What Are You Playing This Weekend?

Gabe Serbian

Gabe Serbian, musician

The legendary drummer has only one game on his mind. And he’s just happy he doesn’t have to buy memory cards any more.

By Chris O'Connell • February 22, 2013

In What Are You Playing This Weekend? we discuss gaming and such with prominent figures in the pop-culture arena. We always start with the same question.

Gabe Serbian is the drummer for The Locust, a renowned art-punk-grind band from San Diego that’s set to reunite at ATP in London this summer. He now lives in Austin, Texas, where he plays drums in local hardcore and punk bands like Wet Lungs and Skycrawler. Serbian talked to The Gameological Society about his Skyrim singularity and playing long-form games without memory cards.

The Gameological Society: What are you playing this weekend?

Gabe Serbian: Same thing I’ve been playing since I got my Xbox, Skyrim: Dawnguard. That’s pretty much it. Nothing is as fun to me as Skyrim.

Gameological: The other games just don’t do it for you?

Serbian: No, it’s—this is the first video game system I’ve had since PlayStation 2, in the probably early 2000s or something, and, I dunno, the map is just enormous and you can just run around. It’s just cool because you can just do whatever you want. If you don’t want to play missions, you can just run around and fight stuff. It’s just fun to—I don’t know, fight animals or bandits or make potions and stuff.

Gameological: Have you ever played any music that utilized video game sounds?

Serbian: No, but I’ve always been into the—I had this plug-in on a program that would do an 8-bit crush of anything, so anything you did would sound like early Nintendo or Atari games.

Gameological: Like, you could play The Locust, and it would sound like insane NES music?

Serbian: I never tried that. I would just make keyboard lines and crush ’em. It was pretty cool.

Gameological: Do you ever play drums at home?

Serbian: No, because of my neighbor. But I kinda want to start just to fuck with that neighbor. I don’t care to practice at home, it would just be to piss off the neighbor. Just for the satisfaction to know I am irritating these people.

Gameological: Did you grow up playing video games, or was your focus just music from the start?

Serbian: Yeah, I had a Nintendo and was super into all the Mario Bros. games and Zelda and stuff like that, and then, like I said, I got a PlayStation 2 and would play Resident Evil forever. I didn’t even have a memory card, so I’d just try to stay alive as long as I could, and then I’d die and have to start all over again.

Gameological: It’s like when you play Nintendo when you’re younger, and you couldn’t save anything.

Serbian: Exactly. I knew I could get a memory card and start saving my progress, but it took me a while to do that because I would rather spend my money on pot or something like that, you know?

Gameological: The funny thing is, games like Resident Evil, at that time weren’t designed to be one-shot games like the ones we grew up with.

Serbian: Yeah. It was also a point where, I get into video games every once in a while, but when I got into Resident Evil it was this new type of game that I had never played before, and it was really cool, and it was scary even. I’d play it at night and stuff would just jump out at you out of nowhere and I’d be low on life—with no way to save it.

And now, we put the question to you. Tell us what you’ve been playing lately, and which games—video or otherwise—are on your playlist for the weekend.

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47 Responses to “Gabe Serbian, musician”

  1. ferrarimanf355 says:

    Anybody playing some Kenji Eno titles in remembrance of that crazy guy?

  2. Cloks says:

    Mother 3, which I just started for the third time. I feel like that’s the charm, and I’ll probably play through it all the way now that I’m actually playing it on a handheld, like it was meant to be experienced.

    For those who follow my weekly exploits, I finished Klonoa: The Phantom Door or Something Like That this week. By finished, I mean my emulated PSX version crashed out three different times before the final boss (I beat that bitch of a level three times while rescuing all the goddamn buddies or whatever) so I watched the ending on Youtube. It’s kind of a downer, but it’s a great cap to the game.

  3. Cheese says:

    I’ll probably be wrapping up Ni No Kuni, and starting…something else. I don’t really know what, but I’ve got Ico/Colossus, Catherine, Dishonored, and XCOM on deck. Any thoughts on which to play when?

    • Hey @TheOnceAndFutureCheese:disqus , I just finished with Al Mamoon/Old Smoky, going to collect my merit stamps and move on soon.  Does the game open up after the port?  Does the game de-linearize?  I know a JRPG will typically have a ‘you should go here next’ element but wondering if I can finally explore.

      (side note, after 12 hours, I can gladly the report to anyone curious that the tutorial/training wheels feel like they’re finally off)

      • Cheese says:

         So it’s about a third as long as the FFXIII “tutorial.” Japan, you patronizing son of a bitch.

        It does open up a bit when you get the boat, and much more when you get a teleport spell and the airship-esque thing that you get (it’s a spoiler).

  4. PaganPoet says:

    Finishing up my Insanity playthrough of Mass Effect 2, which is surprisingly not as difficult as I expected. I mean, I’ve been dying…a lot. But there were only 2 or 3 battles that have given me a ton of trouble. The best part about being an Engineer is you can make a combat drone to distract the enemies, and it works pretty well.

    Also, I chose Morinth over Samara this playthrough. I felt pretty terrible about it, but…how awesome is Morinth’s unique power “Dominate?” That’s my jam, y’all.

  5. HobbesMkii says:

    Planetside 2. If anyone has tried/heard of it and felt intimidated, it’s always fun with more people, so hit me up on Steam.

  6. Enkidum says:

    Beyond Good and Evil. Got it last week when it was on sale for less than 5 bucks on PSN, it’s a fine game but not nearly as good as people seem to have given it credit for. Good voice acting, and a decent – if very short – story. Definitely very short – I’m probably going to finish tonight or tomorrow night and I’ve played less than 15 hours.

    I also broke down and got Virtua Fighter 5 and will probably stink that up for a while. But really I just want to play the old drunk dude and get him to drink a lot.

    And there’s the super bonus game of discovering that a paper I published last year has incorrect results in one chart – nothing that changes a goddam thing of any importance, but about 10 numbers need to be changed. And the online supplementary data file is half garbage, so I need to replace that too. So I get to play “compose a grovelling letter to the editor requesting an errata to be published and hope that he doesn’t decide to withdraw my paper out of spite”. And in future I get to play “check the goddam numbers a lot more carefully or you’ll lose your fucking job that you don’t have yet”. Sigh.

  7. rvb1023 says:

    Finally finish up Ni No Kuni (I had a busy week) so I can start my Revengeance. I’m super pumped.

  8. ComradePig says:

     I bought the PC RTS title RUSE on sale for $2.50 on Steam last weekend and have been having quite a lot of fun with it. Namely, I’m fairly decent at the online component of the game which is a rarity compared to most other RTS titles, where if you you didn’t buy it on launch you’re probably doomed online.

    Granted, other sale buyers probably account for a lot of that. Outside of RUSE, I’ll be continuing with the usual assortment of titles I’ve listed on here before.

    • valondar says:

       RUSE is good fun! While an RTS it’s the closest I’ve felt to tabletop wargaming while playing a videogame.

  9. goawayinternet says:

    Methodically working my way through System Shock 2 now.  I now have just enough stats to really hold my own, but of course now I’m on deck 5 and there are security bots everywhere.  Never felt so alive though :)

  10. beema says:

    So, I acquired Dead Space 3 and I’m somewhat surprised to say I’m enjoying it a lot more than most of my recent purchases. It’s mostly going through the motions of the past 2 games with some stupid shit slapped on top, but the core of the game is the same and that’s what the engrossing and fun part really is. The weapon crafting shit is needlessly obtuse, though. Can’t say I like that so far. Also the human enemy sections are completely stupid. 

    I WILL play some god damned video games this weekend! I MUST!