voting booths 1966
News

An election simulator shows you how everything went so wrong

Much of the public was left stunned in the wake of the November election in America. Beyond Clinton’s loss, despite winning the popular vote, many were shocked that the margin was close at all. While distrust and dislike of the electoral college is a fairly bipartisan issue, it is actually only one layer of what caused the election to go the way it did. The much larger systemic factor is the voting system we use, as demonstrated by Nicky Case’s To Build a Better Ballot, an interactive essay on alternative voting systems. One person, one vote, isn’t that the fairest?…

cp
News

Kids use Club Penguin to protest against the president-elect

As an American college student, I’m no stranger to protests. In the past month, I’ve attended roughly two or three per week regarding issues like health care, systematic racism, discrimination against undocumented students, and most recently, our president-elect. After the election on November 8th, protests immediately began appearing all over the country. In Boston, thousands took to the street the very next day. Going out to march in crowds filled with signs saying things like “not my president” and “I’m with her” is one way to exercise freedom of speech and express dissatisfaction, but not always the safest. With these…

Everything is going to be OK
News

You probably need this interactive zine about being hopelessly optimistic

Game maker and web artist Nathalie Lawhead announced that she’s making an interactive zine earlier this week, under the working title “Everything is going to be OK.” It’s about being hopelessly optimistic while everything is breaking around you. “It’s a cathartic dump of my past experiences mostly about feeling hopeless or ostracized for being a woman and doing the tech thing,” Lawhead told me. This is a topic she has written about before. “To me, the election results drove the point across that this situation will not improve.” What she fears most is the “sexist backlash” that having Donald Trump…

Football Manager 2017
News

Football Manager 2017 simulates the consequences of Brexit on the sport

It’s been a while since Kill Screen checked in on the Brexit fallout. Last time around, David Cameron was still an active Member of Parliament and Nigel Farage was giving awkward interviews about the NHS while looking a bit like Downton Abbey’s gawpy interpretation of Pepe the Frog. How time flies! In the four brief months since a plurality of Britons voted to commit economic and diplomatic harakiri, the venerable Football Manager series has managed to simulate the decision’s effects on the sport in its next entry, Football Manager 2017. And as Miles Jacobson, the man in charge of the videogame series, told The…

DC protest
Feature

American politics and the importance of participation

Heat waves rose from the concrete streets of central Philly as I left my office at 1pm to join a protest in the streets. I melted as I walked the two miles down Broad Street from City Hall towards Temple University. The in-between space transitioned to ghetto territory—an uncharted war zone where people fought each day to survive. The American political atmosphere that week was especially bleak, the full-frenzied craze of it all taking place during the Democratic National Convention. Americans across the nation applauded the perfectly manicured show broadcasted on nationwide TV, proclamations of justice and equality and fixing…

Shin Godzilla
News

All bow down before the mighty Shin Godzilla

At one point in Shin Godzilla, Toho’s 29th entry in this ancient series, a character calls Godzilla a “perfect organism.” This might sound familiar to anyone who’s watched Ridley Scott’s Alien (1979): it’s how the devious android Ash describes the xenomorph. Godzilla movies don’t typically reach outside the big guy’s cultural bubble, the occasional crossover with King Kong notwithstanding. They exist within a cloistered half-century of constant reinvention; there are whole eras of Godzilla named for whoever was emperor of Japan at that time, all refracting and, frankly, diluting the original premise into a repeatable formula that yielded enjoyable-but-inessential riffs on everything…

score-animat-926-small
News

Prepare for the Clinton-Trump debate with a political drinking game

If the current presidential election has not yet driven you to drink, the first of three debates between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump scheduled for Monday (yes, today) may well prove to be the tipping point. Before it has even begun, it is already infuriating: one candidate is likely to be declared presidential if they manage to avoid a sudden bout of incontinence, whereas the other’s supporters have been preparing for this injustice with their normal reserve. Is it over yet? The desire to drink through debates is oftentimes a purely rhetorical gesture meant to signal just how frustrating the…

wheels of aurelia (race)
Review

Wheels of Aurelia sputters onto the race track

Elevator pitches have the benefit of being ideas rather than actual things in the real world. With the right pitch just about anything can sound promising. Take communism, for instance—a system that, on paper, reads like an egalitarian haven, promising equality, fairness, and a stable life for everyone. It often doesn’t play out so well when put into practice, but the idea captivates so much that it lead to countless wars, dictatorships, and deaths. Wheels of Aurelia, set in a 1970s Italy reeling from feminism, communism, revolution, and terrorism, sounds better as an idea than it plays. You are Lella,…

Wikiverse galaxy
News

Wikiverse lets you explore Wikipedia as a virtual star system

Since its launch in 2001, Wikipedia has become the largest and most popular encyclopedia on the internet, containing over 40 million articles in over 250 languages. It’s a refuge for the habitual late-night scroller, a balm for the compulsive fact-checker and, as its motto suggests, a questionable resource for students: “The free encyclopedia that anyone can edit.” Two years ago, French programmer Owen Cornec released Wikiverse, a HTML, CSS, and WebGL-supported Chrome Experiment that made falling down a Wikipedia hole at three in the morning that much more experiential. In Wikiverse, you can explore Wikipedia in the form of a…