Let’s try something here. Let’s play a little game. As I said before, I’ll probably wrap up Final Fantasy V soon. I want to do Portal afterwards, but that shouldn’t take long. As I hinted, I’d like to give the readers of this blog the opportunity to choose what I play after that. I still don’t want to post the contents of the Stack just yet, though. Instead, I’d like to know what kind of game commentary you want in general. I’ll try to pick the best fit from the Stack, and also bear the results in mind in future choices.

First, let’s choose the genre. You can select more than one option in this one, and there’s a certain amount of overlap. I’ve listed them in order of how many there are on the Stack.
Sorry, there are no polls available at the moment.

Second, how old a game should I play?

What release date?

  • 1986-1995 (the DOS age) (36%, 10 Votes)
  • 1996-2002 (people start designing games for CD-ROMs, hardware 3D acceleration, and Windows 95) (36%, 10 Votes)
  • 2003-2006 (up to five years ago; reasonably modern) (21%, 6 Votes)
  • 1985 and earlier (the dawn of time) (4%, 1 Votes)
  • 2007-2008 (released after I started this blog) (3%, 1 Votes)

Total Voters: 28

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Do you want me to talk about something you’re likely to have heard of, or something likely to be new to you? (Note: None of the examples listed here are actually on the Stack.)

How obscure?

  • Things that I'd expect fans of their specific genres to know about, but wouldn't be surprised if others didn't (No One Lives Forever, Maniac Mansion, Lode Runner) (65%, 17 Votes)
  • Things I wouldn't expect you to have heard of, but it wouldn't surprise me if you had (ZPC, Amerzone, Claw) (23%, 6 Votes)
  • I'd be surprised if you had heard of it (Ken's Labyrinth, Symbiocom, Mimi and the Mites) (8%, 2 Votes)
  • Canonical works that even non-gamers have heard of (Doom, Adventure, Super Mario Brothers) (4%, 1 Votes)
  • Big titles that you probably know about if you're a gamer, even if you don't follow their genre, because they got a lot of coverage in the gaming press (Halo, Myst, Prince of Persia) (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 26

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Finally, what kind of soul do you have?

Should I play a game that I expect to be good or a game that I expect to be bad?

  • Choose something where you don't have strong expectations yet. (54%, 14 Votes)
  • Good. I want analysis of what works and why. (46%, 12 Votes)
  • Bad. I just want to see you amusingly rip into a game's deficiencies. (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 26

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11 Comments so far

  1. katre on 7 Jan 2008

    Yay, more game discussion!

  2. Jota on 7 Jan 2008

    Hey, I’ve heard of Ken’s Labyrinth!

  3. Carl Muckenhoupt on 7 Jan 2008

    I’m surprised!

  4. Merus on 7 Jan 2008

    Consider this a write-in vote for the last question – I’d like you to play something that you suspect you’ll have plenty to talk about. There’s not much to say about why Super Mario works – precise controls, a game that seems linear at first glance but has tons of secrets and non-linearity for those who dig deeper – but for other, more adventurous games, who knows? I know my understanding of game design increased dramatically reading your analysis of the Roberta Williams adventure you played a while back.

  5. Jason Dyer on 7 Jan 2008

    I also have heard of Ken’s Labyrinth. I had to look up the other two.

  6. Carl Muckenhoupt on 7 Jan 2008

    Maybe Catacomb 3D would have been a better choice for that slot.

  7. Merus on 7 Jan 2008

    And I’ve heard of that!

  8. Jason Dyer on 7 Jan 2008

    This has potential for some sort of “stump the forum/blog/IRC channel with the most obscure game you own” game.

  9. Mark J Musante on 8 Jan 2008

    This text box has an arrow pointing at my name!

  10. Carl Muckenhoupt on 9 Jan 2008

    Yeah, I chose that because I sometimes find comment threads on blogs confusing — sometimes it’s hard to tell if the comment goes with the name before it or the name after it. But I suppose putting horizontal lines between comments would serve the same purpose. Maybe I’ll change it to do that instead.

    I think the main lesson of this thread is that it’s easier to come up with an adventure game that no one’s heard of than a FPS that no one’s heard of. (How about The Fortress of Dr. Radiaki? Is that obscure enough?)

  11. Jason Dyer on 10 Jan 2008

    For some reason The Fortress of Dr. Radiaki had endless ads in magazines. (At least the ones that I read.)

    From my present vantage point, the most obscure game in my stack is Dark Earth. I don’t think it makes the cut, though.

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