Five years ago, as a newsroommate, I would have said that RPG stood for rocket-propelled grenade.
Glyph is getting more and more game-oriented as time goes on. It started as a group of verbivores (pretty much everybody who works here now is bilingual or more), but now the most common second languages here are technology, the mobilizing of skill, the efficient transmission of data, and smart information design. The work demands it – translation projects have gotten more media-complex.
We're making really big toasters, many of them for game developers. L10n Tamer (director of localization) describes us as taking things apart, sending the content out to be translated, then reassembling and testing everything when it's finished.
I used to take games for granted. I used to say they were a waste of time, despite previously spending hours in high school playing Super Mario. I never saw the elegance behind the machine until I stumbled upon various aspects of game design via Google – aspects such as simulating the avoidance behavior of a fake crowd, the demand for royalty-free "art assets" for homebrew game developers, or the use of artificial intelligence to create challenging gameplay environments (a bit technical, but a great discussion from International Journal of Computer Games Technology). Hello, Mr. Minsky, we haven't forgotten about you after all.
I'm learning that we play because it lets us explore, escape, solve, orchestrate, vent, experience the absurd, practice and refine... in-home gaming is part of an arc of history [some say] killed off the video arcade, while deniers reminisce and other research shows it's simply evolved to suit changing times.
Game development has changed so much over the past 3+ decades. Here's a gallery from between 1990 and 2008 alone, showing the progression of graphic design. It's astounding to me how extremely simple games such as Akalabeth (1980) were entertaining, but perhaps even the simplest games hook people for the same reason that Haruki Murakami keeps people reading....creates frustration in the reader, in addition to creating elegant backstory or neediness in the plot.
Here's a clip from 1980 of the aforementioned Akalabeth. I guess this is how gaming used to be.
Compare this with a very old version of Everquest, from 1996, or with the latest installment of Elder Scrolls. Elder Scrolls Skyrim came out on 11/11/11: