Annals of Technology: The Grammar of Fun: Reporting & Essays: The New Yorker
Until very recently, almost no literature was devoted to game design, and what there was tended to be quickly made obsolete by the speed of technological developments. After the day’s final meeting had ended, I realized that, for the two decades that I had been playing games, I had unwittingly been at the mercy of the constantly changing orthodoxies of game design. I knew that some games seemed more fun than others, but I would have struggled to explain why. Bleszinski and the other Epic designers came to this form as children. Growing up playing games, they absorbed the governing logic of the medium, but no institutions existed for them to transform what they learned into a methodology. Gradually, though, they turned a hobby into a creative profession that is now as complex as any other. They have established the principles of a grammar of fun.
CliffyB and the world of the video game.
The New Yorker has a typically in-depth, insightful, and light-hearted profile of the lead designer behind Epic's monster hit "Gears of War" video game series.
"Why did mushrooms make Mario grow larger? Why did flowers give Mario the ability to spit fire? Why did bashing Mario’s head against bricks sometimes produce coins? And why was Mario’s enemy, Bowser, a saurian, spiky-shelled turtle?"
There has been some really good journalism devoted to video games lately, including this New Yorker profile of Epic's lead designer.
Cool article about Gears of War and Epic Games