[Conference Paper] Creature, Monster, Nameless, Created: Frankenstein transformed in role playing games (International Bicentennary Conference on Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Ca’Foscari University of Venice, February 2018)

This paper explores the transmission of Frankenstein’s Creature - or Monster - into tabletop and computer gaming. It briefly covers the 'Flesh Golem' archetype and Frankenstein-esque figures as encounters in Dungeons and Dragons - superficial imitations, influenced more by cinematic adaptations than the novel, and emphasising the ‘Monster’ reading of Frankenstein’s creation. Then, it moves …

[Conference Paper] Endless Nineties: the perennial aesthetic of ‘grimdark’ games (Gothic Styles, Gothic Substance; University of Manchester, October 2017)

The early 1990s saw a kind of crystallisation in gaming aesthetics, centred on games that either squinted towards Gothic or outright claimed a place in the culture and tradition: Warhammer 40,000 and Vampire: the Masquerade on the tabletop, Alone in the Dark and Wolfenstein on the PC. These games are genre-defining, persistent, and - to …

[Conference Paper] The Horror of Bradensbrook: Gothic Co-Ordinates in World of Warcraft (Gothic Spaces, University of Sheffield, May 2017)

https://youtu.be/u5yeSR_f_x8 Transcript Introduction Somehow - don’t ask me how - I managed to confuse the word “Bradensbrook” with the word “Ravenholdt” when submitting this abstract. Or maybe it was “Black Rook Hold” with “Ravenholdt”. Or it might have been “Rooksguard”... or “Ravencrest”... Thing is, this confusion allows me to make a point. World of Warcraft …

[Book Chapter] The Conqueror Worm: E. R. Eddison, Modernism and the Great War (Baptism of Fire, Mythopoeic Press, 2015)

Literary critics who are into modernism have this unfortunate habit of claiming everything and anything as modernist. I wanted to see how far that would fly with Eddison, who is after all profoundly un-modern and has little in common with the Eliots, the Joyces and the Woolfs despite being active in the same general period. Hence …

[Music Review] Game Changers: The Reptile House EP (COREHAMMER)

Unexpected reblog of my Corehammer piece on The Reptile House EP and why it’s the best thing ever. Good things happen sometimes!


the_reptile_house_epFor me, the Sisters of Mercy are one of THE goth bands, and it makes me chuckle inwardly when Eldritch, and Pete Murphy, try and distance themselves from a sound and an image they went to painstaking lengths to define and craft.

The Reptile House EP is a moody slab of uber-goth and is probably the crystallisation of Eldritch’s vision (the EP is allegedly pretty much an Eldritch solo work) and, being pre-Hussey, has no light side… in fact there is no glimmer of light in any of the 25 minutes – and it’s the better for it.

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