If you ever need evidence of how profoundly sexist the mainstream gaming press is, you don’t need to look any further than the alleged rise and fall of point-and-click adventure games.
Everybody knows what a point-and-click adventure game is, right? You walk around pre-rendered environments looking for hidden objects and talking to quirky NPCs, then use those objects to solve inventory-based puzzles. They’re usually colorful, often comedic, and tend to have little or nothing in the way of twitch gameplay - fun for the whole family.
Now, the narrative the gaming press would have us believe is that, following the golden age of Sierra and LucasArts back in the late 80s and early to mid 90s, point-and-click adventure games suffered a sharp and seemingly irreversible commercial decline, essentially vanishing from the gaming scene until they were revived by the heroic efforts of outfits like Telltale Games and guys like Tim Schafer in the late 00s.
The trouble is, that never actually happened.
Oh, don’t get me wrong: point-and-click adventure games are enjoying something of a renaissance at the moment, and the names I just dropped deserve a lot of credit for that.
No, the part I have trouble with is the alleged interregnum between the reigns of LucasArts and Telltale. The fact of the matter is that point-and-click adventure games never died.
The chronology just doesn’t add up. To pose a few obvious examples:
The Nancy Drew series, a point-and-click adventure franchise as old-school as they come, put out over a dozen titles during the early 00s.
Funcom’s Dreamfall: The Longest Journey was enormously
successful, both critically and commercially, during a period when the gaming press would have us believe the genre was almost wholly
Likewise, the Dream Chronicles series managed three sequels during a period when point-and-click adventure games allegedly weren’t a thing.
Sure, a lot of these games weren’t sold via specialty gaming stores, instead appearing primarily on the discount software shelves at Target and similar stores - but then, that’s a matter of how you frame it, isn’t it? With a slight change in perspective, being relegated to the Target discount shelf becomes maintaining a strong presence in mainstream retail channels during a span when virtually all other games were increasingly confined to specialist hobby outlets.
So the question becomes: why was the gaming press claiming that point-and-click adventure games were dead when the genre was clearly alive and kicking?
I strongly suspect that the answer to that question lies in what the Nancy Drew franchise, the Dream Chronicles series and Dreamfall all have in common: female viewpoint characters and an explicitly female target audience.
None of that stuff counts because it’s for girls.
When the gaming press talks about the revival of the old-school
adventure game, they’re specifically talking about point-and-click
adventure games for boys.
When FPSes began to dominate the young male gaming audience in the mid 90s, point-and-click adventure games saw the writing on the wall, and shifted their target audience en masse to young girls. And it worked fantastically - but as far as the gaming press was concerned, that was high treason.
There was a problem, though. You see, being a fan of point-and-click adventure
games - particularly the kind with really obtuse puzzles - was once trumpeted as the badge of a “serious” gamer. There was far too much male gamer identity invested in the genre to simply turn around and say “well, they’re not real games anyway”, which is what usually happens when a genre finds a strong female audience.
And so the great myth of The Death of the Adventure Game was founded. That way, the gaming press could continue to lionise the point-and-click adventure games of the past while straight-up refusing to acknowledge the existence of the genre in its new, girl-targeted form.
These people are so sexist that they literally spent over a decade grandly eulogising a genre of games that was, in fact, alive and well rather than accept the blindingly obvious truth: that adventure games didn’t need male gamers to survive and thrive.
I’ve been going through my physical reader letters slowly this week, trying to diminish the pile (guiltily: I am answering letters mailed to me back in November), and I noticed that a lot of them said “PLEASE never stop writing!” I always sort of smiled and thought, yay that’s nice but also why would I ever stop writing because please I’d be a crazy person not writing and this is the best job.
I didn’t figure it out until one of them actually asked me to never stop writing — and then said “unlike _____ and her _______ series!” The thing is, I knew _____. _____ was a friend whose series got canceled because the publisher didn’t think it was selling well enough to continue publishing it.
So I just wanted to say — you guys know that, right? A lot of you are writers, too, so you probably do. Writers don’t want to stop writing, usually. We want to keep publishing books. So if a series suddenly stops before your eyes or an author goes silent, don’t automatically shout at the author. In a lot of cases, that author is quietly trying to sell another book to a publisher.
I’m lucky to have books lined up in front of me to write, and people who want to publish them, but trust me: it is a very, very rare and glorious thing in this uncertain business. Please support the series you love so the publishers keep them alive, and also, please don’t be vexed at the authors if they stop in the middle of series — they might be as upset about it as you are.
Erm, except for the last book in the Books of Faerie series. Feel free to yell at me for that. Because that one is my fault. And I have left you hanging and continue to and this is my sorry-but-not-sorry-enough-to-do-anything-about-it-yet face.
My favourite thing about the “keep it. It suits you” line is that Finn is like so sorry n worried poes mad and poes just heart eyes, like he stops mid sentence to point out Finns wearing his jacket he’s so pleased, what a gay
oh goD I was checking this family into the hotel and halfway through my welcome script I looked over and thought their kid was holding a stuffed flying bison so I stopped mid sentence to enthusiastically point over at the poor kid and yell “APPA!” but it turns out it was just an ugly old teddy bear and the mom was very confused and the grandfather was very confused and the kid was very confused and i was dead inside
It’s taken 60-some episodes to get to this moment of Regina opening her heart, so we’re gratified the audience came with us on that ride.
- Eddy Kitsis.
And here is my problem with Outlaw Queen. I’ve been on this ride for 60+ episodes and I want the end story to be worth it and I don’t feel Robin is. He still feels to me like a mid-point in the story, another step in her opening her heart up before we reach the big gratifying moment.
We’ve all been on this ride for 60+ episodes and I have to believe that the pay-off will be more than a rushed quickly added in story (which it is - they said that they had their plan for Regina from the beginning, Robin was a quick change added in at the last minute - just look at 2x19 where there was no tattoo). The thought has not been there since the beginning with OQ. Robin has not what we’ve been building to for 60 episodes.
What has been there from the beginning?
Regina, Emma and Henry.
Over 60 episodes I have watched these relationship develop in amazing ways and I hope they will continue to do so. At its core the show has been about this family.
I’ve been on this ride Eddy is talking about and I’ve seen what they’ve been building and I can’t believe that the end of the ride will be Regina and Robin. I can’t because it isn’t what that ride has been about.
The ride has been about Regina opening her heart up to love, redeeming herself in her own way, going from enemies to reluctant allies to friends with the mother of her child and finding a family.
None of that has been about Robin.
To me he is not the end of the ride. He is a just a loop in the ride before you reach the conclusion.
I watch Once and I know Regina’s ride is not over, I have to believe that there is something more, that her endgame happiness is the story I have watched for 60+ episodes.
While playing with several new players and a new DM on a pre made adventure we got to the mid point of the dungeon. We opened a crypt in a large room off of a small corridor. A ghost comes out to talk to us.
Not paying attention and more focused on walking to the other room for another beer I say under my breath: “Tell him to suck my D*** ”
DM: “ummm.. okay. Roll a D20”
Me: “Wait what? I was kidding!”
DM: “Roll a D20”
Me: “Dont make me do this…” (Rolls a Nat 20)
Everyone has burst in to laughter at this point. We can assume what happened with the remainder of that situation!
If you understand or if you don’t If you believe or if you doubt There’s a universal justice And the eyes of truth Are always watching you
Libra is the cosmic energy of justice and associates with morality, righteousness, and objectivity. Revered in both myth and material, the judge is an esteemed member of society, capable of generating law bound by conscious impartiality and morale. On a shaking tightrope, the Libra is constantly striving for balance, easily shaken by a hidden sensitivity and sharp intellect. There is a natural diplomacy the Libra thought process follows, constantly integrating multiple perspectives and attempting to find the neutral mid point. This can be maddening and chaotic inside for the Libra, where they are forced to insert incredible judgment amongst conscience and concern. Libra and the 7th house rules the lower court, legislation, and legality. Saturn exalts in Libra, and Saturn governs all forms of Karmic Law, authority, justice, and diplomacy. These domains of life express cohesively in the Libra archetype.
Libra self mediates with highly developed righteousness. And Libra is an incredible dreamer, but intense psychological precision must be inserted into every decision or judgment. The use of justice systems, contracts, and law provides the social cohesion and bliss Libra envisages, because equality and virtue becomes rule. Libra is not where law becomes corrupt or amoral. Libra is the purest expression of bringing oppositions into balance, restoring inequality, and maintaining peace through divisions of principles. They retain all the cheques and balances in order and reins in the laws upon which civilised society conducts itself. The function of the Scales is to balance the ‘system’. The Egyptians saw the sacred Scale of Ma’at. Ma’at as the goddess of balance, justice, truth, and order. It was She who kept the universe from drifting into chaos. At death, a human’s heart was measured on Her scales against a feather. This determined if the individual had lived harmoniously with natural laws and could move on to the next realm. Souls too heavy were immediately devoured by demons. The responsibility of Ma’at expresses through Libra, who upholds this grand cosmic duty with grace. Libras conceive the undercurrent of universal justice and recite this through thought and action.
Libras do not believe that calling out inequality or sexism makes one a victim, but is rather empowering and declaring of social destruction. The young Libra can live in an unruly world of wild oppositions in which they swing wildly between. The scales come into balance with age, experience, self reflection, and developing a sense of proportion with the use of discrimination and judgment. When the scales are not balanced, the Libra can become heavy hearted, reactive, vulnerable, sad, and lonely, while the mind is in high, chaotic flight. Intuition must be weighed with intellect to bring pure morale, retribution and righteous answers to light. There is a sensual nature of Venus that glosses the airy Libra mind, it gives Libras an ability to see a beautiful or reformed society that they promote with natural law. The Libra scales tend to tip on the side of other and away from the self, expressing their devotion to people and decency. As God’s appointed judge of the cosmos, in divine eyes Libra is forever your honour.
Card Text: +2: Look at the top card of target player’s library. You may put that card on the bottom of that player’s library.
0: Draw three cards, then put two cards from your hand on top of your library in any order.
-1: Return target creature to its owner’s hand.
-12: Exile all cards from target player’s library, then that player shuffles his or her hand into his or her library.