December 24, 2007

White gaming knight

Filed under:Online Communities, Videogames — Lake Desire @ 9:58 am

I’m at my parents’ house for the holidays, and actually have time to go online and catch up on the old blogs I used to read.

Jeff on Feminist Allies writes in What Men Can Do Wednesday: Avoid Being the Hero that the need to be rescued is a gendered act. (And illustrates his post with some lovely pictures of knights and LEGOS.)

We all need to be rescued, from time to time. That’s what friends, lovers and family are for, in part. Our social networks are also, to some degree, our rescuers, our safety nets. There’s no shame in wanting to help people, or needing some help, gender be damned. However, men are trained from boyhood that they not only need to tend to their own needs, but they must rescue those women who need saving.

The “white knight syndrome” is replayed in videogames, where I, the player, embody the white knight in so many of the games I love, Legend of Zelda, the most of last ten years of Final Fantasy games, even Paper Mario. Growing up, living in stories through gaming in a way I couldn’t through reading books or watching films that replayed the same white male heroic trope, no wonder I expected it when I went into videogame communities as a confused and depressed teenager. As I recently wrote about in Cerise, the guys there were more than willing to step up, in a very gendered and possessive way, and be my fucked-up hero. And I wanted it.

And what’s it do to my gender identity, my self esteem, my confidence in my agency, being the hero when I game, and then entering a community of folks who share my hobby and becoming the one that needs to be rescued?


December 21, 2007

No more shit on my blog, I hope

Filed under:Site News, Wii — Lake Desire @ 10:49 pm

I finally updated my antispam plugins. I guess I never thought to, and just kept deleting the 40-60 spam comments and trackbacks that got through. Do the machines advertising the FF10 hentai know this is a gamer site, or throw that stuff all over the internets?’

Meanwhile, in real life, I made it through my first quarter of grad school and teaching unscathed. (I’m studying English.) The first quarter is supposed to be the hardest, but I still had time to join my university’s cycling team, keep volunteering at the foodbank, and maintain my extroverted lifestyle. I did, however, completely miss the passing of NG+’s two year anniversary. Oops.

I have no idea what’s going on in the world of gaming or game blogs. But at least I have been playing the darn things! (In the past I’ve been too busy writing about them.) As I’ve mentioned before, I’m playing Resident Evil 4 again with my copilot Meghann, this time on the Wii. We’re almost done and get to play the Assignment Ada mission soon. (We played RE4 on GameCube the first time, which left it out for some reason.)

I also borrowed Super Mario Galaxy from one of my classmates. I’m going to write a review for Cerise, but a preview: it’s an even more innovative stoner game that Katamari, but hella boring to play alone. My roommates and I have been working together on the same save file. Great bonding, and the second player even gets some action with the Wii remote.


November 5, 2007

New Cerise Issue

Filed under:News, Personal, Writing — Lake Desire @ 9:07 pm

The November issue of Cerise is out today! It’s sex themed, and I’m not especially into talking about sex, yet I find myself just as engaged with this issue of the magazine as any other. Go figure. I even had time to write an article for this issue (grad school is calming down a bit), a gamer story called Who’s entitled to me? It’s more of a narrative than analytical. I really needed to write it, but it was stuff that was hard to put out there for the world to read.


November 3, 2007

Ashley’s really not that bad

Filed under:Videogames — Lake Desire @ 7:24 pm

Meghann and I put a few more hours into Resident Evil 4: Wii edition today, and I was thinking: Ashley’s really not that bad. It’s a lot easier to take her seriously now that we’re not playing through in her special outfit. (We took that picture with my digital camera because we couldn’t find a picture online.)

I haven’t played the other games in the series, but yeah, the whole premise of RE4 seems kind of petty. Like Diego Luna points out in his article Shotgun vs. Skirt: Gender in Resident Evil 4, Ashley’s helplessness is a sharp contrast to Leon’s manly manliness. But seriously, for a college student constantly shot at, kidnapped, and pawed on by zombies, she really keeps it together and does what Leon asks instead of panicking and running off. Her shrill cries for “Leon!” are reasonable enough–but what I find less reasonable is what a huge part of this game is a young woman being shot at, kidnapped, and grabbed.

ashley graham resident evil 4

There are a lot of scenes in which Ashley grunts and turns a crank, or the camera follows her as she crawls under tables. I don’t get if she’s supposed to be fanservice or what. Some of the searches that lead folks to my blog are trying to find Ashley porn. I really don’t think she’s very pretty. What is it–the school-girl outfit and big boobs?

For some reason, we still love RE4 anyways. Maybe there’s just something campy about how rediculous the story is. Gives us something to laugh about in between being terrified of the scary, scary monsters.


October 30, 2007

Resident Evil 4, Redux

Filed under:Resident Evil Series, Videogames, Wii — Lake Desire @ 7:30 pm

Remember when New Game Plus was just a new little bloggling? My friend and occasionally guest blogger, Meghann, and I played Resident Evil 4 as if we really could spare to spend 20 hours a week on that game. Well, almost two years later, we’ve both graduated and live in different cities, but we’ve picked up our RE4 (and pizza!) obsession again to play the game again on the Wii. Damn, Resident Evil 4 is still fun. Ashley is still annoying, too, but at least this time we didn’t accidently select her special pop sensation outfit. (No joke!)

I’ve also been playing Super Paper Mario. Not a lot to report there, ‘cept it’s fun enough. I like playing a level here and there, and Peach is actually playable and stands up for herself, but it’s no Thousand Year Door.


September 27, 2007

Grad school!

Filed under:Personal, Videogames — Lake Desire @ 6:44 am

Hey all! I’ve got a darn good reason for not posting all month–I started grad school! I’m going to the same university as I did for my undergrad, but this time around I’m working on my MA in English Studies. As a part of my program, I just started teaching English 101 this week, which is an introduction to college composition course. I’ve spent the last two weeks getting ready for it.

My actual grad school classes start today, so we’ll see how it goes. And don’t worry, blogging and Cerise are still going to be a part of my life.


August 28, 2007

Simply said, I love me some Harry Potter.

Filed under:Videogames — Meghann @ 3:54 pm

Hey everyone, Meghann here.

I think most of us know how huge the Harry Potter books and movies are and the widespread mania over each of them. It took me a couple years, but I finally surrendered and read all the books (available at the time) about a year and a half ago. With my induction into the world of Pottermania, I was excited when I found out there were Harry Potter games. I had played the first one with some kids I babysat, but beyond that I hadn’t experienced much else. To my delight, I found Harry Potter and the POA (Prisoner of Azkaban) at blockbuster for an unbeatedly low price. Being the cheap and frugal person that I am, I hurriedly bought it and brought it back to school with me.



August 22, 2007

No content in this post, either

Filed under:Personal — Lake Desire @ 9:23 pm

Sorry I haven’t been blogging lately. I always have one excuse or another: school, work, no time to game, etc. Now it’s savoring the last bits of summer outside and even getting out and traveling. I just got back from a bike trip to Vancouver Island, and in a week and a half I’m going to Nicaragua with my brother’s bike time. I’m not even giving you all much to miss, since I’ve been so quiet on blogging lately.


August 16, 2007

Submit to the September Issue of Cerise Magazine

Filed under:News — Lake Desire @ 8:19 am

The submission deadline for the September issue of Cerise Magazine is August 20, 2007. I know I always say it, but Cerise is a great opportunity to get your writing out there to the gaming world with something as simple as a review or gamer story, and we can work with you on your writing if you need it. And this issue’s theme:

Theme: Blue is for Boys, Pink is for Girls

When you bring up the word “gamer” the image is almost always a man. Women, though they make up the majority of gamers in areas such as online games and show a serious force in games like Vampire: The Masquerade, are still seen as “casual”, “not serious”, only interested in “girly games”. Men are the console gamers, the Warhammer players, the “serious”, the “hardcore”.

This issue is devoted to exploring and deconstructing the dichotomy inherent in the idea that “blue is for boys and pink is for girls”: casual vs. hardcore, masculine vs. feminine, online games vs. console, real gamers vs. fake ones… How do these things translate to gamer culture? The industry? What does it say about women’s place in the gaming world?

There you go!


August 7, 2007

Cerise August 2007

Filed under:News, Online Communities, Personal, Videogames — Lake Desire @ 3:56 pm

The August 2007 issue of Cerise Magazine is out. I think that the whole issue reeks of awesomeness. Check it out, yeah? And don’t forget to submit for the September issue by August 20.

I would have posted this sooner, but I was camping over the weekend at Lake Wenatchee with my mom and her sister. I remembered after I got there that I brought my laptop last year because a local sundries shop has wireless, but I still can’t get it in my head that I’ll find free wifi in rustic Eastern Washington.