No Time To Play
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Weekly Links #220


This isn't a new problem, but it's rearing its ugly head again.

At some point during 2016 or 2017, it seemed that every other conversation on Open Game Art was about copyright -- rather than tools, technique or curation as you might expect. As of this writing, that trend seems to have died down, but the fact that law would be such an overriding concern for artists is telling.

Lately however a similar thing is happening on the Discord server, where it seems that every other conversation is about business, marketing, piracy and so on. It's getting so bad, people are begging to hear some talk of game engines for a change.

And no matter what we do, creators keep going back to wrangling issues that have little or nothing to do with the act of creating. They have to. Can't very well keep creating if you're broke or in legal trouble.

But can we keep creating when we must spend most of our time and energy dealing with other things? Maybe we need a few new genres, like paperwork sculpture, and waiting in line performance art.

Which reminds me of the time a few years ago when evidence seemed to indicate that GitHub was moving into a "post-licensing" era, meaning projects forked, rejoined and generally shared code in a completely informal manner, no longer keeping track of authorship and terms.

Haven't heard of that since, but one thing is certain: the sky hasn't fallen. And while the world of software development has some nasty problems of its own to deal with, they also have something to teach other fields.

In the way of news, not much this week except for a new game added to my latest project, and this:

To start the week on a high note, Hardcore Gaming 101 writes (briefly) about Archon, an old 8-bit game I knew little about before reading the article. It turns out to combine chess with fantasy tactics, and having just completed a simplified chess variant, let me tell you it's a tricky enough genre. One more classic to learn from, then. Especially as hotseat multiplayer games are a big absence from my repertoire, one I'd very much like to fill.

Thanks for reading, and see you next Sunday.