I began writing a blog about games ten years ago this month. I had just moved to Seattle for a new job and I was bursting with the desire to inform people how games were really made, because an understanding of that would explain so much about how these artifacts of culture became what they were, and naturally point to directions we might explore to further unlock the medium’s promise.

It’s difficult to go back and read the oldest entries. The flaws in the writing and the gaps in my knowledge really stand out. I’d like to think I got better over time, but who knows. The first substantial post I made was about the issue of pre-rendered trailers and doctored screenshots in advertising. (The prior year I’d worked on a game at a major publisher where we passed off as screenshots images assembled from multiple actual screenshots, so it was on my mind.) Subsequently I wrote about many other topics, though in hindsight I often returned to the nexus of player choice and narrative design.

As is the fate of many blogs, I wrote here less and less as the years wound on. I was busy at work, and I started to shift the attention I could spare for writing toward more traditionally structured pieces for publications instead of the freeform musings you can get away with on a personal site. And, as that was happening, the idea of blogging itself grew outmoded and mutated into a variety of successor formats.

Finally, my desire to say things about games faded away. In fact, the last couple years of posts here are mostly short stories, humor pieces, and thoughts on films and books. It’s funny to remember the urgency I once felt around talking about games, and to register how dramatically different I feel about it now. It’s not that I’ve lost interest, or become irredeemably embittered and cynical (though I do struggle with those feelings sometimes). The truth is more that it feels like the writing I did has, more or less, served its purpose. It’s often said that writing about something is a good way to determine what you really think about it, and the time I spent hashing out my thoughts on games here helped me find my positions, develop my theory. I know what I think, now, and these days I’m focusing on trying to express that worldview in my works directly.

Thanks, as always, for reading.

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