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Weird combination of ideas. Bridgerton gives me this weird feeling that there is only one man, just played by many different individuals, but I know that there are older ones... John Malkovich, Doctor Who? A world composed of only the same character at different times in their life...
Primordial soup / vibes
June 12, 2024, 11:04:48 PM
regarding starseed pilgrim:

"its like a weird platformer where u plant seeds that grow into platforms and run from encroaching darkness but also there's a lot going on???? it's like. an amazing mix of analytical and intuitive contemplation, and of chill vibes, excitement, and dread"

i read this the other day. recently. and it made me feel something, like, especially the latter half, about form and content.

i have thought about starseed pilgrim for a long time mainly in terms of form. it's a weird platformer where you plant seeds that grow into platforms and run from encroaching darkness and also there is poetry.

but then the second half of this tweet wiggled me out of a certain mind-crevice.

  • analytical and intuitive contemplation.

yes, these are good. what else though.

  • chill vibes,
  • excitement,
  • and dread.

it made me want to think about games like this more... hmm. it's funny how you can take this tweet and map it perfectly to the MDA framework. in order, even! it's wild.
Active Projects / mantra.
June 11, 2024, 09:29:29 AM
(in progress.)
I was reflecting on HANDMADEDEATHLABYRINTH issue 0 in the shower while thinking about haiku games and thinking about war on the games industry. Here are my thoughts.

HMDL is a joke wrapped in a videogame.

I think a lot about videogames and also the industry or whatever, and I had the idea for HMDL a long long time ago. It is a joke of the form, "What if [GAME YOU KNOW], but then [SURPRISE]?"

There's a problem there. I wanted to make that game, I really did, but the joke is at the expense of the game that I wanted to make, reducing it to a joke . . . or worse than that, I think, reducing it to a mere act of passing.

An act of passing. I need to unpack that, but it's the crux of the entire reflection.

There is a book called Game Poems that I love to complain about, but I find myself exploring it and quoting it over and over again. Anyway, here is the part that I will complain about today, or rail against:

Quote from: p81-82? ish?Conceived through the lens of lyric poetry that we have been utilizing, we might say that game poems are artifacts positioned as videogames that are [pg break] short and subjective, make use of poetic address, exist in a ritual space, are hyperbolic, are bound to metaphor, and juxtapose signified meaning with material meaning (keeping in mind that, as in the case of lyric poetry, all of these characteristics are simply tendencies).

Specifically, "positioned as videogames."

Quote from: p105. . . the core material of the videogame poet is the language of videogames: a vast tangled web of visual, auditory, and procedural signifiers, with all of their established ways of signifying (both denotatively and connotatively) in relation to one another and to the world at large.

What I am about to say is not targeted at Game Poems but around it:

issue 0 expended
too much effort
PASSING as a vid-

Quote from: p113. . . intervention in the established language of videogames can be pursued with intention, and that we might consider such work (for lack of other present alternatives) the special domain of the videogame poet, and the game poem.

I think a great deal of my resistance to Game Poems, as a text, has come from a desire to shed videogames entirely, and even the role of "intervener" in videogames is not one I desire. I wish for my shedding to be entire, complete.

In practice I think Magnuson is correct. Or, rather, Magnuson's thesis does direct its fangs towards me and my practice; mine, too, is an act of game poetry. I do not want to save videogames. I do not want to change videogames. I just want to make my art. But I cannot avoid the relationship that what I do has to videogames. Through attempting to make videogames and finding some kind of subsidiary practice made of the same parts, it would be accurate to say that my "core material" "is the language of videogames".

Oh, I'm losing my point. I'll post this and think about anything else I have to say afterwards.

- 36 to 40 dried bamboo leaves (2 to 3 leaves per zongzi)
- 5 cups uncooked short grain sticky rice (also called glutinous rice, or "sweet rice")
- 2 tablespoons light soy sauce (plus 2 teaspoons)
- 2 teaspoons salt (plus 1/2 teaspoon)
- 2/3 cup raw peanuts
- 1 pound pork belly (450g, cut into 12 equal pieces)
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons shaoxing wine
- 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1 teaspoon oil
- ½ cup water
- 6 salted duck egg yolks
- 3 Chinese sausages


Previous day

1. First, soak the leaves overnight. The next day, wash and rinse each leaf front and back, keeping them in a large bowl or tub of water until wrapping time so they don't dry out.

2. Soak the sweet rice overnight. The next day, drain completely. Mix the soaked, uncooked rice with 2 tablespoons light soy sauce and 2 teaspoons salt in a large bowl and set aside.

3. Soak the peanuts overnight. The next day, boil for 5 minutes, drain, and set aside.

4. In a bowl, toss the pork belly with 2 teaspoons light soy sauce, 1/2 teaspoons sugar, 2 teaspoons shaoxing wine, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and white pepper. Marinate overnight. The goal of this step is to make the pork belly slightly too salty, because the rice will absorb the excess salt, giving the zongzi its distinctive savory, umami flavor.

Day of

5. The next day, heat the oil in a wok over medium heat. Cook the pork belly for a few minutes before adding the water. Cover the wok with the lid, and cook for 5-10 minutes until the liquid is gone. Remove from the wok and let cool.

6. Cut the egg yolks in half. Cut the sausages into 12 equal pieces. Set aside in separate bowls.

7. Follow the step-by-step photos to wrap the zongzi. Remember: You must cut away at least half an inch off the bottom of every leaf you use. Make sure the kitchen twine won't break easily. To do this, it's best to wet the twine first by soaking it in a bowl of water. It's best to tie one end of the twine to an anchor point or kitchen fixture (e.g. you kitchen sink), because you will only have one hand to tie the zongzi. Your other hand will be holding the zongzi. Or have someone help you out! If leaves rip anywhere during the wrapping process, you'll need to start over and discard the ripped leaf. That's why I call for more leaves than is technically needed. Some of the leaves are bound to rip.

8. To cook the Zongzi, get a medium-sized pot and neatly nest the zongzi inside, avoiding large gaps. Put a large plate directly on top of the zongzi to weigh them down. Fill the pot with cold water, until the zongzi are submerged. Place the pot on the stove over medium high heat. Once the water boils, turn the heat to low/medium-low, and let it simmer for at least 7-8 hours. *INSTANT POT NOTE! there is another recipe that says using an instant pot you can do 90 minutes.

9. The water should be "moving" while simmering, but there should be no large roiling bubbles. You must check the pot fairly often to make sure the zongzi are always submerged in water. Only add boiling water to adjust the water level—do not add room temperature or cold water. Keep a kettle of hot water on the stove so that you're prepared throughout the 7-8 hour cooking time.

10. Once the 7-8 hours is up, eat the zongzi while they're hot! Sweet zongzi can be enjoyed at room temperature, but savory zongzi are really the best when they're steamy and delicious.
Active Projects / beepbox vibe songs. (ongoing.)
June 04, 2024, 02:39:51 PM
a place for posting every beepbox song i write.

- odd rhythms, reminds me of etrian odyssey a bit. chill.

- listening at the door (beepbox ver), originally made in musagi and posted in "THE PURPOSE OF MAKING GAMES AS ART (nobody can give you permission to love)"

- whistling, has a sort of spooky vibe, is pretty over the top
Active Projects / geomoth, an adventure game
June 03, 2024, 10:31:18 AM
I have a problem with geomoth as well as the underlying "adventure game manifesto" upon which it was founded, but before i get into that let me get all my eggs in one basket.
PROCEDURES / Doing one thing a day
May 30, 2024, 08:04:27 PM
Quote from: @GateEightyEight. . . if i'm happy i stay up too late bc stuff interests me, and if i'm sad i stay up too late to try to find the joy that i felt i was denied during the day. i basically only get enough sleep when i'm unenthused about life.
~ tweet
Sometimes . . . I forget what it's like to solve a problem, and I mean really solve a problem. I want to record this so that I have a reference point for what it's like to recognize a problem and solve it appropriately, completely.
Active Projects / first moon's reflections
May 28, 2024, 11:33:52 AM
make a thing every day in the spirit of 31 unmarked games, but not necessarily a game; respect the work you've done; see (the badly named) wholeness of action

when the moon becomes new, stop gathering; start connecting and reflecting

release something on the night of the full moon.

do not make plans.
Primordial soup / wholeness of action
May 28, 2024, 10:53:54 AM
- sylvies sylvieish games ("Scattered Self")
- my comments in 'roleplaying games', esp on self-playing ("to play a role so well you need not make any decisions at all . . .")
- sylvies discord thoughts on improvisation
- (collaboration)

~ backlink first moon's reflection
Active Projects / the train to nowhere
May 24, 2024, 03:42:32 PM
short narrative game in four parts
- the train(s) to nowhere (and subsequent bus to nowhere)
- the birthday of '24
- burning plastic and choking on the smoke
- chris, no sonia, and the short long way home
Active Projects / diary games
May 23, 2024, 09:59:50 PM
games like Hawk Cliff Today, but especially like a polaroid of space, games full of specific memories, specific emotions.

remember his belligerence, remember miscommunication, remember stealing your party's loot, your friend's dessert, away from the assembly in the evening.

remember your moments of being human before they are gone, before you are gone.
Active Projects / roleplaying games
May 23, 2024, 06:55:47 PM
it seems so obvious. i'm looking for a material that emerses the player back into their selves, into their life experiences, their imaginations . . . i've been reading a big fantasy novel series and many comics . . . i like setting . . . i like players taking responsibility for their own experience . . . i've been thinking about doing something on the web, although that doesn't directly connect people to each other there is definitely an aspect of it which involves connecting people to each other, the web being the great connector, and i've often thought about multiplayerness . . . and my last three favourite games were Grandline (not googlable), Roadwarden, and Slay the Princess . . .

it's obvious.
Reviews & reflections / The Waking Knot Demo
May 23, 2024, 02:14:12 PM
The Waking Knot (demo) on Steam

My advance apologies to Stan and Bill.

More than ever this reflects on my own distance from games rather than being any judgement upon this game's creators.
when i was part of 10mg wombat shared his intentions publicly. he said in the interview linked: "10mg is a psyop. The goal is not to make money, or to immediately convince people that short, experimental games are worthwhile. It would be great if that happened, but 10mg is primarily about shifting the overton window of the game length discussion."

i think that in some sense i have adopted his mission. if anyone has been psyop'd, it's me.
Reviews & reflections / Snow Game
May 22, 2024, 03:45:36 PM
Jack sent Snow Game to the letterclub crew, and so I played it.

Some weeks ago I happened to check out increpare's... twitter? cohost? I'm not sure, it was on some feed-based medium. I saw that increpare was making a lot of puzzle games, to a similar or greater degree of prolificiency (prolificness?) as me. And, playing them, I noted: This is a lot of puzzle games.

Something I noted about myself is that after about, I don't know, five or ten daily platformers, I get tired of making platformers, and I want to do something else with it. But then, I do something else with it, and I think: Ah, this isn't really as good as making a platformer the right way. Whatever that means.

So, when I played Snow Game, I thought... this is that type of creative work. A quivering. A vibration along a straight line to nowhere.

A certain idea from game poems comes to mind. My summary of one thing that the book identifies as interesting to the author -- and to be clear about my own position, I do not like it -- is that the game poet plays with the extant language of videogames in order to do something with it. Magnuson writes "Videogames have established visual and auditory vernaculars that are ripe for poetic intervention" and I think I can see increpare here at that same sort of "play."

To me, it is not play. It is struggle, it is pain, it is disappointment.

I wish now that I could say I have lost interest in the language of videogames and therefore lost interest in such intervention, such struggle, such play. But I am in too deep. I have spent decades playing and making games. I know too much to leave it all behind. At the same time, I do not think I am interested in playing with games. To play requires a mutual respect, a willingness to cooperate on some level, a certain collaborative spirit.

No, my relationship to games is becoming something altogether different. So I am not a good collaborator. There are other relationships one can productively have with a thing.

See: The Art of War
Close reading / The Art of War
May 21, 2024, 12:10:51 PM
regarding Sun Tzu's
"The Art of War"

reading announced here i guess: https://x.com/droqen/status/1792965930001002595
March - I created droqever.com and shared some of the initial games with paradise.

but it's interesting to note my thought process evolving steadily through the few tweets I make...

November 25 last year, in response to which Brin suggested Kinopio, I twote: " I'm trying to find... a software or service to keep track of multiple projects in a way that's publicly followable and user-friendly. Not sure I can fully explain myself, but is there anything like this? Like . . . GitHub but for more types of projects than just code stuff? // And *ideally* something I can self-host or customize to my liking to a significant degree?"