Note: For those of you coming to this article outside of the context of the Video Games, Literacy and Learning course (EDT791), I reference topics discussed by James Paul Gee in his book What Video Games Have to Teach Us About Learning and Literacy.
Ten hours in to Persona 3, I felt like I had picked a truly special game to study for this class. Atlus had melded a dating / relationship simulator, a genre I thought I'd venture in to, and a role-playing game into what felt like a fresh, new experience. Up to that point, the game's story and premise was, well... weird, but I like challenging narrative in my entertainment. So, a tale of quirky J-pop teenagers mixing night-time demon hunting with day-time high school romance wasn't so much a problem as a challenge. The mechanics of actually playing the game were quite strong.
Dear Persona 3,
I want to like you. I did like you... and maybe I still do. I just don't think you want me to like you any more.
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It took me over a week to do so, but I think I've finally chosen a game to play for class. Picking a game was actually more difficult than you might imagine. The requirements are pretty open-ended - the game needs to be something I've never played, and should (hopefully) last me fifty hours or more. The hard part?
This past Wednesday, I started my second semester of the Educational Technology (EDT) master's degree at ASU. Last semester, I realized just how difficult having a demanding job and going to school could be, so I decided to cut back this semester to just one class. That one class is Video Games, Literacy and Learning, and if the first class is any indication, it should be a real blast.
In the wake of Jeff Gerstmann's controversial firing from Gamespot, the larger issue of journalistic integrity in the enthusiast gaming press has come to the forefront. I don't have much to say on the issue, aside from echoing N'Gai Croal's we haven't the faintest non-fatal suggestion for how to close up Pandora's box now that it is wide open. If you're not familiar with the story, it started after Gerstmann was suspiciously fired after a negative review of Eidos's Kane & Lynch, which had been heavily advertised on Gamespot in the days leading up to the review.