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We’re not matching Amazon’s prices at the following link.

Sometimes there isn’t one single topic to dominate the conversation. A segment spent here and another segment spent there. Maybe a call, maybe an email. Whatever the case, when something doesn’t dominate the show, you get a grab back of topics thrown around. Such as the case with this episode. We talk about the games we’ve played, as we always do, but we somehow manage to make that last an hour. I don’t exactly remember how, but I had something to do with, I know. Then we talk about getting deals on games and consoles that aren’t…illegal, really, but may have a bit of moral weight to them.

Whatever the topic and whenever the week, we’ll be here live each Saturday night to talk about them with you. As always, thanks for listening.

 

We’re under review embargo at the following link.

We often talk about being a fly on the wall during certain conversations, though the one that must have taken place at Ubisoft wasn’t likely as interesting as we might make it out to be in our heads. There likely wasn’t any push back saying that Assassin’s Creed Unity wasn’t ready for release. Probably just questions about if a day one patch would fix it or something along those lines. Hell, it may not have been any question at all. Pre-order numbers were probably enough to justify release. Told PR to make sure the review embargoes were far enough out to make any cancellations negligible and then ship it.

Whatever the case may be, the problems with Ubisoft as well as the matchmaking issues and day one patch needed for Microsoft’s big Halo collection on Xbox One made for a pretty depressing week to enjoy this hobby. Nothing works when you pay for it anymore and there’s a chance even after you pay for it, it may still not work.

 

We’re not as excited about Overwatch as you might be at the following link.

Blizzard did a thing and announced some stuff. But no manner of flash, pomp and circumstance could rile the excitement of most of us on the show. Particularly that of Nate and James, the two people on the show with the most experience of what it is Blizzard does.

The rest of us had no real opinion either way, but speaking for myself and what Overwatch showed off didn’t seem like anything new to me, and, in fact, it seemed VERY familiar what with the banging of wrenches to make a thing and setting up portal stuffs. I’ve done that before. I can do it now, in fact. There’s more to be said for Overwatch, particularly after more is revealed and known, but for now…we’ll probably just be watching over it for something to strike our collective fancy to draw us in. Also, we’re keeping an eye on how they’ll want us to spend our money with it as well.

 

There’s no time like the past at the following link.

This episode was due out many days ago.  As it is now only hours before the next broadcast and we’re too old to remember what happened a week ago, we’ll just go ahead and publish this thing with many apologies and zero summaries.  Enjoy.

 

We agree to disagree at the following link.

We obviously don’t agree on the specific qualities of games at all times, but we could honestly stand to disagree a deal more than we do.  One of the effects of spending so much time with friends of the same vintage is that your tastes, which were probably similar to begin with, have aligned even further as time rolls on.  The conflicting opinions keep the conversation interesting, and the friendships keep them civil.  It’s too bad, then, that we find so many reasons to tell one another how right they are.  Of course, if Scott continues to enjoy his time in Destiny as much as he has, there will be no shortage of material to fight about.

 

We’re talking shop at the following link.

It’s nice to detour around the discussion of actual games from time to time in order to talk to one another about the ergonomics and hardware of playing them.  We’ve only ever grazed the issue, but there are nearly unlimited variations on the theme of gaming hardware, and there are loads of things to be said about how each of us chooses to play and what interfaces we choose to use.  When and whether we use controllers or mice or keyboards or speedpads says a lot about our tastes and priorities (and budgets, sadly.)  It’d be lovely if we could make it a regular part of our conversation, though the last thing we need is to add a hardware backlog to the one we already have.

 

We’re dismantling exotics at the following link.

Destiny, in case there was any doubt, is very far from perfect.  We continue to play and assess the game so that we may, every week, tell you in detail how broken, shallow, or disappointing any particular mechanic happens to be.  But we do keep playing it, don’t we?  That phenomenon is hardly unique to Destiny, and it’s hardly new.  Broken (or mildly sprained) mechanics can’t quite suppress the pleasure of solid moment-to-moment gameplay.  Wrong or right, it’s hard to ignore and not at all worth the effort of denying, though it’s probably time to look away to some other game that has no hope of living up to its hype.

 

We should forfeit our lives at the following link.

We’ve done enough work in Destiny by this point to justify a shift away from a ravaged future earth and toward the strife and conflict in Middle-earth.  We haven’t made that move yet, but it’s becoming harder to avoid with every stream, review, and friends list testimonial making it clear what a great game we’re missing out on.  We generally can’t stand being late to a party, but it’s looking more and more like we’d be fools to wait much longer.  There’s every chance, then, that by next week’s show we’ll have hung up our guns and strapped on our swords in their place.

 

We’ve got our noses to the grindstone at the following link.

More Destiny talk tonight, and more to come, it’s safe to say.  Surely we should have categorized Destiny as either a write-off or a god-send, but neither classification is a just fit.  Destiny is second-to-second, bullet-to-bullet satisfaction coupled with a broader sense of disappointment and disaffection.  Magnify this by the grand budget and much grander expectations and you’ve got a working plan for a perpetual conversation machine.  The only thing that can stop us at this rate is a crowded holiday release schedule…and would you look what’s coming our way.

 

We know where it comes from at the following link.

We can only guess at what the process has been like for Bungie in the years they’ve been working on Destiny.  There’s sure to be a lot of stories that would generate sympathy in critical circles and further devotion among the fans.  But there are no doubt also troubling things we could learn from the sausage making, and plenty enough of it to put us off our games…for a while, at least.  For now, there’s just no stopping; bounties and heroics won’t clear themselves, and there’s always more Hive in the cave.

 

We’re back on our feet again at the following link.

We’re not entirely sure now what Destiny means to us as players, or what it might end up meaning to the game playing public at large.  There are a lot of opinions about what the game has and hasn’t done right, and there are a lot of emotions invested in those opinions.  We’re still trying to muscle through the story, such as it is; we’re hard-bitten guardians slowly fighting our way through the various ruined landscapes of the solar system.  We might be able to offer a consensus in a few days, but it’s a frustrating game to think and to talk about, even while it’s perfectly entertaining to play.

We take a break from infighting and the dispensing of career advice during the second hour to share some time with Casper Van Est of Double Dutch games, maker of SpeedRunners, the finest friendship destroyer I’ve played in ages.

 

We’re on the mend at the following link.

Scott has, as usual, returned home from PAX bearing the gift of pox and illness for us all.  There are nearly as many strains of plague attacking his system as there were indie games and discussion panels for him to lost track of.  He had a swell time, allegedly, so I’m sure it was worth it in the end.  He has also returned having borne witness to a long list of desirable and sadly far-distant games, most of which we’d love to own and cherish right this very minute.  Until we can, rambling stories from a sick man will have to do.

 

We have a different point of view at the following link.

There was most definitely a show last week, but there was no Scott to host it or to help it on its way from the studio to the internet.  He’s back now, and all is right with the world, so we apologize for the lateness of the post and the strangeness of the episode it contains.

 

We’re spending too long on a topic we shouldn’t at the following link.

I suppose it’s my fault for opening the door to the conversation, but at the time I was very uninformed with the goings on of Phil Fish, Zoe Quinn, and that whole situation happening for the past week. What I realize now, after the fact, is that I, personally, have very little to say on the matter that hasn’t already been said. Someone on the CoG forums said it best, I think, “Just treat people like people.” Thinking back on the situation, it was a topic we shouldn’t have brought up. It didn’t go anywhere on the show and only led to us trying to get off the topic onto other things. It also makes writing a summary of the episode even more difficult. Even now I’m ready to move on to some other topic to tell you about from the show.

So, moving on, Firefall seems to come highly recommended by a regular listener of ours, even to the point of calling into the show to give it his praise. Speaking of praise, James returns to the show this episode and we give Wolfenstein: The New Order its due (by that we mean, hey…you should probably play this, it’s good). On the other side of that coin, his opinion of Destiny has changed since playing the beta but it opened the doors to our discussion of space combat games – something we seem to possibly seeing a revival of in the very near future.

Show Note: While I will be at PAX, the show will be LIVE this weekend!

 

There’s 30 minutes of more show for iTunes pre-orders at the following link.

We’ve done bonus content for our show before and if we ever did it again we’d never hide it behind a paywall or make it exclusive to iTunes or YouTube or something like that. We’d like everyone to be able to enjoy it with the least amount of hoops to jump through as possible. Which is why it sometimes comes as a head scratcher when a previous game becomes exclusive to a system. Even when DLC becomes exclusive to certain retailers. I mean, we know WHY it happens, we’re just not fans of it.

Money makes the world go round, as it were, and that seems to be the case for games as well with the recently revealed Rise Of The Tomb Raider being exclusive to Xbox consoles for “holiday 2015”. We know it’s a timed exclusive, but that doesn’t make it any better for us to come to terms with. Then again, it seems like something we should since there’s no sign of this ever stopping.

Money: now you’re playing with power.