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How game developers employ specific techniques to prompt habitual player behaviour

Neopets wasn’t my first venture into gaming but was certainly one of the first I grew addicted to. The addiction was definitely not occurring by chance as the developers were enacting a method that used to be known as “stickiness” to suck in even a kid like me in the mid-2000s.

When sleeping over at my friend’s house on the weekends, we’d stay up until midnight — a big deal for eight-year-olds, because we were essentially sneaking downstairs to the family desktop computer without being caught — because we thought this is when we had better chances to find Neopets


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A mystery that, even years later, remains elusive

For avid horror gamers, you’ll have at least heard of Hideo Kojima’s P.T., but whether or not you’ve had the privilege to play it is a different question. Its removal from the PlayStation Store was seemingly an unfortunate result of the disagreements between Kojima and Konami, which is a real shame because it’s considered one of the scariest masterpieces of all time.

P.T. stands for “playable teaser” and as such, it was an excellent preview of what fans could expect for the then-upcoming (and now-canceled) Silent Hills project. But it operated almost as its own standalone game, taking approximately a…


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How you view the game’s gacha system depends in part on whether or not you view loot boxes as gambling

Twitch streamer Lacari hung his head in dismay as he continued to spend dollar after dollar trying his luck at Genshin Impact’s gacha system. Here, they’re known as Wishes and are used to attempt a small chance at getting rare characters and items. The main draw that Chinese developer MiHoYo is going for in its newest free-to-play title is for players to open up their wallets for a chance at four and five-star characters that they won’t otherwise have access to.

Genshin Impact is the newest free-to-play open-world action RPG reminiscent of Breath of the Wild. So much so, in…


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Kingdom Hearts’ biggest pitfall is the same charm that brought it to success in 2002

I am not going to attempt to unravel the story so far for the fans who might need it, partially because I myself am still very lost, even after having experienced most of the games first-hand. But if there’s one plot point that anyone who’s played a main-series Kingdom Hearts game can follow, it’s the relationship between Sora and Kairi.

Betwixt all of the narrative issues found within Kingdom Hearts, it’s the epitome of childishness that sticks out the most. And while it is that childish quality that made gamers fall in love with it nearly two decades ago, it’s…


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Players are increasingly seeking out the video game equivalent of comfort food

Rather than creating new and original art in any medium, the 2000s have become a generation of reusing franchises, sticking to stories and characters that people know and love. Instead of original IP, it’s more popular to see yet another Batman movie or a remake of an ‘80s horror flick. The 21st century is about regurgitating the aesthetics of past decades and labeling them as “retro,” and consumers eat it up.

Lately, it seems like every player is hoping for a remaster, remake, or even just a simple port of the most beloved games from their childhood. This trend is…


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Picture from Zan on Unsplash

Medium is a wonderful tool for both young and veteran writers looking to monetize their craft. Rather than applying to become a staff writer for websites or pitching articles to your favorite publication, all you have to do is write a post, almost like blogging. If you want to make money off of it, become part of the Medium Partner Program. From then on, with the right skills, you can build yourself to become a professional writer.

But with the goal to earn money from writing objectively-driven content comes the dull but necessary task of fact-checking information. …


In the height of another wave of police brutality, the gaming industry needs to use its platform to speak out on the injustice and educate.

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The year is 1912. In our right hand, we hold a baseball. On the stage in front of us stands a restrained interracial couple: a white man and a black woman. We must either throw the baseball at the couple or throw it at the announcer. The choice is ours.

This, of course, is the fictional world of Bioshock Infinite, a title long looked towards for its symbolism of racism in America. By creating the satirical world of Columbia, it faces the harsh reality that xenophobia in the U.S. stems from the country’s religious background, a truth many would rather…

Roni Maca

Reader, writer, small fighter.

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