Best Of Member Blogs: From The 'Whoa' Feeling To Pseudo-Choices

Showcasing highlights from Gamasutra's Member Blogs, our weblog writers reflect the great "whoa" feeling we get from certain game mechanics, and the "illusion of choice."
In our weekly Best of Member Blogs column, we showcase notable pieces of writing from members of the game community who maintain Member Blogs on Gamasutra. Member Blogs can be maintained by any registered Gamasutra user, while invitation-only Expert Blogs -- also highlighted weekly -- are written by selected development professionals. Our favorite blog post of the week will earn its author a lifetime subscription to Gamasutra's sister publication, Game Developer magazine. (All magazine recipients outside of the United States or Canada will receive lifetime electronic subscriptions.) We hope that our blog sections can provide useful and interesting viewpoints on our industry. For more information, check out the official posting guidelines. This Week's Standout Member Blogs - My Darling Jumping - Trigger and Environmental Feedback Loop Mechanics (Jose Joao Proenca) For Jose Joao Pronenca, some of the most memorable game mechanics involve the "whoa" feeling, in which the player triggers an action -- such as a jump or a powerslide -- then is granted only limited, indirect control over an avatar for a small period of time. It's one big reason why we love to jump in games. For his effort, Jose will receive a lifetime subscription to Gamasutra sister publication Game Developer magazine. - Design and Criticism: the future of Game Studies (J. Bronaugh Vorderkunz) J. Bronaugh Vorderkunz asks pertinent questions about the future Game Studies as an academic discipline. In order to find answers, he looks at the state of Game Studies today and comes up with eight key points he believes are essential when critiquing a game. - Alessa Gillespie: Child Star or Monster? (Ryan Straight) Ryan Straight brings to attention the writings of UK-based Kingston University's Ewan Kirkland, who explores Silent Hill games and their protagonists, including the "ambiguous monster," Alessa Gillespie. - Infamous And The Illusion Of Choice (Francisco Souki) Gamasutra blogger Francisco Souki returns for another week, this time examining the "illusion of choice" presented within Infamous. Is making the player simply believe he or she is making a meaningful choice good enough?

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