Coming Down Off The Flash Fence

For the last several weeks (or has it been months now?) I’ve watched the Flash wars from a distance. Not for lack of interest but for lack of time. It’s been a busy season around here and for all the rhetoric I think I sensed that for all the headlines I really didn’t have the information I needed to make an informed decision. But I’ve had the chance to get more-or-less caught up and I think I’ve come to a place where I’m willing to come down off the fence.

I think Steve Jobs is right.

App Development and The Fuzzy-Wuzzy Fallacy

In wargaming there is a principle known as “The Fuzzy-Wuzzy Fallacy” and without going into excruciating mathematical detail it’s premise is that quantity relates to quality at a better ratio than you might think…specifically a unit with 2X firepower is not worth 2 opposing 1X units but rather the square root of two because the guy with the BFG9000 can still be pwnd by a single low-tech arrow. [see: Pippin’s comment on Boromir].

How this applies to app development is simple:
App customers are absurdly cheap.

Ergo: multiple, inexpensive, interlocking projects stand a better  chance of making a profit than a single expensive project.

Legion Goes Way Beyond Heavenly But Kicking

LegionSo I ducked out out of house way late the other night to see the new movie Legion. I’m a big fan of Paul Bettany but to be perfectly honest I didn’t go in with very high expectations. I knew there was some mix of angels and demons and guns and you know, that sounded like it might be kinda fun. But I wound up seeing a movie much deeper and much more thoughtful than the previews suggest.

At its heart, Legion is about the line between following God’s heart and following His command. I’m going to just skip any theological issues I might have with the movie because it’s really not a theological movie at all, and yet it’s deeply about the meaning and cost of faith and obedience.

The Book of Eli Pulls No Punches

I slipped out late on Sunday night to catch this new Denzel Wasington movie The Book of Eli. I didn’t really know what to expect but walked away really impressed with a movie that shot unerringly straight at deep divide between faith and religion. And I hope this aint news to you – but the two have nothing in common.

What Happened to the Wild Things?

When my son was born a little over three years agowhere-the-wild-things-are my good friend Mark brought over a selection of books he thought to be essential “must read” tomes for any little boy. Where The Wild Things Are was in there and I’ve read those 200 or so words to Odin  probably a thousand times. We love that book and we love the pictures and my toddler sees no psychological complexity to a boy in a wolf suit. Why then did Spike Jonze feel it necessary to turn it into something all Jungian and dark and disturbing.

Look, every once in a great while I can appreciate a movie like this…once in a great while. My real problem is the way a piece of joy and sweetness and innocence from my life has been hijacked to sell some kind of overburdened hyper-symbolic look into the pathos of a troubled tween.

Arkham Asylum Nearly Flawless

Batman: Arkham Asylum is far and away the best super-hero game I’ve ever played and one of the ten best games overall. This game is what I have always wanted a super hero game to be with a little Tomb Raider, a little Zelda, a little Splinter Cell – these folks did everything right. I’ve…

Manifold Publishing

There is no way that any video game or series of video games can possibly tell the stories we want to tell at Soma Games.
Neither could a graphic novel,
…or a book,
…or a movie.

If ‘the medium is the message’ then we will only have told our stories properly when they are told across multiple media, each used in its proper place to express the proper part of a manifold expression of creativity that ought to transcend any single medium.

Keep Raising The Bar

Christian game developers have toiled in obscurity for all these years largely because we’re broke and making a video game is an expensive proposition. With little access to capital games have struggled with older technology that doesn’t compete with current expectations and anemic (…or totally absent…) marketing budgets. The two factors make the whole enterprise of building a Christian game a daunting task. The Catch-22 of course is that investors want to see some proven indication that a title has a reasonable chance of making a profit but it’s been next to impossible to prove the point when nobody can make a realistically funded effort. (Left Behind notwithstanding…ahem)

But two recent releases have me smiling about things to come. The first is Heaven The Game (which we reviewed here) and the other is Adam’s Venture. Neither game is what you would really call a AAA title and neither plays on a console which is where most of the gaming market is right now, but neither title could have been cheap to make, and that means somebody is starting invest some serious dollars into this niche I’ve been talking about for years.