First Person Podcast Episode 29

Reflections on Surviving Subterfuge

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Will FPS ever be the same?

Probably, but the experience nonetheless caused the participants to consider the porous nature of the magic circle. How can we navigate the rhetoric of games that reward betrayal, dishonesty and colonial domination, all of which run contrary to our own principles? To what extent do we perform ourselves in the games that we play? How can we be ethical actors while still engaging in a spirit of play? Continue Reading

Remodeling the Labyrinth

Player-led Efforts to Update GMT's War on Terror Wargame

“The Sun Rises on the Middle East,” accessed at BoardGameGeek. Labyrinth’s gameplay models real-world current events.

In October and November of 2010, thousands of copies of GMTs Labyrinth: The War on Terror, 2001-? made their way from warehouses in California to distributors and customers around the world. Focusing on the contemporary conflict known as the Global War on Terror, Labyrinth stood in contrast to standard historical fare offered to commercial wargame enthusiasts: conflicts in which dozens, if not hundreds, of years spanned the gulf between player and subject. Labyrinth’s subject matter both raised concerns and prompted accolades. Matthew Kirschenbaum, in a nuanced critique at Play the Past, stated that “despite its many aspects that call out for critical scrutiny, I believe Labyrinth has been good for strategy gaming, demonstrating the vitality of board games for exploring material that big-budget computer games can’t or won’t touch.” Continue Reading