Pictoflip Lovin Buttons

New game collection celebrates the kindness we bring to each other

In a year such as this one, it can be easy to be weighed down with how incredibly hard the world sucks. With so many horrific acts of violence, and a vomit-inducing election cycle, it can be tempting at times to shut down. But there is still good in the world, and Pictochic’s collection, Lovin’ Buttons, reminds us of that. In three little games, Lovin’ Buttons communicates the beauty and kindness of the connections we make with each other, on our phones, over the internet, and in person. Sunday In The Park With Dogs Yep, it’s exactly what it sounds like.…


No! Please don’t take the weeds out of Animal Crossing

I’ve heard many lovers of Animal Crossing: New Leaf (2012) express a desire to go back and play some more. What’s stopping them? It’s the fear of what state their town will be in after the mayor disappeared for six months (or more). Animal Crossing’s infamous weeds are the personification of this guilt, growing in your town every day you’re absent; a grand public exhibition for your neglect. But an upcoming update to Animal Crossing: New Leaf will remove them forever. Whoopee, you might say. But no, don’t be so hasty, as this may actually diminish what makes Animal Crossing so…


Turns out that 11 to 14-year-old girls can make the cutest games

Let’s be frank: it’s not easy working as a woman in games. The past few years have been particularly tough for us. But as women in games, each of us feels a responsibility to help and support each other while working in this space. Especially when it comes to helping young women enter the field. Whether as designers or artists, programmers or journalists, we want to put our experience to use and give aspiring women the tools they need to pursue their interest in videogames. Girls Make Games is one initiative that fulfills that goal. Hosted by LearnDistrict, Girls Make Games…


Not even Anarcute can put a friendly face on rioting

State of Emergency (2002) seemed real dumb even to a 14-year-old kid reading its EGM cover story. A chaser to Rockstar’s monumental Grand Theft Auto III (2001), State of Emergency wanted to carry on the torch, but only for Grand Theft Auto’s chaos and edginess. It was a Crazy Taxi (1999) for rioting where you’d play as thugged-out agents of mayhem, torching bystanders, smashing property, and maiming mall cops into pools of blood and floor tiles. According to David Kushner’s book on Rockstar, Jacked (2012), a reporter from the Tacoma News Tribune called up Rockstar’s PR in May of 2001…


Anarcute puts a friendlier face on revolution and rioting

Punk music. Chains. Leather, drugs, mohawks, and spikes. The revolution, at least as far as it’s depicted in films like The Warriors (1979) and comics like The Dark Knight Returns, is often offputting and grotesque. These stereotypical trappings are hardly an accurate representation of real punk culture or political upheaval, of course—featuring teens tagging anarchy symbols on school playgrounds or mugging innocent strangers on their way home from work—but they do work well to create a sensationalized moral panic for a square-jawed Clint Eastwood type to come clean up. Unfortunately, they also raise a question. If the revolution is supposed to be so fringe,…

creamy skate adv

Grind through creamy, dreamy skatescapes

I have a lot of memories with the Tony Hawk games. The Tony Hawk series, perhaps most notably Tony Hawk’s Underground (2003), represented a scrape-and-bruise-free foray into youthful anarchy. Tony Hawk’s skateboard games were the anti-sport for kids like me that didn’t have any sports of their own to partake in. As it was hard for me to find enjoyment in cars driving in circles like my mom and her boyfriend often did, I stuck to watching skate videos, thumbing through Thrasher, and becoming the Deltron 3030 bumpin’-virtual pro skater I always knew I could be. An homage to the skate…


Merrily Perily is a comedy of errors about poison and pooping yourself

There’s a certain type of prank prevalent on YouTube where the prankster dribbles hot sauce onto a friend’s food and also into their drink, so that once they eat the food and realize the predicament they’re now in, reaching for their drink will only make things worse.Merrily Perily takes that prank and stretches it out into an entire game. The game casts the player as Perry, a man who wanders into a village suffering from dehydration. You ask all the villagers for help, but for some reason, they’re all extremely standoffish and seem dedicated only to wasting your time. With…