journalism' ... and to some degree in the video game dev community: the authorship of video games. Since the indies became so popular and Minecraft's @Notch turned in to a megastar, certain people in the media love to push "the-man-behind-the-game" type of newspaper style writing.
That's fine, as long as it is true. But "one-man-one-game" scenarios are just a sign of the digital Boheme ignoring people who work in this business for 20-30 or more years in the shadows. Why don't THEY get an article written about them? No documentaries about them, neither.
How many personal dramas do you guys think happen every day in game development? Game designers losing their spouse to cancer, their child in a car accident - while they are in crunch time? Or leaving their fiancé & family to work in a foreign country for a video game company, just to escape the poverty they grew up in? Working class heroes are not interesting enough for you? Or how about an article about the sweatshops in Hongkong, Macao, etc ... where people work crunch time ALL the time for a fraction of the money EA slaves get, doing the most hidious, repetitive work you can think of? I was annoyed to see an "old story" - that's all. Why not dig for a real - may I say - original piece of work? (I'm going to stop now - sorry for spamming the comments, everyone. But I'm always up for real discussions).
@Rahf: it is mentioned in the game. Loading screen. Also the creator repeatedly said it. But I was polemic. Why NOT a story about Brad Muir?!
@MordeaniisChaos: @phantomzxro: etc, ... my argument is this: the biography stands in the way of the game.
The game should - ironically, just like a son - stand on it's own feet?
Independent from it's father/creator. Indendent from Sony PR or 'video game' journalists jumping on that part of the background they heard of, because the Official Sony Blog talked about it publicly (first) in freaking June 2011. (That's the main reason, why I felt the itch to shit on this. Because I am getting fed with this 'story' for so long - again and again) The biography is in the way of the game and becomes an excuse for a 'bad' game. Suddenly everyone is all teared up and emotional & everyone else saying 'meh' to the game is a bad, heartless person - or a sociopath ... or is accused of having a "troubled life", like @Xeirus: suggested. You should keep the personal from the professional. The game website "The Escapist" has its name for a reason.
"Reading" your OWN meaning into the games is part of the fun of playing videogames? If you get the 'official' version by the author, the authorship - like a dictator, like dominant figure, you might say, like an alcoholic abusive father - stands in the way of your (players/consumers/Sony-customers) own imagination, you cannot enjoy the work for what it is. In literary theory this is called "close reading". It kills your own independent thinking/imagination. You get every aspect of the work chewed for you before you get to eat it.
I am getting annoyed with this overhyped 'autobiographical' game bullshit. The game is mediocre. Mechanically meh. Technically rather on the lower mid-end.
Nobody writes about how Trenched/Iron Brigade is one man's vision about 'Love'.
Just because Sony's PR was clever enough to sell this game on this premise, you media clowns all jumped on it, because you like writing about 'deeper meanings' in games. But it's nothing you should emphasize. I don't think James Joyce's novels are any better because I know the mans biography or that he liked his coffee with milk but no sugar.
Demon Souls could be equally about the Emanation of Souls as written by Thomas Aquinas in his Summa Theologica. Or Borderlands could equally be a game about deconstructivism - it's all in the eye of the beholder?
 And "be hold" you should. Every piece of art comes from one way or another of suffering. So what? Even if it's only the crunch time EA slaves have to go through. Nobody writes about the tears of the EA wives (anymore) ... for a reason?
I'm still not convinced to go premium again after the Whiskey Media split.
I used to not care about "premium content". It was all about 'support the Duders'. But now, with CBS as their employer, there is no reason for me to back them up. My money goes to buying more games instead.
... premium content suddenly matters. That is, if somebody wants to buy a subscription. For me, nothing of the premium content is interesting enough. I don't use Roku, I can live without Dave (and Dave's sister - that was cheap, exposing her to premium members, btw) - I miss the Flight Club, but don't care anymore when I see the "Live Premium" button. I click on something else. Another website.
The new/old GB dilemma is: if you want to have 'new' people (=more "unique visitors") checking the site, you must be inviting ( = content for everyone). If you want to nurture a limited number of people (how many 1000s are there now? less and less?), you have to give them something matching some sort of 'value'.
It's a tough balance, for sure.
Use your keyboard!
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