Culture

Ten Reasons Why You Have to Play Watch Dogs 2

Ubisoft and their open world games don’t have the best reputation out there. Mocked in the game community for cookie-cutter mission types and derivative game structures, based on unlocking segments of the game world and one by one ticking off collectables and side quests. Ubisoft became synonymous with assembly line game production that valued quantity over quality. After redeeming themselves a lot with Assassin’s Creed Syndicate, the sequel to lukewarm…


Blood Ties and Lara Croft as Millennial

Tomb Raider celebrates its 20 year anniversary this year. To celebrate, a set of bonus content for Rise of the Tomb Raider was released yesterday. It includes classic skins, a new level in Lara’s manor and a new co-op mode. Although I enjoy this thoroughly, it also made me realise the definition of ‘classic’ Tomb Raider is becoming relative. When I became a Tomb Raider fan, I was twelve years…


A Contemporary Look at Dracula

Having recently re-read “Dracula” (technically reading it for the first time, since I realised that at an earlier point I read a cleaned up, PG version), I came fascinated by the thematics and the relevance of the story in the time it was written. Bram Stoker’s famous novel is an intriguing period-piece, giving a striking image of English society in the late 19th century. It’s suspenseful, brilliantly paced but also…


The Sweet Green Days of Past

On the 11th of August (this Thursday) Green Day will release their newest single: “Bang Bang” – and I’m excited. It’s one of those quirky interests of mine that I can’t always put a finger on. A mixture of coincidences, teenage memories, guilty pleasures and random obsessions. Green Day is a weird band; fickle and multilayered, loved and scoffed at and often struggling with its identity. Maybe that’s why I…


Review: Ghostbusters

Calling the new Ghostbusters movie “self aware” is putting it mildly. It’s a fun filled vessel of smack in the face contemporary relevance. Not that it attempts to be political or self righteous; that’s exactly what it doesn’t do. It carries a message without being overly smart or witty, it just is what it is: a lighthearted action comedy about four women hunting ghosts. It’s exactly what it was back…


Star Wars and the Future of Optimism

Is it possible to get nostalgic for a time period that you didn’t experience yourself? The easy answer would be no. That’s also the answer that makes the most logical sense, at first sight. But the truth is more complicated, as I found out. There’s a sense of second hand memories that can pass over to you from the previous generation. Media plays a big role in this phenomenon. A…


Watch_Dogs 2: Contemporary Art

When the first Watch_Dogs games was revealed, it spurred a lot of editorials and opinion pieces regarding its subject matter. In hindsight it’s remarkable that the thematics of Ubisoft’s creation hadn’t been used in videogames before in such prominent manner. It’s a textbook method, to utilise the fears and insecurities present in society. Popular media has been doing this for ages. The Cold War inspired writers for tales about nuclear…


Battlefield 1: Opinions, Ignorance and Optimism

Last week DICE announced the new Battlefield game, and it already managed to stir up quite a flurry of opinion pieces and sharply worded tweets. Even before the game was officially announced, the leaked materials caused a debate. Even though the trailer is in-engine, it doesn’t show actual gameplay, but that doesn’t stop some people from already making sweeping generalisations about the style and tone of the game. Slightly more negative opinions…


A Conversation With Mario

It’s unusually quiet in the Italian diner. The lights are dimmed and only flickering candles in tacky glass bottles illuminate the place. The buzz from the street outside is sparsely heard. It’s February and cold. Nobody wants to be out. The waiter comes and fills a glass with red wine for me. “Garlic bread, sir?” The patron of the joint stands at the bar and his piercing eyes scan the…


Unravel, Ikea and Swedish Meatballs

A friend’s comment about Unravel made me think about something. We hardly ever realise which country our games are from. Unravel is Swedish, and we know that because the game is using the Scandinavian country as backdrop for the adventures of its adorable little protagonist.But normally, in 99 percent of the cases, the country of origin is not reflected in the product. My friend discussed with another friend the achievements…