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Alternative and speculative histories of games

We're doing something a bit different for the next issue of Memory Insufficient. The next issue will present alternative histories and speculative histories of games.
Alternative histories (or 'allohistories') ask, what if history had gone differently? What if games history had progressed in a different direction? What would games be like in an alternate history of the world? For example, what kind of competitive multiplayer games would people play using highly advanced steam-powered engines? 
Speculative histories, on the other hand, ask what kind of futures might arise from current events. How might video games and video game cultures look in the future? How might future changes to games culture affect our society? For example, what kind of future can we glimpse in culture wars currently happening in gaming-related social spaces online?
The issue could also include critical analyses of speculative and alternative histories represented in games. There are a number of prominent examples in cinematic AAA video games (Bioshock, Half Life, Fallout) and tabletop games such as Chrononauts and Microscope. What do these games tell us about history? What are the benefits of this kind of speculative play? How might the stories told through these games represent or misrepresent historical processes?

This issue will be guest-edited by Rachel Weil alongside regular editor Zoya Street.
Submit by email to or send a link on Twitter to @rupazero.


24th November

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