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Tuesday
Feb252014

Rape Culture 101: It Doesn't Just Happen in Dark Alleys (Part 4)

(Editor's Note: trigger warning for this series - rape and violence)

This week I'm going to give you just a couple of small notes on how some people view consent that significantly contribute to rape culture. We'll get back into the heavier stuff next week!

Click to read more ...

Monday
Feb242014

Episode 102 - Nika Harper: Story Mode

Generally, I try not to think about episodes in terms of favorites but I have to confess that our guest this week has already become a favorite. Nika Harper joins us from the Geek & Sundry vlog channel. Her new show, Story Mode, combines game play and story telling - two of the things we love the most about gaming here at Game on Girl! We talk about creative inspiration, game & geek culture, and a host of other fabulous topics.

We WRaP about our latest geeky passions this week, talking about what we are Watching, Reading, and Playing. What are your latest geeky interests? Passions? Obsessions? 

Check it out and let us know what you think in the comments!

Until next time, game on!
Regina & Rhonda

Episode 102

Friday
Feb212014

The Dream that was Firefall

I wish I had ever seen something this epic in game.I mentioned back in January of 2013 that Firefall by Red5 Studios was a game that I was looking forward to being released hopefully that same year. At this point I don't know if it will ever launch, or if it does, that it will be worth playing.

To be fair, Red5's acting CEO, James Macauley, has indicated that the game will “take flight” this year. However, based on what I've seen from the game's last “Milestone” patch, I don't believe this is likely.

Where to start?

When Regina first introduced me to Firefall, I loved it. Even though it was pretty bare bones in September of 2012, it was still great fun to bound across the world on jump jets with my friends destroying any hostile alien life we came across. At that point there was only an introduction quest or two, thumping for resources and PvP as far as in game content went. It was still enough to keep us entertained for a week or two. Based on that experience I was willing to support the game in the hopes that it would help get the development completed sooner and purchased an Ensign level Founder's pack.

It would be about another 6 months (March 2013) before a Milestone patch would be implemented. (A Milestone patch being one with a lot of major changes and additions to the game.) I didn't play daily while waiting, but did jump back into the game from time to time to see what had changed if anything. When the patch finally dropped it brought some new content and also changed the way you upgraded your combat chassis and how resources were distributed. While it seemed like a long wait and I did lose hope at one point, this patch felt like it was definitely a move in the right direction.

Skip ahead 4 months to July of 2013 and there was a new Milestone patch for the game to switch to open beta. Again some new content and, if I recall correctly, another change in resource distribution as well as a controversial durability system on gear. I was encouraged that another major patch had come quicker than the previous one and that the game was shifting to open beta. This to me seemed like the game development was gaining steam and that we getting close to the home stretch.

Then came the news in September 2013 that the PvP element was being pulled from the game so that development could focus on PvE tuning and content. I'm not a big PvP gamer anymore and was happy that development was moving toward a PvE focus. That being said, I found that this was really unfair to all the PvP players who had taken the time and spent their money to support Firefall. Sure there was a promise that the PvP system would be reworked and brought back at a later date, but when the part of a game you love the most is removed from said game you are not going to be happy. This was troubling to me. Despite the fact I should have been happy from a PvE player's point of view, I had this niggling sense of unease.

Mid December of last year brought the news that Mark Kearns was no longer CEO of Red5. Again I felt uneasy.

Finally, the latest Milestone was released late last month. While it did bring perks to the game, which I liked. The developers changed the way chassis constraints worked and how your gear was upgraded to such a degree that I, and many other people were very disappointed. Also, there was the promise of more PvE content. While there was more, I certainly wouldn't call it much. Certainly not as much as you would think given that Red5 dropped PvP from the game to concentrate on it. Three new world quests were added as well as some introductory quests for the campaign that is being created. Introductory quests that were so bugged I had to wait a week before I could play them and then they were over in a few minutes. The Chosen war was supposed to be heating up as well, but I haven't seen anymore Chosen activity than I did prior to the latest patch. (The Chosen are the PvE bad guys intent on invading the Earth.) Basically, I'm very underwhelmed.

Where am I going with this?

Don't bother with Firefall. I honestly get the feeling that they are just flailing at this point and that anything that might get an official release would be so rushed and ham fisted that it would be even worse than the current state of the game. I know some would say that the game is still in beta, but the game has been in beta for almost two and a half years now and has been receiving funds from customers for a year and a half of that time. At some point you can't hide behind the term “beta” anymore. I think with Firefall that point has come and gone.

 

Remember the Athenians.

Tuesday
Feb182014

Rape Culture 101: Saying "Yes" Isn't Enough (Part 3)

(Editor's Note: trigger warning for this series - rape and violence)

Alcohol is a factor in many rape cases. Many stories exist about a man hitting on a woman at a bar or a club only to abandon her when he finds out she’s still sober. A good number of the rape cases that make headlines involve women being drunk and assailants using their mental state to their advantage.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Feb182014

original gog logo concepts

The challenge that thrills me the most in design is branding. In the simplest way possible, in the smallest space, with only black and white to work with, communicate a concept, personality and mission.

The main challenge with Game On Girl was to find an image that communicated 'gaming' to everyone. For that, I started with a shield and cross bones. In addition, the brand should identify Game On Girl as a unique concept. The initials "GOG" were perfect for branding because I could play with the symmetry of the three letters simply by turning the last 'G' backwards.

Regina stated early on that her favorite color was purple, which was excellent for a superhero/gaming theme.

 

I focused on imagery to do with 'gaming' and 'girl'. The astrological symbol for female ♀ made it into the design early on. We liked where things were going with the "GoG" and female symbol but I tried to create as many concepts as possible to pit them against each other.

I started thinking about anything that represented 'geek' or 'gamer', including old-school representations.

 The complicated BAM! logo.

 

The super hero shield and cape.

 

I still really love this one with the old arcade machine styled 'G's and the 'o' shooting stuff.

 

Loved the idea of a meeple but it focused too narrowly on tabletop gaming.

 

I was really into graffiti and tattoo design at the time. We loved this but it's not right for a brand.

 

Gigi started off holding a controller and the colors were purple and gold.

I'm really very proud of how the Game On Girl brand turned out. It has so many of the qualities you want in a good brand: memorable, eye-catching, flexible, and customizable.

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