In what is easily the most inspired news story of the year, MTV Multiplayer's Tracey John dishes up something truly savory.
You might not be aware of it, and that would be to your credit, but there is a "fan outcry" over Diablo III's use of colors other than gray and red. Tracey gets the game's designer on the "horn," and has him explain what he likes and doesn't like about the many fan altered shots of the game that are floating around. What you get as a reader is a surprisingly constructive assessment of why things don't work, or why they have done things differently, or why they have done that - only in an area we haven't seen yet. It's fascinating, wall to wall.
I would like to draw your attention to the last shot they offer, though: a shot which contrasts "Necromancers Choice" with "wow gayness." It was never clear to me if the shot was offered up by a necromancer, or someone who goes by Necromancer, or if this aesthetic is the preference of nine out of ten necromancers, or what. Shit be ambiguous. "wow gayness" is, as a phrase, almost too stupid to contemplate. We tried to imagine the sort of person who takes world-class design, changes the contrast, and then calls themselves the artist. It wasn't especially difficult.
When I buy the next Diablo, I'll be playing it exclusively for the art. I watched the entire direct-feed presentation, and the only things that kept me going were the wild palette shifts and chunky, hewn environs. I could hear the clicking of mice throughout, click click, like insects. The whole thing made me itch.
I've been reserving a portion of my consciousness for Fatal Frame on the Wii, with the thought that its core gameplay (killing ghosts with cameras) would be vastly improved by a pointing device. I always forget when I buy these Goddamned games how horrifying they are, and watching a few videos of the new one has convinced me not to buy it, so maybe this isn't good marketing. The menacing spectres often have something about them that is... wrong, on some level, which is how Japanese horror in general does its business. The sympathy the game evokes for these things is inexplicably potent. But it was the audio in those clips, just as it was in previous games, that made playing the game impossible. I pulled the second Fatal Frame out of the disc tray and threw it across the room, once. I had to make absolutely sure that it wouldn't get back in.