Kieron Gillen's workblog




"Look me in the eyes and tell me what you want. No, not that. That's the first thought off the top of your head, a cheap and easy lie to dodge the question. It's not the real truth. Here's a hint for your mental rambling: why did you pick up this PC games magazine? Why are you reading this review? What do you want?

Now hold that thought. We're going to be relatively restrained for the majority of this review, but we'll come back to that little point later. It's an important point to remember, as it's all that really matters here. For those who don't frequent online games forums compulsively, the Invisible War demo was released online in late November. The reaction to it, in certain circles, has been somewhat akin to Hitler turning up to an Anti-Nazi League rally. People are angry. There have been rumours of mobs forming in middle America brandishing "WARREN SPECTOR=ANTICHRIST" signs and burning effigies of lead designer Harvey Smith. They say Invisible War is a betrayal of Deus Ex. Strong words."

My controversial and pretentious review of Deus Ex: Invisible War from Gamer, republished at Gamesradar. More in link. Clearly.

"The European Games Developer Conference is many things. Often intriguing. Often illuminating. Often - though perhaps not often enough - outspoken. And often about better ways to get pixel shader effects even shadier. But it's rarely as out-and-out controversial as Jason Rubin's keynote address this year: "Great Game Graphics... Who Cares?"

If you rely purely on your PC for your gaming pleasure, you're unlikely to know much about Jason Rubin, or the company he heads, Naughty Dog. They're responsible for the entire series of Crash Bandicoot games on the PlayStation and, recently Jak and Dexter on the PS2. They've sold 25 million copies, which explains the lovely tan Mr Rubin possesses. Their secret - and I paraphrase him directly - is that they made sure that their games were better looking, by far, than the nearest competition while ensuring their games were just entertaining enough: great graphics plus a reasonable enough game. This led to the aforementioned mega sales. While the original Jak and Daxter was hardly a failure, it didn't break the three million boundary, despite being one of the most technically impressive games of its type. From this, Jason has elaborated an argument that graphics alone won't be enough to sell a game anymore. He posits two other things that can sell a game - association or novelty. That is, licences, or new stuff. The day of Great Game Graphics has passed."

My Graphics RIP feature-cum-editorial-cum-thought-piece from the current issue of Gamer, for some reason stuck up on Gamesradar while the issue is still on sale. More in link. Again.




Kieron Gillen's Workblog, foo'.