We asked our team: how would you describe video games to a non-gamer, and what game would you recommend as their intro to the medium?
Aaron Suduiko is the Founder and Chief Video Game Analyst of With a Terrible Fate. He specializes in the relationship between player and avatar, and the myriad ways in which that relationship centrally influences the stories of video games.
Suduiko graduated Harvard College in 2017 with high honors in his major, philosophy. Part of his degree included three independent studies on the storytelling of video games, advised by philosophy professors. In his senior year, he wrote an honors thesis on the ontology of video games as a storytelling object, earning high honors for the written work and highest honors for his oral defense of it.
Suduiko has spoken about his work on the philosophy of video games at a variety of venues, including: Harvard’s philosophy department; PAX East; Harvard’s annual ARTS FIRST festival; PAX Australia; the British Society of Aesthetics’ postgraduate conference; PAX West; and SUNY Oneonta’s undergraduate philosophy conference. His work on the aesthetics of quantum mechanics in BioShock Infinite was published in Cornell’s undergraduate philosophy journal, Logos. He’s spoken with the lead librarians at Harvard about the literary value of video games and the need to make them available as library resources.
Suduiko started analyzing video games in his senior year of high school, when he compared and contrasted the role-playing dynamics of video games and stage plays. After he started his degree in philosophy in 2014 and heard about the 3D remake of Majora’s Mask, he created With a Terrible Fate as a personal blog analyzing the philosophical and artistic value of Majora’s Mask. Since then, he’s grown With a Terrible Fate into a site with over 10 video game analysts striving to understand the stories of video games in new, rigorous, illuminating ways.
If you don’t see a new article by Suduiko on any given day, he’s probably busy gaming.
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Understanding the religious background of Okami gives us a new way of understanding what it means to experience a video-game story.