Full Course: Alpha Protocol

Full Course is a new series I’m trying out where I go really in depth on a given game, show, or whatever. If you have any thoughts on how this article came out, feel free to leave a comment! I’d love feedback on this one.


Western RPGs are rarely my thing. If they’re fantasy, it’s incredibly tired fantasy cliches (dragons, elves, orcs, ect), and when they’re something else, something about the mechanics rarely click with me (though I do hope that will change as I try getting into Deus Ex, which I’ve only toyed with in the past). But I ended up playing eighty hours of Alpha Protocol for two weeks straight, four plays finished. So clearly, it’s doing something right. Alpha Protocol taps into a lot of common western RPG tropes and design styles, especially from Deus Ex, but there’s more going on there, and the context to its systems changes everything.

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We Know The Devil and the Queer Struggle

Today’s article was commissioned by a regular reader. If you’d like to have me write about something of your choosing, consider commissioning me! Details here, willing to discuss subjects not covered on that page. Use the e-mail listed there.
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2015’s We Know The Devil is a very gay game. It’s got magical girls, it’s got lesbians, it’s got anime art styles, it’s got a vague sense of nostalgia, heck, it even has angst! So much angst! Queer stories have a habit of going deep in angst, and for good reason. In case you’ve been watching nothing but Fox News and Info Wars for years, queer people don’t have it so good in, well, any country. But while the whole having equal rights as human beings thing is a significant issue, We Know The Devil is way more interested in more mundane situations and how they have a habit of causing emotional problems for queer people dealing with hardships, and how those issues tend to intertwine and become something horrific.

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