November 2020 media
Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity: The best compliment I can give Age of Calamity is that I’ve spent any time with it at all, given that I have an unfinished Trails game on my plate. I’m no musou devotee, though I enjoyed the first Hyrule Warriors and Fire Emblem Warriors well enough. The Breath of the Wild connection really elevates this one, though. The story is kind of whatever so far, but I’m completely taken in by the overall presentation. Even just hearing some of that sound design again is enough to get inside my soul. That world has its hooks in me for good, I think.
Solutions and Other Problems: Allie Brosh’s Hyperbole and a Half still feels recent somehow—maybe because I still see a “clean ALL the things!” emoji regularly on my work Slack—but it’s actually from back in 2013, during the age when it still made sense to both use Blogspot and publish a book based on Blogspot content. Solutions and Other Problems is her new book, out this year, and it is devastatingly good. She’s still as funny as ever, but also leans more heavily into personal tragedy—perhaps like Hyperbole with some of the aura from the manga My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness.
Objectified: I rarely watch movies, but I did enjoy Helvetica years ago and always meant to check out the other films in the so-called Design Trilogy. Since then I’ve actually become a designer, and this was an interesting view into what the world is like for the more visible subfields of that broad discipline. While there are obvious and fundamental differences between industrial design and game design, I could also identify some areas of shared practice—particularly around the focus on user experience and user research. Our common ground is in figuring out how things ought to work.