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March 20, 2010

Devin Monnens writes a critical essay about Brenda Brathwaite's "Train"

Tactility and Ambiguity : The mechanics and message behind Train by Devin Monnens from his blog, Dessert Hat

This reading, I argue, is flawed and seems largely the result of insufficient coverage of the game (reduced in large part to the fact that only one copy exists and fewer people have played it than have played Battle Kid: Fortress of Peril). This argument also becomes moot if we are to take the manifesto of the game design collective Tale of Tales seriously, whose first point states: “Games do not have spoilers.” Simply, you can still experience Train knowing ‘the reveal’.

I played Train recently at the Art History of Games conference in Atlanta where the game was exhibited along with several other works of game art commissioned specially for the conference. I had read about the game before, so its theme and contents were not a surprise. In this regard, my only disclaimer is that I was unable to play without the experience of someone who had never heard of Train before. But more on this later.

Posted by Rafael Fajardo at March 20, 2010 10:00 AM