An Evening with Jonathan Blow

November 17th, 2011

I finally got a moment to edit Jonathan Blow’s talk at the San Jose State Game Development Club earlier this year. Enjoy.

Play Part 2 | Play Part 3

Award winning game designer, Craft & Punishment Artist, and outspoken critic, Jonathan Blow speaking at San Jose State Game Development Club. Blow’s time bending, mind melting indi puzzle platformer, Braid, won the “Game Design” award at the Independent Games Festival in 2006.

Recorded by John Bruneau
April 21st, 2011

Off Book: Video Games

November 2nd, 2011

This episode of Off Book takes a very precise look at the movement of games in society right now. This very well produced video touches on many of the ideas we discussed as we put these shows together and not surprisingly features references to several games featured in Learn to Play and Craft & Punishment.

“Video games are more important than they seem. They are a storytelling medium, a place for self-expression. The age-old tradition of gaming teaches us strategy, maneuvering, and the importance of making choices. From the cinematic experiences of mainstream gaming, to the hyper-personal environments of indie games, gaming activity defines the way we live and interact with information, and each other.”

Featuring: Eric Zimmerman, Jesper Juul, Game Studies Scholar, Leigh Alexander, and Syed Salahuddin
Music by: 4mat, The Shortsleeves, Trash80,
Producer: Kornhaber Brown

more from Off Book

Do “Art Games” Matter?

October 26th, 2011

Do “Art Games” Matter? from IndieCade 2011. Featuring Daniel Benmergui, Brenda Brathwaite, Rod Humble, Eddo Stern and moderated by John Sharp. Learn to Play exhibited Brenda Brathwaite’s Train and Rod Humble’s The Marriage and Learn to Play Too featured Brenda’s Síochán leat (The Irish Game). Eddo Stern is an old professor of mine so its pretty cool seeing them all together.

“The idea of what art games are really revolves around the holy trinity “The Marriage, Passage, Braid” – John Sharp

Susana Ruiz interviewed by De-Bug

May 30th, 2011

In February we were blessed to have activist artist, Susana Ruiz of Take Action Games, come up from Southern California to visit the show. Besides giving artists talks at De Anza College and the Euphrat Museum we were also invited by the Silicon Valley De-Bug headquarters in San José. An exiting impromptu video interview was shot on the spot by Fernando Julian Perez . That interview is now live on De-Bug. Check it out.

Super Brothers create game. Is amazing.

April 30th, 2011

Congrats to Learn to play artists, Super Brothers and Jim Guthrie. Their new game Sword & Sworcery EP Received a 9.5 in IGN and a Perfect 10 on Destructoid

Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP is a game that takes real chances to stretch the gaming medium without sacrificing the joy of play and discovery that makes the medium great.” – Sean Carey
Destructoid review >>

“I’m not going to fire up a debate with Roger Ebert over this, but Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP is art” – Levi Buchanan
IGN review >>

Jonathan Blow coming to SJSU

April 19th, 2011

Jonathan Blow at SJSU

Award winning game designer, Craft & Punishment Artist, and outspoken critic, Jonathan Blow will be speaking at San Jose State University on Thursday April 21st. Blow’s time bending, mind melting indi puzzle platformer, Braid, won the “Game Design” award at the Independent Games Festival in 2006. From what I gather this will be more of an open conversation rather than formal presentation. Whether you have played Braid or not, I can’t recommend this event enough.

Where : San Jose State Student Union, Costanoan Room
When : Thursday, April 21, 7:30pm – 9:00pm
RSVP : Facebook

Much thanks to the San Jose State Game Development Club for making it happen.

Good Bye

March 2nd, 2011

… And Thank You from all of Us at Learn to Play, Learn to Play Too, and Craft & Punishment


Last Chance! The Shows Are Wrapping Up

February 24th, 2011

Lean to Play Too at the Euphrat Museum of Art and Craft & Punishment at Evergreen Valley College are closing their doors. February 24th will be your last chance to see these two glorious exhibits. A big thankyou to everyone who came out and to everyone who made these shows possible. This chapter or our saga has come to an end but who knows… Goonies never say “Die”!
– John

goonies nes

New Show! Craft & Punishment Opens Jan 31

February 23rd, 2011

Craft and Punishment

Craft & Punishment
The Art and Craft in Game Design
Presented by Learn to Play

Craft & Punishment, a new show from the creators of Learn to Play, asks the questions: Is there a dialog between art and craft in game design? Where does such a distinction lead? Is digital pain the new pleasure?

Indi-game designer and critic, Anna Anthropy, creator of Mighty Jill Off, will be giving an artist talk as part of this evening’s reception

Exhibiting Artists:
Gaijin Games, Ian Bogost, Anna Anthropy, Jason Rohrer, Amon 26, Michael “Kayin” O’Reilly, Mark Essen, Paul Robertson, Arnt Jensen /w Playdead Games, Terry Cavanagh, Jonathan Blow, Jennifer Lau, Jonatan Söderström

Exhibition Dates
Jan 31 – Feb 24, 2011

Regular Gallery Hours
Mon -Thur, 10:30am – 2:30pm

Tue Feb 15, 5pm – 7:30pm
Evergreen Valley College Art Gallery
Visiting Artist: Anna Anthropy

Facebook Event

Evergreen Valley College Art Gallery
3095 Yerba Buena Road
San Jose, CA

Craft and Punishment flyer

Susana Ruiz – Take Action Games

February 22nd, 2011

9:30 am, 10:30 am, Tuesday, Feb. 22
De Anza College, Admin 109, Administration Building* (center of campus)
21250 Stevens Creek Boulevard, Cupertino, CA (map)

take action games

Noted game developer Susana Ruiz and Take Action Games (TAG) create games as Finding Zoe, Darfur is Dying, and In the Balance, an ongoing trans-media project. TAG is also wrapping up a quiz-based game for the United Nations Development Fund for Women.

Ruiz and TAG worked with Toronto’s METRAC (Metropolitan Action Committee on Violence Against Women and Children) to create Finding Zoe. METRAC was interested in a game for youth, ages 8-14, addressing abusive dating relationships and gender stereotyping. TAG specializes in casual games for change, addressing social/political content, traversing the intersections of computational art, narrative, journalism, activism, ethics, history and documentary. Questions and discussion to follow.

Co-sponsors: Euphrat Museum of Art, CADRE Laboratory for New Media, De Anza College Sociology Department, Santa Clara County Office of Human Relations, De Anza Associated Student Body, Applied Materials Excellence in the Arts Grants, Arts Council Silicon Valley

Facebook Event

learntoplay ruiz

*Possible Room Change (updates)