content by

Melissa Kagen

Video Games and the Promise of Cake

Welcome to Close Reads! In this series, Leah Schnelbach and guest authors dig into the tiny, weird moments of pop culture—from books to theme songs to viral internet hits—that have burrowed into our minds, found rent-stabilized apartments, started community gardens, and refused to be forced out by corporate interests. This time out, professor and videogame researcher Melissa Kagen invites us into the virtual kitchen to talk about cake and its discontents.

Videogames are full of cake.

Princess Peach bakes multi-tiered, cream-and-strawberry thank-you cakes for Mario when he saves her. Super intelligent AI GLaDOS rather famously promises the Portal player that cake (and grief counseling) will be waiting for them once testing is complete (but the cake is a lie—or is it??).

[Minecraft has cake. Zelda has cake…]

Series: Close Reads

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