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John Vanderhoef

John Vanderhoef's picture

History

Member for
1 year 42 weeks
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Critic
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http://www.pressstarttodrink.blogspot.com
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http://www.twitter.com/johnvanderhoef
Brief Bio

As a 5-year-old child forced to hang out with older children because their father was friends with his father, John recalls his first experience with video games -- wide-eyed, a big dumb look on his face -- in a furnished basement littered with imported Korean toys and illuminated by the glow of a cheap 19 inch television displaying mesmerizing, bouncing pixels. Yet because he was young and inexperienced and "bad at it," he wasn't allowed to play. Kids are like that. After eventually convincing his folks to buy one of those amazing machines for the family as a Christmas present, he did finally get to play, albeit while sharing with two older sisters. Luckily, they soon lost interest. But he has never looked back.

In college John fell to poetry, short story writing, and journalism, but ultimately took to writing critical, academic work on video games. He was actually surprised this was an option. For reasons he will never be completely sure of, he ended up in graduate school where he wrote about the discursive mapping of gender onto the terms "hardcore" and "casual" and the power hierarchy of legitimate and illegitimate games that creates. He is a proud feminist.

Currently, John is a PhD student in the Film and Media Studies Department at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He continues to study gender, race, and sexuality in video games, video game culture, and the video game industry. He also mulls over issues of creative labor, cultural hierarchy, and power, among other random subjects.

Ten All-Time Favorites Games
BioShock, Ico, Shadow of the Colossus, Portal, Peggle, Casltevania: Symphony of the Night, Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee, Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past

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