Monthly Archives: April 2008

Spring Thing 2008 Is On

Just a quick notice that “Spring Thing 2008” is now underway.

Spring Thing is an annual interactive fiction competition which began in 2002. It is different from the other well-known IF competitions (IFComp and XYZZY’s) in that it promotes medium-sized to long works of IF, and it also has an entry fee. According to the organizer, Greg Boettcher, this is “to encourage excellence in game authorship and discourage shoddiness.” Given the wide range of quality we typically see at comps like IFComp, this is probably a Good Thing.

There are three entrants this year: Pascal’s Wager (by Doug Egan), Without a Clue (by David Whyld), and Blue Lacuna: Sneak Preview (by Aaron A. Reed). The games can be downloaded individually or as one archive at [More...] Read the rest

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You Want Art With Those Games?

This is the first part of a series of blogs that aim to contribute yet more internet detritus to everybody’s favorite age-old argument: Seriously, are computer games an art form?

Part 1: Games Are Not An Art Form

By now I would guess that most people with a finger on the pulse of the computer/videogame industry have the sense that there is a growing movement for this medium to be regarded as something more than a hollow, trivial pastime. The “Games as Art” debate has certainly been ongoing for some time now, and unfortunately for everyone I feel the burning need to chime in. Part of the argument that games are not, and perhaps never will be, considered a true art form is that the [More...] Read the rest

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Steve Meretzky’s Basement

As mentioned in my last blog, Jason Scott is the creator of the BBS Documentary and runs a blog called ASCII. He’s currently working on a new documentary project called GET LAMP, about the history of the text adventure game, which I eagerly await.

As part of his work on GET LAMP, Jason has interviewed a number of big names in the history of text adventures, one of them being Steve Meretzky of Infocom fame. This past weekend, Jason spent some time in Meretzky’s basement. As Jason says, “There are worse places to be than Steve Meretzky’s basement.”

Apparently, Meretzky saved just about everything he could — original game boxes, memos, ad copies, correspondences, and so on. For those of us [More...] Read the rest

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