Friday, 29 January 2010

Dimension Jump

In order to explain the fourth dimension* in Cosmos, Carl Sagan asks the reader to imagine how one might describe three dimensions to a being from a two dimensional world. Though he does a good job, we (nor, I suspect he) are left no closer to truly understanding what it might be like to perceive the universe in more than three dimensions. That is not to say that pan-dimensional beings do not exist. Here is a rare picture of one in the wild:

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Chix in Pixels

I think the time has finally come for me to write about female video game heroines. I say "for me", because the rest of the gaming press and indeed all other kinds of press have already expended a vast amount of time and energy to discussing this topic. In fact, the number of column inches devoted to women in video games only really come second to the anguished reams of press allotted to video game violence. I think this is because whereas discussions of video game violence tend to be beard-stroking affairs regarding the psychological and sociological implications of allowing children to dismember Nazi vampires, it is hard for even the most ponderous of academics to come up with anything sensible to say about this:

Thursday, 14 January 2010

The Puppy Method

So anyway, I have been playing Bayonetta all week, and it is very good. As for whether or not Bayonetta is a good female role model, I honestly don't know. Really, I don't think she is any more or less representative of women than most male video game characters are of men, so I'm not going to worry too much about that side of things. What concerns me about Bayonetta is the fact that her clothes are made out of hair that is still attached to her head.

Friday, 8 January 2010

I pity the fool who doesn't endorse video games.

Happy New Year everyone. I wasn't sure what to write this week as I have been waiting for Bayonetta to come out and the video game part of my brain has been centred around that. I read an interesting article in the Escapist magazine about the patchy representation of women in video games which suggested that Bayonetta was something less than an aspirational female role model, and I was considering writing a response, but I thought I had better wait until I had actually played it. Although the pulicity shots make me wonder whether governing Alaska and shooting moose is actually a bit more exciting than we might otherwise have believed it to be: