Operation ZenRescue Completed
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 22 December 2014, 9:52 pm
During my time off, I have been devoting a fair amount of my time and energy to rescuing my old blog content – a couple of years ago, I had an incident with my hosting that resulted in me needing to start over with a clean state, which put about 8 years of content in […]

Added New ‘Published Articles’ section
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 19 December 2014, 4:57 pm
Between 2008-2013, I wrote a column for Game Developer magazine called “Design of the Times”.  As part of me enjoying my time off, I created a new Page for these articles – you can find them from the Published Articles … Continue reading

On Progressive vs. Normal Criticism
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 18 December 2014, 2:10 am
Erik Kain of Forbes Magazine says that on the topic of GamerGate, I understand it among the best.  Which is high praise, as he’s been fairly plugged into the controversy from the outset, and is actually reasonably sympathetic to some of … Continue reading

MMOs and the Fall of THQ
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 15 December 2014, 1:33 am
The AAA games industry has hysterically overreacted to the failure of anyone to capture the lightning in the bottle that World of Warcraft.  It’s weird – AAA studios seem completely and totally oblivious to the fact that EverQuest was quite successful … Continue reading

Civilization: Beyond Earth, and Resonance’s Role in Game Design
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 11 December 2014, 1:15 pm
I won’t lie – when I was planning on when my last day with Bioware would be, the idea of coinciding it with the release of Civilization: Beyond Earth was pretty damned serendipitous.  I expected to go into a six month … Continue reading

GamerGate Now Beating Up on Gamers With Disabilities
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 7 December 2014, 8:28 pm
AbleGamers is a charity that I have some familiarity with.  I actually spoke on a panel for AbleGamers in 2012 at PAX, when I also accepted the award for Accessible Mainstream Game of the Year on behalf of the SWTOR … Continue reading

Perversely, the Target GTA V Kerfuffle Represents Progress
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 7 December 2014, 3:55 am
Target Australia’s decision to pull GTA V from shelves is surprising for a few reasons, the least of which being that the product has been on shelves with nary a buzz since September 2013.  Not much has changed since then, … Continue reading

Updated Breaking In Page
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 6 December 2014, 6:04 pm
I’ve updated it, so it has working links, and now has a section that talks about watching your social media footprint.  Here’s a link.

Yes, GamerGate Still Exists- Just In Petty Drama-Oriented Form
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 6 December 2014, 3:50 am
So, how is #GamerGate going, you might ask?  I’ll be honest – I went out of town for five blissful days for a board game convention, which is pretty much as close to a religious experience as I get.  During … Continue reading

“Framed” Design Review (and the concept of Design Space)
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 28 November 2014, 2:29 pm
“Framed” is a brilliant experimental iPhone game, built on one incredibly genius design idea, but appears to run out of room quickly. First off, I love the look and the style of this game.  The character design is strong, given … Continue reading

That Stephen Seagal Moment
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 26 November 2014, 8:25 pm
About a year ago, I decided to lose some weight with the Rock Band Exercise program.  In short, Rock Band on Expert Drums will totally and completely kick your ass.  Along the way to losing about 40 pounds, I gold … Continue reading

In The Process of Trying to Find a More Comment-Friendly Theme
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 24 November 2014, 1:59 am
I’ve changed the theme to be more readable than the previous, particularly in the reply chains.  I’m still looking for potentially better layouts, particularly for comment threads.  If you have feedback, or better ideas on WordPress templates (keep in mind, … Continue reading

Guitar Hero Finally Gets a Bad Review
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 17 November 2014, 6:21 pm
This guy’s complaint: “Guitar Hero broke my knee!” We were neck in neck in points… I had to do something special. I needed STYLE points. I breathed deep, my rock

Sarkeesian Effect Duo Reanimates Defeated Corpse of Jack Thompson
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 18 November 2014, 10:18 pm
Dear GamerGate, I know that you guys are starting to think about the Holidays, and what Black Friday stunt you can pull.  I know, in particular, game developer outreach is top

The Lost Gamergate Episode of Seinfeld
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 17 November 2014, 11:10 pm
One of the more annoying things about #GamerGate is trying to explain how it definitely started as a harassment campaign, but has long since migrated past that.  It really sounds

Weekly Roundup: Gaters Gonna Gate
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 16 November 2014, 6:06 pm
For those who view #GamerGate as a Macabre Theatre, this week was far less spectacular than last week. But that’s to be expected, I guess.  Last week was a masterpiece

Don’t Let #Shirtstorm Ruin an Amazing Scientific Achievement
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 15 November 2014, 4:15 pm
This week, humanity did something pretty cool.  The European Space Agency landed a drone lander on a comet.  It was a monumentally incredible and fantastic scientific achievement, and everyone associated with it

WAM is Merely a Patch for Twitter, Which is Broken
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 14 November 2014, 3:18 am
Andrew Sullivan is one of my favorite bloggers of all time.  I’ve always loved his stuff, his infamous article on Obama converted me to the ways of hope and change,

The Best Game Reviews of All Time
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 13 November 2014, 10:12 pm
Nobody asked, but: here are, in my opinion, the best game reviews of all time. 3) “Chess”, by Greg Kasavin. 2) “World War II Online” by Lum the Mad. 1)

Five-Baggers and Dead Sharks
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 13 November 2014, 12:09 am
I’m always on the search for new terminology to use in the science of game design. No, I don’t mean building a game design lexicon for academics (although I’m glad

You Know Your Game is in Trouble When….
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 12 November 2014, 9:26 pm
If you liked yesterday’s post (“Why Did a Designer Put This Terrible Feature in This Game?”), then you might like these two old chestnuts: You Know your game is in

Mining for Buried Treasure
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 12 November 2014, 4:43 pm
Since I finally have time to do so between gigs, I’ll be going through my old blog archives and trying to import stuff that is still relevant and/or interesting to my

The True Impact of SJWs on Game Development
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 11 November 2014, 5:43 pm


Gamergate’s Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Week
Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 8 November 2014, 2:51 pm
Some of you guys have been bugging me for an update on Gamergate.  This is kind of depressing – none of y’all actually want to jump in the muck, but

Posted by Zen Of Design [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 4 November 2014, 11:00 pm
Today was my last day at BioWare: Austin.  It was a distinct pleasure to work at one of the finest game studios in the world for 8 years of my

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