Part two of the big Eurogamer Christmas reading list

Welcome to part-two of my end of year reading list - part one was published yesterday. It's a list that highlights the writers we're really lucky to publish on Eurogamer, and without whom, the website would not be the same. I hope you saved some space after yesterday's feast, and remember, if there's a writer who really clicks with you, then return the favour and click on their name next to their author portrait, to go to their author page. There, you'll find many more pieces by them. I hope you enjoy the platter before you.

Sir Clive Sinclair sadly passed away this year, and he leaves a legacy in gaming that will never be forgotten. From calculators to some of the first mass market home computers (that could play games), Dan Whitehead tells Sir Clive Sinclair's remarkable life story.

Matt Wales really sticks with some games, and one of those is No Man's Sky. He's been on and off dabbling for the five years it's been out - gosh has it really been that long?! - and it's a game that's changed a lot in that time. Here he explains why No Man's Sky's latest Expedition is a great re-introduction to the game.

Luke Kemp didn't understand Eric Chahi's VR game Paper Beast properly until he read Robert Macfarlane's acclaimed book Underland: A Deep Time Journey. But to understand why, you have to understand Macfarlane, as Kemp attempts to.

Twine is free, open-source software for making interactive fiction, and it's one of the few places in gaming where trans people have a strong and visible presence. Eli Cugini explores a blossoming creative scene.

An open book on a table, some liquor in a glass, and a roaring fire. Bliss!
I've changed fireplace for today's piece because I'm in my other castle. Inviting, isn't it? Image credit: Adobe.

Shenmue might be 22 years old, but for Aamir Mehar it still feels excitingly different and unique. Few games evoke life so strongly, he argues, as he slips back into Ryo's shoes.

Is that a funny accent in Dragon Quest Builders 2, or is it Polari, a secret dialect? Edward Hawkes investigates.

'Appreciating rock climbing' wasn't something Henry Stockdale thought he'd get from lockdown life. But through Crytek's VR game The Climb, he did.

It takes courage, and perhaps a bit of madness, writes Thomas Nickel, to make a brand new game for a very old machine. But that's what M2 did with the 30-year-old Game Gear, and Nickel tells the story of how.

"To say that the internet collectively lost its mind over all nine feet and six inches of Countess Alcina Dimitrescu would be an understatement almost as colossal as the Lady herself." Amen, Dr Lloyd (Meadhbh) Houston, amen. Here's an exploration of taking pride in queer thirst.

Dead Space 2 is a banger, and its memorable level is Chapter 10: Déjà Vu on the Ishimura. Here, Graeme Mason talks to the people who made Dead Space 2 about how Déjà Vu on the Ishimura came about.

Boat rides in games: they're doing more than you might realise, as Emad Ahmed finds out.

Nier Automata was a calculated risk. It bet big on some ground-breaking conceits. And in 2017, no one really gave it much of a chance. But it worked, bringing the series widespread, international acclaim. Nier matters, as Hirun Cryer explains.

Jennifer Allen has had a rough time of late with endometriosis and the surgery to try and alleviate it. But the only way she could seem to think about it was through the lens of Candy Crush Soda Saga.

How long does it take you to unlock all 101 ships in R-Type Final? In Tony Coles' case, 16 years.

It might be a stretch to say a decade old Mario game predicted an ecological disaster in Mauritius last year, but the more that Mauritian Mahin Kesore looks into it...

Here's a name you'll remember: lovely Chris Bratt. I added the lovely part - he didn't have that called out each day on the register. He investigated the problematic practice of outsourcing game development crunch earlier in the year. But when it came time for the companies involved to talk about it - in no small part thanks to People Make Games' reporting - those companies, as he writes, "totally missed the point".

What is it about game worlds that make people feel like they're more able to be their true selves than in the real world outside? Sharang Biswas dives in and explores how games can help us imagine a queerer world.

John Linneman celebrated five years of DF Retro this year. In this piece, he unearths the 'lost' Rare N64 game Dinosaur Planet, which would go on to become Star Fox Adventures.

Accessibility is improving rapidly in games, which is why remasters, or standalone expansions, provide an exciting possibility: the chance to evolve accessibility in a game. Spider-Man: Miles Morales is a shining example of this, as Vivek Gohil explains.

Even getting stuck in the Suez Canal and Covid-19 lockdowns couldn't stop the ambitious Virtual Realms exhibition eventually opening in Singapore. Alexis Ong went along to experience it, and talk to the creators involved.

Final Fantasy 14 is having a really big moment, which is remarkable for a game eight years old. Sayem Ahmed looks at why.

Remedy deservedly won a lot of plaudits for Control, but for Edward Love, it's still the original Max Payne than bangs.

Amelia Hansford can think of nothing finer than making a virtual road trip across Europe in a whopping great truck. Here's why.

Xbox Game Pass can frequently seem like a ridiculously good value proposition. But is Game Pass too good to be true? Chris Tapsell investigates.

Yaseen Ahmad is a teacher, and he doesn't think a lot of games get the profession quite right.

Imagine being defeated by a game when you were a child, only to grow up convinced it was so hard no one could beat it. Until, that is, you bought the game years later and tried again. Here's Sahira Raja with a story of family, dancing games, and humbleness.

Did Blade of Darkness really pioneer Dark Souls? Rick Lane finds a copy of the 2001 game and puts it to the test.

Someone should make a game about Transformers. "But they have!" you scream. And you're right. But they've all missed the best thing about the Transformers, argues Caelyn Ellis, and that is the toys themselves.

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About the author

Robert Purchese

Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer  |  Clert

Bertie is senior staff writer and Eurogamer's Poland-and-dragons correspondent. He's part of the furniture here, a friendly chair, and reports on all kinds of things, the stranger the better.

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