The Sunday newspapers | Rock Paper shotgun

Sundays are to apply excessive amounts of lip balm because it gets nipped out there. Before you swipe, let’s read this week’s best writing about games.

For Polygon, Maddy Myers asks: How does Samus Aran turn into a ball?

As for how morph ball would actually work, it’s a different story, and it’s not a question that any Metroid game has answered: How can Samus look good enough in morph ball mode to navigate an underground maze ? And wouldn’t she get dizzy? My personal theory is that the morph ball works in the same way as a glide-eye-apple toy, meaning that Samus is curled up but always upright while in morph-ball mode. This would still mean, once again, that the morph ball should be at least half as big as Samus Aran standing at full height in his armor.

Over at The Verge, they collected the worst gadgets they have ever touched. An interesting summary, but it’s the Doom-like rotating illustrations by Alex Castro that really get me started.

On paper, the Ouya had a lot to go for it: an interesting Yves Behar design, an Arm processor (years before the Switch would take a similar grip) and big ambitions. But the Ouya was sold to backers (and customers) on a pile of promises and unfulfilled potential, of great things it could accomplish sometime in the future, if only it had the support, time (and money) to pull them out. But time was one thing, micro-consoles that Ouya did not have, and even a Razer acquisition and a spiritual sequel to Forge TV could not avert the inevitable.

For PC Gamer, Wes Fenlon breaks down why Metaverse is bullshit. Hooray for commentator icarussc for the place.

If Facebook – sorry, Meta – is one of the main drivers behind the meta-verse, then of course it will have a new spin on the ad-filled news feed. It will just be a natural extension of the concert’s economy, a poor soul is paid 0.00 trillion1 bitcoin per hour to almost dress up as a carnival barker and shout about the latest terrible news from Syria on a virtual street corner. And if Epic somehow created Sweeney’s utopian metavers, it would still be built to promote Epic’s own interests and profits above all else. There is no way for any massive technology company to build the meta-verse without becoming the villains.

For Vox, Sigal Samuel wrote about how new technologies promise a shortcut to enlightenment.

Thompson, for his part, is concerned that such technoboosts may be counterproductive rather than beneficial – if, for example, the way technology conveys the experience of meditation reinforces the ego tendencies that meditation is intended to alleviate. This is his concern for all the gamification that the Muse app shows, from telling you when you’ve achieved a streak in consecutive days, to rewarding you with bird chirps when you’ve stayed calm long enough.

Finally, I have rediscovered Alpharad’s video about a Donkey Kong Amiibo they have trained to become an unstoppable force in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Viewers then challenge this huge AI to a duel. Spoilers: no one competes with Hard DK, NO.


Music this week is Reviver of Lane 8. Here is the YouTube link and the Spotify link. A dance track with lovely drums.

The bonus track is Feels So Good by Luxxury, featured in Forza Horizon 5. It’s not out on Spotify yet, but here’s the YouTube link. The baseline is dirty.

Hi, I’m trying to read more books, so why not also share what I read? I’m about a third of the way through English Pastoral by James Rebanks. So far, it’s a beautifully written story about how the old ways of farming have changed over the years. I know nothing about agriculture, but it has proven to be instructive, gripping and hopeful. Seriously, it’s amazing.

It is me. Have a good Sunday everyone!

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