bmas06
News

Three burly men will set out on a gentle adventure with you next month

Just hearing the name Burly Men at Sea—along with watching its trailers, filled to the brim with a bouncing, benevolent brawniness–effectively communicates what it’s like to play the game. You embark on a journey as not one, not two, but three Brothers Beard, who put the lumbersexual hipster trend to shame. Heeding the call of the blue siren, you join them as they gallivant across the sea and a storybook of various Norwegian haunts. “We knew we were making Burly Men at Sea before we knew what it would be,” said co-creator David Condolora. “We had that name in our head before we even started making…

Zarya
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Zarya makes Mother Russia her bitch

We love Overwatch. And so, we assembled 22 of our best writers and set them to work—a writer to jump into the skin (or robotic shell) of each character. The result is 22 odes. You can use the“Overwatch odes” tag to leaf through them, all use the handy list at the bottom. /// Zarya’s existence in Overwatch began as an apology or, more accurately, as reparation for videogames ignoring the existence of plus-sized bodies (particularly of the female variety). After fans called Blizzard out for a stringent lack of diversity in their female body types a couple years ago, they…

Vampyr
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Blood fetishists rejoice: the Vampyr E3 trailer understands you

The vast majority of videogames harbor a raging, barely concealable boner for violence. But it takes a special kind of violent videogame to step over that fine line into the realm of fetish porn: where violence is used for neither shock nor gore nor anything remotely resembling reality. Rather, the videogame snuff film aims to entice that primal, buried part of your sexuality that lusts after something without knowing whether you want to consume it, have sex with it, kill it, or some combination of all three. That’s the Vampyr E3 trailer in a nut shell: the loving caress of a CGI-ed blood stream splattering across your face with the warm tenderness of a paramour. While certainly not the most expected followup from…

Jak and Daxter
Feature

Jak and Daxter: the Search for Player Two

This article is part of PS2 Week, a full week celebrating the 2000 PlayStation 2 console. To see other articles, go here. /// I hear him pad up next to me before I feel his whiskers tickle my ankles. A wet, impatient nudge tells me to hurry up already—there’s something I should see up ahead. Won over, I look down. “What is it, Dax?” His ears perk at my response before immediately shooting down to the ground with the rest of his body. Head low, eyes steady, he slinks forward to his new objective with laser focus. But, after reaching…

5
News

The adorably grotesque world of Push Me Pull You arrives next month

As you can surmise from the title, Push Me Pull You (PMPY) is about the delightful tension between polar opposite forces. Even the world behind this couch co-op game is simultaneously the same and exact opposite of our own world. Because, you see, PMPY is populated by a very similar society with one key difference: people are joined at the waist to one another, turning the populace into a squirming pile of two-headed mutant tube creatures. Despite the body horror this image suggests, PMPY depicts a utopian society built around play, diversity, and a strong sense of community. For all its grotesqueness, this society of skin worms seems endlessly more charming and self-loving than our own. The bond struck between each one—quite literally unbreakable—is…

Planet-licker
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Planet Licker, a game that you play with your tongue

By far the most innocent game with the smuttiest implications at GDC this year was the alternative controller entry entitled Planet Licker. In the game’s fiction, you are a monster who eats planets made of popsicles. As the player IRL, you are also a popsicle-licking monster of sorts, only instead of planets your tongue is manhandling an edible controller. Planet Licker not only puts your tongue to the test; it’s also a race against time. You have to schlurp up six planets before the clock runs out. As part of the annual ALT.CTRL.GDC showcase, Planet Licker was an unusual experiment for creator Frank…

Thumper
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Rhythm hell game Thumper aspires to be a VR fever dream

The term “rhythm game” might call to mind images of a virtual band either slaying or bombing in front of a crowd. Usually, you’re cast as a musician strumming a fake guitar or a fake drum kit to the demands of a note highway, songs turned into timely button presses. Thumper throws all that shit out the window. You play as a beetle who lives, breathes, and literally is metal. You are tasked with making the right moves as you try to survive the endless road to hell stretched out before you.”When you think of Rock Band or Guitar Hero, they’re trying to recreate this euphoria…

Isabela's_Ongoing_Search
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80 Days writer thinks you should stop playing the hero

“Protagonists have had their way for too long,” declared Meg Jayanth, the writer behind 2014’s 80 Days and a contributor to last year’s Sunless Sea. At her GDC talk on Monday, Jayanth took the stage to instruct a room full of game designers to transgress one of the most fundamental conceits of their craft: “Forget your protagonist,” or, in other words, forget the player. Almost since their inception, videogame worlds have bended backwards to the whim and ego of the player-protagonist, leading to conventions like leveling up and the Badass Anti-Hero With A Gun cliche. Of course, arguments against the classic power fantasy narrative aren’t new, either. You don’t even have to…

GenitalJousting_Screenshot2
News

Genital Jousting, a real videogame about penises fighting each other

A videogame that has you and your friends play as mutant penis-butt creatures trying to penetrate one another might not sound like the most empowering female experience. But, believe me, it is. Genital Jousting began as a simple joke. At Berlin Minijam last spring, programmer Evan Greenwood (director of Free Lives, the studio behind last year’s masculine-pumped action game Broforce) set out to make a local multiplayer game with humor that was “at the expense of penises.” After teaming up with Marin Kvale (sound) and Daniel Schüler (art), they came to the understanding that watching players “chase each other around trying to…