What Are You Playing This Weekend?

Laura Green

Laura Green, musician

Laura Green shares the secrets of a professional Power Glove player.

By Ryan Smith • October 4, 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.

Laura Green once played the NES Power Glove and Power Pad in the chiptune-heavy pop band I Fight Dragons, but these days, Laura Green is back to the regular old keyboard as Lady Laura. She released her debut album, JEZEBEL, in 2012, and she’ll be following it up with one more, which she says will be her last, early next year. She’s also gearing up to be head bartender at Geek Bar, a nerd-themed brew-pub opening soon in Chicago. The Gameological Society spoke to Green about her love for food games and why she no longer uses Nintendo peripherals in her music.

The Gameological Society: What are you playing this weekend?

Laura Green: If I have a chance, I’d really like to go to Emporium [a Chicago arcade bar] and play BurgerTime. And I hope when I go this time, the machine is fixed. That would be awesome.

Growing up, we had the NES, and there was a video store closing across the street from where we lived. My brother and sister and I had saved up for the NES with our allowance, and when we got it, we were absolutely thrilled. It was mostly up to us to buy the games though. The video store was closing, and we bought all these games for 99 cents. So I bought stuff like BurgerTime and Panic Kitchen. I don’t know why I picked chef stuff or games involving food. I guess I just love food.

Gameological: That’s interesting because you aren’t old enough to have lived during the Atari generation. Was it strange to go back and play these more primitive games?

Green: Not at all. BurgerTime is awesome, though it’s not an easy game. If I get to level three, I consider it a win. That usually puts me in the top score on the cabinet at Emporium. I’ve only gotten to the fourth level once when I was in Portland and kind of shitfaced. But yeah, it comes from an era of games that were wildly challenging—the puzzle-solving, sweat-dripping, “Oh fuck, oh fuck, an egg is coming for me now” thing. Mr. Chef Peter Pepper was moving around, and the food creatures would adapt to where you were, and that was cool. It wasn’t like Donkey Kong where you could memorize when the barrels were going over.

Gameological: So you had an NES as a kid. Is that when you first developed your love for the Power Glove and Power Pad?

Green: We inherited our Power Pad from our cousins. That Glove was expensive, and we had to pay for our own stuff, so I couldn’t really afford it. Maybe we were too young to be influenced by the “I love the Power Glove—it’s so bad” mentality, or maybe we just saw it as something that was already unattainable. But I always knew what it was, and I coveted it.

Gameological: How did you get from someone who “coveted” the Power Glove to playing it in I Fight Dragons?

Green: I started as a keyboard player, before Bill Prokopow was in the band. He was just a consulting producer at that point. We had one rehearsal where I was sitting at a keyboard playing the chiptune part of “Money” on a keyboard, and Bill took over keys at the control station. Brian [Mazzaferri, lead singer] had this idea to use NES controllers. We all looked at him like, “Shut up!,” and I was like, “This band is not going to last.” But then during the next practice, he brought it and it was working. It didn’t come without its kinks. It was a process for me to move from a musician to more of a gamer because we put these melody lines into the buttons, and it became more like inputting game codes than actually playing music.

Gameological: You had to memorize button sequences like the Konami Code to play a song?

Green: Absolutely. So when I went back to play my own music and sat down at a keyboard it was like, how the fuck do I do this again? It was definitely a brain switch. I remember saying that I’d lost all my musicianship being in this band. It’s not entirely true, but kind of.

Gameological: But you opted not to be a Power Glove solo artist after you left the band?

Green: I thought about it. Well, I thought about incorporating some of it into my Lady Laura stuff. Some electronic element. But I realized I was really burnt out on the whole IFD thing and all the shitstorm that surrounded it. It wasn’t quite what I wanted anymore. I wanted to be self-reliant on these two hands and whatever real instrument I was playing and not anything else. So I abandoned the Power Glove, and I don’t even have one anymore. There’s a guy in Arizona, Matt something, he’s an astrophysicist who designed a Bluetooth-controlled Power Glove for me so I could run around the stage cordless—wherever I wanted and play wirelessly. I had found him on YouTube and was like “Yo, can I play music with this?” I made it rain on him with all the monies, but then I got kicked out of the band! [Laughs.] He still has it.

I don’t know what IFD has discussed since I left the band, but a few years ago I remember talking and saying that we were eventually going to have to evolve out of the NES stuff. We were playing in front of all these teenagers who thought I had an Ove’ Glove on my hand. They thought I was jumping around doing nothing, and I’m like “No, these things did exist.”

Gameological: They thought you were faking playing the Power Glove?

Green: All the time, but I’m like if you go back and listen, you can hear all the times I fucked up or we had a glitch. You can tell I wasn’t faking. But these kids couldn’t identify with it, so we talked about doing an LED light sensor or different things.

Gameological: Did you ever have a glitch during a live show and go back and have to blow into the NES?

Green: I wish it was that simple.

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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252 Responses to “Laura Green, musician”

  1. Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

    Topical Anecdote! I once played a homebrew synthesizer on my DS in a real (fake) band that I was in. We had one show opening for a friend, and we hadn’t planned anything until like an hour before we had to be there. There may or may not be a video of the whole thing on youtube.

    ANYWAY, this weekend I’m probably going to be playing Metroid Prime 3 and hopefully some of my coveted “local multiplayer” that I talk so much about. More likely than that though I’m playing with an IRL puppy.

    • ProfFarnsworth says:

      Local Multiplayer is one of the best times I have had. I hope you have a good time doing that!

    • Which homebrew synth did you use, if you don’t mind my asking? I had a bit of fun with NitroTracker back in 2008 and dabbled with Seno DS a bit.

      • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

        I think it was called Cells or CellDS or something like that. About a week later I discovered that there was a freaking KORG cart for the thing and was kicking myself for not knowing about it. 

  2. George_Liquor says:

    Burgertime is the quintessential 80s arcade game: A bizarre, abstract concept perfectly executed. A lot of NES arcade ports suck in a big way, but Burgertime is pitch-perfect.

    • Enkidum says:

      I’ve recently been looking at old NES ROMs and I’m really stoked that I’ll be able to play that again. I just threw quarters down that machine back in the day.

      • George_Liquor says:

        It’s a great translation indeed, but if we’re talking about emulation, I’d suggest just going with MAME and a copy of the original arcade machine’s ROM. 

        • Enkidum says:

          Actually I guess I have that too. My long-term project is getting all these ROMs working nicely via XBMC with cool pictures and so forth – steep learning curve, but it’s cool as hell when it works. 

          Main issue I’m having right now is getting my PS3 controllers to be recognized by my Mac and the emulator at the same time.

        • Derek_Noakes says:

          @Enkidum:disqus Have you heard about OpenEmu? It’s an open source emulator for the Mac that compiles all the ROMs in to one library (broken down by system) and automatically adds box art for them. It’s basically iTunes for all your ROMs. I’m not sure if it supports the PS3 controller yet, but I’m using a wired 360 one with no problems. It’s the best emulator solution I’ve found so far on the Mac.
          It hasn’t seen public release just yet, but it was relatively easy to get the source code from GitHub and compile it in Xcode myself. And I have little to no knowledge of how to do such things, really. Maybe that’d be a good solution for you.

        • Enkidum says:

          @Derek_Noakes:disqus Ahhh… I keep finding references to it that link their web page, which has no download links (or anything, really) of any kind on it. I’ll search for the code on github, thanks.

          I’ve been using mednafen, which works great. But ideally I’d get it all working via xbmc because I like having the one-size-fits-all TV, movie, and gaming thing. One that my kids can even use.

    • Flying_Turtle says:

      And man, is Burgertime hard. The enemies are relentless, there are plenty of them (especially when the pickles show up), you can burn through the pepper quick, and the mazes are tough. Since the AI seems to just be full-on pursuit, there’s not much mystery as to what the bad guys are going to do, and they tend to group up, so I’m sure it’s possible to go on very long runs, but I could never pull it off myself.

      • JohnnyLongtorso says:

        I refuse to believe anyone has ever gotten past the second level of Burgertime. It’s just not possible.

  3. ProfFarnsworth says:

    This was an interesting article.  If I get lucky (and no one is still sick in my house, which incidentally sick Cubert = ANGRY Farnsworth) I will probably still play Dragon Age: Origins.  Everyone is talking about it now, so I figured I join in the conversation and create a jilted, arrogant, elf that knows nothing about his position in life at the moment, but rushes right into the battle giant sword swinging.  

    So far, it is going pretty great.  I enjoy the game a ton, and the slow methodical pace works really well with my homework load.  I get to keep thinking while playing.

    • Sarapen says:

      You’ve reminded me that I was hoping to eventually get 100% for this game. I’ve never gotten that for any game but I do have a mage save from after Ostagar that I could do the alternate choices with. I’m not sure if I’ll feel engaged in the narrative since I tend to play the same cold-blooded hardass in every RPG and it would feel unnatural to do anything else. Hopefully, switching from female City Elf to male sorceror would be a big enough difference for me. Perhaps this is a gaming project for next weekend.

      • duwease says:

        I found the stories were *just* different enough that I was willing to play through 3 times as vastly different personalities.. although changing the difficulty helped mix it up as well.  That was in my ‘completionist’ phase, though, so it probably won’t hold up for the average person.

    • Unexpected Dave says:

      I have yet to play through Dragon Age: Origins with a non-mage character (although I have played many of the non-mage prologues.)

      I need to remedy that forthwith.

      • Fluka says:

        Now that I’m playing as a not-mage, I am validated in my belief that mage is Best Class.  I mean, hitting things with a big hammer is fun, but mages get to summon horrible fire storms.  I just wish they had more than one origin (e.g., Dalish Elf Mage).

        • Unexpected Dave says:

          Virulent Walking Bomb is by far my favourite spell. It can clean out a room in a flash.

        • Effigy_Power says:

          Mages are hella more fun in DA2 though, since DA:O’s combat is a bit leisurely at times and the mage is even more leisurely than the rest.
          I’ve had most fun in DA:O with the Twohanded Warrior build, though archery is pretty fun too.

        • Fluka says:

          @Effigy_Power:disqus I’m doing two handed warrior right now, and it’s pretty great to knock things over before they have a chance to respond!  How are rogues in DA:O versus DA2?

        • Effigy_Power says:

          Slower, as everything is. And lacking some of they key skills, like teleporting behind the enemy. I’d say that on a single target they have the highest DPS, but I can’t really determine the benefit they have over dual-wielding warriors besides the obvious stealth (which I never used) and opening locks, which Leliana and Zevran do just fine.

      • ProfFarnsworth says:

        It seems that Mages have the best fun in DA:O.  Especially since they get the ability to be a warrior with the Arcane Warrior perk.

    • Fluka says:

      *Waves tiny Dragon Age: Origins flag!*  Yaaaaay Dragon Age!  I’m happy I could drag all of you down with me.

      That’s my weekend plan as well, albeit with a cocky good-humored Dwarf Noble (brilliant dwarven screenshot here).  Someday I’ll manage to create a character in this game who is a jerk, but for now I’ll just settle for screwing over the mage community.  Mostly I just don’t like making my party unhappy.  Because I am a total pushover.

      Agreed on the slow, methodical pace – once you get into a groove, the game is downright relaxing.  I just wish I could finally get the heck out of Orzammar.  I’d forgotten how frikking long the Paragon of Her Kind quest is, with two super-aggravating boss fights right next to each other.  (That said, there’s nothing like killing [redacted awful and disgusting boss] when your three squadmates are already dead and you have 10% health left, hoooo).  And yet, I still love it.

      • Effigy_Power says:

        I’d totally play it again, but I’ve done every origin to the end, Noble Human even twice, so I really can’t. I will enjoy talking about it at great length tho.

  4. rvb1023 says:

    Beat rain, not super impressed. Will probably blaze through A Machine for Pigs in one sitting tomorrow and then it’s more Dragon’s Dogma  as I await the presumable poorly written yet oddly alluring Beyond: Two Souls. Bring it, Cage.

    • indy2003 says:

      Rain looked pretty cool, but I keep hearing that it’s rather underwhelming. Will probably wait until it’s free on PS+ at some point.

  5. PaganPoet says:

    Nearing the end of Final Fantasy V myself. The two worlds have merged into one, and now I’m off to gather all the ultimate magic spells to break the seal on the legendary weapons in the sealed castle. I just typed like…10 different JRPG cliches in that sentence, but I don’t care, this game is fun. I’m finally starting to master jobs, too. Wonder if my FF completionist will kick in and I’ll feel obligated to master all jobs with all characters.

    • CrabNaga says:

      It’s particularly “easy” to master jobs by killing a specific enemy in the final dungeon: Movers (aka red bouncy balls). The only trouble is getting to the point where you can actually kill them; I forget if they’re just super strong or tend to run away or what. It’s totally worth mastering jobs too, because their passive abilities get passed onto the Freelancer class such that the Freelancer gets huge bonuses by the end of the game. FFV is like a master class in RPG mechanic design because it offers up so much choice and gives no fucks whether or not you become an overpowered walking hulking death robot-gardener.

      • PaganPoet says:

        Yeah, the Movers seem to be the go to guys in classic Final Fantasy games for learning abilities and spells. I remember them having the same function in VI and VII.

  6. Merve says:

    I didn’t know you could play music with the Power Glove. That’s awesome! Finally, someone found a use for that old glove.

    I’ve had a busy couple of weeks; it’s been nearly two weeks since I last played a video game. So I’m definitely taking some time off this weekend to play Mark of the Ninja, which is the subject of our current game revue club. Come join us in the Gameological Steam group to chat about it! I’m interested to see how 2D stealth will work. (My guess is not super-well, but I’m willing to be pleasantly surprised.)

    • Girard says:

      I’ve heard it works well in that game (which I just got in a bundle…maybe I’ll find time to play it this weekend and participate in the chats!).

      Another really good recent 2-D stealth game is Gunpoint. It augments the stealth gameplay with interesting environmental hacking puzzles where you can do things like hack a guard’s gun so that when he pulls the trigger to shoot you, it turns off the lights or opens a locked door instead.

    • DrFlimFlam says:

      I would say definitely play it with a controller, but otherwise Mark of the Ninja works well. In some ways, what I’ve played works better in 2D, since there’s less crouching in a corner and a wider view of what’s going on.

    • CrabNaga says:

      Stealth in games is a tricky subject. I feel like the best stealth games present it as a mix of a puzzle and a timing challenge (i.e. deciding your approach and moving out at just the right time). Mark of the Ninja does this very well. It very clearly shows you what areas are safe to be in, what threats you will have to overcome in a specific room, and so on. There’s little surprise in the game in the way of “oh crap I came out of this vent and now there’s a guy staring right at me!” The game gives you the tools and knowledge to figure out practically every situation before you throw yourself into it, which avoids a lot of the frustration I’ve had with other stealth games. It also manages to be a stealth game where it’s possible to be fast; if you already know the layout of a particular area, you can generally find a path/series of actions that will get you on your way in a surprisingly short amount of time.

    • Chum Joely says:

      Me too! Totally forgot to put Mark of the Ninja on my (very short) list of game options for this weekend, in my other post on this article. But yeah, I like it OK so far, after about 1 and 3/4 levels. I’m hoping the levels and gameplay get a bit more complex/interesting as we go along, and the less said about the cutscenes and story, the better (I had no idea I would be playing as Ninja Eminem), but so far it’s got the basic ingredients for what could be a pretty interesting game. Especially if I start trying to max out the stealth/speed objectives (the “optional seals”).

    • Kyle O'Reilly says:

       Trust me brah, once you’ve tasted the smooth, rich 2D stealth of Mark of the Ninja, you’ll never go back to that clunky third dimension.

      • Merve says:

        “Dude, why are you only walking alongside walls?”
        “I refuse to acknowledge the third dimension! Now would you kindly hand me my keys from the table in the centre of the room… uh, I mean, the foreground?”

  7. Citric says:

    On the go I’ve got:

    Art Collector’s Creed II, where a man stabs people so he can buy paintings. I’m somehow getting less intrigued by the story as it goes on, but Ezio is charming enough, and I get to decorate things with art. I kind of wish Da Vinci was a Professor Layton figure and you’d get wacky puzzles with the codex stuff.

    Professor Layton and the Make Citric Feel Dumb Mask, because I don’t know if the puzzles are harder or I’m dumber, but damn I seem to be getting stumped a lot.

    Zelda DX, which is nifty, and damn impressive for the hardware, though it’s also pretty weird. Like how some specific things are explained a bit too much – that damn pot boss will not shut up about his pot – but nothing else is. Or how it suddenly has weird brief side scrolling sections. It’s so weird that something that appears to have been created by throwing everything at the wall to see what sticks actually worked, and was done for the Gameboy of all things. How often does the most limited system in a developer’s arsenal get something so ambitious and strange?

    Maybe Super Mario 3D Land. It’s pretty fun! That’s all really.

    • Enkidum says:

      I have friends who won’t shut up about their pot either, and I agree, it’s annoying, I mean, either share it with everyone else or just stop talking about it.

      • NakedSnake says:

        I know! And to make it worse, now they’re advertising his new movie all over this site.

    • DrFlimFlam says:

      I like all the Mario characters that show up. There is a Koopa, a Chain Chomp, a Goomba… strange dreams, man.

    • GaryX says:

      I seem to recall the first Zelda having moments of side-scrolling. I think they just “expanded” that a bit for Link’s Awakening.

  8. NakedSnake says:

    (1) I love that the fact that the throwaway reference to “it’s so bad” merits a link to the previously mini-documentary on the power glove.
    (2) That really awesome that she used a powerglove as an instrument and it makes we wonder about what I’m doing with my life. NOT INTERESTING ENOUGH. Yet.
    (3) Guys, I am playing State of Decay and it is glorious. Not to say it’s a perfect experience. It’s buggy at times and a lot of how you’re supposed to succeed at this game is frustratingly obscure. But if you’ve ever wanted to play a true post-apocalyptic open world game, check this out. So many of the game elements work together so well. There is combat, exploration, scrounging, building, and death. So much death. Virtually all the characters can die, and the game autosaves after each death, so it’s pretty permanent when it happens.

    I’ve talked recently about games that know how to manipulate the player. I’d say this game is a perfect example. The perma-death mechanism above adds a real intensity to every fight. Another thing that works well: they give you a huge world to explore, but then they keep you so busy maintaining your small band of survivors that any chance to explore really feels like a luxury. Going out to loot a house feels really satisfying. It’s a great example of how setting limits on a player enhances immersion. At any rate, I drank too much cough medicine tonight, so I’ll shut up, but this is still a great game.

    • Chum Joely says:

      I’ve noticed that our pal DJ Subversive is playing State of Decay (or Terraria) every single time I turn on Steam, so my curiosity was already piqued. I am supposed to be working on my backlog right now, but I’m getting pretty tempted to add State of Decay to the wishlist…

      • NakedSnake says:

        It’s definitely a refreshing change from other open-world games. And on some level it’s the Zombie game I’ve always been wait for. It works b/c the emphasis is on survival.

        • djsubversive says:

          Yes. You have to pick and choose your battles. Well, most of the time. Marcus is a one-man zombie-wrecking machine. But even he can get killed by a horde or a lucky Freak.

        • TaumpyTearrs says:

          I was just trying to sell some people on State of Decay today! I bought it on my brother’s X-Box even though I knew he was taking it back to school, and I didn’t beat it but I got pretty far (to where the bridges to the military camp open up).

          Its actually good that the game is so vague, because honestly once you figure out how everything works and improve some characters’ abilities it becomes too easy. I’ve heard a good way to counter this if you replay it is to let your starting characters die BEFORE you get out of the first area and meet up with the survivors at the church, because it makes the group start with lower morale and you get assigned a new random character who isn’t a strong as the starting ones. When I have access to the game again I will probably start over and do this.

          Also, being able to open up the car door while driving is such a tiny touch that added SO much fun for me. I can’t count the number of zombie mobs I splattered against those doors.

        • NakedSnake says:

          @TaumpyTearrs:disqus Yea, it’s a shame that it was released a little buggy, but there are clearly so many details that the developers paid attention to in development. I like the fact that if you’re doing a mission with someones and they are talking to you, they’ll shut up when you are fighting zombies. And then they’ll continue their story after the zombies are dead, and your character goes “you were saying?” or something.

      • djsubversive says:

        It could use a bit more polish, but I’ve never let that stop me from playing and enjoying a game (and they’re working on things like KBAM and hopefully more graphics options).

        • Chum Joely says:

          Well, you seem to love New Vegas well enough, so obviously lack of polish is not a deal-breaker…

        • djsubversive says:

          @ChumJoely:disqus compared to some of the other games I enjoy, New Vegas is a shining gem of polished-ness.

        • Effigy_Power says:

          It’s true, that Sub plays games that are more bug than man.
          He’s crazy, I tell ya.

        • djsubversive says:

          @Effigy_Power:disqus if it “requires” a fan-patch, won’t run on win-7 without trickery, or is a poorly-translated Russian game, I’m usually all over it. :)

    • Kyle O'Reilly says:

      I never thought a game could make rifling through cabinets that intense.

    • djsubversive says:

      State of Decay is fun times. I lost some random survivor and Ed to a Feral last night. Maybe the same Feral – he got the random pretty far from the Snyder Warehouse (my second home after the Church), and Ed went out to find his rucksack of supplies and got torn apart about 4 blocks from home.

      Have you gotten to the part with Alan and Pastor Will yet? Not meeting them – there’s something else that happens later. I won’t say anything else in case you haven’t seen it yet.

      • NakedSnake says:

        Yea, I lost both Ed and Maya within the first hour of play. It made me realize that I needed to take the game/zombies more seriously. I didn’t really care about Ed (except that I had spent a bunch of effort saving him), but I was a little broken up with losing Maya. I love that each of the survivors has their own little personality quirks that gives you a little sense of who they are, so that you might actually mourn them a bit if they die. Yea, I went through the Alan/Pastor Will section. I appreciate the game’s efforts to keep me interested with a central plot, but I’m with GOB on this one: I make my own backstory. Venturing out with different survivors has a way of making stories. “Hey Jorge, remember that time we cleaned out a nest of Zombies and just when we killed the screamer, a horde showed up?” “Yea man, never thought I’d get out of that one alive”.

        • djsubversive says:

          Yeah, I have one guy who’s a Soldier and a Pack-a-Day smoker, and he’s been my main “backup” character (when Marcus and Maya are injured and/or very tired). Then I got the wonderful combination of “Alcoholic,” “Slacker,” “Likes to Drink,” and one other booze-related trait in another survivor. She sits around the warehouse all day and complains (I had a “snitches get stitches” Home Event involving her). But at least she’s got 4 levels of Beer Pong!

          Useless traits and skills are the best. Ed’s got everyone beat when it comes to Reality Show Trivia. My top chef used to be a butcher. Another guy has “Priorities” (he said the following as I escorted him home: “You wanna know something funny? All the toilet paper disappeared in the first few days. Sure, you figure sports cars and plasma TVs are gonna go fast because people are stupid. And stuff like food, medicine, and ammo is obviously a top priority. But I wanna know what kind of guy walked outside his house, took a good long look at the end of civilization as we know it, and said to himself ‘man, I am gonna have to take some shits. Better stock up on two-ply, STAT.'”).

          The devs must have had some fun coming up with stuff like that.

        • NakedSnake says:

          @djsubversive:disqus Haha, yea, I got the drunk chick, too. I’ve actually taken a bit of a shining to her since her actual dialogue is totally gruff and hostile. Almost lost her when I let her get to 3 points of fatigue and did one last run to pick supplies at a remote gas station. I figured with all that drinking, she’d be used to operate at less than optimum capacity.

          I just picked up some new survivors and one of them had a story about being attacked by dogs in Afghanistan. Looks like I have a new workhorse to level up.

          One thing I’d like to know is whether there’s a strong benefit to leveling up all your survivors. I know that they go on missions all the time without me. I wonder if I’m less likely to get a “survivor needs help” call if they’re all pretty sharp. I’ve noticed that some people need help more frequently than others.

  9. Sarapen says:

    58 attempts and I’ve finally managed to add a third victory to my FTL list, this time for the Osprey. I would have gotten it 10 games back when I had a good run going but once again I fucked myself over by blowing up an enemy ship when my boarding crew was still on it. Every time I keep reminding myself to stop doing that.

    Anyway, I’m FTL-ed out so I think I’ll try Sword of the Stars: The Pit again. I’ve only done 2 plays but I did get to level 19 with the Scout on the second try. Is that good or bad or what?  I haven’t checked online for tips and tricks yet.

    Also I might go back to chipping away at getting the single player 100% for Red Dead Redemption. The Rockstar site says I’m at 99.1%, I just need to do some more bounty missions in Mexico and I’m set.

    Oh, and I guess I should really start To The Moon or get past chapter 1 of The Walking Dead. I’m never in the right mood for them though.

    • Citric says:

      The not in the mood thing is why I’ve got a half finished game of Digital Devil Saga that I really keep meaning to return to.

      It’s a great game, but it’s an endurance run, and I’ve been in the mood for sprinting.

      • Sarapen says:

        Tell me about it. I’m all, “I could play this moving tale of survival and paternal love or I could try to (complete Xiaoyu’s schoolgirl costume)(kill a bear with Molotov cocktails)(see if this time my crew can avoid getting eaten by giant alien spiders).” 

        Every time I pick the thing that comes after “or”.

    • NakedSnake says:

      No game can be 100%ed without busywork, but there’s something about Red Dead that made even the busywork seem enjoyable. Perhaps it’s the sense that things move a little slower out west, and that collecting herbs and tracking animals is a reasonable use of time.

      • Sarapen says:

        Yeah, somehow it didn’t seem ridiculous that a grizzled bounty hunter was riding around the countryside looking for flowers to pick.

        Also, I had a thought while waiting to fall asleep last night: What if you tie up someone, leave them in the middle of the woods, and cover them with bait?  Will they be torn apart by wolves? 

        I’ll need to investigate this. I’m kind of surprised that there’s still stuff for me to experiment with despite playing RDR so much.

      • indy2003 says:

        Plus, hearing tough-as-nails John Marston get really giddy about collecting flowers is never less than delightful.

    • EmperorNortonI says:

      THE PIT!!!! I think I got somewhere around level 19 with the Engineer once.  I starved to death, and it was just crushing, as I had put together a pretty solid kit, other than that.  The thing is, after about level, oh, 8 or 9, there is NO MORE FOOD.  NONE.  So, you really have to use recipes to maximize the food items you get early in the game, I guess.

      Also, i wonder if it really requires playthroughs with different characters.  You accumulate recipes and tech over time, even after a failed playthrough, and so maybe you just have to play a bunch with the smart engineer to unlock stuff, and then switch over to another character to make the best use of it.

      • Sarapen says:

        Oh, so you don’t have to relearn the same things over? That’s handy, and I suppose it’s a way to grind the game for players. You’re not joking about the food thing, I was reduced to eating the irradiated meat of dead enemies just to stop from starving. Okay, guess I’ll try the Engineer next playthrough.

    • DrFlimFlam says:

      Trying it with the Red Tail. So close.

      What’s great is looking for advice on the internet and all these people saying tha unlses you pick a terrible ship, you should normally be able to beat the game most of the time. I mean, yes, I’m better than I used to be, but still, more than half the time?

      • Sarapen says:

        Those people are lunatics.

        And I don’t know what it is but for some reason I found the Red Tail harder to play than the Kestrel. It’s something about the layout but I can’t quite articulate it.

    • The_Misanthrope says:

       I just got my first victory (on easy,of course) with the Kestrel.  It was a close one, too; I was 3 hull sections from exploding myself.  I’ve only played one run with the Phallus…er, the Osprey, but it really starts off with some nice advantages.

      I really hate it when the damn flag-ship does its emergency jump with my boarding crew still on it.

  10. EmperorNortonI says:

    My main game recently has been Fallen London, checking in every few hours to use up my actions.  I’ve also continued on with Card Hunters.  And, I just started up a new game of EUIV, as Denmark in 1508.  I wanna be Boss Baltic, yo.  Though, as I’ve almost come to expect, within 2 years of starting, my decent starting monarch has been replaced with a 0/1/1 idiot, who my previous experience indicates will rule for 60 years.

    I’ve also started blogging about game stuff.  I’ve got a few game theory articles discussing Theme in SF, how Social Realism is typically overlooked, the implicit expansionist goal in EUIV, and the emptiness of leveling mechanics.  And, Game Ideas.  Check it out, at http://somethinginterestinger.wordpress.com/

    • ProfFarnsworth says:

      The blog is rather interesting.  I like many of your ideas.  You are very good at expressing your ideas and are also extremely effective at describing many of the games I have a hard time explaining.  

      All, in all…Good Job!  I am impressed and would love to keep reading!

    • NakedSnake says:

       Cool.

    • needlehacksaw says:

      I am steadily making progress (and regress. A lot of regress) in a different StoryNexus game: Black Crown. For those of you who do not know it, it’s worth checking out the interview Adam Smith did with the creator Rob Sherman on Rockpapershotgun.

      It’s the unlikeliest of projects: a very, very weird storyworld in which you play as a “clerk”, isolated in a rubber suit from his/her environment, for an oppressive institute which tries to unearth the remains of a mythical figure called the “Miasma Eremite”, all the while using the employees as test subjects for growing strangely polyvalent abscesses. There is a lot of body horror, of loneliness, pain and overall unpleasantness around, but are are also unexpected moments of beauty.

      Strangest of all is though the fact that the game owes its existence in parts to Fifty Shades of Gray, of all things, since the money Random House made publishing it allowed them to back risky and strange projects like Black Crown

      Other than that, I decided to give Dishonored a go. The dialogue in the first few minutes made me cringe repeatedly, the stealth elements do look very simple for a Thief-veteran, and oh my god, how I did despise those objective markers. I little adjusting the settings does improve things infinitely, though. You see, the reason I took this game and not one of the at least 100 others from the backlog is the recent talk about Half-Life 3, which reminded me that the thing I liked best about Half-Life 2 was the environmental art. And since Viktor Antonov is behind those aspects in Dishonored, too, I’m holding out for some spectacular architectural sights — and you just can’t marvel at level architecture when you have a glowing arrow urging you to press on and never hold still to, well, just stop and smell the roses. Or rats, for that matter.

      • EmperorNortonI says:

        I’ve heard of Black Crown, in large part thanks to the RPS article you mentioned, but didn’t know it was on StoryNexus.  I must admit that I’m just too icked out by the concept to try it myself, but it sounds like a fascinating experiment in many things.

      • duwease says:

        Ah yes, I heard about Black Crown, from an interview Rob Sherman did on a fine site called The Gameological Society.. ;)

        • needlehacksaw says:

          Oh, how embarrassing! In my defense: I was on holiday when that was published, on the other site of the globe, and not checking even essential sites like Gameological all too often. I know, that is no excuse, but… I didn’t do it on purpose! I’m innocent!

      • Electric Dragon says:

        Have just started on Dishonoured* myself, having finished the main plot and most of the secondary content in Sleeping Dogs (if I could shave an extra 0.2 sec off my Midtown race time I’d overtake Hobbes, but I’m in the mood for something different).

        *I hate that the name uses the American spelling. It looks and feels wrong to type it out, so I refuse to go along with it.

    • Sarapen says:

      Kudos as well, I’ll be reading through your archives later.

  11. aklab says:

    I think I’m pretty near the end of Anodyne, and I’m really enjoying it. Great soundtrack, clever writing, graphics that are simple but evocative rather than mere retro-gimmickry. And surprisingly disturbing, which is a definite plus!

  12. Aurora Boreanaz says:

    I’ll be splitting my time between:

    Terraria: The 1.2 update adds a ton of neat stuff, making me want to create a new world and move all of my things there – including boss kill trophies, which only drop 10% of the time!

    Jagged Alliance: Back in Action: Good and bad points to this one (Good: Better graphics and controls, tactical command mode lets you synchronize merc actions, not soul-crushingly hard.  Bad: Not-so-great enemy AI, a bit glitchy, and might be TOO easy by comparison to the earlier games.)

    X-COM: Finally got this on sale, totally excited to try it out!

    Also, will probably spend small bits of time with Mark of the Ninja, Gunpoint, Fez, FTL, and a few others to try them out.

    • NakedSnake says:

      Shit, if JA: Back in Action is halfway decent (I had assumed it wasn’t), then I ought to check it out. Although I do have Silent Storm in my GOG collection unplayed. A few people have said it’s the spiritual successor, although people don’t talk about it much.

      • dreadguacamole says:

         I liked Silent Storm a *lot*. Totally went under the radar for some reason, but it’s a great game.

        • NakedSnake says:

          Did you play Jagged Alliance 2 and/or XCom? Any thoughts on the comparison?

        • djsubversive says:

          @baneofpigs:disqus SS is similar to JA2 in that they’re both turn-based, with an “overworld” map that contains the smaller levels that you fight in. You also have up to 6 squad members (no ‘reserves’ or secondary team or anything, but you can switch out your team members at HQ whenever you visit).

          JA2 is a lot more “gun-porn”-y than SS – you’ll see a handful of rifles and pistols, none of which are all that different stat-wise (but the Familiarity bonus your soldiers get for using the same weapon for a while is a neat touch). No shotguns, no weapon modification (some rifles have scopes, some don’t, ditto with suppressors). But you can destroy just about everything with explosives in Silent Storm, something that very few games let you do.

        • dreadguacamole says:

          @baneofpigs:disqus : it’s been a while, but I’d say it’s very similar to JA2 and the first two X-Coms – small squad tactics with action-point turn-based  strategy and tons of options to choose from at any given time.
           And as @djsubversive:disqus said, it takes destructibility to a whole new level. Being in full 3d, firing lines are calculated in real time, and it does things like ricocheting bullets. Once explosives start becoming commonplace, battles can get wonderfully unpredictable. No idea how well it’s aged, but at the time it was glorious.
           I kind of remember the more strategic aspect – the overworld, wasn’t that great, and it’s got that whole Slavic game vibe, with a lot of things that seem slightly off somehow.Other than that, I’d personally rank it above the JA games, but below X-com 1&2.

           I haven’t revisited it like I have the other games  – fatigue set in after a few more games and expansions came out that were a little too samey. Kinda gave up on them when they did a Nightwatch game with the same engine… Now I’m kind of wanting to give the first one a go again.

      • djsubversive says:

        Like I said in Steam chat yesterday, Silent Storm is fucking awesome.

        Back in Action looks and sounds like a streamlined 7.62 High Calibre, from what I’ve seen. Not a bad thing, especially if the game isn’t buggy as hell. And it’s apparently a sort-of-remake of JA2.

        • Effigy_Power says:

          The story of Back in Action also seems to be cobbled together from the previous games. I am not even sure if it’s not basically just a HD remake. A well done one, but still. It feels rather more familiar than even a sequel ought to.

    • needlehacksaw says:

      The good thing about Gunpoint is that you can and probably will finish it in in a “small bit of time”. Some people say it’s too short — I say it’s just that we are so unused to a game that respects our time in every possible way that we hardly know how to deal with it.

      (I just finished it in one sitting last week. It’s a very generous game, in a lot of senses, to the point where it seems to lack challenge — but it can be as challenging as you want it to be. Plus, the pneumatic trousers are one of my favourite items in recent games.)

      • Fluka says:

        I loved the fact that Gunpoint is the length that it is.  Like the original Portal, it doesn’t overstay its welcome.  Plus, it’s frequently hilarious.   (Even the achievements!)

    • Sarapen says:

      Ah, Jagged Alliance 2. That game was awesome back in the day. I hadn’t heard about the remake. Too bad about them not sticking the landing.

      As for X-Com, that game is brutal in an awesome kind of way. For like a month straight when I wasn’t playing it I was thinking of playing it. I haven’t been that obsessed in a long time. But damn, is it harsh. ZODIAC MOTHERFUCKER called it Lieutenant Gorman: The Video Game.

    • DrFlimFlam says:

      Someone’s been bundling Humble Indie style!

      FTL is the greatest. I think I paid $7 for it and I’ve got 35 hours or so in so far. I’ll play it for several weeks and then cool off for a few months and then hit it hard again.

      • Aurora Boreanaz says:

        That’s what I did with Terraria.  I played it for about six months straight, then quit for a year.  I went back to it about two months ago just for Steam Cards, and got hooked again.  And now the 1.2 update has me interested in collecting in-game stuff too.

      • Effigy_Power says:

        The current Mobile Humble Bundle has a game called Star Command which feels a bit like a FTL clone at first, but definitely has its own charm. If you like FTL and have a tablet or something (I wouldn’t play it on a screen smaller than 7″) I’d recommend you try it.

        • Sarapen says:

          Yeah but you have to sideload it on Android which turns me off about installing it. I’m paranoid about anything going wrong with my phone.

        • Effigy_Power says:

          The Humble Bundle App actually works really well and uses the official Android installer.

        • DrFlimFlam says:

          Unfortunately, my devices are all iDevices, but I’m keeping an eye on Star Command. What I’ve read tells me it’s not yet ready for consumption (at least at cost), but I’m watching it.

        • Enkidum says:

          I can’t stop my squads of hot chicks getting sucked out into vacuums now that I’ve (uh.. SPOILERS?) returned to our solar system and the original bad guys are tougher. I have no idea how to even fix the hull walls when they break without dying.

        • Effigy_Power says:

          Yeah, the game is crap at really explaining its mechanics. Basically you need to send Yellow Shirts to repair by getting them close enough, I think.
          And yes, the difficulty ramps up stupid fast after that.

  13. GhaleonQ says:

    Game 1: Maybe Peter Pepper’s Ice Cream Factory, after this interview?

    Game 2: Final Fantasy XIV is daunting; what should I expect?

    Game 3: PIck My Next Home (Japanese title: Stop! GhaleonQ From Playing VidGam For Past 3 Months) !  I’m getting dizzy from stress.  I have offers in Milwaukee (where I live), Madison, Austin, and New York, but my dream job (apart from the Wisconsin state legislature, which won’t come through in time) is in Saint Paul and I may not get it (in 2 weeks).  I won’t get into the details of the positions, but, Gameologians, is it pretty easy to make new friends in these places?  And would you recommend/not recommend any of these places in particular?  I’ve moved a lot and am basically tired of starting over with peer groups/girlfriends, so I want to know that people don’t live desperately and alone in my new city.

    • PaganPoet says:

      I feel odd, but I seem to be one of the only people I know who actually dislikes New York City. I think that could be great if you’re pretty well off, but otherwise I would hate to live there.

      Madison and Austin are both pretty nice, and I’ve met friendly people there. I think any socially adaptable person wouldn’t have trouble meeting friends and/or people to do naked stuff with in either of those cities.

      • JohnnyLongtorso says:

        The cost of living in New York is higher than in other places, but it’s way overblown in the media. Like, every news story about the cost of apartments always leads off with “the median cost of a one-bedroom apartment in Manhattan is $3,000 [or something like that]!!!” which is ridiculous and overstating things. When we were apartment hunting, everything we looked at was in the $1,400 – $1,500 range. If you want a bigger place, you’ll have to live out in Inwood or Bensonhurst or something, but otherwise it’s not a huge increase from a lot of other major metropolitan areas.

        Edit: And what never seems to factor in to the equation is that you don’t need a car, so you don’t have a car payment, insurance, maintenance, gas, etc. etc. That can be a significant savings.

        • Aurora Boreanaz says:

          I keep hearing that you don’t need a car in New York, but how does that really work?  If you’re going grocery shopping, are taxis cheap enough to take back to your apartment?

        • PaganPoet says:

          @AuroraBoreanaz:disqus I live in a much smaller city than NYC: Denver. But I totally get it. I live in Capitol Hill, which is near downtown Denver. After years of worrying about gas, insurance and parking in such a crowded part of town, I decided to sell my car 3 years ago. I haven’t missed it. Everything I need from day to day is accessible by foot, bike, bus or light rail train. I bought one of those metal wire carts to use for when I go to the grocery store.

          Sure, there are a few annoyances now and then, but even if I absolutely need a car at some point, I could always rent, or take advantage of programs like Occassional Car or Zip Car to use a car short term.

          I’d imagine that a huge city like NYC would be pretty similar.

        • JohnnyLongtorso says:

          @AuroraBoreanaz:disqus  A lot of people have those old lady shopping carts that they use to take groceries home. We get the majority of our food from FreshDirect, which is a delivery service. It’s a little more expensive than a grocery store, but it’s worth the convenience, and most of their fresh food is higher quality than you’d get in any of the grocery chains around here (aside from boutique places like Fairway and Whole Foods). There are also three supermarkets within a few blocks of our apartment, and we can take the train down to Trader Joe’s on 72nd Street (about a 10-15 minute trip one way, depending on the time of day) if we need some cheap staples – Trader Joe’s has the cheapest cereal in the city, for one thing.

          It’s an adjustment – I used to get everything I needed in one big weekly trip, but now I often have to go twice a week to pick up a few things.

        • @AuroraBoreanaz:disqus & @JohnnyLongtorso:disqus I bring a couple of reusable shopping bags with me to the Trader Joe’s in Chelsea (the only bearable Trader Joe’s in the five boroughs, I’ve decided. Stay away from Union Square at all costs) and buy only enough to carry on the subway. It’s a pretty okay arm exercise and assures that I won’t have a fridge full of things I’ve forgotten about in two weeks. When in need, there’s always a few bodegas and surprisingly well-stocked pharmacies within walking distance of pretty much anywhere. I sometimes think about FreshDirect or Soap.com (who proudly advertise free shipping within NYC) but I have a hard enough time with Amazon deliveries, I don’t want to deal with the neighbors getting my food shipments while I’m out.

        • JohnnyLongtorso says:

          @dsanskrit:disqus  FreshDirect is great about delivery – their delivery times are broken up into two-hour windows, so you can easily choose a time when you’ll be home. I think they deliver up to 8 or 10 PM. (They’re not paying me to say this, I promise.)

          Soap.com is awful – we tried using it and the delivery didn’t show up on the day when they said they were going to deliver it, then the next day they claimed they tried to deliver it and nobody was home, despite the fact that I was home when they said they made their attempt. And when my spouse called to complain, they said “yeah, we’re having a lot of trouble with our delivery service”, like ‘what can you do?’. We’re never using them again.

          I haven’t had any trouble with the UWS TJ’s beyond the perpetually-long lines at the registers, but I was used to the tiny one in Virginia Beach that’s the size of a postage stamp and is always jammed full of people to where it’s impossible to look at anything on the shelves.

        • Unexpected Dave says:

          Downtown rent is ridiculously inflated in any city, big or small.

    • NakedSnake says:

      I’ve never lived in any of those place, but I have moved around a lot and I have this one simple observation: the further north you go, the more clannish it gets. For whatever reason, I think that people are more open to meeting new people in temperate climes.

    • EmperorNortonI says:

      I have heard great things about Austin, and there is a very strong gaming community and industry out there.

      • DrFlimFlam says:

        No offense, Texans, but Austin seems like the epicenter of cool in a place that otherwise scares me.

        • GaryX says:

          Texas is actually a really fantastic state and full of worthwhile people and places and is perhaps one of the most beautiful, varied landscapes I’ve ever seen–and one I think of often.

          It’s just big enough to also contain a lot of idiots and a portion of them are politicians. I would stress, however, not to let the morons make you write off the whole state, although I’m aware of how easy that is to do.

        • ocelotfox says:

           Texas is one of those states, much like Florida, that is distorted by media perception if you haven’t lived there.  To most people, it seems like a super conservative state mostly mired in football and the oil boom, but it’s actually a very diverse and interesting state (I spent about a month meandering through various cities on a trip a few years back).  That being said, I hate the Dallas/Arlington stretch because it’s just awful urban/suburban sprawl that reminds me far too much of Atlanta.

        • Effigy_Power says:

          The most frequent description I get of Austin is “It’s like Portland, but it doesn’t ever rain.”

    • Destroy Him My Robots says:

      Final Fantasy XIV is pretty good. The start is kind of slow, but the prettiness of the world should tide you over. The story and quest texts are quite interesting. It’s very time consuming, naturally. And I’m kind of unhappy with it because I have no friends on my server (and it seems like I won’t be able to transfer from a legacy world) and the game’s pretty difficult and would definitely be better with a good Free Company (=guild). So definitely ask around before rolling on some random server.

      Also, the gamepad controls work pretty well.

      • ZTO says:

        I found the game very slow, plot and leveling wise, until I joined a good GC. I feel the game misses a lot of the teamwork and social aspects until late in the game. If you should ever be able to move, you would be more than welcome to join the GC I am in on Midgardsormr. We are the Kraken Club.

        The story is indeed pretty interesting and the voice acting is pretty decent, though there seems to be very little VA for whatever reason.

        All in all, I think it’s a pretty fun and accessible MMO if not exactly the deepest or most inventive.

        • Destroy Him My Robots says:

          Thanks! I had set my eyes on Shiva, where my brother is, but it’s nice having options and Kraken Club sounds fun.

          Socially, what kinda worked for me is that, since the areas are pretty small, you frequently have the opportunity to aid some struggling adventurer on the roadside. It’s nothing deeper than /emote and then you part ways, but people do appreciate a well timed healing spell.

        • GhaleonQ says:

          @DestroyHimMyRobots:disqus Nice!  I tend to be a healer or helper, so doing good deeds is natural for my playstyle.  I’ll carve out some time and see how I like it.

    • DrFlimFlam says:

      I like the Twin Cities area, but I’ve never lived there, just visited a few times. I also never tried to break into the social scene, well, anywhere, so there’s that.

      The nice thing is it’s not like the weather would catch you off-guard.

      • Raging Bear says:

        I went to school in St. Paul, but also didn’t get into much of a social scene, or get to know the city(ies) basically at all, because I never left campus because I’m incredibly dull. People seemed quite friendly, though.

        • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

          Your level of social interaction is optimized to reap the most benefit from Minnesota nice.
           The saying around here about Minnesotans is, “… they’ll give you directions to anywhere except their own house.”

    • CrankyKong says:

       Final Fantasy XIV is a lot of fun. And you can do a lot of it alone.  As the other guy said though, it can be a lot more fun with a good free company to help you run dungeons (which are the most fun thing in the game imo).

    • GaryX says:

      I’m from Texas but live in NYC. I love New York and some of my best friends live in Austin. I’d say you can’t go wrong with either of them.

    • Jackbert says:

      I live in Minneapolis. Saint Paul is okay. There are a few cool neighborhoods but most of them are shitty, so it depends on where you’ll be living. Very midwestern, which you might consider good or bad. In terms of making friends, that’d be bad. In terms of making girlfriends, that’d be bad.

      From what I’ve heard, Madison is the Minneapolis of Wisconsin and Milwaukee is the Saint Paul. So a bit better, basically. I don’t know if that’s true though.

      My mom lived in Austin for a while and loved it. It’s another one of those stuffwhitepeoplelike hotspots like Minneapolis and San Francisco, so if you like that stuff, it should be cool. People are pretty friendly as well, she says.  

    • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

      My brother actually moved back to Milwaukee from the Twin Cities because he was frustrated with the difficulty in making friends here. So as far as mid-sized, Midwestern cities between the 40th and 45th parallel are concerned, you’re in the more socially open of the two.
        ‘Course, I’m going out on a limb here and assume you and my brother probably run in very different social circles, so your experience may be very different. But regardless of that, you’re right that making friends as a grownup is the worst.
         Also, I’m sorry, but I think it’s kinda’ funny that every option you’ve listed is a liberal hotspot. 

      • Aurora Boreanaz says:

        What better place to live than a liberal hotspot?

        My wife told me she was notified of a job opening in Salt Lake City.  I laughed, and said there’s no way I would live there.  EVER.

      • GhaleonQ says:

        @AuroraBoreanaz:disqus Ha!  The tricky thing is that while my best, lifelong friends are all small-town conservative (in the dispositional sense), ALL of the rest are not.  Avoiding being douchey helps when moving between them, so I try not to be.

        I do advocacy work, which is why I’m headed to the “front lines.”  I didn’t take the Austin one, but it’s right outside of the capitol.  I could have conceivably left SXSW with my friends only to get in huge trouble when they saw me the next day while protesting (unknowingly) outside of my building.

    • Enkidum says:

      I’ve spent a little bit of time in New York and Madison / Saint Paul, and heard enough about the others, to know that really any of them are pretty damn awesome (except I dunno about Milwaukee). I mean, yeah, it’ll be a bitch getting a social circle and all of that, because it always is. And there are plenty of people living desperately and alone in all cities, but none of them are Detroit or anything like that.

      You’ll do fine wherever you end up. Seriously, it’s hell to choose, but this is the kind of problem you want to have in your life. If it were up to me, I’d probably check out Austin or New York, but it isn’t, so good luck to you.

    • djsubversive says:

      Madison’s pretty great. vinnybushes just moved there, so you’d even have a fellow Gameologician in town. :)

      • Effigy_Power says:

        His address is, I am sure he’s cool with us telling you, 1234 Imagine Lane. The entry code to the house is also 1234 and he usually has headphones on between 8pm and 11pm, so drop in and surprise him. He’ll love it.

        • DrFlimFlam says:

          WHAT IS IT WITH PEOPLE HERE AND THE LACK OF SPECIFIC ZIP CODES.

        • djsubversive says:

          He loves getting visits from people who just bought new chainsaws and hockey masks!

        • Effigy_Power says:

          I don’t know, but for multiple reasons, chiefly amongst them that I am too lazy to look one up, it’s going to be 12345.

        • djsubversive says:

          @Effigy_Power:disqus meant to reply, not like, but Madison actually covers 35 zip codes (I had to look it up because I forgot what mine was when I lived there). 537xx, generally.

    • dmikester says:

      Having lived in NYC for a decade now and likely about to move, there are definitely things to consider/be aware of.  For one thing, prices here are very inflated even compared to other major metropolitan cities (I say this as a seasoned business traveler who has been to most states in the country), especially when it comes to food and basic needs.  It’s not like it’s unlivable, but unless your job offer is for something where you’re making a lot of money, it’s not easy to save here.  Almost all of my friends out here, including people who are making decent salaries, pretty much live paycheck to paycheck.  Now, that being said, if you’re willing to live not close to Manhattan and/or far away from a subway, things start to go way down in price, but then you have to factor in convenience and commute.  I’ve lived in both Queens (ten minutes away from the last stop on a subway line) and Manhattan, and I can’t tell you how much happier I’ve been in Manhattan despite prices being astronomically higher compared to Queens.  So it very much depends on your preferences.  

      Also though, more than prices, the important thing about moving to NYC is whether you’ll be OK with the culture and pace.  There’s no other city quite like NYC with the crush of people and the insanely fast pace that people move at and expect things to happen.  I often have to catch myself when I visit anywhere else, as my rhythm is so different.  I happen to love that pace and energy, but it can also be very exhausting at times.  I go through phases where I can’t stand New York, and I go through phases where I can’t imagine living anywhere else.  So I would say, if you haven’t and if possible, visit NYC for a while before accepting a job offer here.  It’s maybe the most intense and vibrant place I’ve ever been in the world, but it’s also unrelenting.  It’s also, however, Gameological HQ, so it’s got that going for it!

    • GhaleonQ says:

      @PaganPoet:disqus @JohnnyLongtorso:disqus @AuroraBoreanaz:disqus @dsanskrit:disqus @$57124394:disqus @baneofpigs:disqus @EmperorNortonI:disqus @GaryX:disqus @drflimflam:disqus @Raging_Bear:disqus @Jackbert:disqus @Spacemonkey_Mafia:disqus @Enkidum:disqus @djsubversive:disqus @dmikester:disqus  I appreciate it, all!

  14. patagonianhorsesnake says:

    i’ve been dealing with so many nonsense champions in my life that i’m just playing saints row three and just repeatedly doing sweet jumps off of islands and not hurting anyone. that’s all i can deal with right now. it’s all i can take.

  15. Flying_Turtle says:

    Busy weekend here, so it’ll be anything I can play in short bursts. Leading candidates are probably Super Mario Bros. 3 and MLB 08: The Show. Maybe Civ V, but while it’s theoretically possible to play Civ in short sittings, that’s not usually how that plays out, so probably not.

    • patagonianhorsesnake says:

      i really want to like civ v, but the beginning of the game always seems to play exactly the same, no matter who i choose or where i start. research pottery! build monument! is there a way to change things up?

      • EmperorNortonI says:

        Fiddle with the world.  Starting out on tiny islands makes a different game.  Playing a tiny crowded world makes early wars inevitable.  Turn on Rampaging Barbarians and choose Honor, then try to max your culture out by fighting the hordes.

  16. Destroy Him My Robots says:

    I’m kind of booked this weekend, but if I can make the time it’ll be Monster Hunter 4 with a nice chaser of Dynasty Warriors 8. If not, just some Layton download puzzles in bed.

  17. feisto says:

    Hopefully, I’ll get to play some of the games in the 2013 Interactive Fiction Competition. (http://ifcomp.org/) You usually have to wade through a few undercooked (or at worst unplayable) games to get to the good stuff, but there’s nothing better than stumbling across a really good text adventure you didn’t even expect.

    • Girard says:

      Ooh! Yay!

      I have very little time, so I’ll probably have to wait until after voting and skim the top few games. It’s nice to know it’s that type of year again!

      • feisto says:

        Oops, sorry, I haven’t actually played any of the games yet. I was just projecting what I was hoping to get out of this year’s batch!

  18. DrFlimFlam says:

    I got to stage two of the final boss in FTL before my brain broke and I forgot about teleportation to save me from the drones. It’s okay; I would not have made it past the third stage’s Zoltan Shield, since I was primarily a Fire Bomb/Boarding Drone/Teleportation guy. 

    That being said, when you’re not heavy on weaponry and your Boarding Drone lands in one of the Phase 1 Weapon bays, it’s super frustrating. The weapon is already defeated, you dumb robot. And now I can’t fire off another one. It took ages for that fire to burn through the ship.

    So I’ll probably fire up the Red Tail again and see what I can pull off this time. This might be my Ship of Success.

    Also Skyrim. I think the Imperial Questline is moving towards completion. Maybe.

    • I’m sitting on 42 stacks of rotting turnips!! Ack!!

      Still no biggie, I got my silver watering can and I feel like a plant watering GOD.  I’m on day four of perfect town status, hope I can keep it going!

      • DrFlimFlam says:

        I refuse to begin any new town projects until someone requests a lighthouse. It’s like a federal shutdown in Pawnee. NO NEW PROJECTS. NO SIGNS, NO BENCHES, NO ANYTHING UNTIL I GET MY LIGHTHOUSE.

        • SonjaMinotaur says:

          I just got my police station! Which I had to wait FOREVER for. 

          I heard a rumor that diving resets conversational cues? If that helps.

        • @SonjaMinotaur:disqus , how does one get the police station offer?  I assume by allowing crime to run rampant after opening up the town casino and brothel(s)?

        • SonjaMinotaur says:

          @httplovecraft:disqus Now that would be a minigame! You can work in the cafe… or the brothel. 

          Oh, wait, if that’s a serious question, the Police Station, like the lighthouse, is just a random chance conversation.

    • SonjaMinotaur says:

      I sold my turnips at a sad 190 this week. Oh well. And I have written on my list of chores for this weekend “organize gyroid collection” so there’s that. 

      • DrFlimFlam says:

        190 isn’t terrible. It’s not going to make you a millionaire, but it sure beats normal interest rates. If I can sell for 160 or better I won’t complain too much.

        I found two stacks of rotten turnips when going through my cupboards as I redecorated, Spooky-style. I was disappointed. What if that was my 558 week??

        • SonjaMinotaur says:

          One of my friends had a strike this week at 500! …that she found out about just before noon with no time to invite anyone. So, having missed that, even a decent price is a disappointment this week.

        • DrFlimFlam says:

          Yeah, I had a day like that once where I sold out before noon but no one could get over. Not a big fan of that stop time. Nintendo could’ve made it at least 9-2 and then 2-close.

    • Sarapen says:

      Cloaking is good for avoiding the boss weapons spam. Teleport to destroy weapons, firebomb the crew, cloak when they do the bullet hell thing. You can actually finish while in the green.

      • DrFlimFlam says:

        I made a huge mistake and pulled my mantis Fight Team A a moment too late. But man, the fire doors on the first fight are ridiculous. You could make some Kraft Macaroni and Cheese once the non-ion weapons are down waiting for it to do its damn job.

  19. Chum Joely says:

    I hate to admit it, but unless I suddenly get a sudden burst of willpower, most of my gaming time this weekend will probably continue to be in Binding of Isaac. I’ve put in an ungodly amount of time on it since Jackbert basically dared me to beat the game in last week’s WAYPTW.

    About 20 hours in-game since then, and I’ve only reached the final boss fight once (where I was summarily stomped into submission– 7 HP to 0 in about a minute). But still I keep trying, thinking that THIS time will be the one where I get the perfect combination of power-ups and good luck. So far, it hasn’t happened. But I do really appreciate the depth of this game, which seemed kind of flimsy and uninteresting the first 2 or 3 times I played.

    Anyhow, if I can stay away from my BoI addiction (I am seriously starting to get carpal tunnel symptoms here), I might spent a couple of hours with XCOM: Enemy Unknown, which I also hope to finish now that I have got the hyperwave relay working and seem to be receiving messages from the aliens. I’m on Easy mode so this might actually be possible.

    Alternatively, I may make a better effort to spend some time with my real-life kids after a tough week. Could go either way.

    • needlehacksaw says:

       Just out of curiosity: Which one of the final bosses are you talking about? (The abyss that is this game is endless…)

      • Chum Joely says:

        I mean the final final boss, or so I think– “Mom”.

        • needlehacksaw says:

          Oh, good luck with her.

          Keep moving, don’t give up. What helped me finally get rid of her was lot of heart(s), a bit of luck, some well-placed bombs and faith in the fact that she could be a very supportive mother. (What with her actually helping you by stepping on her own hands and eyes, thus hurting herself.)

          …come to think of it, you could say that in BoI, art imitates (teenage) life, in a way.

    • CrabNaga says:

      I sure hope you have at least one (ideally 5, one in each continent) Firestorm now that you’ve made the Hyperwave Relay.

      • Chum Joely says:

        Uh… um… uh-oh. I’m almost done with the research project, so pretty soon I should be able to start building one? (oh man)

  20. dreadguacamole says:

     Terraria, Terraria and more Terraria. Started a new world and a new character, and going at it again. It’s as absorbing as ever. The patch should really be called an expansion pack, the amount of new stuff I’m seeing is huge.
     I finished Brothers: a Tale of Two Sons, and liked it quite a lot. Might go back to find some secrets (going by my missing achievements, I already have an idea where some of them are). Gorgeous game – definitely not for everyone, since the gameplay is a bit… I’d compare it to Uncharted’s pure platforming moments, where what you can and can’t do is extremely proscribed, and it’s all about linear motion and showing you pretty stuff. Unlike Uncharted, though, this one has a story worth telling. With themes and everything!
     And it uses its game mechanics to underline what the game’s about beautifully. Be warned – it gets pretty grim at points.

    • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

      Does the patch increase mineral drop rates? I stopped playing the game when I realized my digging in the sod to building awesomeness ratio was about 50-1.

      • a_scintillating_comment says:

        I might be in the same boat–I can’t stick with it. Some friends introduced me to it at a LAN a couple weeks ago. I haven’t thought about why I wasn’t engaged, but I was pretty bored. I have to say it was a lot more fun than Minecraft though–something I also don’t really get along with.

      • dreadguacamole says:

         Can’t really say for sure – on a small world, at least, it’s about the same.
         Maybe that’s the problem? Terraria games can take forever to solo if you’re playing on large or even medium worlds.

    • djsubversive says:

      Since there seem to be a few of us with Terraria, would people be interested in starting up a Gameological world, new for 1.2?

      • dreadguacamole says:

        I’d love to, might even drop in every now and then – my weird UK gaming hours might be a problem, though.

  21. duwease says:

    Most likely not too much this weekend, as it’s the little one’s birthday.  But hopefully at some point in the near future GTA Online starts working, and I’ll be playing that.  Gameological Crew represent!  It’ll be interesting to see how much I like it, as I played very little GTA4 multiplayer, but played the everloving hell out of Red Dead Redemption multiplayer.

    So I guess if that’s not working, I’ll play more single-player GTA5, as I have plenty of things to do in that yet.  It’s pretty much what I expected so far, but I do have to say that it suffers a bit from being played in succession to the constant-endorphin-rush Saint’s Row IV.  I like the new chase mechanics, and abhor the ‘medal’ mechanic.. there is nothing fun in trying to achieve them, and they do little but remind me of early-era-360 when achievements were shoehorned in with little thought given to how they enhance the experience.

    • Carlton_Hungus says:

      Just finished the GTAV single player (except some assassination missions to max out my insider trading returns).  Plan to try and jump into GTA Online this weekend, take on some jabronis with the Gameological crew.

    • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

      We’re having my kid’s birthday party next week. It’s going to be a fugue state of out-of-town family and bouncy castles.
        Good luck with yours.

    • Effigy_Power says:

      It’s too bad that industry squabbles are preventing people playing the games on different consoles from teaming up. It’s also odd how little of a deal Rockstar makes of this, for example by not displaying who is playing it where in the team roster.
      I feel like that drives a big wedge into the crews. One more thing PC gaming has over consoles, I guess.

      • duwease says:

        I’m kinda surprised that Valve hasn’t opened up the technology that lets people play their games cross-platform and tried to make some money off of letting other games use the Steam platform to at least cross over with PC players.

  22. Raging Bear says:

    I may or may not try to finish my rental of Killzone: Mercenary, which is technically astounding, but still so full of annoying FPS tropes I can barely stand it. This prompted me to replace my ps4 launch window preorder of Shadow Fall with AC: Black Flag, which I will probably also not like much, but I’m nothing if not a chump.

    I’m a little bit bummed that GTA Online doesn’t really let you solo, as all the actual missions require at least two players. I thought it would be like RDR, (which the setup seems at least partially based on), where you could do whatever you liked alone, and still unlock weapons and whatnot in case you wanted to play with others later down the road. No dice.

    Plus, you can’t listen to the game audio at all without hearing people on their headsets anywhere else in the instance. It’s…harrowing.

    • Kyle O'Reilly says:

       I’m in luck as I was never really pumped for GTA Online so I’m not let down that it is kind of lackluster.

    • TaumpyTearrs says:

      Late response, but you can always mute other people’s headsets in the options. And although some of the Jobs are hard with one player, they can still be played solo as far as I have encountered (unless you are talking about the “Missions” around the map that are mostly variations on deathmatch/racing style games, it took me a while to figure out that only the Jobs you get on your phone from name characters are actually “missions” like in the one player game, whereas the things they call “Missions” are just the multiplayer Vs. games)

      • Raging Bear says:

        I did eventually figure much of this out, mainly after starting private or crew-only instances rather than “solo” where you can’t actually do a damn thing, and still getting the calls from story characters. So that’s much better. I had assumed the “missions” would somehow be substantial co-op things. I’m not sure why they decided to use that designation for various PvP things that have their own icons all over the place anyway.

        I’ll have to look again for the headset option, though. I swear I stared at the options for minutes at a time, but must have still managed to overlook it in my panicked desperation to silence the voices.

  23. doyourealize says:

    A friend of mine had a Power Glove. We used it to play games in which one of us was really strong or something, and we would pretend to punch holes in things. This is not as innovative a use for it as Laura Green’s, but either way, that thing is way more fun using it for things it wasn’t designed for.

    I recently picked up Guild Wars 2. Played it for free for a bit and got hooked. I know there are a few of you out in Gameological-land that at least used to play. If you’re still around, send a message. Maybe you can show me the ropes…and I’m pretty shy in game, so reaching out to unknowns doesn’t usually happen.

    • Electric Dragon says:

      The Power of Glove is a curious thing
      It makes one man fight, and another (wo)man sing.

  24. Jackbert says:

    Same shit I’ve been playing for the last month, Mark of the Ninja and Animal Crossing.

  25. Unexpected Dave says:

    I just found out that there’s a vintage arcade in Halifax! I won’t be checking it out this weekend, but they do have a free-play night every Wednesday ($5 cover).

    What I will be playing this weekend is primarily Apollo Justice. If I need a little rush of adrenaline with minimal story, I’ll break out Mega Man 3.  

    • Citric says:

      That would have been neat to know about in August, when I was actually in Halifax.

      Though the thing I miss most about Halifax is the amazing apple cider at the farmer’s market. So delicious.

  26. stakkalee says:

    It’s my wife’s birthday this week so no gaming for me on Saturday, as we’ll be out of the house doing ‘couple’ things.  That’s just as well, because the city is shutting off sewer service temporarily this weekend to do some maintenance, so we’re not allowed to use any water between 9am and 7pm.  I may run around in Skyrim on Sunday, or maybe start another New Vegas runthrough.

    • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

        I’m sorry that the city is going to prevent you from the ultimate ‘couple’ thing on your wife’s birthday.

      • a_scintillating_comment says:

        Wow! Is that the same thing Shatner used on ‘Raw Nerve’?

        http://imgur.com/J4HBAba

        • Effigy_Power says:

          That type of chair is called a “Lovers Seat”, which eventually morphed into the Love-Seat or couch, because a) people were slightly less uptight about sitting next to each other and b) because not everyone had a huge room and still enjoyed sitting.
          Why do I know this? Dafuq is wrong with me?

  27. Smilner says:

    More GTA 5 for me.  Hopefully I get to put in some time with the Gameological Crew and make some real mayhem.

    No D&D4e this week, as my daughter is with her mom.  Who knows what board games may come up?  If the libations start to flow, it may just devolve into We Didn’t Playtest This At All.

  28. indy2003 says:

    Currently halfway through the fourth world of Rayman Legends (underwater stealth levels!), which is still a lot of fun. It had seemed a bit easier than Rayman Origins, but I just reached the five-skull Shaolin Dojo level – man, it’s killing me. I must have failed it 30-40 times yesterday. Tough level to get through on its own, but adding a two-minute countdown makes it near-impossible. I’ll give it another shot tonight. I also wish the Murfy levels were a bit less frequent, but they’re not too obnoxious.

    Anyway, it’s an excellent game, but it seems a little desperate at times. “Here, collect some lums to unlock more heroes! Collect some teensies to unlock more levels! Participate in daily challenges to unlock more lums! Win more cups to unlock more challenges! Collect enough lums and get some scratch-off tickets! Use those scratch-off tickets to get some more lums and teensies! Or hey, how about some Origins levels! Those have more lums and teensies, too, and more scratch-off cards! And you can get creatures! They produced lums on a daily basis, so be sure to turn the game every day! Wanna play some soccer? Here ya go!” Sometimes all of the extra business is fun, and sometimes it’s a little exhausting.

    Also playing GTA V. Having a good time, though I had to take a break from it for a couple of days after Trevor’s now-infamous torture mission. I had heard about it in advance, but I still found it rather troubling. Just didn’t feel like playing for a little while afterwards. Now I’m back in action and getting ready for my second heist. Haven’t even taken a look at GTA Online yet, with all the reports of crashes and such.

    Finally, still working my way through Final Fantasy VII for the first time on the Vita. About eight hours into it right now (just had my first battle with Rufus – I don’t know for sure that I’ll fight him again, but given that he said something along the lines of, “Okay, enough fighting for now, bye!” I have to assume he’ll turn up later on). Still really digging it – involving story, increasingly enjoyable combat system and a solid pace.

    • DrFlimFlam says:

      I feel like I never played the game right growing up, and now I’m trying to be be mo strategic about doling out materia. Most magic hurts offensive stats (albeit in small measures), so my plan is ultimately roll with two back row casters and Cloud in front, Covering everyone.

      • indy2003 says:

        Yeah, I’m still experimenting with different combinations. The game hasn’t permitted me to have any sort of consistent line-up yet. I was actually invited to redistribute the materia I had available before the last couple of battles (as Cloud was fighting solo in one area while most of the others were doing battle in an elevator). Best decision I’ve made so far: equipping Cloud with Restore + All.

      • Unexpected Dave says:

        I always found that FFVII is rarely so difficult as to force you to be strategic. It is nice to have shorter battles, though.

      • TaumpyTearrs says:

        I didn’t understand all the stats when I was a playing FF7 at age 12 or whatever, so I could never understand why my Cloud was such a pansy-ass in HP and damage-dealing (it was because I loaded him down with offensive materia, so he became my mage instead of my warrior)

    • Chum Joely says:

      Word up on Legends being hyperactive and/or desperate. I am loving the core game, though– I finished the 5 main worlds, and maxed out the first 3 of them for Teensies and Lums, but haven’t got enough Teensies to unlock the Living Dead Party yet– 15 more to go.

      Still, they could have easily left out the kung fu soccer thing, the Origins levels, and everything relating to the lucky tickets– including the entire concept of Creatures, which are really just there in order to generate Lums so that you can earn more playable characters, which is not a particularly interesting device. I do like the online challenges, though.

      • Crusty Old Dean says:

        I appreciate the Origin levels (not having played Origins) but I agree with you on the rest of the stuff. I beat the game and I still don’t even know what  lums and coins are even for. And all those playable characters all look exactly the same.

        • Chum Joely says:

          The main purpose of Lums is for measuring how obsessively you’ve scoured each level (And the skull coins are just 25 Lums in one place). There are bronze, silver and gold cups to be had for each level, depending on how many Lums you pick up. I like this because it does get me really exploring the levels in detail, which develops my skills (some are very hard to reach, time correctly etc.), which is the fun part of any game.

          I guess it is cool to have the extra Origins levels in there if you haven’t played it (two games in one!), but for me, I would rather they had let Origins be Origins rather than “remixing” it and putting it into this game too, but with a slightly different new art style and some Legends-oriented tweaks to the gameplay.

          Also, the presence of the Origins levels adds 260 extra Teensies (I think) to the total that I have to get in order to max out all the trophies, which is theoretically my goal on this game. I find this to be a major pain. I already beat Origins once, why do I have to do it again??!

        • ocelotfox says:

           I think it was just a way to add replayability to the game.  I think Ubisoft was worried that the game would be traded in after completion, and tried to create an incentive system (and related trophies/achievements) to prevent the loss of new game sales.  The lums, the creatures, and the online challenge system all seem built for this purpose.  I don’t think any of them add to the game, but the core game of Legends, and the remastered levels of Origins certainly make it a worthwhile purchase despite the extraneous stuff.

          Btw, if anyone has yet to purchase Rayman Legends, it’s on sale next week at Gamestop for $40 for all three systems.

    • dreadguacamole says:

       Heh. I’m still on indefinite leave from GTAV after that mision. It’s not just that what happens in it is horrible, it’s also that it’s unnecessary, self-congratulating, and a perfectly shitty mission. Perform this horrible thing by playing this absolutely shitty, un-engaging minigame! now drive here! rinse, repeat!
       Ugh. I really hope that they at least changed a single frat boy’s mind on torture, that’s the only positive thing I can think about it. Completely put me off the game.

       As for Rayman Legends… I don’t know, I feel they dealt with the whole Ubisoft philosophy of “throw as much shit as you can manage at the players to keep them swiming in it for as long as possible” particularly well; it feels generous to me, rather than a chore, like FarCry3 or the latter AssCreeds did. And at least they have an excuse (the remix levels, bosses, daily challenges and soccer minigame were apparently added after the game was completed but put on hold for a few months by ubisoft mandate. Wouldn’t be surprised if the weakest elements, the scratch cards and the creatures, were also a part of that.

    • Effigy_Power says:

      I don’t know why, but the torture scene didn’t faze me whatsoever. I expected it would. CoD’s glass-eating routine certainly did.
      I guess the game is in general so unhinged and insane that quite honestly a bit of torture didn’t seem all that bad.

      Considering how many people the player has murdered at this point, amongst them cops and civilians and whatnot, I guess I thought it would be kind of false to pretend that one more terrible act would push it over the edge for me.

      I can totally get how it would turn people off the game, don’t get me wrong. But I kind of feel like I almost consented to this stuff when I bought the game, because I knew it had a torture scene in it and bought it anyways. I feel as though if I had gotten upset about it then would have been a bit dishonest.

      I bought GTA5 despite a lot of reservations on a lot of different levels, so I feel like at least in this case and purely for myself I’ve given away the justification for outrage. I was well informed that the game was morally heinous and a big bag of sexism and bought it anyways.

      • indy2003 says:

        I basically agree with you here, and moral outrage over that mission does indeed seem hypocritical given all of other horrible stuff you do in the game. I just found it unsettling and needed to get away from the game for a little while. I’ll definitely be diving back in soon, though. Despite that mission, Trevor is still my favorite character in the game. He’s a character who completely lacks the sort of unintentional hypocrisy which has marred other Rockstar protagonists.

        • Effigy_Power says:

          I totally agree, it seems that extra bit crueler than anything else you do in that game.
          Then again, I didn’t hear anyone complaining about taking a torture victim and freeing him, then handing him over to someone else to be tortured, which is a thing that happens.
          Perspective is a weird thing.

  29. Cloks says:

    I’ll be playing the original Metal Gear Solid as I attempt to work my way through all 4 games in the main series. I picked up the HD collection and MGS4 so the rest should all look great but playing this on the original Playstation and my CRT makes it even better.

    I’ll also be replaying Mario and Luigi: Superstar Saga on my new-to-me pink GBA SP 101. I got a flashcart to go with it and I can now play almost all of the GBA games, woohoo!

    • Passe_Partout says:

       The Mario and Luigi RPG games are some of my favorites on the Nintendo systems. I like RPG battle systems much more when they involve the player in attacking and defending, instead of moving towards more hands-off systems like in FFXIII.

    • ocelotfox says:

       Gotta love Fawful, the best character the Mario series ever graced us with.

    • Citric says:

      I actually finished Partners in Time pretty recently, and Superstar Saga is way better than Partners in Time if you’re curious.

      I almost bought the new one but I should probably play Bowser’s Inside Story first? I’ve heard it’s a return to form.

      • Cloks says:

        Partners in Time was flawed but fun and Bowser’s Inside Story is great.

        I might have to get a 3DS for the fourth one, they’re really good games.

        • Citric says:

          I think the problem with Partners in Time was partially that they thought they had to use all the buttons, so it added a layer of complexity that wasn’t really necessary.

  30. Kyle O'Reilly says:

    Woof.  I’ve been going full-throttle in the real world (boo!) and have only had time for sporadic murder rampages in the digital world (yay!) so this weekend I’ll try and finish GTA V.

    I’ve been jamming to the soundtrack on Youtube because it’s the tits but some turbo-douche did the unspeakable internet crime of putting a spoiler in the title of one of the songs from the soundtrack.  I was bummed, so now I feel like I just need to hurry up and get to the spoiler so I can get some closure.

    Also might try to crack into Mark of the Ninja because I voted for it in the game club and I’d feel like a jerk if I didn’t write about it.  Also it’s the purest most fun, stealth game there is.

    • Effigy_Power says:

      I am not super-happy with the radio channels in 5. Radio-X sort of relies on the lesser titles of Hardcore, something Liberty City Hardcore did a bit better.
      Vinewood Boulevard Radio is generally solid, but suffers from unbearably douchy DJs.
      Only Lowdown is really generally tasty and has Pam Grier as a DJ, so all the better.
      Non-Stop Pop can be fun for a short while but fluctuates wildly, with Amerie being sort of the top of quality and the Pet Shop Boys making me want to tear my soundbar off the wall.

      • Kyle O'Reilly says:

         I take it you don’t dig old-school country or synth-pop?  Because if you do, GTA V has got you covered.  Admittedly Rose Fm was better than Rebel, but if you like synth pop holy shit does Mirror Park hit the spot.  Not to mention I have FlyLo, World and Soulwax in the wings if I need more synth.

        And sweet platform-dildo-shoes they got Bootsy Goddam Collins to DJ the funk station.

        Honestly, other than the punk station and the barrio station I love em all, but it all comes down to taste.

        Diff’rent strokes for diff’rent folks though.

        • Effigy_Power says:

          Oh yeah, I can really only judge the small selection of music I like. GTA has a long-standing history of not really catering to my own particular taste, which is fine.
          I am sure if I was into West Coast Classic Hip Hop, I’d be in heaven.
          WorldWide has a few okay tracks, but is too leisurely to really fit this game.

  31. Chalkdust says:

    This weekend, I will be playing the game of moving and realizing how out of shape I am as I lug boxes up stairs.

    Since this means most of my stuff will at least temporarily be in transit, I’ll stick to portable options.  I zipped through the Phoenix Wright: Dual Destinies demo… cannot wait for the full game.  When I have downtime I will plug away at Etrian Odyssey IV (as I am eager to generate an ‘extra data’ file which is supposedly used somehow in Etrian Odyssey Untold).  Probably will also clean house, shave down the collection of games and get some trade-in credit.  Maybe pick up Grand Theft Auto V like every other multicellular organism in America.

    • ocelotfox says:

       Loved the Phoenix Wright: Dual Destinies demo, it was great to have Phoenix back in the driver’s seat for the first time since Trials and Tribulations.  I did read some previews that say he’s splitting time equally with Apollo and Athena, but it should still be a fun return to our favorite defense attorney.

  32. Passe_Partout says:

    Wonderful 101, Pikmin 3, and Wind Waker HD have convinced me to invest in a Wii U, which will hopefully arrive today. The promise of Super Mario 3d World and Bayonetta 2 have only sweetened the deal. I’ve decided to balance that out by letting go of my Xbox 360, since I haven’t touched it more than twice in the last year, and that was just to play Spelunky and Fez, which I now own on PC.

    I’m also trying to get into the groove of hitting the gym again. It’s been a couple of years and I’m not very happy about regaining the weight I sloughed off previously. It also alleviates some of the misplaced guilt I feel about playing video games and not dedicating my time towards something a bit more constructive, like teaching a child to read or learning how to operate a crane.

    I’ve also jumped back into Terraria as a light time waster. I only scratched the surface before the 1.2 update, but even starting over after that felt different. I feel like there are more cavern openings than there were previously, encouraging more exploration. It is fun to make tiny shelters as I dig deeper. It really drives home that feeling of being a lone explorer. Also the ability to continue moving up one block without jumping makes traversing the world much faster.

  33. evanwaters says:

    I started a new game of The Movies for whatever reason, and while I’m doing better than I did originally an interesting phenomenon emerged- all of my stars AND extras are women. Generally the game doesn’t care except for a few minor stat things (the Advanced Movie Maker lets you release films with gay interracial love stories in the 1930s, which is kind of awesome), but it is odd. I’ll see if this persists.

    Fooling around with World of Warcraft too- mostly Brewfest stuff, getting all my alts jaunty chapeaus and the like. But I’ve also decided to level my main, as slow a process as that is at the top levels. The Pandaria content is generally pretty good, though I still think it’s a step down from Cataclysm.

  34. a_scintillating_comment says:

    I’m talking… GTA V in the GLOG crew (not super impressed so far)
    Maybe some… CS:GO (because I don’t know why)
    Maybe, maybe some Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts  (Anyone else? I never played the previous games, but it’s been and interesting ride so far)

    • duwease says:

      I think Nuts & Bolts is possibly the most underrated 360 exclusive.. loved that game SO much.  Then again, I’m a software engineer so maybe I just like tinkering with things more than most people.

      • DrFlimFlam says:

        I see the potential in Nuts and Bolts but nevre put more than a few hours in. I know there’s a good game there, but I never want to take the time to really find it.

        • a_scintillating_comment says:

          I’m not too far, but yeah there seems to be a really good game in there. Something that opens up a so customizing your ‘ride’ becomes more of a necessity. I was surprised because I’m not the type to tinker like @duwease:disqus says, but it’s just getting under my bland robot android skin in some way

    • Effigy_Power says:

      Wait, you’re not impressed of GTA5 or the GLOG crew?
      Because them latters is fightin’ woyds.
      (I am joking.)

      • a_scintillating_comment says:

        Haha, well Crew = awesome. As for game, it’s just so early for me, that I’ve only done death-match, and it’s not terribly fun in R* games with the lock-on an such. I’m excited to do some heists (it has those, right?) or at least missions with people. 

  35. ZTO says:

    Likely FFXIV:ARR. Sitting on 50 in a fighting class as well as my carpenter. My Free Company (as previously stated, =guild) has been on a mad quest to seize control of the markets with an army of crafters. Raw materials are stupid cheap and finished goods are still pricey. So far, so good.

    Other than that, Pokemon and maybe Warframe. New versions of Pokemon are shaping up to change the meta-game pretty drastically (new type, fairy, will be immune to dragons AND super effective against dragons). Of course, they’re not out yet but that doesn’t mean I can’t raise more ‘pokes to transfer up later. Also, mega-evolutions. Charizard is actually practical outside of a team that runs sunny day? Also, a black and red fire/dragon type charizard? All of my childhood dreams have come true!

    As for Warframe, I’m not sure what to think of it. I like the idea of another freemium co-op shooter a la ME3’s multiplayer, but there seems to be very little instruction and very strong push for me to join a dojo (again, =guild). Also, it’s much harder than I would expect. I’m a pretty good shooter player and I am just not used to getting killed because I have no ammo in the first 1/4th of a game.

    • djsubversive says:

      yo, what’s your warframe name? We have a GS clan.

      also, Clan = Guild. Dojo = clan-specific space station.

  36. ocelotfox says:

    I’ll be playing some more Fire Emblem: Awakening, it’s starting to really pick up (I’m at Chapter 9, and I’ve been doing a lot of Risen fights and Spotpass character fights to level everyone up).  And while I’m at it, probably going to finish up Okami HD just in time to get Beyond: Two Souls.  I just hope that David Cage has learned from his mistakes and can deliver on that promise of a new type of cinematic gaming experience.

    • Passe_Partout says:

       Have you played the demo yet? It kind of got me hooked on the idea because the acting is very well done and the story seems like it might be worth experiencing, which makes the iffy interactivity more bearable.

      Playing as Aiden reminded me of Geist on the Gamecube. That game’s only redeeming quality was the possession mechanic.

  37. His_Space_Holiness says:

    This week in New Vegas: I still got those Old World Blues, and I’m still loving the hell out of it. The Brains continue to be hilarious, and the old buildings filled with utterly insane SCIENCE! are still fun. I’m pretty annoyed at how Nightstalkers went from pushovers to borderline unkillable, but the Cyberdog machine gun helped a lot with that. Cower before the sound of barking death, coyote-snake things!

    I’m also enjoying the Wild Wasteland perk, because I’m always in favor of more silliness in my dystopic wastelands. It’s mostly pop-culture references — an old fridge containing Indiana Jones’ corpse, a mini-Deathclaw named Stripe, Rex alerting you to a boy trapped in a well — but still funny. My favorite is the window in the OWB stealth training lab where you can spy on a bunch of Cyberdogs playing poker. Nyuk nyuk nyuk!

    • DrFlimFlam says:

      Yeah, I can’t imagine a world in which that perk isn’t flipped on.

    • djsubversive says:

      Nightstalkers becoming monsters was balance – once you enter BIG MOUNTAIN, Cazadores are much less frightening, so they had to do something about that.

  38. ferrarimanf355 says:

    Gonna play some Asphalt 8: Airborne, my new addiction.

    I also paid off my Xbox One preorder, along with Need for Speed Rivals, Forza 5 CE, NBA2K14, and a play and charge kit. I also deposited $100 into my Xbox Live account to get Killer Instinct Ultra Edition, Lococycle and Crimson Dragon, and the X360 version of Soul Calibur II HD when that comes out.

    Bring it on, November 22nd.

  39. Treymoney says:

    I’m going to try to finish Shin Megami Tensei IV on the neutral path this weekend.  I’ve played for almost 90 hours so I should have finished… 40 hours ago?   Part of that was the 6 hours it took to build a team that could beat Beelzebub.  But I also find the world really appealing, and befriending and fusing demons is super addictive.  This was my first Megaten, and I’ve enjoyed it so much I also picked up Strange Journey and Nocturne for the PS2, but I’ll probably take a break before I start with either of those.

  40. Mercenary_Security_number_4 says:

    This chick is pretty cool.

  41. dreadguacamole says:

    Woot! Knock Knock, by Ice-Pick Lodge (they of Pathologic, the Void, and Cargo) is finally out!
     Too bad I won’t be able to give it a fair shake until after a Pathfinder p&p session tonight…

  42. djsubversive says:

    State of Decay, ArmA 3, and Fallout: New Vegas (specifically, Lonesome Road) most likely.

    I’ve got most of the scripting stuff figured out for Operation: Bring Tha Noise in ArmA 3, and the tasks seem to be firing properly (even for clients), when I use the correct names. Now it’s just a matter of finding the right balance and waiting for some things that BIS broke (binoculars), and then moving/removing some things (like the autonomous drone that kills one of the patrolling guards at the farm and the ability to respawn – but I might try to use the “revive script” that’s been floating around that lets people revive each other with med-kits and first-aid kits.).

    @Effigy_Power:disqus : If you come up with something suitably hilaridorable for the war-baby, I will attempt to figure out how to apply decals to vehicles and put it on the tank, because why not? :)

    Lonesome Road is good times. Not as good as Dead Money, but it lets me explore a ruined city, which there isn’t enough of in NV.

  43. dmikester says:

    Ack, got here so late!  If I can balance my work and gaming right, I should be finishing GTA 5 this weekend, and by finishing, I mean getting 100%.  Definitely the most pleasant experience of getting 100% in a GTA game I’ve ever had, though some activities are stupidly difficult and aggravating (knife flights and some of the stunt jumps).  I’m not really clear on why Rockstar chose to have most of the 100% requirements involve Franklin and not the other characters, but there you go.

  44. Effigy_Power says:

    Oooh… I don’t know.
    I’ve sort of given up on making definite gaming plans for the weekend because I barely seem to follow them anyways. My weekends are usually about as planned as Weekends at Bernie’s.
    When I am really into a game, like a week after Skyrim comes out or something, it’s sort of inevitable I will play that. But otherwise I just sort of go with my mood now. Could be EU4 (My Ottomans just took Rome), could be GTAOnline if that ever works, could be ArmA3, could be whoknowswhat.

    Best laid gaming-plans with mice and keyboard don’t usually work out for me. When I look back at previous WAYPTWs the correlation between what I planned to play and really did play is probably less than 30%, unless I am playing a new release and can be sure about it.
    So I’ve decided to stop worrying and love the random. I’ll sit down at my desk or console and see where the mood takes me.

    The only thing I really need to be sure of is that there’s ANY gaming at all and that at least some of it is enjoyable. After a week and a half of gaming abstinence I sorely need some preferably lethal fun.
    And on that note: Abstinence don’t work, yo.

    • djsubversive says:

      Fixed the script for the hostage last night. We can try the mission again without the gunner drone (which is sort of cheaty). Possibly even with four players. Wouldn’t that be nice?

      The mission is mostly infantry-focused right now, until you get your hands on the editor and fill the southern half of the island with tank patrols. There’s a couple of vehicles at the Kamino range and the Stratis Air Base (not counting the 3 trucks for The Noise), and I don’t think there are any hostile helicopters or armor – there are 3 helis at the air base, but they’re Empty and need to be destroyed for the SAB task.

      Oh, one request: could you hold off on the diarrhea-ray next time? Or at least let me know it’s incoming so I know to wear non-khaki pants (and/or some sort of protection)? :)

  45. ocelotfox says:

     I am downloading now, but yeah, it seems that Cage really decided to overhaul his script work.  That, and I think working with actors like Willem Dafoe and Ellen Page will improve the presentation of certain line readings that made Heavy Rain lose a lot of its weight.