The stealth genre is one that game developers ought to approach with caution. Stealth-centered games are difficult to execute well, and it isn’t difficult to understand why. Any proper stealth game has to balance its genre’s three core gameplay concepts: waiting, sneaking and acting. Getting the equilibrium between the three can be difficult, and it varies from game to game: the Hitman series emphasizes the waiting aspect, and most of one’s time is spent gathering information and artfully setting traps (although one can choose to forego these elements and play instead a mediocre shooter).
Tanya Tagaq, the Inuit throat singer who held a concert at the Buckley Recital Hall last Friday, cracked a light joke shortly before her performance began. Amplified by the microphone that she tore from the stand, her hearty laugh rumbled and echoed in the air. She kicked aside her high heels within seconds of her entrance and seemed completely at ease.
Two weeks ago I reviewed a then-just-released indie game called Anodyne. It was a familiar style of game set in an unfamiliar world, with quirky characters, dreamy landscapes and great music. I took my chances and emailed the developers, Sean Hogan and Jon Kittaka, to see if they’d be open to a brief interview.
In this week’s episode of “Girls,” Hannah, Marnie and Shoshanna stand face-to-face with extreme manifestations of the problems they confront every day. When the episode opens and we see Hannah compulsively opening and closing her door, stuffing chips in her mouth, it seems like yet another overblown, desperate cry for attention. Though the resurgence of her OCD — which, we learn, plagued her in high school — doesn’t cause her to abandon her exasperating capacity for selfishness, it really does take a toll on her.
In late January, I remember scratching my head in elation when I heard that David Bowie, the famously press-shy, eccentric whirlwind of a musician who all but promised us he would never release new music again, announced a new album, “The Next Day.” It was due in March (only two months away!), and a song was made immediately available with no prior announcement.
Two weeks ago, Amherst College bought us a Festival of Ice, complete with fire-blowers, ice-carvers and (what I believe to be) the yummiest Hamantaschen ever tri-cornered. To advertise for the event, a large ice sculpture of a snowflake was placed in front of Val, and Amherst’s Februaries are so cold that the sculpture lasted several days before the sun’s mild rays took their toll.
My parents’ college reunions fall on the same weekend every year. One parent can never visit the other’s, and generally my dad takes the kids to his because we live only an hour from his alma mater. When I was six, my mom decided to take me along on the five hour drive from Philadelphia to Amherst. I can’t say that I remember the reunion itself, but what I do remember is Northampton. More importantly, I remember a specific part of Northampton.