Zine Review: Dear Diary, Today I Died 3

Dear Diary, Today I Died 3
Avery Flinders
http://chickencollective.storenvy.com/

Dear Diary, Today I Died 3 is a full-colour A5 gaming zine about finding new games to play, hidden characters, and more.

“The key is to make friends who have the same taste in horrible games that I do.”

Hahahaha.

Avery opens this third issue of the Dear Diary series writing about how being spoiled for choice with so many new games out there can be a bit bewildering. As quoted above, Avery’s solution is to make friends with people who have similar tastes in games. This was a funny start to the zine for me because I have two friends I used to meet up with regularly to discuss the latest games we’d discovered.

After that, Avery gives a rundown of hidden characters from the game The Binding of Isaac – a game that clearly means a lot to them. Even though I don’t have the game (yet), it was nice to read such clear enthusiasm from Avery about the subject.

In the middle spread of this issue, we’re treated to what will stand as the first of an ‘once and issue piece on a game that has queerness baked into the very process of playing’. Not only do I think this is fun because, well, I love gaming, but I also think it’s important for younger queer readers who may be looking for ways to identify with popular media. In this issue, Avery writes about Diaries of a Spaceport Janitor, a game that sounds very strange and intriguing.

Avery writes a short but touching piece about keeping a digital vigil of sorts for friends who have passed away by using a phone game. In the phone game, Avery can still visit creations made by the friends who have passed. They touch on the topic of how now, in a digital age, our digital selves can remain behind even after our biological selves have passed away. I call this piece short because it leaves me wanting to read more about the topic of our digital selves from both Avery and others as well.

The cover of this zine features Webber, a character from Don’t Starve, which is the first thing that caught my attention for this whole series. I’ve absolutely loved Don’t Starve since it first got started on Steam (a game marketplace, etc). So you can imagine I loved reading Avery’s thoughts on the multiplayer version of the game: Don’t Starve Together. They write about how the multiplayer game can be a great way to catch up when distance and other factors keep you from catching up with friends in person.

If you hadn’t already guessed from my reviews of Dear Diary, Today I Died 1 and Dear Diary, Today I Died 2, I really like this zine and series. I like the mix of game commentary, recommendations, and links between gaming and real world topics. I hope to see the next zine in this series soon.

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