a journal of play.

Category: Uncategorized

On Permadeath & the Magic Circle

UPDATE: The link to the full-text article was originally incorrect.  You can download the paper here. In the twilight of last year, I re-read Caillois and Huizinga. I concluded that people had been too hard on Huizinga and largely ignored what’s interesting about Caillois, but I also can’t shake the feeling that neither writer has […]

Marx & Play

An interesting snippet on Marx and play that I stumbled across in Wikipedia under the “Criticisms” section of Commodity Fetishism. “Marx’s idea of commodity fetishism is therefore claimed to be an exaggeration, because in real life people simply do not fetishize objects to the extent that Marx thinks they do. They apply all sorts of […]


Damn, been a while, huh?  Listen, I know, but for that Game Design class Joon, Jonas, Mads and I made LAZA KNITEZ!! and it’s really, really awesome.  We also actively discourage playing by yourself, so grab three friends! All you need is a computer that can run Flash and a keyboard. And also you have to be […]

The Game Jam as Radical Practice:

Exile Game Jam has come and gone.  Games were seen, games were played, games were made.  I knocked off a research assignment, read up on permadeath, and got more than 100 pages of “Creating Interactive Fiction with Inform 7” under my belt.  Not bad.  Add two hot meals a day and enough beer to keep […]

Games as Self-Realization:

I used Martin Redish’s theory of self-realization (from “The Value of Free Speech”) to justify classifying electronic games as protected speech. Here, Gadamer makes the argument better than I did: “Reality” always stands in a horizon of desired or feared, or at any rate, still undecided future possibilities.  Hence it is always the case that […]


The deadline for the Game Jam was an hour ago.  We’re gonna start presenting games pretty soon.  My text adventure is nowhere near finished, but I learned a bunch of Inform 7 and I got to see how the game-sausage is made.  I’ve had a ton of fun out here in the beautiful Danish countryside, […]

Baby’s First Game Jam:

Hey gang– coming to you live from Exile Game Jam, hosted in a goddamn big house called Vallekillde, which apparently got the party started in 1865.  As someone who got kicked out of boarding school twice, I really admire the hell out of this place.  Check out their English website if you want to learn more […]

Juul on Caillois:

What up, Internet?  I’ve been pretty busy catching up with emails, but I thought I’d get fancy and hit y’all with some content.  I just started reading Jesper Juul’s Half-Real.  Here’s an excerpt that stuck in my craw: Caillois is best known for his categorizations of games (and play) into agon (competition), alea (chance), mimicry […]

Analysis up on Kill Screen:

Good morning ladies & gentlemen: I hope everyone’s Fourth of July celebrations were fantastic.  I personally tore the skin off the top of the toes on my right foot, was badly sunburned, & threw up from overexertion after a long day of volleyball, hydrosliding, and celebratory imbibing.  Hooray America! I am totally psyched to report […]

Change of plans:

Look out for an article on Brown v. EMA Tuesday… All I can say is I’m really excited about the new host.  Sneak peak, for your eyes only, loyal readers: In his dissent, Justice Thomas weighs in with a radical rethinking of the First Amendment rights of children– that is, they don’t have any unless […]