Eric Swain's Blog
Eric Swain is a self-educated game critic. One day he had the crazy idea that video games could be put under the microscope with the same amount of respect and thought that books and movies are only to discover he was not the first person to think of this. He set out to learn all he could and hopefully add to the growing field of game criticism. He has no idea how far he’s come or if he’s moved forward much at all. He graduated from Boston University with a B.A. in English. You can read more of his work at http://www.thegamecritique.com.
A conclusion to a series of posts on Driver: San Francisco waxing poetic on the firm foundation of play feel the game's deeper elements are built upon.
Both John Tanner of Driver: San Francisco and Driver of Drive are existential characters defined by their primary ability of driving a car, but have little else in common and each character further defines themselves by how they use that ability.
Driver: San Francisco creates a feedback loop between the mechanical and aesthetic notions of the game and creates a synthetic meaning between them.
Driver: San Francisco has some sloppily tuned driving, but instead of being a problem, it's a feature. The problems such driving causes instead add a degree of verisimilitude to the game's world.
Driver: San Francisco is an excellent example of a game mechanic being utilized as a method of conveying the subtitles of the game's narrative.
Mark of the Ninja requires a different contemplative mindset to truly get the game. Simply playing the game to completion isn't enough understand the craft of the interconnected nature of the whole.