GameSpite Quarterly Issue 4
Spring 2010 | The Mechanics of Gaming
You can purchase GameSpite Quarterly 4 from our friendly neighborhood print-on-demand bookshop! As usual, GSQ4 is available in a standard paperback edition (156 pages, $13) and a super-classy hardcover deluxe edition (184 pages, $36). All previous volumes are also available at the GameSpite bookstore on Blurb.
Greetings, Spiteketeers!  You hold in your hands  a tiny miracle: The fourth volume of GameSpite Quarterly. It’s a miracle because, somehow, we’ve managed to produce one of these every three months for a year now. You know how copy editors  will get on your case for calling some new event the “first annual” whatever it may be, because something can’t technically be annual until it’s happened twice with a year separating the instances? Likewise, a publication probably oughtn’t be called “quarterly” until it’s seen release once per quarter for a year. So with this issue, GameSpite Quarterly is finally what it says on the tin, as it were.
Unlike previous issues, GSQ4 wasn’t initiated with a clear mandate besides, “Lets all write about things we find interesting.” Surprisingly, though, a theme has slowly taken shape over the past months as submissions have filtered in—or, perhaps, not so surprisingly, since that theme is the mechanics of gameplay. It’s a topic that greatly interests me, the question of what makes games work? What makes them fun? Why do some games fail where others succeed? And it stands to reason that the people who have signed on for this project would share similar interests. Another unintentional theme took shape, too: The first half of the book focuses specifically on the mechanics and design philosophy of RPGs and adventure games.
Don’t worry, though; GSQ4 isn’t stuffy or cerebral or stilted. It’s thoughtful but, you know, not up its own arse or anything gross like that. As with the last three books, everyone who has contributed to GSQ has done so simply because they love games, and they love writing about them. Even when we’re critical, we scold for love. Hopefully you’ll see that enthusiasm in our writing and enjoy our work long enough to stick around for our second annual set of quarterly publications. If that makes any sense.
March 1, 2010
 Note: This is not actually the official designated term for GameSpite readers. Please do not regard it as canon.
 Unless you’re reading this online, in which case, you are gazing at miraculous dot-phosphors or liquid crystals or whatever.
 Do you remember copy editors? They’re what the journalism business used back when it cared about quality writing.
In This Issue
- How RPGs Lost Their Way by Jake Alley
- Dragon Quest V: Heavenly Heartbreak by Jeremy Parish
- Shin Megami Tensei: Law, Chaos, and the American Way by Cole Lastie
- Persona 4: Thinking Small by Bob Mackey
- Suikoden V vs. Tierkreis by Ben Elgin
- Final Fantasy XI: A Linkshell to the Past by Scott Lowe
- Final Fantasy: Populist Mechanics by Jeremy Parish
- Star Ocean The Last Hope: The Lost Hope by Andrew Bentley
- Chrono Cross: Star-Crossed by Jeremy Parish
- Super Robot Taisen: For Love of Giant Robots by Kat Bailey
- Mario & Luigi: The Inside Scoop on Bowser by Philip Armstrong
- WURM Online: Lowly in WURM by Aaron Littleton
- Mass Effect 2: The Mainstreaming of Mass Effect by Jeremy Parish
- The Once and Future Genre by Luke Osterritter
- The Neverhood: Quirk, Strangeness, and Charm by Mike Zeller
- Psychonauts: Mind Games by Matt Cramp
- 1999: The End of Space Combat Sims by Kat Bailey
- Age of Empires III: High Colonists by Aaron Littleton
- The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from License Butchery by Mike Zeller
- God of War: Titanic Fury by Sean Gandert
- Left 4 Dead: Live Together, Die Alone by Anthony Rogers
- Alternate Bosses for Mega Man 10 by Philip Armstrong
- Mega Man X: Welcome to the Year 20XX by Jeremy Parish
- Mirror’s Edge: A Failure of Perspective by Johnny Driggs
- Monster in My Pocket: Tiny Terrors by Mike Zeller
- Panzer Dragoon Orta: Rail Love by Wesley Fenlon
- Space Empires IV: Galactic Pesticide by Aaron Littleton
- The Typing of the Dead: House of the QWERTY by Michael Ayles
Deluxe Edition Extra Content
- Noir in Gaming, Part 2 by Wesley Fenlon
- Mushroom Hunting by Jake Alley
- Jaki Crush: Hell’s Balls by Mike Zeller
- New Game Plus, Spring 2010 by Jeremy Parish
All text ©2010 its respective author. All copyrighted images property their respective creators with all respect to their ownership. Layouts and edits: Jeremy Parish. Front cover photo: Catherine Nguyen. Copy edits: Patrick Carr.