Author Archives: bombshell

Games That Make You Read: 80 Days and Fallen London

80 Days was one of the big games of 2014. Both games and mainstream media loved it and many games makers and writers whose opinions I respect, such as Emily Short, Anna Anthropy and Simon Parkin, included it amongst their favourite games of the year. Over the past month I’ve played it three times and […]

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Writing video games – Jeffrey Yohalem at the Brisbane Writers Festival

Jeffrey Yohalem is a video game writer and designer. He works for Ubisoft Montreal, which is one of the big (AAA) game studios. A couple of weeks ago, during the Brisbane Writers Festival, Yohalem gave a talk at the State Library about writing video games. He divided his talk into two parts. In the first […]

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Story+ 2014

A couple of weeks ago, the Brisbane Writers Festival held its second Story+ conference. Story+ was created to look at the intersection of narrative, design and technology. The inaugural Story+ last year was a one day event, but this year it took place over two days: Thursday 4 September and Friday 5 September. Day one […]

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Games That Make You Read: Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney

“Badly written and annoying” were the notes I wrote to myself when I began playing Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney. The game was originally created in Japan in 2001 and is the first in the series of Ace Attorney visual novels. Phoenix Wright is a just-graduated defence attorney and even though he is somewhat naive and […]

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I think we need to talk about the word “digital”

On Saturday, I was at the Sydney Writers’ Festival and attended a session called New Worlds: Digital Storytelling. This session threw together (almost literally) Cornelia Funke, an author using digital technology as a way to further expand her story world, Inua Ellams, a poet using Twitter as a medium and Kavita Bedford and Connor Tomas […]

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Haunting Melissa

Last weekend, I finally finished watching Haunting Melissa. I say “finally”, because I’d been watching it since last November. And it’s only 11 episodes long. Haunting Melissa is an iOS app. It’s not exactly a TV show and not exactly a film, but something in between. It’s about a girl, Melissa, who is haunted by […]

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Where games and movies cross over: Beyond: Two Souls

I’ve now played Beyond: Two Souls. It’s the story of Jodie Holmes (Ellen Page), a young woman who has an unbreakable connection with an “entity”. The entity is an unpredictable being with no corporeal form. His name is Aiden (pronounced Eiden) and he and Jodie share a mental link. He behaves a bit like a […]

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Where games and movies cross over: L.A. Noire and Heavy Rain

Last year, I wrote about how I believe that “books, films and video games [are] going to meet somewhere in the middle. The lines between them [will] blur and interactive storytelling [will] be the result”. I then proceeded to write a number of posts looking at meeting points between books and games but not really […]

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Why interactivity: a response to Pepi Ronalds in the Killings blog

Last month, Pepi Ronalds wrote a piece for the Killings blog called “Why we’re still curled up with the book”. In it, she talks about how as readers we have a resistance to interactive ebooks because of our history with the physical book. She begins by identifying a problem with the word “book” and the […]

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Reading in the future: interactive fiction and chatbots

I’ve recently been reading the work of interactive fiction writer Emily Short and discovered her story Galatea. I was happy to find that the story was powered by a chatbot engine and I wondered if this was a whole genre within interactive fiction. To my initial surprise, I discovered that there seem to be very […]

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