Keyboard Geniuses

Dragon's Crown

Heavy Hangs The Head That Plays The Crown?

Highlights from the week’s comment threads.

By Matt Kodner • August 9, 2013

Keyboard Geniuses is our weekly glance at a few intriguing, witty, or otherwise notable posts from the Gameological discussion threads. Comments have been excerpted and edited here for grammar, length, and/or clarity. You can follow the links to see the full threads.

Double-D Dragon

In Out This Week, Drew Toal brought us the lowdown on the handful of games that came out this week, but for more than one reason, everyone’s eyes were drawn to Dragon’s Crown, a new brawler touting some over-the-top character designs, like an Amazonian with a butt the size of a water buffalo’s back half. Effigy Power felt the developers should have taken their aesthetic to its logical conclusion:

I think the thing that truly pisses me off about this game is that they obviously wanted to go X-rated with this but didn’t have the guts, thanks to sales. If you want to make a game that’s downright porny, go nuts. Seriously, there’s not enough adult material in gaming, at least no serious stuff.

But this bawdy, immature Hooters-style quasi-nudity and bouncing just seems like the typical frustrated dry-humping we get plenty of in media.

In any case, go big or go home. I for one am looking forward to a game that is chock full of X-rated material and still a good game. I am not holding my breath.

Elsewhere, His Space Holiness busted out a wonderfully prescient Mystery Science Theater 3000 clip re: large breasts:

I can’t believe it took me this long to think of it, but the MST3K guys pretty much came up with the perfect description for this game:

Hips Don’t Lie

Despite the egregious character art, Samantha Nelson found a lot to like about Dragon’s Crown. Spacemonkey Mafia agreed and came to the defense of the game’s art direction, barring the problematic chests, butts, and so on:

If the (deservedly) contentious character designs were removed—hell, if everything but the environments were removed, this game would be—visually—a triumph of the medium.

It’s not just that everything is digitally hand-painted, though that’s a unique enough quality in a game to merit notice. It’s that, and I am not being hyperbolic when I say this, it is almost Rembrandtesque. The environments are luminescent, rich, and glowing. Vanillaware does more than reference classical oil painting, they work to include those qualities in their work.

Another example of this is that their games always include a cooking minigame of some sort. And you can see in the way all the ingredients are presented, still springy and infused with color, displaying the same motivation in rendering a still life—of trying to capture the essence of life before inevitable entropy sets in.

And the work to animate such detailed designs requires a completely different approach than rendering polygons. It’s pretty amazing to see movements unfurl.

Samantha felt that pointlessly navigating towns took too long, but Taumpy Tears brought word of a simple pleasure squirreled away in town:

I can definitely see the “spending too much time in town” thing becoming annoying, mostly because my fiancée is impatient when aspects of games like leveling up and selling equipment take up time between her killing things. However, the players can attack each other in town. There is no friendly fire in the dungeons, but in town you can knock each other around the screen to your heart’s content. And you can hit the townspeople who walk by, and instead of killing them, your iceblast or axe chop will knock over their basket of food or something. And if you keep attacking the townspeople you get locked up in jail for the night, as my fiancée immediately found out. No penalties or anything, just an acknowledgement that you’re being a dick.

Nightmare Team
Reggie Fils-Aime

In The Bulletin, Sam Barsanti gave us his take on the latest game-industry news. Beyond the shitstorm surrounding the sudden cancellation of Fez II, a far-fetched petition surfaced to include cult Nintendo executive Reggie Fils-Aime as a playable character in the new Super Smash Bros. But for Cloks, Reggie was just the tip of the iceberg. He gave us his own far-fetched list:

Dream Characters:
Oscar Goldman from The Six Million Dollar Man
Halo from Halo
Sam the Eagle
James VanDerBeek
Red Hulk
Dermott Fictel
If all of these characters are in it, I’ll consider buying a Wii U.

Ah, Halo from Halo, my favorite Halo-brand character. In other news, Sam also noted the Wii U’s recent sales woes. While the system doesn’t have many vocal fans, Indy2003 voiced a hopeful opinion:

The sad thing is that the Wii U really is a better and more innovative system than the Wii, as far as I’m concerned. The Wii’s “wave your remote around” gimmick is more immediately accessible and fun, but the Wii U has a level of depth that is really impressive. I’ve been playing through Game & Wario over the course of the past week or so, and while the game itself isn’t anything special, it does a terrific job of demonstrating just how many things the Gamepad is capable of.

If Nintendo had offered a stronger selection of launch titles—with a particular emphasis on titles which demonstrated the full range of the Gamepad—they might have had a hit on their hands. Now, I’m fearful that the Wii U will quietly slip away before anyone even bothers to develop some quality games for the system. (“Hey, guys, that Zelda game we were working on? Um, we’re retooling it for the Nintendo Ultrabox, coming in 2016!”)

Food Truck Out Of Luck
Austin skyline

For a special feature, Chris O’Connell dug deep into Austin’s thriving scene of indie game developers. A large discussion ensued about Austin itself, and as the internet is prone to do, things got a bit off topic. Suddenly, everyone was debating the merits of food trucks, like a bunch of wild animals. Thankfully, Kyle O’Reilly defended their honor with a piratical metaphor:

Stumbling drunk into the street to find out there’s a big metal soul-food restaurant on wheels outside the bar is how I imagine pirates felt when they tumbled onto an island and stubbed their two on a box of Spanish doubloons.

The “Cool” LARPers
Boutros Boutros-Vader

John Teti proved himself an avid reader of The New York Times when he recommended an article detailing the unexpectedly fantastical and highly competitive world of Model United Nations. Fluka kicked in her own experiences and made a comparison between Model U.N. and live action role-playing:

High School Model U.N. was one of my teenage obsessions, to the extent that I was co-president of my high school’s team. While more “educational,” MUN has more in common with fantasy role-playing games than anyone would like to admit. Like the article says, you have a character defined by your carefully researched nation or official’s political positions. You are given a quest (a goal for the committee to accomplish), and using the rules (formal parliamentary procedure) and with the guidance of your dungeon master (chairman), a narrative emerges as you interact with your fellow players. It’s essentially school-sanctioned LARPing. Like many such ventures, the best experiences are the smaller “special” committees (e.g., Security Council). They often have a “MIDNIGHT CRISIS” where staffers come and knock on your door at 2 a.m. because “There has been a crisis, and the delegates must assemble to solve it now!” (This sounds less fun now that I’m pushing 30.)

Who Does No. 2 Work For?
Fallout 3

In a Q&A, we brought you a rundown of Gameological’s favorite sidekicks who outperform their spotlight-hogging counterparts. Samantha Nelson went with Tails, that flying fox of a fox from the Sonic series, and Mr. Glitch blew my and your mind with a bit of trivia:

Hey, didya know Tails is just that fox’s nickname? His full name is Miles “Tails” Prower. Get it? Miles Prower? Miles per hour? That stupid little play on words went unnoticed by my dumb self for 20 friggin years!

I’m still angry I didn’t get that earlier. Mechanical Frog was less angry with a futuristic assassin’s nonadventures:

I think the best example of a protagonist being outshone is Desmond Miles in the Assassin’s Creed series since it happens to him repeatedly every year. The framing device sets him up as the lead character, but every one of his ancestors, especially Assassin’s Creed 2’s Ezio, is much more interesting and charismatic. I wouldn’t mind if Ubisoft dropped the modern-day parts entirely, to be honest.

And Gnarled Bark chose the silly robotic compatriot of the Borderlands series:

I’d have to go with Claptrap (CL4P-TP for those of you who need the official name) from the Borderlands series. Claptrap is funny, annoying, nearly useless, terrified, and gives the best high fives. The question mentioned that some people think of Ellie as The Last Of Us’ hero. What makes Claptrap great is that he’s the only one who thinks he’s the hero. I have four older brothers, so Claptrap reminds me of how I used to act as a kid. I was a little annoying, but I meant well, and all I wanted to do was hang out with the big kids. There’s something so sweet about Claptrap that makes you want to give him that moment where he thinks he saved the day.

Well, folks, that’s it. Everybody, thanks for reading and commenting, and we’ll see you next week.

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97 Responses to “Heavy Hangs The Head That Plays The Crown?”

  1. Spacemonkey Mafia says:

    Weekend Prompt!

       I’m in the thick of Last of Us and think it’s fantastic.  And for all the discussion of the sophistication and cinematic aspirations of the title, there are some elements that are just good ol’ fashioned video game.  For instance, in traversing almost the entirety of the nation, and scrounging through all of fallen civilization, there are exactly six items Joel will deign to pick up from the ruins.  Compass?  Heat pads?  Rain poncho?  No thanks, just hand me that broken scissor blade and half-empty sugar dispenser.
       For all the advancements in gaming, there are still some necessary game play abstractions that haven’t advanced from the point where you’d walk into a strangers house, rifle through their wardrobe and take their gold, overturn their crockery for random herbs then go over to where they sit as they’d look up and blithely say:  “I haven’t seen my daughter since her husband took that job in Mukoru Mine.  I guess she must be worried about him.”

       What is your most or least favorite meta-game play devices?

    • DrFlimFlam says:

      It really yanks you out of the game world when Booker eats trash. WHY IS HE EATING TRASH ALL THE TIME? AND WHY IS THIS OKAY?

      A more realistic depiction of health in games without healing spells from time to time would be nice. Even a vigor that healed Booker would be better than dumpster-diving from Twinkies and hot dogs. Or, I don’t know, an abandoned food stand because of the jaw-dropping violence?

      It goes hand in hand with shield technology. Halo had a reason for it. BioShock (and many toher games) DON’T.

      • Effigy_Power says:

        We can take that a bit further.
        I am pretty sure eating old cotton candy from a trashcan does not in fact restore your hitpoints. Now, I haven’t tried this in real life, but I am pretty sure.

        • DrFlimFlam says:

          If Booker was eating a nice spinach and arugula salad, maybe a nice filet of salmon, I mean, THAT is some nutritious food.

        • rvb1023 says:

           I like to think video game characters are just way more evolved than us.

      • Merve says:

        One funny thing I noticed about the food in trash cans in Infinite: you’re more likely to find rotten food in the poor districts than in the rich districts. I thought that was a nice touch.

    • Effigy_Power says:

      I think I loathe the general tit-for-tat quest-structure when it makes no sense. Of course people can’t be expected to act all altruistic and free-giving in games. It’s unrealistic. But it becomes annoying and pointless when people use the mechanic against their own self interest.

      “Sure, I’ll smith you a weapon that can defeat the zombies that are about to destroy our village, but first [insert mundane task]”

      Just make me the fudging sword, you prole! I am risking my life to save your worthless craphole of a village from a horde of face-raping zombies and you want me to pick up a basket of cookies from your aunt? What the hell, game?
      MMOs are certainly more chock-full of these quests, since nothing you ever do has any repercussions anyways and there’s never a time-factor.
      I remember that a quest in one of the lower level areas of the Undead in WoW rewarded a quest to slay some very hefty ghosts with… A SWORD MUCH BETTER AT SLAYING GHOSTS.
      The NPCs had this magical weapon, but chose to neither use it to defend themselves nor to maybe raise the chance of my quest succeeding by giving it to me first.

      This all ties in with the fact that few games really punish players for failure. If the ghosts in WoW killed you, you ran back to your corpse and pick it up from there. But MMOs are not alone in that. Even highly immersive RPGs constantly do this. The fact that I can take my sweet-ass time between quest-stages that should have time-sensitive factors has ruined a lot of story-lines for me.

      “Alduin is destroying Skyrim, seeking the destruction of all life. He must be stopped.”
      “Yeah, sure thing. Anyone mind if I go off for a few weeks mining, btw?”

      Well, I guess that’s two things I hate, but they are somewhat related in my head. NPCs don’t take things seriously and never impose actual pressure on the player UNLESS in the form of holding our time hostage to do their shopping or paint their fence or something. Annoying.

      Wow, long rant.

      • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

        We don’t love you because you’re succinct.

        • Effigy_Power says:

          Wait, you love me because I am not succinct or I am succinct and you don’t love me.
          In which case I will kill every last one of you.
          With kindness. (That’s what I call my +5 chair leg.)

        • DrFlimFlam says:

          I would be happy to tell you how Spacemonkey feels about you, but I was exploring an old haunted ruin and got scared and left my favorite shoelace there. There are also monsters.

        • SamPlays says:

          Sorry but I’m a fan of the acerbic one liners.

      • DrFlimFlam says:

        Mass Effect 3 was one long funfest while the Reapers were reaping Earth. I never understood how I had time to go gallivanting around while Earth succumbed.

        • Roswulf says:

           I actually appreciated how Mass Effect, through the collection of War Power (or whatever its called), made the gallivanting make sense.

          You only got one shot at the Reapers, and it was worth making the horrible choice allowing tens of millions more to die on Earth if you could marginally increase the chance of that desperate play payoff by salvaging a Volus holy book.

          Now the fun party time of the Citadel expansion COMPLETELY blows this explanation out of the water, but I’m willing to cordon that off as an alternate universe of funtimes.

        • Merve says:

          Mass Effect 2 also made the suicide mission time-sensitive, which I thought was a nice touch.

      • The_Misanthrope says:

         I’m always pretty bothered by the lack of urgency in RPGs.  Sure, they tell you that the fate of the world is at stake, but then they just let you dick around to your heart’s content (that latter clause is practically written in all the Elder Scrolls design documents).  Just once, I want to see an RPG willing to subvert that notion:

        Hero:  Well, after wandering the countryside to collect several varieties of mushrooms so the herbalist who refuses to leave his store will make me the potion I want, I feel I’m ready to start my epic quest to save the world!

        Joe NPC:  Huh?!?  That quest?  That’s old news!  Didn’t you hear?  Val the Demented finished collecting and assembling the 5 Eldritch MacGuffins, allowing him to ascend to godhood.  Now we must serve his every whim.  Hell, just the other week, I had to sacrifice my firstborn son. But I don’t want to bore you with my life…

      • edincoat says:

        This is my mine gripe with Mass Effect.

      • SamPlays says:

        The false sense of urgency is so common in video games that I was shocked when my tardiness led to the death of hostages in the first stage of Deus Ex HR. Funny thing is, the game kept reminding me of the urgency when I was too busy scoping out office space.

      • His_Space_Holiness says:

        I actually enjoy the lack of urgency in RPGs, partly because I think it’s funny to just dick around while the world is in deadly peril. Hey, I’m the prophesied Savior of Whatever The Fuck, what are you gonna do, send someone else? Now excuse me while I go light some trolls on fire for the complete hell of it. But I also hate time limits in video games in general, so it all works out.

    • Aurora Boreanaz says:

      One of the most irritating and immersion-breaking things in both Oblivion and Skyrim was the questionable “stolen item detection” mechanic.  It’s pretty damn ridiculous when you snag a couple of items from one town, travel halfway across the country, and have them confiscated as contraband in a completely different town.  ESPECIALLY ridiculous when it’s food items you stole.

      “Really, officer?  You have an instantly updated country-wide magical database to track missing loaves of bread and carrots?”

      Though it’s still better than in Daggerfall, where you could break into a shop after hours, steal their entire inventory, then sell it all back to them the next day.

      “Well I’ll be, it’s my favorite customer again!  Cleared out another dungeon, eh?  Amazing!  What is this, the fifth suit of Daedric Armor you’ve found within a day’s travel?  I don’t know how the other adventurers have missed those spots in the thirty years I’ve been here!  And it also looks JUST LIKE the one I used to have displayed here in my shop…that I must have misplaced…oh, I think it was six days ago now?  Here is your 30,000 gold in payment that I can somehow still afford and you can also somehow fit in your pocket!”

    • aklab says:

      Hmm. There are plenty of necessary gameplay abstractions that I wish could carry over to real life. If I could reload saved states I could’ve avoided a few scrapes… 

      One game device that bugs me is arbitrary inventory restrictions that still make no sense. I realize they want to introduce a level of realism or heighten the challenge of resource management, but if I have two bottles of potion, and the game won’t let me take a third bottle of a different potion, but I can hold 98 more bottles of the first potion… Or you’ve established that my character can carry 500 pounds of stuff, but whether it’s 500 pounds of magical scrolls or 500 pounds of rusty daggers makes no difference to my ability to run around and shoot a bow and arrow. 

      • Chewbacca Abercrombie says:

        The only game I’ve played with inventory restrictions that I actually liked and thought made sense was Alone in the Dark for 360 where you can only hold as much as will fit in your jacket pockets. Shame there was so many other things to annoy me in that game, like the awful controls and ridiculously bad driving that also constantly froze my game. It’s amazing I ever beat that game.

        • aklab says:

          That makes sense! 
          More sense than, say, BioShock, where you can lug around a pistol, a machine gun, a shotgun, a crossbow, a grenade launcher, a flamethrower thingie, and a research camera, yet you can only carry like 7 of the tiny syringes that give you magic powers or literally restore your life. 

    • The_Helmaroc_King says:

      While I can’t say 100% that it’s my most or least favorite system in games, it is one that a lot of people can relate to: loot systems. Most or least favorite? Yes.

      I like it when it feels like I’m actually earning what I pick up, and what I pick up is worthwhile. A game like FTL doesn’t have the most variety of items, but you have to earn things the hard way and lucking onto a new crew member or enough scrap to buy a much-needed upgrade is incentive to push forward against the odds.

      I dislike it when anything useful is absurdly unlikely to find, and the rest is just vendor trash I don’t need, which I’ll dutifully cart it back to town so I can sell it for more money I don’t need. Meanwhile, the useful items hide behind an absurdly improbable drop rate.

      • Aurora Boreanaz says:

        I’m torn between both extremes of loot systems.

        On the one hand, I think that anything that an opponent has when they attack you should be lootable on their death (barring a percentage for equipment to be destroyed during said death).  Shadowrun Returns’ main campaign, Dead Man’s Switch, has zero enemy loot except for keycards and the like.

        On the other hand, if you are able to loot EVERYTHING they were carrying, it becomes a chore to identify the best equipment for use and/or future sale.  I spent more time in Skyrim and Oblivion trying to figure out what loot had the best weight-to-value ratio than I did fighting monsters.

        • Effigy_Power says:

          I have to be stern on this. If I see someone wearing awesome armor and I kill them and then DON’T get to loot the armor, I am a lot less happy.

        • The_Juggernaut_Bitch says:

           @Effigy_Power:disqus Well, when you hack a dude to death with an axe or a sword… or lightning bolts… the odds of their armor surviving in any kind of useable state diminishes drastically.  Also… ew?  Dude just bled nine gallons of gore in to that, and you want to put it on?  Have you never heard of blood-born pathogens?!

    • stakkalee says:

      I both love and hate fast travel.  On the one hand, schlepping you loot back across the countryside isn’t fun AT ALL, but on the other hand, magically appearing at my destination just destroys any feelings of immersion the game might have built up.  I don’t want to do away with fast travel because of the tedium that would result, but I’d like to see somebody come up with a system that makes sense.

      • Merve says:

        I have a feeling that more RPGs would use teleportation as an explanation for fast-travel if it didn’t totally run the risk of breaking the games’ fictions.

        • Aurora Boreanaz says:

          The blatant existence of mage portals in WoW made me increasingly furious when, with each new expansion, they would move the portals to the newest large “hub” city going back to the older ones, but never link them FROM those cities to the hub, because “you wouldn’t explore all our nifty new content” or some bullshit.

          Because if YOU were in charge of arranging transport for troops to the front lines of the newest Magic War or Conquest Area, wouldn’t you make sure people could RUN AWAY instantly, but if more people wanted to join the fight, they have to come via land or stupid flying animal taxis?

      • Aurora Boreanaz says:

        I agree on the love/hate.  The way I managed it with Skyrim was making a deal with myself to only fast travel to places I’d already reached via normal foot or horse travel.  That lasted a few days until I started getting impatient.

        • Effigy_Power says:

          Actually that’s sort of how the game works, isn’t it? You can’t fast-travel to a location you haven’t explored yet via manual means.

        • Aurora Boreanaz says:

           @Effigy_Power:disqus  I think you could take a wagon directly to most of the main cities though…I avoided that means is what I meant.

      • Cheese says:

        I wish more big games did in-game fast travel, like the various fast travel options in Morrowind. I like fast travel if it a)costs something, b) is limited in start/endpoints, and c) is explained in-game.

    • Kyle O'Reilly says:

       Lease favorite? Probably all the murder.

      “Drake, we have to find the ancient tibetan tea set before So-and-So.”

      “Sounds great Journa-blondie but first I have to shoot a couple hundred dudes in the head with a gun.”

      • NakedSnake says:

        I’m a fan of violent video games just as much as I’m a fan of non-violent video games. But it really bothers me for some reason when the stakes of the mission don’t sync up with the level of violence you’ll bring to accomplish it. I really appreciated in Gunpoint how they give you an achievement (Acknowledged Ludonarrative Dissonance) if you conduct the game with more violence that the situation warranted. 

      • fly says:

        I wanted less stop and shoot and more running for your life with luck involved action sequences. Considering how much they ripped off Indiana Jones, they should realize that Indy didn’t stop to murder every single person  that was shooting at him. 

    • Labrat85 says:

       Obstacles that should not pose a challenge to surmount and yet still block the heroes progress.
      Like a row of boxen only half your avatars height keep you from the clearly visible goal, forcing you down a windy path to get there.

      Oh and GRINDING, repeat the same task 20 times to get a small statistical upgrade? NO thank you. Almost every fight should be an event, if that means shorter games then great maybe i will finish more of them.

    • Effigy_Power says:

      Oh, I have another one.
      The discrepancy of power between Cutscene and Game.
      JRPGs, to my knowledge, are very guilty of that. Kelly was playing Xenosaga. One character, some weird cyborg chick named Kos-Mos (facepalm) annihilated an entire fleet of ships in a cutscene, cutting them to ribbons. Once the (20 minute) cutscene was over, Kos-Mos was in a fight with a few bugs and lost because she missed twice in a row punching them.
      Dafuq, game?
      Weapons do that a lot too. Cutscene sword chops dragon’s head off, ingame sword needs 20 hits to splinter a shield.

      • His_Space_Holiness says:

        Xenosaga is a game and series that requires a very high ridiculousness tolerance from the player. Fortunately I have an astronomical tolerance level, so I loved the hell out of its unique brand of utter batshit, Nietzche-and-Jung-damaged insanity.

      • Destroy Him My Robots says:

        You know, that’s very interesting. You might be right that this happens more often in Japanese games, whereas on the flip side I feel like American games more often employ what TV Tropes calls “Cutscene Incompetence”, where you kick some guy’s ass until his life is down and then there’s a cutscene where he kicks your ass and runs away. Someone should do a statistical analysis and then tell us WHAT IT ALL MEANS.

      • The_Juggernaut_Bitch says:

         Kos-Mos was kind of like that, though.  She was super-ultra-powerful… when she felt like it.  This was not that often.

    • EmperorNortonI says:

      I’m impressed, because all of my biggies have already been called out on this list.

      – Quest givers who can, but won’t, help you? Check.
      – Shopkeepers whose very life depends on your success, but who still demand the $? Check.
      – Timelessness? Check.
      – Ridiculous disconnect between genre/theme/story and bodycount? Check.

      So here’s somethign slightly different – games set in the “real world” that feature ridiculous puzzle architecture.  Who the heck builds a lever/door puzzle?  Especially as the only way to get into a particular room of their house?  If you want to keep people out, it’s a pretty useless mechanism, and if you want to, I dunno, USE this building, they’re a huge pain.  And what’s with all the exposed stairs and walkways with no safety rail?

      I’ll accept these in a Zelda game, because that’s what the game is about.  I’ll accept these in futuristic games like Metroid, because The Future.  But not in the modern world.  No.  That stuff would never pass code.

  2. Spacemonkey Mafia says:

    And frankly, I think we discussed food trucks like a pack of quite well-behaved animals.

    • Matt Kodner says:

      I think @PaganPoet:disqus said “meh,” which really sent me over the edge. 

      • The_Helmaroc_King says:

        This indifference will not stand, man.

      • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

        He’ll do that.  Incidentally, is ‘Heavy Hangs the Head that Plays the Crown’ yours?  ‘Cuz that’s pretty good.

        • Matt Kodner says:

          All hail Baron Von @JohnTeti:disqus for that one. 
          I’m not the greatest at headlines, if you can’t tell from my weekly struggle at section headers. 

          THOUGH I did one time come up with Good QWOP, Bad QWOP, which continues to be my finest moment. 

      • Jackbert says:

        I’m with @PaganPoet:disqus . All the people in line for overpriced bad food on wheels get in my way downtown.

        • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

          Didn’t you say you live in Little Canada?  Your downtown is a Hardee’s overrun with coyotes.

        • Jackbert says:

          @Spacemonkey_Mafia:disqus : Little Canada is Minnesota. Specifically, I live in your town, M to the P to the L to the S.

        • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

          @Jackbert:disqus   Hell, friend.  I know it.  My wife drove up there this week to sell a woman some Ikea curtains through Craigslist.
             My original comment stands.

        • Merve says:

          Duuuude. NYC street food is amazing. Korilla is my life, man.

        • SamPlays says:

          Douchebag! It’s Harvey’s not Hardees.

        • PaganPoet says:

          THANK YOU. I stand by the little Thai restaurant with ducks drying in the window and chilis so hot you can hear your bowels crying out in pain.

        • Merve says:

          @SamPlays:disqus: Harvey’s makes better burgers than any o’ them fancy Yankee joints. </snobbish_canadian>

  3. Mr. Glitch says:

    Hi everybody, Mr. Glitch here. I’m working on an all-new review of the Game Boy shmup, SolarStriker. The wordy bits will be up shortly, and the looky bits will be added a little later. Stay tuned at!

  4. Ack_Ack says:

    That’s kind of a strange name for anyone to have.  Fils-Aime translates to Son Love.  I’d hate to see what kind of special move he has, but I’m sure that involves his mom and a bathtub.

    • DrFlimFlam says:

       I’m going to go out on a limb and say that while your translation is
      accurate as a word by word, it’s more “Loveson”, and could be akin to
      “Goodson” or somesuch.

    • Effigy_Power says:

      For all its horror, @Ack_Ack:disqus’s translation has more potential for a nice, tragic game, Greek-style.
      Oedipus Smash Brothers coming out in 2015.

    • Merve says:

      Based on pronunciation, I think it’s supposed to be “Fils-Aimé” with an acute accent on the e, which would make it “loved son.” That makes a bit more sense.

  5. DrFlimFlam says:

    I demand the presence of HTTP Lovecraft up there and I will not rest until this is rectified. I mean, I’ll sleep, and eat, and all that, but I will not REST until then.

    Lots of fantastic discussion this week. Really fun.

  6. I’m going to go ahead and assume that everyone who claimed to not get the pun of Tails’ name is being, has been, and forever will be sarcastic, because I prefer to think better of the whole lot of you.

  7. Fluka says:

    *Skulks out of her remote summer vacation lair to raise tiny fists of triumph!  Then burrows back into her self-imposed internet blackout…*

    • Effigy_Power says:

      Go away, you Luddite. You remind me of myself a week ago and I can’t have that.

    • Jackbert says:

      Hey, I had the week off as well. Definitely not purposefully though, it was awful.

      • Fluka says:

        *Briefly surfaces!*  Yes, but I have lots and lots of pie and fudge, so that was okay.  *Rolls back for another 24 hours of gluttony!*

  8. Cloks says:

    If anyone who is interested in Saints Row IV hasn’t pre-ordered it yet, here’s an edition that only costs a cool million bucks.

    It seems like all the stuff inside is only worth about 600,000 though, so I’d save your money.

  9. stakkalee says:

    Let’s just do it to it.  Our most commented article this week was the Sidekicks Q&A which had 260 comments.  And now for our Top 5 Most Liked (non-KG) comments:
    1) @FyodorDouchetoevsky:disqus gets 63 likes for responding with equanimity.
    2) With 43 likes @feisto:disqus is our roving reporter on the ground.
    3) With 31 likes @Fluka:disqus says something you other gamers can’t deny.
    4) @Paraclete_Pizza:disqus gets 30 likes for his cultural relativism.
    5) With 27 likes @DaveDalrymple:disqus busts some heads, rhetorically speaking.
    Now for the plaid jackets.  We have 3 new members taking the plaid today, so give a big GS welcome to @Indy2003:disqus, @MechanicalFrog:disqus and @GnarledBark:disqus!  In addition, @TaumpyTearrs:disqus gets a second stud for their third selection, @His_Space_Holiness:disqus is getting a fourth stud, @KyleOReilly:disqus gets his sixth stud, @Mr_Glitch:disqus gets his eighth, @cloks:disqus is at nine, @Fluka:disqus gets her tenth stud, @Spacemonkey_Mafia:disqus unlocks the “Rented Car Roadtrip!” achievement with his 25th stud, and once again @Effigy_Power:disqus threatens @Paraclete_Pizza:disqus ‘s first place standing, one stud behind him, 27 to 28.  Also, among the assists today @The_Helmaroc_King:disqus and @rvb1023:disqus move up to the Wireless level with 6 assists apiece and @PaganPoet:disqus moves up to the Omnidirectional level with his tenth assist!
    And now, Linkdump: World Art edition!  Here is a series of video game-themed posters done in the style of Japanese woodblock prints, here is a collection of Pokemon done Mayan-style, and here are some portraits of Link done in a variety of styles.  That’s it for this week – enjoy your gaming, and remember to keep it scintillating!

    • Effigy_Power says:

      I am disappangry and scareoused at the same time.
      I will get you, you troublesome knave.

    • Cloks says:

      Is there a complete list of Stud-haverers and their stud numbers?

    • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

      Everytime i have a top ‘liked’ comment in a week, it’s always one i fell kinda bad for posting. I’m not that much of a dick, really! Right guys? Guys…?

    • indy2003 says:

      This is truly one of the great moments of my life. I made Comment Cat, Ma!

  10. I’m always surprised that no one knows about the Prower = Per Hours thing. I would have swore it was in the instruction manual of the second game. (Or maybe I read it in a GamePro magazine). Either way, I thought it was common knowledge by now.

    (By the by – always pay attention to characters names in cartoons or cartoony entertainment. They tend to be mostly puns but something they’re subversively clever.)

  11. OH! One more thing.



    Works across Android and iOS devices. Get four friends, get drunk, have a shit load of fun.

    • The_Helmaroc_King says:

      FTL? Teamwork? Cross-platform over Wi-fi?




    • Effigy_Power says:

      I clicked on this link and my browser crashed.
      WHAT ARE YOU SHILLING HERE? I bet my computer is now full of NSA spyw -subroutine A34 activated. Data recording in progress. Ignore this, Citizen-

    • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

      That game looks awesome and if i had a smartphone i’d make everyone play with me. Also if you like FTL and gaming IRL I highly recommend picking up Space Alert. It’s an awesome coop boardgame that is crazy hectic and fast and OHMYGOD DID NO ONE JIGGLE THE MOUSE FUCK FUCK FUCK WE’RE ALL DEAD!

      It’s probably a lot meatier than Space Team though. It’s fun. Play it.

      • The_Helmaroc_King says:

        I have played Space Alert, but I’m not entirely certain we played it “properly”. I think the rules say you’re supposed to put your cards face down on your action tracks, but we always put ours face up. I remember having a decent time, but it’s been a while so I can’t recall if it’s well balanced or not.

        • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

          Yeah, you’re supposed to play them face down, but that’s the thing about boardgames. You can easily tweak the rules of things like that to your liking. playing them face up makes it easier to see what everyone is doing and removes a bit of the chaos and the dram that comes from slowly revealing what cards you played in the resolution phase.

          The game is still really hard though. I don’t know that my friends and I have ever beat a regular mission. 

  12. edincoat says:

    My favorite gameplay abstraction: “Oh, look, I am at the start of the game and there is pistol ammo everywhere.” *a little bit later* “Wow, in this area they use shotguns, too!” *and finally* “I’ve been fighting some elite force for most of this game, but just now they started to arm their troops with machine guns that I can grab. Yes!”

    • DrFlimFlam says:

      Very similar to the Shop At The End Of The World, which really should think about either opening more branches in smaller towns or at least selling their vastly superior goods to other locations.

      Still trying to wrap my head around how Midgar has the worst gear on that entire planet.