“Words on Things”
Certain works of art remain overlooked and incomplete until the moment their fertile void draws forth an unanticipated meaning, suddenly completing the long stagnant process. Or something like that.
“Life as Non-Gamers (And How That Worked Out)”
Lots of parents threaten to take away all their kids games -- but we actually did it. The results were not what we expected.
“My Double Life as Dragonborn”
Discussion will focus on “The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim,” drawing parallels between video games, art and life.
“The Search for Desiderata”
One of the most popular—dare we say best-selling?—poems of the 20th century, “Desiderata” is unabashed in its New Agey wisdom. “Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence,” it begins. In our current age of portentous manifestos, “Desiderata” serves as a template for making grand statements we can all up-vote. But where did it come from, who wrote it, and how did it get so famous?"
"What's Your Favorite Cookie...or Why I Like the Girl Scouts"
There is a lot to like about the Girl Scouts besides just our cookies.
“Aspiring to Addiction: Game Design and Compulsive Play”
Game designers tend to embrace the addictive properties of games, openly striving to create systems that ensnare players in ongoing loops of compulsive behavior. Notable examples can be found in many games that adopt the "free to play" business model, which is heavily reliant on encouraging habitual usage patterns in order to extract as much money as possible from players. This talk will explore the ramifications of this approach, from the perspective of a game designer who has worked on a number of free to play titles.