That Poppy: An elaborate piece of performance art, or marketing

For the last few months I’ve been obsessively following YouTuber and recording artist That Poppy. Her music is aggressively standard three chord Pop-music, however if you pay attention to her videos on her official Vevo channel and her secondary YouTube channel, certain things stand out. Continue reading


Molleindustria, art video games

Molleindustria, is an Italian game development company that describes itself as:

Since 2003 we produced homeopathic remedies to the idiocy of mainstream entertainment in the form of free, short-form, online games. Our products range from satirical business simulations (McDonald’s Video game, Oiligarchy) to meditations on labor and alienation (Every day the same dream, Tuboflex, Unmanned), from playable theories (the Free Culture Game, Leaky World) to politically incorrect pseudo-games (Orgasm Simulator, Operation: Pedopriest).


Created as a criticism and rejection of stablished game making ideologies and methodologies, Molleindustria creates game that question not only the game world but our day to day existence through the means of play.  Critiquing our capitalistic society, highlighting the perpetuation of violence through hate crime and the banalities of life is their bread and butter and it is the reason I will be addressing their work this time. Continue reading

The pleasures of teaching

An undergrad wrote this about my class:

“I know that the class had no clear intention to adress any philosophical issues or issues of imperialism, socialism and social injustice, however I noticed that by knowing the culture around us we can get answers to the questions I mentioned above, and understand how things happen the way they do and why cultural conventions are generated.”

Well son, let me tell you, THAT was the whole point of the class, you learnt about all those issues while we talked about game of thrones and superman.

Featured image by Alroyfonseca (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

The artistry of frustration

Recently I have been going through two very interesting games, Dark Souls and Bloodborne, designed by game-maker Hidetaka Miyazaki. These are often cited as prime examples of great video game design, lauded for their often times punishing difficulty and obscure and ambiguous yet intriguing storyline. While both games share mechanics and themes such as cycles of life and death and growth through perseverance and personal hardship, the framing in both is different enough to be considered an alternative exploration of these themes instead of simple repetition. Continue reading