Community Collab: Video Game Literary Classics 101

The Prompt
Students all over the world have to read certain classic literature in school such as: Hamlet, Lord of the Flies, The Great Gatsby, Homer’s Odyssey, etc. With that in mind…

Imagine it’s 2050 and you’re helping design a course for high school students called Video Game Literary Classics. You have been asked to suggest a culturally significant video game (or several) for students to academically analyze and discuss, as they would with classic literature. Which video game title(s) would you choose for literary study and why?

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My Hoard of Dragons

Dragons always meant a lot to me because it was the first thing I ever learned to draw, a skill taught to me by my first, true best friend in my early teens. We would spend hours upon hours reading fantasy novels (also with dragons in them of course), drawing, and playing games like Spyro and Kingdom Hearts. Since then dragons have represented the personification of imagination and creativity to me.

Dragons are in nearly every culture’s mythology, they show up all over the world, and they can look so different – a million different designs from a million different minds, yet represent all the same idea. I’ve collected dragon figures, sculptures, carvings, etc. since I was a kid and I’d love to show you some of them!

This is just an image post, but if there’s any interest I’d be happy to talk about the artists and studios behind some of the pieces, where I found them, what games and films they are from, and so on. I also have a lot more not pictured (don’tjudgemeokay) I can share. Just let me know!

ATTENTION Gaming Bloggers – GAMERS BLOG PARTY meet and greet on Monday the 17th!

On Monday evening at 1pm EST/6pm BST, Later Levels will be hosting a Gamer Blog Party! Come meet your fellow writers and network to your heart’s content.

From the Facebook event: ”Join us for the next blog party in June, where you can share your posts and meet some amazing bloggers in the community. This time there’ll be a ‘fancy-dress’ theme: change your WordPress profile image to your favourite video game character for the duration of the event!”

Stay tuned to Later Level’s blog and Twitter feed for updates, details, and the post location. Be there or be square!

Ethics and Tragedy of Blades in Xenoblade Chronicles 2

One of the central themes of Xenoblade Chronicles 2 is whether or not Blades should be considered a race of people rather than weapons or tools, or if it is fair to treat them as weapons even if it’s their nature. Are they slaves no matter how well their Driver treats them? Just because a Blade and Driver have a good relationship, even a loving one, does that make it right to use them? On the other hand, is it acceptable to leave them dormant forever, in effect unalive?

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Tales From Video Game Retail: Trade in Woes

Trade ins. Dear lord, trade ins. Don’t get me started on those sports games that come out at the same time every year, like FIFA, NBA, Madden, etc. Folks would want to trade in last year’s Madden game and FREAK OUT when they saw the trade in value, having not realized that games depreciate like anything else.

Like, bruh. I’ve got 20 drawers of games back here behind the counter and FIVE of them are FULL of MADDEN, and then I have another shelf of them in the back room on top of that. I could literally put out a dumpster fire with the amount of Madden copies in this store — just dump them in to smother the flames. No one would miss them, and we would still have dozens left! Dozens!

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Vacation photos – We made it to Oahu!

19 hours of airport travel later…
Sunrise over Honolulu
The manic eyes of jetlag
Pearl Harbor
USS Missouri moored in Pearl Harbor
Found this fantastic, janky local eatery
Local dessert favorite: shave ice, ice cream, fruit, with condensed milk on top, 5 million calories
Trippy murals downtown in the art district
Little Japan full of gacha machines!
The view from our balcony
8AM with a cup of coffee.

The Red Strings Club Review; the ghost in the machine

The Red Strings Club is a fantastic little point and click adventure game by Devolver Digital that can be completed in one sitting. Running about three to four hours long but with great replay value, The Red Strings Club provides a quality, succinct cyberpunk package fortified with superb dialogue and sprinkled with the tendency to make your question your own opinions.

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Hawaii Flight delays and Nintendo Switch travel swag

My boyfriend and I are currently living in a John Mulaney standup bit right now. Our first flight was delayed yesterday so badly that it combo broke our two connecting fights and we had to reschedule for today. Delta is like the the EA of airlines, I swear. Our second flight today is delayed too so here we are, aging towards death one delay announcement at a time in Detroit International when we should be on the beach already. “Tragic – they were so young,” the police will say, shaking their heads sadly when they find our desperate skeletons clinging to the slowest charging ports on the planet, Subway and Starbucks litter scattered around us.

First world problems, am I right? Anywho, thought this would be a good time to show y’all my neat travel gear for my Switch. I found this lovely, if pricey leather Switch travel case from WaterField designs a few months ago and it’s amazing. There’s enough room to fit my Switch with an entire battery case on it, plus an extra set of joycons and a bunch of other little items. When I fly I like to move my wallet and essentials over to it and treat it like a purse, while my real purse gets smushed into the bottom of my carry on. The inside is felt with a suede section over where the screen sits. It gets mistaken for a purse with the matching strap I got for it and this pleases me. 🙂

Switchpack by WaterField
Zelda and Xenoblade keychains, plus tiny notepad for draft notes