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March 5, 2021
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This Week in Video Game Blogging: No Man is an Island, Ocean, or Sky

by Critical Distance on 08/15/16 06:36:00 am

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The following blog post, unless otherwise noted, was written by a member of Gamasutra’s community.
The thoughts and opinions expressed are those of the writer and not Gamasutra or its parent company.


Exploration, open worlds and vast nothingness have captured people's imaginations more than anything else this week, with a number of games inspiring a sense of connection and wonderment


  • Debris | vextro 
    leeroy lewin praises the aesthetics of the wide open and the pitch black.

"Debris is a visual aid, an interactive song. A gentle music transformed into a terrifying confession, a full marriage of very conflicting and dissonant aesthetics. A nothingness that demands the attention. A terrifying experience treated as another day at work."


"Like space, the deep ocean is a metaphor for the unknown. We don’t know what’s down there, and unless we spend a great deal of money and time training to dive down with oxygen tanks strapped to our backs and water pressure compressing our fragile lungs and vessels, we will never get to see it up close."

Pokemon Go

"The compass in Skyrim was meant to point us towards interesting locations. Lots of time and effort went into designing that world, and the developers wanted to help us see as much of it as we could. The PokeStops in Pokemon Go might not have been designed with that same specific intent, but the resulting feelings of exploration and discovery are the same. I’m still drawn to things that might otherwise go overlooked. It’s actually shocking how much art surrounds us at all times that we don’t notice, little works of creativity that give the world a human touch."

No Man's Sky

"These interactions are comparatively shallow, but they’re enough for now. The developers have struck a difficult balance, providing reasons to keep playing without overcomplicating or distracting too much from the joy of exploration."

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