Social games? Boeh!

Cow Clicker in Het Parool

The Dutch newspaper Het Parool ran a story last Saturday about Cow Clicker. You can read a scan of the story below (in Dutch, click for the large version), but equally interesting to me is the fact that the paper put an enormous Cow Clicker cow on the front page of their media section (also below), just like Svenska Dagbladet… read more

Revisiting Asynchronous Multiplayer Games

Me on Me on Social Games

In the autumn of 2004, I wrote a paper titled “Asynchronous Multiplay” for the Other Players Conference on Multiplayer Phenomena, which was held at IT University, Copenhagen in December of that year. To give you an idea about how long ago 2004 was on the timescale of game development and game research, consider a few facts: Facebook was incorporated in… read more

The Clickness Unto Death

The Fate of Cow Clicker

This is hard to explain. Something’s happening to Cow Clicker. Some months ago, evil bovine lords broke into Cow Clicker and started making demands. Their mysterious clues became the Cow ClickARG, which, Inception-like, sent up Alternate Reality Games from within the send-up of a Facebook game. Clues were scattered by the “bovine gods” around the globe, where “cowllective intelligence” helped… read more

Shit Crayons

My talk at the 2011 Game Developers Conference "rant" panel

Last year I made a game about Facebook games, called Cow Clicker. You get a cow. You can click on it. In six hours, you can click it again. Among the many retorts to Cow Clicker‘s characterization of social games, a common one is about creativity. Players of these games, the argument goes, exercise imagination and creativity far beyond what… read more

The End of Conceptual Art

Lessons from iCapitalism

Whether via the lamentable trend of gamification or through the very public release of Jane McGonigal’s new book, the topic of videogames’ impact on the real world has been front-and-center of late. Enter iCapitalism, an iOS game that critiques both capitalism and iOS games through a simple design. As in Godville, there’s no gameplay. But unlike that game (which actually… read more

Koklickar

Cow Clicker in the Svenska Dagbladet

Here’s the Cow Clicker cow displayed enormously across the culture section of the Svenska Dagbladet, Sweden’s main newspaper. There’s something tantalizing and disturbing about seeing the cow on newsprint. The article it accompanies can be read online, although it’s in Swedish.

Press Round-Up

In lieu of a real post

I’ve been busy since the holidays catching up and preparing for the new term, which makes this the requisite occasional “I haven’t posted on the blog” blog post. Since I’ve been reduced to such self-referential shame, I figured I might as well take things even further and offer my readers a massive dump of recentish press about me. For starters,… read more

The Best of 2010

Year of the Cow

Switched.com ran a story offering their assement of The Best Tech Writing of 2010, and my piece Cow Clicker: The Making of Obsession. I’m in good company, too: others in the top 15 include Zadie Smith, Malcolm Gladwell, William Gibson, Gary Kasparov, and the inimitable Onion. I’d never heard of Switched.com, but apparently it’s a reasonably popular AOL technology lifestyle… read more

2010

A summary

Here’s a quick link summary of my 2010, including both major events/work and smaller moments that took the form of blog posts. Happy new year, all. Disney cease-and-desist – the turtlenecked hairshirt – the Art History of Games – Hacks, Remakes, and Demakes – Heavy Rain – Pascal spoken here – I hate gamification – Knight News Challenge – philosopher… read more

Click.

More Zynga bullshit

Kyle Orland, co-author of the forthcoming book Farmville for Dummies, writes this introduction to a two-part feature over at Gamasutra, by Tadhg Kelly. The title: “How Zynga’s CityVille Has Compelled 70 Million Players.” Given today’s surprising new interest in Cow Clicker over on Reddit, I thought I’d share some delightful snippets Orland extracted from Kelly’s work. One of the keys… read more