Sundays are for using an old receipt as a bookmark. Before you remind yourself of how much you spent on that McDonald’s breakfast, let’s read this week’s best writing about games (and game related matters).
Over on IGN, Rebekah Valentine wrote and recorded a vid about the NieR: Automata mod that fooled the world. A long form investigation into the Reddit user SadFutago, who constructed a fake multi-month storyline – which we’ve covered here, too – about a secret church zone.
“I wanted to start off with a tiny church,” he says. “So I wasn’t even going to make the church myself. I was going to grab a model and just throw it somewhere and then just pretend that it was real as a joke. But then I got a little carried away and we went from this really tiny church design to this huge hallway and there’s a big entrance. And then the iconic door was very secretive. It could’ve just been a new door we added. But the way I wanted it to be was that it would appear as a secret. So I made it integrated into the map so that it’s technically always there even if it isn’t. No one would think though there’s actually a door there.”
Nicole Carpenter wrote about how Zelda Tears Of The Kingdom’s physics engine has game devs wowed. Carpenter chats to a bunch of game devs about ToTK bridge physics and why it’s so wildly impressive.
Tears of the Kingdom also has its own rope-like physics flex: Another viral clip shows a door opening using four wheels and a chain. That’s a complex interaction that takes no shortcuts, Wardell told Polygon. “As a rule, physics engines take a lot of shortcuts and make a lot of assumptions, both for optimization purposes and to keep developers from pulling their own hair out,” Wardell said. “Almost all of these shortcuts, whether it be collision-free ropes [or] rotating objects only applying forces in a specific way, would make this kind of mechanism flat-out not work, or the chain start vibrating until it disappears from view in a single frame, or some other infamous physics glitch.”
For Hit Points, Nathan Brown wrote about Not-E3 and Summer Geoff Fest, and what they both might mean for the games industry’s biggest players. Interesting thoughts from an industry vet on this summer’s spread of events.
A few years ago, Ubisoft had one of the finest release slates in the business; back in my Edge days we routinely crowned it publisher of the year in our annual awards, in thrall at its reliable pipeline of blockbusters and willingness to experiment with unfancied hardware and legacy IP. Over time, production problems, poor creative direction and a miserable misconduct scandal have seen almost everything that Ubisoft has ever had to offer dwindle away to the extent that it can really only be thought of today as the Assassin’s Creed company. CEO Yves Guillemot evidently agreed: last week he is committed to growing AC’s headcount by 40% in the next few years (it is already at 2,000 people).
Unwinnable’s Emily Price wrote about returning to a very old save file in Animal Crossing: New Leaf. Price contemplates why returning to a childhood fave might mean engaging with lots of buried emotions from the past, and coming to remember why a past you made certain decisions.
My house was more of a shock to me. In the first game I always focused on paying down my debt so I could get some more in the form of a house renovation, because decorating my house was my favorite thing to spend time on. Here, I’d done nothing. I couldn’t even figure out how to pay my loan. Somehow, I’d ended up with a Seurat painting on my wall. Where my Wild World town was constructed out of months of repetitive child’s play, my New Leaf town was forever stuck in the very first house renovation and public works project. But in an honor to my first town, I’d named my second one Home – capital H this time.
On The Guardian, Adrian Chiles wrote about ADHD not being a con. The man doesn’t miss.
The worst thing, in terms of the stigma around ADHD, is that we’re in danger of coming full circle. In the beginning it was a disorder with which no adult wanted to be labeled. It was something that particularly naughty schoolkids should have had. Then it became better understood. Those who could pay the money got the care they needed and the hosannas spoke about it. So the stigma slowly dissipated and demand for rose treatment. With drearily depressing inevitability some businesses saw a trough into which to put their snouts and, for a healthy price, hand out dodgy diagnoses. People see this is happening and so conclude that the whole thing is at best a bit of a craze and at worst a con. And before we know it, those with ADHD, or who think they might have it, are subject to a new, virulent variant of the stigma and shame we started out with in the first place.
Music this week is Just Dumb by Boy And Bear. Here’s the Spotify link and YouTube link. A nice background tune for a sunny day.
The bonus album of the week comes courtesy of Leaving Laurel. Here’s the Spotify link and YouTube link. I’ve championed Leaving Laurel here before, and guess what, I’m doing it again. Go to the “read more” section of the YouTube link to understand the album’s origins, then sit with it in the evening or pop it on while you’re working/studying. As a deep house fan, I don’t think you can get anything more beautiful than this.
I’m reading The Great Gatsby for the first time ever! So far, I think it’s very good stuff. Somehow I’ve managed to avoid spoilers all my life, so it’s cool to experience it fresh.
That’s it for this week folks, take care of yourselves and see you next week!