Published Articles

39 Days Review (PC)

39 Days to Mars is a two-player puzzle-adventure game set in Victorian Britain. The two main characters Sir Albert Wickes and Clarence Baxter have gotten bored of living in their bizarre, multiple story house and decide to take a trip to Mars together. Before they arrive at Mars, they must first fix and prepare their ship, then maintain it on the way. It’s the player’s job, both of them, to work together to keep the ship in one piece, and to take Albert and Baxter to Mars!

Player Genderfluidity in Gaming

It’s been really positive seeing in recent years game developers trying to make their games more inclusive. Things certainly aren’t perfect yet, but as an artform video games seem to be making an effort to include positive female protagonists and LGBT characters at a much faster rate than television or film ever did. These days any video game with a relationship system is practically required to include same-sex relationships. In video games you are often encouraged to portray yourself or your own decisions, a reason why they are popular amongst the trans community. In games you get to choose your gender, it’s never questioned like it may be in the real world, creating a very positive experience.

Banned Board Games: What Shall I Be?

In this instalment of Banned Board Games, we look at a game that was, on reflection, very poorly thought through. The sixties’ career game What Shall I Be? aimed to be empowering to young women, but when looked upon in detail turned out to be incredibly patronizing and undeniably sexist. Especially when compared to Selchow & Righter’s boys version of the same game. These days What Shall I Be? is a great symbol of how far we’ve come in gender equality since its release in 1966, but also an important reminder of how things used to be and how far we still have to go. All will be made clear in the above episode of Banned Board Games!

Golden Joystick Awards 2017

Toward the end of last month, voting opened for the thirty-fifth annual Golden Joystick Awards. The Golden Joystick Awards are the second oldest gaming award and a chance for gamers to show appreciation for their favourite games of 2017. Just twenty-four hours after voting went live on September 21, it was reported that the record number of one-day votes had been beaten. There are twenty-one categories to vote on, including Best Storytelling, Best Indie Game of the Year, Best Multiplayer Game

Anireal: Gaming-Inspired Album Explores Child Abuse

Anireal is a new video-game inspired album by composer Calbert “Schematist” Warner that explores child abuse. The album’s sound, inspired by video games, is based on the life of game developer and friend of Warner, Jessica Fong. “After several conversations with fellow composers and artists, I noticed the topic of mental health was an area that was frequently ignored or unexplored,” Warner said. “While meeting Jessica Fong and hearing her talk so candidly about her abusive past, I realized I ha

Five Poor Life Lessons Taught By The Sims

For almost twenty years The Sims has been a very popular franchise with no signs of slowing down. Currently on its fourth iteration, with many console spinoffs in between, the games have raised a generation of gamers, including myself. If I were to apply those weird statistics where people figure out how much of their life they’ve spent eating or in the bathroom to how much of my life I’ve spent on The Sims, I would probably spiral into a deep depression from which there would be no recovery. Su

Middle-earth: Shadow of War New Feral Tribe Video Revealed

With less than a month left to go before the release of Middle-earth: Shadow of War, Warner Bros. and Monolith Productions have released another trailer for the new game, this time showing off the Feral tribe, an orc faction that tames the various violent beasts of Mordor. According to a press release, the orcs in Shadow of War will be split into different tribes, creating a diverse, living world for the player to explore. The crucial Nemesis System makes a return and will likely help make the

SimBin UK Announces Women and Wheels

Earlier this week SimBin Studios UK announced Women and Wheels, the first ever women-only esports racing competition. SimBin made the announcement at this year’s European Women in Games Conference, held in London. The competition is due for autumn and will draw attention to the roles of women in racing and its history. The female-friendly atmosphere hopes to drive more women into the esports scene. SimBin also promise that a percentage of the revenue will go to female-focused charities, althoug

Nominees Announced for European Women in Mobile Gaming

Yesterday, the organisation Women in Games announced the nominees for the European Women in Mobile Games Awards. The award ceremony will take place on September 6 at the East London Arts and Music Academy in London. The awards at stake include The Grand Prix, the award for the best mobile game made by a woman or a team of women, and the Leadership Award, recognizing the exceptional quality of the work of a mobile game developer. “We’re very pleased with the number of entries we’ve received for

Middle-Earth: Shadow of War Monsters Trailer

While we anticipate October’s Middle Earth: Shadow of War, Warner Brothers has revealed a new trailer for the upcoming game showing new monsters and enemies. The trailer shows plenty of recognisable creatures from J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic Middle-Earth, such as the orcs, trolls, and spiders, as well as some newcomers. Among these is a new enemy, the Spirit of Carnan, a tree or Ent-like being whose purpose and origin has sparked much speculation. The game is a continuation of Middle Earth: Shado

Trans Characters in Gaming

LGBT representation in the media has been a mixed barrel over the years, from overly camp villains and victims to overly sympathetic stories, written by cishet writers. Gay representation has improved in the last few years, although some characters feel far from perfect. But without a doubt the trans community gets the worst of it, with decades of insulting characters written out of ignorance, no matter how well meaning, such as on TV shows Nip/Tuck and Family Guy. LGBT organization GLAAD resear

Marching in Pride: "There is no better definition of the word pride" @ Middlesex University Students' Union

Attending the Pride in London Parade with Middlesex University and MDXSU was honestly one of the best experiences of my entire life. I grew up in a much smaller part of Britain than London, where being LGBT was seen as something inappropriate or unusual. Even when trying to be supportive, people would make dumb mistakes and make me feel uncomfortable. My sexuality and gender identity caused me to become homeless around a year before I came to university, and one of the main reasons I came to u

Dreamed of School Management? Check out Academia: School Simulator

So, have you ever dreamed of building your own school? Well, just in case you have, indie developer Squeaky Wheel announced on their website the release prices for the early access version of their new game Academia: School Simulator. For twenty dollars, you may purchase the base game, downloadable from Steam or as DRM-free from the game’s website. For an extra five dollars, you may purchase both School Simulator and Squeaky Wheel’s first game, Political Animals, which received mostly positive

Thoughts On Think of the Children

Developer Jammed Up Studios, along with Publisher Surprise Attack, have confirmed that their new game Think of the Children will be released this Thursday. The game describes itself as a “parenting simulator” with goals of keeping your children alive and avoiding prosecution of child neglect. “Hauled before the court for bad parenting and endangering the lives of your children, the Prosecutors present a series of events as evidence that will either condemn or exonerate you: a birthday party at

Glo Review

Have you ever played Tetris and thought, “Wouldn’t this be better if the screen was almost completely dark and I couldn’t see what I was doing?” Well, my friend, your incredibly specific prayers have been answered. Glo is a new indie puzzle game from Chronik Spartan, with the opening description line: “What happens in a game where most of it is hidden?” After gaming for fifteen years, I can honestly say that that question falls into the category of: “I wasn’t thinking that, but am now.” And do

Bury Me, My Love – The Story of a Syrian Refugee

French indie developers The Pixel Hunt and Figs along with publisher Playdius and co-producer ARTE have announced the release date for their latest project. Bury Me, My Love is an instant-messaging adventure inspired by real events surrounding the lives of Syrian refugees, to be released on October 26. The game focuses on the story of Syrian refugee Nour and her husband Majd. You play as Majd, who is separated from his wife and forced to stay behind, only able to communicate with her through a

Early Access Review: Party Hard Tycoon

Party Hard Tycoon is the new project developed by Pinokl Games, which according to their website is set in the same universe as their previous game Party Hard, which was relatively well received, receiving very positive steam reviews. In the interest of full disclosure, I have never played Party Hard, so I can’t comment on the franchise as a series and if there is something I’m missing here from not playing Party Hard, then I sincerely apologize. That being said; Party Hard Tycoon was an intere

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