I have been sinking my teeth into several books that deal with games and game design. Most of them are quite one track. They deal with mechanics and “how to” on a practical level and not so much on a philosophical level. They’re also wildly male-dominated, written by men, for men, with a male perspective.
I figured I needed a break, so I read Anna Anthropy’s book The Rise of the Videogame Zinester. Unsurprisingly, I share much of Anthropy’s attitude towards the industry. How limited it is and how limited we find it, that games are not and should not be restricted to a small group of elite developers who have access to the tools and resources to make games. The industry as it is is not very healthy, and I certainly share her views on that.
I’m not entirely agreement with her when it comes to certain aspects of the industry practices, though, but that might be because at the time of writing the book, I got the impression that Anthropy hadn’t worked within the industry at all.
The book is positively ancient by internet standards at this point, but I still think it has value, because it takes a different perspective than the usual white male one when it comes to game design. Some of it I suspect is written more for effect and shock value than anything else, but the foundation rests on a healthy lack of respect for a multimillion dollar industry that takes itself way too seriously.