The Long takes close looks at the games, people, trends and ideas that matter most - from the most obscure to the most mainstream.

Kids & Games: Cube & Star: An Arbitrary Love

Kids & Games: Cube & Star: An Arbitrary Love 

As a diligent father, I always play whatever my kids are playing. I want to know what they’re up to, but I’m also curious at how those games choose to interact with them. Saying that I’m often baffled is an understatement, as I feel that the developers usually greatly underestimate …

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Hitman and the Othering of the Enemy

Hitman and the Othering of the Enemy 

Videogames go to great effort to distance players from the violence they commit. The top-down view in the original Grand Theft Auto is a divider between the player and the grisly acts they are performing. It makes the violence lesser, comical, unreal in some way. When on-screen killing is exaggerated …

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The Breasts: Another Review Of Conception 2: Children Of The Seven Stars

The Breasts: Another Review Of Conception 2: Children Of The Seven Stars 

It could be said that I didn’t much care for The Battle elements of Conception II. But there’s a whole other half to the game: the relationship simulation. Should you slog through the game just to see the character archs play out?
That depends on whether or not you want to …

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The Battle: A Review Of Conception 2: Children Of The Seven Stars

The Battle: A Review Of Conception 2: Children Of The Seven Stars 

Part relationship simulator, part clone, part porn. Most people would stick with the cliched “mixed bag” descriptor, but that’s not only sophomoric, it’s kind, too.
There’s good to be had, but a better word for Conception II: Children of The Seven Stars is schizophrenic.

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LA Noire and the American Institution

LA Noire and the American Institution 

Noir commonly attempts to expose the dark hearts of American institutions. In the novels of Raymond Chandler, and in films such as The Naked City and LA Confidential, corporations, police officers, and a vaporous force describable only as “The System” all come under fire. The antagonists are typically corrupt politicians …

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MOBA Madness!

MOBA Madness! 

With PAX now over, many games have made their debut and are enjoying the light of day. No more NDA means I get to write what I’ve been thinking about for a while: a comparison between MOBAs. I take two familiars – League of Legends and DotA 2 – and …

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Banger: A Review Of LUFTRAUSERS

Banger: A Review Of LUFTRAUSERS 

Vlambeer’s Jan Willem Nijman did a talk recently about what makes games enjoyable. Aimed at developers, the talk was designed to show how, through design tricks, you can get more Bang For Your Buck out of the gameplay. It’s interesting to see that talk, but it’s down right fascinating to see how …

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Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2: The Movie: The Interview

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2: The Movie: The Interview 

[SCENE – AN UNDERSEA LABORITORUM. BRYCE sits before a desk facing a long window overlooking a coral reef. He is wearing a heavy tweed coat and penny loafers. The end credits of Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 flicker on the anachronistic holodeck built into the desk before him. From the …

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One Player Only: A Review Of 10 Second Ninja

One Player Only: A Review Of 10 Second Ninja 

I’m going to do it. I’m going to review 10 Second Ninja without mentioning that game.
And don’t be so daft as to ask, “What game!?” It’s clear–very clear–from the first screen what game will immediately spring to everyone’s mind. This is completely understandable, though. The setup is similar, and the …

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Not As Fun As The Name Implies

Not As Fun As The Name Implies 

WORLD END ECONOMiCA episode.01 is a mess.
The interface is clean and intuitive, the art is gorgeous to the point of breathtaking, and the music is enjoyable and appropriate for the situation (when it’s there). All of these things really appealed to me. The story is interesting, too – the author has …

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