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‘Cat in the Stacks: Four in February, Pt. 1

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 I’m Michelle Callaghan, a first-year graduate student at Villanova University. This is our new column, “‘Cat in the Stacks.” I’m the ‘cat. Falvey Memorial Library is the stacks. I’ll be posting about living that scholarly life, from research to study habits to embracing your inner-geek, and how the library community might aid you in all of it.


Did you know Falvey Memorial Library houses the Villanova Electronic Enthusiasts Club? You can join Fridays from 2:30-4:30 p.m. in the first-floor lounge of Falvey Memorial Library for some fun. The VEEC is a social club, focused on recreation and relaxation. Participants gather to play video games in a safe and fun environment. The VEEC is always accepting new members and is open to all!

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What is Four in February? An initiative established by
Mike Suszek of the late video game blog Joystiq, FiF encourages gamers to play four games gathering dust on their digital and/or actual video game shelves. There are no hard and fast rules – the games do not have to be completed, for example, especially if they are huge open world games or MMOs. And mobile games can count, too! For the purposes of this blog, Four in February will consist of four posts on the four Thursdays of the month in the interest of promoting the Villanova Electronic Enthusiasts Club and, more generally, to promote video games as cultural items important to our understanding of interdisciplinary studies.

Last year I wrote about some of the games I was going to attempt to play during FiF, and I’ll say this for myself – I started Never Alone and did manage to complete Dear Esther!  Unfortunately (but also very fortunately) this semester I’m knee-deep in an English thesis using a couple of roleplaying video games as primary texts and those games have priority right now. (Okay, admittedly I’m itching to finish Rise of the Tomb Raider, too.)

But if I had the time to play, I’d want to go with some really literature-esque options this time around – something really library-friendly. Something with a little cultural punch! Here’s my list of candidates (that are gathering dust on my digital Steam shelves)!

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Promotional art via Double Fine Productions

Broken Age
Broken Age is a point and click adventure about two youngins finding their paths in a crazy world. The game plays as an interactive novel. Reviews consider it a “gorgeous, impeccably written adventure.” 

Apotheon
Apotheon is a love song for Greek mythology! An action roleplaying platformer (yeesh, the game world has to work on its genre classifications, TBH), while playing this game you can “Learn a little about Greek Mythology” because “Apotheon tries to stay true to its source material. Read an excerpt from the Iliad about Diomedes before you stick a Xiphos through his Aspis.” [source

The Stanley Parable
An interactive fiction video game, The Stanley Parable is a satirical take on the illusion of choice-making in modern roleplaying video games. It’s very hard to describe this game. I’ve played through it once, so in essence I barely played it, and it’s one I need to get back to for full appreciation. In lieu of a bumbling description from me, I offer you the official one:

The Stanley Parable is a first person exploration game. You will play as Stanley, and you will not play as Stanley. You will follow a story, you will not follow a story. You will have a choice, you will have no choice. The game will end, the game will never end.

Elegy for a Dead World
Elegy for a Dead World is an exploration game in which players fill out a diary while traversing three worlds based on the writing of poets Keats, Shelley, and and Byron. Yep. You read that right. We’re getting quite literary these days.

Are you a gamer? Comment below with the games you’re burning to play with the free time you lack! Check the blog on Thursdays this month for more gamerly offerings.


Article by Michelle Callaghan, graduate assistant on the Communication and Service Promotion team. She is currently pursuing her MA in English at Villanova University.


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Last Modified: February 4, 2016