1. Papers, Please

this game's influence on me!! while others have 1984 as mandatory middle school reading, my catholic school education gave me nothing and encouraged us to stay illiterate, so my 1984 was papers, please. a very direct critique of surveillance and immigration under the most intense morality play my preteen self stomached. i came out reading about political systems - unheard of!

packaged neatly under the love for dystopian titles in YA-driven early 2010s, it hit everything right for me — a manic puzzle with levels repeatable and learnable, worlding in between levels, dozens of endings. i always always recommend this game to anyone and genuinely think it's a MUST play

2. Increpare Games (The Terrible Whiteness of Appalachian Nights)

increpare or stephen lavelle does not know it and probably never will, but he is the reason why im an artist. i learned what it means to create or be in the 'indie' or 'experimental' game space, and his works are some of my favorite to date.

the pictured game was released april 19 2010, a pretty direct commentary on domesticity, gender, and objectification that shocks people (i.e. redditors, the only other people i know who play these kinds of games) because of a nazi blowjob animation. the shifts in art style, the minimalism and mechanical perfection. another game i really enjoy is 'american dream' released in 2011, a collaboration. 11 year old chia was attracted to it because you trade very predictable stocks and fill a home with furniture until you explode.

i love you increpare

3. Minecraft

For the amount of hours I've put into it and how many memories I've just lived through on Minecraft — it would be a waste to not put this on here. I am fighting for C418 on vinyl, I still memorize the End Poem, and last year (2020) during the height of the pandemic I spent 16 dollars a month to bring dozens of friends together to create a town called "Boobs in my mouth". In a week the server banded together to defeat the Enderdragon which I streamed to Facebook in what felt like 2fps quality.

I keep returning to and coming home to Minecraft, and I forever will.

The screenshot is from a Minecraft Seed I shared on the Minecraft Forums back in 2012. I described it as having "caves, mountains, and stuff" which is nice because that is basically every Minecraft world.