[GameSetLinks is GameSetWatch's daily link round-up post, culling from hundreds of weblogs and outlets to compile the most interesting longform writing, links, and criticism on the art and culture of video games.]

A return to GameSetLinks then, even in this super-hectic pre-GDC time, oh, and look out for a special guest blogger on GSW next week, related to a special Game Developers Conference-related project that is wacky, hopefully cool, and... you'll find out about soon!

Hanging out in this round-up, we see game quality over time discussed, demo-scene goodness explored in not one, but two posts, and PSP indies sharing time with Clay Shirky on the future of journalism.

Huzzah, huzzah, huzzah:

Man-Months to Quality - Zack Hiwiller
The claim - if you spend too long on a game, the quality goes down again. No 'real' stats, but some fun graphs!

How the 2600 forged the home video game future. - By Michael Agger - Slate Magazine
'What still amazes me, in spite of my scholarly concerns here, is the nostalgic punch of early video games—how transporting the blocky sounds and sights can be.'

8bit today: SCENE.ORG AWARDS 2008
Good explanations of the retro finalists in the demo-scene category - always worth checking out for bleeptastic inspiration, even for gamegeeks.

No Gravity - The Plague of Mind: Indie PSP space shooter hotness - NeoGAF
Download-only, and this is pretty interesting overall.

Newspapers and Thinking the Unthinkable « Clay Shirky
Tremendously important in the game biz, too: 'Society doesn’t need newspapers. What we need is journalism.'

ASCII by Jason Scott / Blockparty! April 16-19th. Be there.
U.S. demo-scene party goodness, next month in Cleveland - don't forget!