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April 14th

…depict the faction in the story representing racism as unequivocally evil. Cartoonishly evil actually. This pretends like racism is some sort of thing mentally deranged people do, something sociopaths and psychopaths are drawn to or something you become when you are indoctrinated into some sort of cult.

While this of course serves to condemn racism as a concept, it mainly serves as a way out of dealing with your own internalized racism and serves as a way to absolve yourself by comparison. It also serves – and that is actually the truly ugly effect of that treatment – to…

Bioshock: Infinite

…but praised the game’s treatment of Booker & Comstock as competing versions of the American ideal. On the same day, Tom Bramwell at Eurogamer compared Infinite’s Hall Of Heroes to the original Bioshock’s Fort Frolic.

2. The False Shepherd: Discussions of Bioshock: Infinite throughout 2013

The dawn of April, five days after the launch of the Infinite, would mark the beginning of a critical backswing that came to define the game’s place in critical gaming history. An anonymous tumblr post by starburp scathingly criticized the game’s lack of historical context in its usage of racism and black…

This Year in Videogame Blogging: 2020

…Video Games Industry! | Medium Marina Kittaka calls on us “to expand the imaginative space around video games by tearing out The Industry Promise at its roots”.

  • The Future Of The Video Game Labor Movement | Kotaku (Content warning: racism) Sisi Jiang describes frustrations with the Games Workers Unite movement, describing what they saw as a reticence to center anti-racism out of a concern that to do so would risk losing the support of some game developers.
  • Gamergate

    Content warning: harassment and domestic abuse.

    • Anita Sarkeesian looks back at GamerGate | Polygon Reflecting on…

    September 18th

    …of concrete details in Overwatch’s representation.

  • Futurism, Realism, Racism: Deus Ex and the Quest for Credible Science Fiction | Medium Steve Wilcox ponders the depth of the Deux Ex series’ failures in discussing racism.
  • The Indie View: Resistance Isn’t Futile | GamesIndustry.Biz Alexis Kennedy appears again to talk about the public’s role in Valve’s systems.
  • Great Job! You’re fired! | GamesIndustry.Biz Brendan Sinclair regrets that the seeming inevitable place for game developers is unemployment.
  • Displaced by the World

    Although we may alter our surroundings, they affect us as well. Sometimes for the better, sometimes

    September 17th

    …DMCA as protest against PewDiePie’s racism, respecting the intent while also interviewing experts to highlight the potentially hazardous consequences.

  • The three reasons YouTubers keep imploding, from a YouTuber – Polygon Michael Sawyer perhaps undeservedly gives Pewdiepie the benefit of the doubt in this piece, but that aside, it’s a good insight into the problems with Youtube as a platform and as a discipline.
  • Gaming Culture Has Always Been Racist – Y’all Just Didn’t Care – Not Your Mama’s Gamer Kishonna Gray argues that streaming has changed the way that racism is concealed and depersonalised in games culture.
  • Abstract image evoking bird silhouette

    This Year In Videogame Blogging: 2018

    …as the game ultimately reverts back to the old-time black-and-white morality of the original comics and drops the villains’ more complex motivations.

    Life is Strange 2

    • Life is Strange 2 works to deconstruct the series’ power fantasy | Unwinnable – Malindy Hetfeld Malindy Hetfeld likes that the latest Life is Strange game embraces the characters’ positions where they lack power despite having super powers. It fits the game’s themes that Daniel’s problems (racism) do not have a quick fix.
    • What Other Games Can Learn From the Racism in Life is Strange 2 | Paste –…

    April 21st

    …post by starburp, also linked in Kunzler’s first post, is a required read:

    seriously? you make racism against blacks germaine to the plot of your storyline, but you don’t even do any research to find out what else blacks were up to in 1912, and then you bury our ACTUAL struggle against racism in a hippie dippy “we’re all human” resistance movement turned sour. seriously?

    do you know why you did this? because the black people in this storyline aren’t fucking people. they’re props. literally. they are props. and that’s what i find so fucking offensive about

    June 21st

    …inform the narrative and give players a series of racism infused bosses and obstructions to justice to properly hate. Perpetuating the stereotype and, in some cases, feeding the racism that is foundational to the art style itself.

    Blackmon and NYMG co-editor Alisha Karabinus extrapolate further on this in an excellent video analysis, while also taking care to note Cuphead is still in development.

    (Content Warning: both of the above links include examples of racist imagery.)

    Players Playing Play

    On his blog, Andrew Brown proffers an engrossing analysis of symmetrical competitive game design, and in particular…

    November 4th

    …offerings revolve around cocks. I hope you enjoy it.

    • One Twitch Streamer Is Fighting Racism With A Chicken Emote | Kotaku Nathan Grayson documents an ingeniously meme-tastic weapon in the fight against racism on Twitch (Content Notification: racism).

    “The system, which she explained during TwitchCon’s “How to Grow & Navigate Twitch as a Streamer Of Color” panel, is elegant in its simplicity. It centers around an emote of a chicken hiding behind a bush—a sneaky cock, in other words. When community members start spamming it, that lets Xmiramira and her moderators know that somebody’s said

    January 12th

    …white-passing, masculine-passing, able-bodied perspective, it’s necessary and instructive for me to remain vigilant that the particular biases baked into the media culture I participate in are racist, sexist, queerphobic, ableist, and otherwise exclusionary. What are the consequences of participating in that culture, even with good intentions? And what are some of the sites of resistance from within that culture? Three authors explore these tensions in very different and necessary ways.

    • My Games, My Music, and My Internalized Racism – Uppercut Monti Velez recounts surviving the pervasive racism of our media culture (content notification for internalized racism, experiences of