It’s Friday. There’s a new Jurassic Park. Before you hit the theaters and spend way too much on popcorn (why does a small cost $6?!), enjoy our weekly roundup of the best games writing.

Hey, You Should Read This

The demise of cheat codes continues to make me sad. Instead, publishers slowly removed them from video games, and managed to monetize cheats through downloadable content. One of my favorite pastimes used to be turning on invincibility and all weapons in Grand Theft Auto 3, and seeing how much destruction I could unleash. But Max Battcher makes a more telling point, in which he argues games should be equal opportunity when it comes to player preference. If you’re allowed to skip a game’s cutscenes, why can’t you skip the combat, too? Interesting idea.

“I also get the argument that ludogically it follows that “tough moments” in a story might best be served with “tough combats” that reflect such. I think the issue here is that the game can be tough without beating me over the head with how tough it is. It’s that point where stress/anxiety meets frustration and becomes ragequit that I’m particularly looking to mitigate. There’s certainly room for a game to maybe not make it easy to skip a combat, but after you’ve spent thirty minutes on this, wiped five times, and shouted a half-dozen obscenities at the console’s microphone maybe your game could consider that you’ve gotten the point across?

[...]

I still recall with great fondness how apolegetic the Full Throttle manual was that not everyone might like it’s few action sequences/combat scenes and it handily provided a shortcut key to bypass a scene as if you had won the action.”

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Oh, And This Other Stuff

  • Mike Williams weighed in on the ongoing conversation about race and The Witcher 3.
  • Austin Walker explained how criticism doesn’t mean you’re demanding games change.
  • Annie Zaleski found out why we all suck so hard at crane machines: they’re rigged.
  • Richard Cobbett wrote a eulogy for World of Warcraft-style MMOs.
  • Kevin Schut praised Splatoon’s cheery aesthetic in an industry full of grim darkness.
  • Felipe Pepe looked beyond P.T. to analyze what other parts of game history we’re losing.
  • Ashley Barry celebrated the silence of games like Journey and Shadow of the Colossus.

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You can reach the author of this post at patrick.klepek@kotaku.com or on Twitter at @patrickklepek.