Like I’ve said in the past, Joseph Anderson is one of my favorite game reviewers. His content usually isn’t directly useful to me because our tastes are so hopelessly divergent that we have very few games in common. Even when we do both play the same game, we come away with very different opinions and seem to want different things out of the games themselves. But while I can’t use his reviews as a guide as to whether I’ll like a game or not, they’re immensely informative in helping me understand what makes these other fandoms tick. If I ever find myself thinking, “How can anyone enjoy X?” then all I need to do is find a Joseph Anderson review of X and I’ll be able to turn the question around and ask, “Dangit, why can’t *I* enjoy X?”
Anyway, here is his two hour(!!) review of Super Mario Odyssey:
This is really interesting because it goes against the grain of what I’ve been hearing from critics. I’m not part of the Mario fandom, so I really only hear about the game from big sites. And according to those kinds of people, Odyssey is an instant masterpiece. But Anderson makes the case that the game is shallow, repetitive, uninspired, and lacking in meaningful challenges.
It’s always a little scary when you stick your neck out and argue with a consensus. I know this because next week I’m going to be starting a series where I do exactly that and I won’t rest easy until I’ve made my case. There’s always the worry you’ll end up arguing with an angry crowd, and that’s no fun.
I know I don’t have a lot of Mario fans here. My audience definitely leans towards PC games in terms of platform, and RPG games in terms of genre. But if you’ve spent time with Odyssey I’d be interested to hear what you thought of it. Are you new to Mario / Nintendo? Did you like Odyssey at first? Did you actually finish it, or did you get bogged down by the busywork repetition?
DM of the Rings
Both a celebration and an evisceration of tabletop roleplaying games, by twisting the Lord of the Rings films into a D&D game.
What is Vulkan?
What is this Vulkan stuff? A graphics engine? A game engine? A new flavor of breakfast cereal? And how is it supposed to make PC games better?
Programming Language for Games
Game developer Jon Blow is making a programming language just for games. Why is he doing this, and what will it mean for game development?
A programming project where I set out to make a Minecraft-style world so I can experiment with Octree data.
Project Button Masher
I teach myself music composition by imitating the style of various videogame soundtracks. How did it turn out? Listen for yourself.