I remember my grandma’s desk being shuffled out to rest strangely in the corner of her basement, watching her play some Arkanoid rip off. I wanted to play it. The games are so interchangeable I’d never be able to know which one. Face against the glass of their back door I cycled through the levels as far as I could get. Never was that far. I think what was nice about it was that it made so much sense. Neatly arrayed patterns, colors; challenging but materially abstract, representational, therefore unstressful.
Gradually the blocks will disappear. For a bit the game is something changing, living. And when I return to it I’m in a trancelike dissolution and remembrance of what else I’ve felt, how my handling of the game’s intensity has changed. As the blocks dissolve so too does whatever old parts of myself I’ve negotiated away or forward, that I’m reminded of because of things like it. I chip away at the charming flatness until it gives way to a void.
And it would later appear on browsers to be played in class, to be rediscovered on my DS, in game collections, and plug-in-plays. It’s there, I play it, and I forget about it. Like a kind charm, imbued with good and bad, safety and tumult. A constant that has absorbed and redirected simple expectations for videogames. Something unconsciously accepted among childish notions of what is correct, not to be articulated, not needing to be justified.