Out This Week

Payday 2

Brotherly Love

In this week’s releases, heists get pulled and two pairs of famous brothers go on a pair of (unrelated) adventures.

By Sam Barsanti • August 13, 2013

Out This Week is a look at a few new games that are out this week.

Mario And Luigi: Dream Team
Nintendo 3DS—August 11

Don’t be alarmed. I know the byline up there is not that of your usual Out This Week captain, Mr. Drew Toal, but everything will be fine. I’m taking things over while he gets married, and I promise not to burn everything to the ground while he’s away.

Mario And Luigi: Dream Team is a sequel to the other Mario And Luigi role-playing games—at least in the sense that any Mario game is a sequel to any other Mario game. I doubt the storyline carries over from 2009’s Mario And Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story, but you never know with RPGs these days. It could be like Mass Effect. Maybe all of your Mario’s decisions affect the fate of the entire Mushroom Kingdom in some way. Maybe at the end, a dying Mario meets a space Toad who lets him choose one of three similar endings. Or maybe it’s a lighthearted romp through a colorful cartoon world and some of it takes place in Luigi’s mind. I guess we’ll never know for sure.

Europa Universalis IV
Linux, Mac, PC—August 13

Are you hyped for Call Of Duty: Ghosts? Well, Europa Universalis IV might be the perfect game to help you pass the time until Ghost’s November release date. Don’t be fooled by the complicated name. The official site prominently shows a dude with a cool mustache holding a gun, which is about as Call Of Duty as you can get. Europa Universalis IV is probably going to put more emphasis on strategy, scheming, and diplomacy than your usual first-person shooter (also, none of the game takes place in first-person), but that’s just going to make you better at nailing headshots or whatever in the long run.

Payday 2
PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360—August 13

If I were to make a video game, it would be some kind of cross between the varied character specialties in Team Fortress 2, the stealth infiltrations of Splinter Cell, and the bank scene from the beginning of The Dark Knight. You’d pick from a selection of heist movie archetypes, and then, you’d have to pull some kind of robbery by utilizing each team member’s special skills. The winnings would be divided up by whoever survived the mission, so you’d have to choose between helping your team or picking them off Joker-style. From what I’ve seen of Payday 2, it comes pretty close to that. I’d like to see less Insane Clown Posse and more Ocean’s 11, though. You don’t have to wear a weird mask just pull a bank robbery. You’re not Bodhi from Point Break. Actually, I take back everything I just said. If I made a video game, it would be like Point Break. Little hand says it’s time to rock and roll.

Phineas And Ferb: Quest For Cool Stuff
Nintendo DS, Nintendo 3DS, Playstation 3, Wii, Wii U, Xbox 360—August 13

What’s the deal with this trend of games for kids having weird joke titles? The second Adventure Time game, Explore The Dungeon Because I Don’t Know!, has a terrible-on-purpose thing going on, and now we have the cheeky Phineas And Ferb: Quest For Cool Stuff . I’m not complaining; I just think it’s strange. Are kids today really that into irony or are these games being marketed with a nod to the adults who watch shows like this and won’t shut up about how smart their humor is? The only thing I know about Phineas And Ferb, the show, is that the titular brothers have a pet platypus that is a secret agent and a sister that doesn’t approve of their wacky adventures. The game probably involves those things.

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87 Responses to “Brotherly Love”

  1. Fluka says:

    Oooo ooo oo!  And Gone Home is out on Thursday!  I am looking forward to breaking into a family home and poking around in people’s personal belongings, trying to reconstruct the narrative of their lives!  (And in the game!)

    Also, apparently there is more Daudly Dishonored DLC out today.  I bought the first, Knife of Dunwall, but haven’t gotten around to playing it yet.  Does the non-silent protagonist and non-revenge plot make the whole Daud arc a bit more interesting than Corvo’s story, or is it mostly more of the same?

    Also why is it still a week until Saints Row 4 comes out and gah why am I so excited about this it is going to break my heart.

    (EDIT: and why the fuck is Disqus auto-indenting my paragraphs aargh.)

    • Sam_Barsanti says:

      I also bought Knife Of Duneall and never played it…I should’ve jumped right in after beating Dishonored, since I’m terrible at finishing games once I take a break from them.

      • Fluka says:

        Yeah, same.  I’m currently looking at these and thinking “Damn, I should really play this Dishonored DLC – it looks good.  Riiiiight after I finish Dragonborn and all that Dragon Age 1 and 2 DLC…”

    • ItsTheShadsy says:

      Aw man, this is another one I’m just gonna put on my wish list, isn’t it?

    • Merve says:

      Daud’s ability to speak makes him a far more interesting character than Corvo ever was. However, the plot of The Knife of Dunwall isn’t any better than the main game’s plot.

      Still, it’s more Dishonored, so if you enjoyed the sneaky, thievy, whalepunky goodness of the main game, then you’ll probably enjoy the DLC. If anything, the level design has improved from the main game.

  2. beema says:

    You forgot about Dishonored’s Brigmore Witches DLC! Unless of course this column doesn’t count DLC. But I’m excited for that.

    A friend of mine is offering me payday 2 for $23 because a friend of theirs bought a 4 pack. Should I bite? I have no idea what that game is like.

    • swelsh20 says:

      I think Payday is pretty great, especially if you will have friends to play with. I think it plays a bit like Left 4 Dead in that there are four people playing cooperatively in slightly randomized scenarios. Every instance will play out a bit differently. If co-op gaming is your thing and you are a little bit intrigued, $23 is a good deal.

    • HobbesMkii says:

      DJ Subversive and I played the first one almost religiously. I’ve been playing the beta nonstop since I discovered I had it by dint of owning the first game (this was on Friday). 

      It’s very much like Left 4 Dead: Bank Robbery edition. It’s perhaps a little more punishing (although, I think for this they tamped down the difficulty at the lowest level) that L4D ever gets. However, the caveat is that you can play in such a way to minimize how challenging it gets. For instance, you can stealth through a bunch of missions, so that you don’t end up in the shootouts that characterize much of the game. 

      I think $23 is a pretty solid deal. The first game sold for $20, and from what I played of the Beta (which was a neutered version, I’d guess), this is a marked improvement over this game. Everything they added enhanced the “I am a career criminal” feel.
      So, if you like co-op FPS games, I’d snatch it up. 

      Plus, I’ll almost always be down for a heist. Hit me up on Steam (that goes to anyone here in the GS Group).

      • djsubversive says:

        Payday 2 is definitely an improvement over the first. Not just for new heists, even though the multi-day heists are pretty neat. The progression system allows you to specialize in your role a little better than the first and the skills are neat (some are almost mandatory, like Transporter, which lets you move faster while carrying bags of loot and throw them farther – Hobbes and I were tossing bags of cash across the street last night).

        The weapon customization could leave a bit to be desired – you have to get new gun bits from a random-reward system at the end of a mission. You don’t always get gun bits (sometimes it’s cash, masks, or mask-bits like color schemes and materials for customization). At least you can only get gun bits for guns you have.

        Still, I’m satisfied. Overkill expanded the game to be more than just L4D + Heat (it’s still basically that, but there’s more stuff surrounding that core concept this time).

        Like Hobbes said, we’re almost always up for a heist. Hop in chat and let’s steal some stuff.

        • HobbesMkii says:

          It’s kind of funny how unhappy I am when I get cash in the Payday reward. Masks are sort of middling (just once, I’d like to get a pattern rather than a color, material, or new mask, so I can actually make a mask). Weapon mods are obviously the best (if most expensive).

          By the by, a pre-release write up I read said there would be 30 different locations, but I don’t know if that means 30 different heists, or just 30 different maps (including the Escape Maps and each place for multiple day heists). My intuition is that its the latter.

        • djsubversive says:

          @HobbesMkii:disqus Cash may be king, but it’s a crappy bonus at the end of a heist. Especially when we just pulled in over 1 million dollars.

  3. Effigy_Power says:

    The pox on your house for comparing EU4 with CoD, Sam. That was cruel and mean and you made my cat cry bitter tears of tuna water. The pox on your house.
    Now excuse me while my predominately white Empire aggressively invades the Middle East, which is so not CoD, I can’t even describe it.
    The pox!

    • Sam_Barsanti says:

      They just seem very similar to me. Like, I know Battlefield is a different game than Call Of Duty, but c’mon. They’re basically the same, just like this.

    • SamPlays says:

      *Eastern European military officer enters room*
      *Points hanging overhead lamp directly into your eyes*
      Exactly how many women constitute your predominantly white empire?

      • Effigy_Power says:

        I won’t tell you nothing, you fascist! Nothing!
        Well okay, I’ll sell them all out if I can get back to being Empress.

        • SamPlays says:

          *Sits down*

          Let us discuss this proposal over some p’tcha and… you like Marmite, no?  

          *tilts head towards cell door*

          Guard! Bring us the foot jelly and Marmite!

    • Roswulf says:

       When playing the demo, I had a “WHAT THE HELL AM I DOING?” pang after pushing the “Exterminate Natives” button for the third time.

      And then I invaded the Aztecs to steal all their gold.

      I guess what I’m saying is that EU IV is orders of magnitude worse for the moral soul than CoD, and also that I want to spend forevers playing it.

      • HobbesMkii says:

        What about that CoD mission where you can (optionally) mow down Russian civilians in an airport?

        • Effigy_Power says:

          Yesterday I sacked Wales with my Icelandic Viking Raiders, burned down their churches, abducted their nobles, sacrificed the men to Odin, took the Queen as concubine until she was 40, then sacrificed her and took her sixteen year old daughter as concubine, with who I had several sons who then accompanied me on further raids on Wales.
          It’s all about me, so it’s all good.

        • SamPlays says:

          *shudders* That level gives me the same feeling as watching real animals being killed on-screen in Cannibal Holocaust. Ick.

      • CrabNaga says:

        Serves those Aztecs right for invading Spain in 1252 A.D.

        • HobbesMkii says:

          Oh, man, if you convert a Sunset Invasion game file, the Aztecs have formed a humongous empire in America. Ought to be pretty crazy fun!

    • HobbesMkii says:

      I loaded up Jerusalem at its height in CK2 yesterday and played to expand it. I’m so excited to convert! I also played a game where the Zoroastrians, Norse, Romuva and Tengri all reformed and formed massive empires. That too should be pretty good.

      • Effigy_Power says:

        I am pretty tempted to import my Norse Empire, but I am afraid the tech levels would be all screwed up, since I only got it to 1100 and I really don’t want to play another 300 years, which, when you have around 960 provinces, happens in realtime.

        • HobbesMkii says:

          I watched the video over again, and they actually explained that tech level is based on the number of settlement slots (i.e. baronies, temples, and cities). I’m not sure if they have to be built or just available, however. 

          So, I don’t think it should be a problem. Maybe try converting a blank 867 game and converting your Norse Empire and comparing their tech levels?

      • BuddhaBox says:

        Here’s hoping the next expansion adds the ability to play as theocracies. Or a Jewish character.

        • HobbesMkii says:

          If I remember correctly, Henrik Fahraeus (aka “Doomdark” to those of us on the CK2 forums) the project lead for CK2 said in the 90 minute livestream of the converter that the next DLC will be something that won’t surprise people as its something the community has been requesting. Given how much the community requests theocracies, I wouldn’t be surprised if it were that.

    • I’ve never played any of the EU games, but I am familiar with Crusader Kings II. How borked am I in learning the game’s systems? It looks pretty intriguing.  

      • Destroy Him My Robots says:

        Judging by the demo, the tutorials have gotten a lot better since EU3, where I think Paradox made the tutorial kinda like how Paul Rudd cleaned up in Wet Hot American Summer.

        • Rick Joyce says:

          Liked for the reminder of the WHAS scene.

        • HobbesMkii says:

          I’ve had the hardest time with the Vicky II tutorials. They’d be fine, but it feels like each tutorial kind of assumes that you’ve watched each other tutorial, so that they’re like, “Oh, that part of the game totally affects the part of the game we’re teaching you know, but it’s covered by another tutorial, so we’ll ignore it for now. I’m sure you’ll get the hang of it.” 

          Of particular standout to me was the economy one, which was basically:

          “This is your economy. This is your imports/exports. You want to export more than you import. How do you do that? Factories and PoPs. Those are covered in other tutorials. We won’t get into them now.”

          “…now that your economy is running smoothly…”

          But, alas, it was not.

      • Effigy_Power says:

        With the new UI EU4 is almost identical to play. Sure, there are many changes in the mechanics, but those are game-rules, you always have to learn those. But at least you don’t have to flail around in a very alien UI anymore.

  4. Spacemonkey Mafia says:

    Is Senor Toal actually getting married?  Or are you just being politic to the fact that he’s currently in holding after another glue-huffing fueled rampage through T.J. Maxx?
       Well, if it’s the former, and he takes a moment from his lengthy Santeria ceremony to read this; congrats, Mr. Toal. To you and your soon to be better half.

    • Fluka says:

      Holy crap; I skimmed over the Mario and Luigi paragraph and totally missed that.  If it’s in fact the case, congratulations Drew!  *Pops open a bottle of the finest Black-Briar Reserve!*

      • HobbesMkii says:

        Hey, I’m passing around a card for you all to sign. Please draw only your finest mustaches.

      • Effigy_Power says:

        Black-Briar? Ewwww. Why don’t you throw dogshit at their cake while you’re at it.
        -salutes Clan Toal with some Honeybrew Meadery Special-

        • HobbesMkii says:

          Elitist.

        • His_Space_Holiness says:

          Fight! Fight! Fight! Fight!

        • SamPlays says:

          *sigh* I’ll bring the Schraderbrau.

        • Fluka says:

          Man, between Sam’s comparison of EU4 and CoD, and arguing about fantasy RPG beers, we really *are* getting our troll on in John’s absence.

          *Cough cough*…

          @Effigy_Power:disqus AT LEAST NO ONE EVER FOUND SKEEVER POISON IN BLACK-BRIAR MEAD YOU HIPSTER.

        • HobbesMkii says:

          @Fluka:disqus I just had a visage of an Argonian in skinny jeans, a plaid shirt, a ski cap, Converse All-Stars and a big Grizzly Adams beard (‘natch) standing in front of a club smoking a cigarette.

        • Fluka says:

          @HobbesMkii:disqus Damn those hipsters kids ruining all the good Dunmer bars in the Windhelm and ironically joining the Forsworn.

        • HobbesMkii says:

          @Fluka:disqus I joined the Forsworn back before all the Bretons were doing it. They don’t understand what it is to be Forsworn like I do. Sure, they might perform dark rites with Hagravens and become Briarhearts, but they’re just jumping on the bandwagon, you know what I mean? It’s all hollow and corporate now. I think I might see about becoming a Stormcloak. I hear they won’t let just anyone join, you’ve got to “pure” or something.

        • Electric Dragon says:

          Electric Dragon’s Patented Space Age Monkey Island Iced Tea

          1 meas. Serrice Ice Brandy
          1 meas. Grog
          1 meas. White Gull
          1 meas. Moonbeam Absinthe
          1 meas. orange soda (if not available, lemon-lime is adequate)
          A splash of Nuka Cola Quantum.

          Serve cold. Preferably in an asbestos mug. Drink quickly. If you survive, please let us know what it’s like.

    • caspiancomic says:

       Quick, does anyone know where the ceremony is going down? I think I’ve still got time to go all Dustin Hoffman on this thing!

      Dustin Hoffman in The Graduate I mean. Not, like, Straw Dogs.

    • Merve says:

      Congrats to the Toalster! Here’s to toalsting many more slices of breald!

  5. So, I was watching Phineas and Ferb the other day, and it occurred to me that this show is really, truly, fucking nuts. I mean this in the best way possible. Like, it’s random enough to watch whenever it happens to be on, but if you follow it for any length of time, there is SO MUCH going on, it’s absolutely insane. I’m not even joking when I say it’s really as dense and wild as Community and/or Venture Bros.

    There are callbacks, and callbacks to callbacks, and references and cutaways to past events, and details so goddamn obscure that only the most hardened fans would notice them. The formula is straight-forward but has been subverted and re-subverted, dissected and destroyed, altered and reversed, and then dropped completely for something just entirely different and off-the-cuff. Some episodes are just insanely wacky, and then sometimes they’ll end with such a bleak, depressing gag that you’ll forget you’re watching a Disney cartoon.

    The more I watch it, the clearer this becomes. This show honestly is beyond what regular TV does, let alone kids TV, and yet no one will never notice it.

    • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

      I had no idea.  I’ve never given it the time of day since I find the animation style to be off-putting, but it’s up on Netflix streaming, so I’ll give it a look the next time I’m folding laundry.

      • Keep in mind that it’s pushing 200 episodes, and it takes a LONG time before the show’s insane complexity and self-awareness becomes really clear. (Like, 3 entire seasons). But it’s funny enough, so it’s not too unbearable.

      • The style kept me back, too, but it was on in the background while visiting some friends a few years ago and I was struck by how cleverly written it is. Plus, no real necessity to worry about ongoing continuity, so just hop in on any episode with a silly description that appeals to you.

      • Girard says:

        It gets a really good rap, but I think I’m happy to sit on the sidelines like with Adventure Time and My Little Pony. It probably has a similar appeal to folks these days that Dexter’s Lab and Powerpuff girls and Zim and stuff had for me in my late teens/early 20s, but I just don’t have time to get into it, and probably wouldn’t enjoy it as much now as I would have then.

        Someone sent me that “the platypus is controlling me” video, which was pretty funny!

    • His_Space_Holiness says:

      Damn straight. I was blown away the first time I watched it. It’s a cartoon on the Disney Channel, it has no right to be this clever and funny! AND YET IT IS.

    • Mercenary_Security_number_4 says:

       First few seasons were great.  Latter episodes get repetitive and lose the perfect balance of crazy and smart.  But yeah, its the closest TV has ever gotten to showing what really goes on in the adventures of a clever kid’s imagination.

      • Yeah, I’ll admit there was a bit of a lull in the middle there, but I feel like after the 2nd Dimensions movie (which was legitimately great), they got a second wind, or something.

        Although, they’re doing the Marvel episode this weekend, so… there’s that.

    • WarrenPeace says:

      My five-year-old daughter is obsessed with the show, so we’ve watched many, many episodes, and it’s pretty damn entertaining. There are some really great jokes, with lots of references to stuff that adults will get but that just come off as silly stuff to kids. It’s a really fun show, and yeah, it gets so self-referential that it can be kind of mind-boggling if you think about it. Also, the songs are often really good too.

  6. HobbesMkii says:

    I don’t even know what I’m gonna do this evening when I get home. EUIV or PAYDAY 2? It’s so hard to decide. I think my head will explode with indecision.

  7. Citric says:

    I can’t believe someone is marrying Toal without demanding the triumphant return of his mustache. If I was marrying him the wedding would be postponed until the ol’ soup strainer found its way back home.

    (What an odd way to congratulate the man.)

    • Effigy_Power says:

      I feel the same way Citric. Without a fabulously dense and handsomely decorated mustache this wedding is going to be an altogether drab and gray affair.
      I don’t even know if I should send him the festively painted cows from my country holdings now.

      • boardgameguy says:

        only do it if the cows have festively painted mustaches to remind Drew what he’s missing.

    • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

      Maybe he’s marrying his mustache?

    • Unexpected Dave says:

      I just hope he’s wearing a plaid tuxedo.

  8. Unexpected Dave says:

    The DuckTales remake is out today. The $15 price tag puts me off, though. Such a price point suggests padding, and not mere embellishment.

    • Mercenary_Security_number_4 says:

       I came here also to remind people about Ducktales. 

      I have no fear.  The graphics were all redone and extra areas have been added.  Its one of the most demanded games ever to be re-released.  They are charging $15 because they took some extra time with it (and love from all reports).  Also because they know people will pay $15 for it.  Hell, I’m waiting a week so I can buy the disc version for 5 dollars more.  Because I still want to be playing this when the PSN store has gone under and I’m on my fifth reconstructed PS3.

    • Mercenary_Security_number_4 says:

       Been playing it for a few minutes.  Perfect job.  The platforming is exactly the same down to the pogo stick and the golf swing, the animation is right on for connecting it to the show, the music retains the same melodies, the dialog is very reminiscent of the show and the voice acting is similarly authentic.  If you have any love of the original game or the cartoon (or both, like me) I strongly recommend it.

  9. Cornell_University says:

    Where the fuck is Teti?  The UPS guy just came over to my place and said he’s not home.  Said he’s been by twice with no answer.  Something about needing a signature as his latest shipment of nazi memorabilia was insured for like $50,000 gil. 

  10. Girard says:

    So, is Drew gonna get married every time Teti goes on vacation? I’m imagining Barsanti sitting in an empty Gameological office in his underoos as he giddily posts all the site’s content.

    • Merve says:

      Well, Gerardi’s running the show in Teti’s absence, and the flow of content hasn’t been reduced at all, which leads me to believe that Gerardi has turned Gameological into some sort of hellish Dickensian sweatshop.

      Makes sense, I guess. I hear that Gerardi’s parents were going to name him Ebenezer before they settled on Matt.

    • Effigy_Power says:

      The concubine system holds firm in the land of Clan Toal.
      May he be blessed with many heirs.

    • Sam_Barsanti says:

      Shh! I don’t want anyone to catch on until it’s too late and I’ve gradually turned the site into a platform for my anti-Adventure Time views.