One of the reasons it’s been quiet over here at the Worlds in a Handful of Dice is that my writing energies have been directed elsewhere. I completed a rather large creative writing module at the university over the past two years, I have been doing some translation work, and then there’s a thing I can actually link you. Well, quite a few things, really.
These past two semesters, I was involved with PlayLab!, the webzine from the game researchers at the University of Tampere. It’s a game journalism course, basically, where the texts are peer-reviewed. I did nine pieces in total, and if PlayLab! returns next semester, I may be back. Here’s my stuff:
- Praedor – Elegantly brutal, a review of the gritty sword & sorcery role-playing game from Burger Games.
- Review: World of Warcraft: Legion, my thoughts on the newest WoW expansion.
- Review: Marvel Avengers Academy, some words on a far-too-long stint with a superhero aquarium on my mobile phone.
- Review: Legend of Grimrock, examining the retro-dungeon crawl through the OSR aesthetic. The fun part in reviewing a game this old is that you can skip the “what’s this game like” expectation of cutting-edge game reviews and engage in more critical analysis.
- College of Wizardry 10 – Magic is real, a companion piece to my far longer CoW10 blog post.
- Knutepunkt 2017 – Two decades of art, design, and scholarship, a report on this year’s Knutepunkt conference in Norway. Writing this one was hard because it kept coming across as a hugbox hippie death cult and I’m still not quite satisfied with the text.
I also wrote three research highlight pieces, where we took a game studies paper from a recent publication and wrote a popularized version of the text. These are my own words, but not my own thoughts:
- Through a Shotglass, Darkly: The Study of Games in the Light of Drinking Games, originally by Jaakko Stenros and Olli Sotamaa.
- Teaching German Literature Through Larp, originally by Evan Torner.
- Fear and Loathing in Barovia, based on “The Psychological Abuse of Curse of Strahd” by Shelly Jones.
Also, the Conan: Adventures in an Age Undreamed Of review by Markku Vesa and Vampire: The Masquerade review by Aleksi Kesseli are based on game sessions that I ran.
And last but not least, we did a collaboration article where each of us listed their favourite game from 2016, PlayLab! Best Games of 2016. My pick was the Vampire larp End of the Line, which was also recently nominated for the Diana Jones Award.