One Month of Critical Intel

As you probably know, I’ve been hard at work recently on Critical Intel, my new weekly column at The Escapist.  It’s been a great month packed end-to-end with work that makes me really proud.  Frankly, having a dedicated space each week has made me understand what it’s like when dogs go to a leash-free park.  First they stand there staring at their owners, blinking, as if to say: “What?  I can go anywhere I want now?”  Then they’re off like a shot, tearing over the scenery as quickly as possible, making giant leaps and running circles.

I’ve always had enough ideas about games to write an article every week, the two things I didn’t have were the time and the dedicated venue.  Of the two, the venue was the most difficult part (I can make time) and I can’t thank the good people at Escapist enough for giving me my own little corner of the web.

So what, exactly, is Critical Intel?  Broadly, it’s a column that examines the overlap between videogames and the real world.  That covers a lot of territory – one week I might be talking about an historical event or legend featured in a game, another week I might be discussing military or medical uses of game technology, while I finish up the month with an in-depth look at the trouble games get into overseas.  It will be always intelligent, always well-researched, and often international.  My goal is to take you a level deeper.

Just to give you a sampler, of the three articles that have come out so far, the first was about game censorship in China, the second discussed how games misrepresent the Mexican Cartel War, and the third addressed whether Assassin’s Creed III‘s DLC pack passes muster historically.  The fourth, out this Thursday, is about something entirely different.

Writing an article every week – while holding a full-time job – has been a real challenge, but the warm response all of you have given Critical Intel makes all the long nights and sacrificed weekends worthwhile.  Thanks to everyone for sharing this new journey with me, and I’m looking forward to showing you interesting new stuff every week – bringing need-to-know information to the people who need to know everything.

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2 responses to “One Month of Critical Intel

  • aveces

    Rob, I just wanted to let you know that your articles are always a breath of fresh air. I found your little corner through Extra Credits’ facebook post and have been indulging in each article ever since. I especially enjoyed your Mexican Cartel War article as it was a sincere, mature, grounded, informative, and honest perspective on games x real world. You, along with those at Escapist and EC, never underestimate your audience and thank you for taking the time and effort in each piece. SO much research! We are lucky – keep being awesome!

    • robwritespulp

      Thanks so much for your comment aveces. I really appreciate it when people let me know that they like the column and I’ve been getting a lot of positive feedback.

      The Cartel War column is something that’s been stewing a long time, ever since I wrote an article back in 2010 on the State of Chihuahua banning GRAW 2. It’s an important discussion that I don’t feel people are really engaging with in any substantive way since most game journalists are – by no fault of their own – not that well equipped to handle international political topics (though this is rapidly changing). In fact, lack of that kind of discussion is why I got into game journalism in the first place. In the end, Critical Intel is just me writing the kind of articles I’d like to read.

      Thanks again for your comment, and thanks for reading!

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