Dyad Isn’t What People Expect From an “Indie” Game?
Games like this often implement the scaffolding of older games — things like lives, coins and other conventions abandoned by newer and more intuitive designs — both as nostalgic touchstones and because they are effective constraints under the right circumstances. Braid uses iconic constructs, like whimsical creatures and green pipes, to subvert expectations. It’s kind of like Mario, except for the part where you can control time.
Then there are those hoping to use the language of games to try something mostly never seen before: Thatgamecompany’s Flow and Flower Gies points to, or titles like Tale of Tales’ The Path, Dan Pinchbeck’s Dear Esther, or any number of others that prize emotion or storytelling over ensuring the player feels “hooked” or mechanically challenged.
Weird breakdown of indie games that only works if you ignore a ton of indie games. I think it’s rather pointless to even try to tease out a dominant aesthetic to any indie game–the only thing that makes them indie is that they’re… indie. But, people love categories.
The Slow Web
One of the centerpieces of the Fast Web is this notion of real-time. Your friend listens to a song, and you find out about it. The smaller the gap between these two, the closer it is to real-time.
Real-time interactions happen as they happen. Timely ones, on the other hand, happen as you need them to happen. Some real-time interactions, like breaking news about an earthquake, can be timely. But not all timely interactions are real-time. I’d argue that most are not. And where the Fast Web is built around real-timedness, the Slow Web is built around timeliness.
I like the distinction between real-time and timely: it’s a good shorthand for the change that started to occur around the turn of the century. I hope the “slow web” becomes something–I don’t believe that the human brain can handle the current speed of information flow forever. It’s too easy to miss things, important things, and that’s eventually going to be detrimental.
New Yorkers and Starbucks
Interesting account of the rise and… fall? of Starbucks in New York. The best thing about Starbucks was that it raised the bar for coffee in this city, and has spawned locally-owned coffee shops that are often pretty good.
Someone should get on Starbucks corporate about closing bathrooms, though. That’s just wrong.