Photo by Brady Dale
This is our ‘Geek This Week’ feature wherein Technically Brooklyn introduces you to a new member of our broad technology community. Leave your recommendations in the comments or email us at brooklyn AT technical.ly.
If you want to write about pop culture, you ought to be closer to it.
That’s why Steve Heisler, a 31 year old video game and comedy blogger, came to New York from Chicago, three years ago.
Heisler speaks like an entrepreneur when asked about the future of comedy online: “It’s no longer going to be you are stand up comic or an improviser or a sketch writer and you also happen to have this web series. I think the next step is going to be, these tools are available to you, you should be using them. You should be trying things and failing.”
Heisler, who lives in Cobble Hill, first came to Technically Brooklyn‘s attention as a writer covering video games when he performed at Kerri Doherty’s “Geeking Out” show at Union Hall, where he told the story of the beginnings of his obsession with Nintendo, including a video where he makes his dad watch as he struggles through a difficult level of Super Mario Bros. (Speaking of the Park Slope bar, Heisler also cohosts a monthly comedy karaoke show there called The Jukebox.)
Heisler is a contributor to the AV Club’s Gameological Society, where he has been able to, for example, talk to a woman who wrote for Bioshock, a game widely lauded for bringing a new level of narrative to storytelling videogames, and cross over his two favorite writing worlds, comedy and games, by covering the board game based on comedian Rob Delaney’s tweets [spoiler: Heisler hated it].
He has a lot to say about how creative developers can be making immersive experiences.
“One of the things that has sort of plagued games is technology,” he said. “As the technology has become so much more robust, game makers can do anything. So I want to know about it because I can then become even more impressed when a certain game subverts the expectation that games can do anything and creates limitations.”
To make his point, he highlighted Fez which alternates between 3D and 2D.
Heisler also writes about comedy for The AV Club, but he recently cofounded a comedy journalism collective alongside three other writers, Chicken Scratch.
“I keep talking about subverting expectations and finding new limitations,” he said of founding the collective with the other writers, “and this is my way of doing that. I don’t want to try to conform to other people. I’d rather take risks that might fail, but at least I’m creating my own limitations. I’m not being limited before I even start.”
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