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We’re letting Matt go without cause at the following link.

We’re not really letting him go, but we have no say in what his job needs of him and it apparently needs him to fly 9 and a half hours ahead of us in time zones where he’ll spend most of the rest of the year. As with most of these things, we wish him well in his future endeavors.

Speaking of future endeavors, we’re quite curious what’s going on with Bungie and the release of Marty O’Donnell from their staff. These things happen but not usually on the terms that we know of publicly from what he’s tweeted so far in being fired from the company. Normally it is either a mutual split or both parties stay mum on the subject. Although, either way, people are going to speculate and that’s no different here.

Unexpectedly in this episode we received a call from Cailleah Scott-Grimes who tells us of her kickstarter project, She Got Game, a documentary about women’s experience in gaming. This was a completely unplanned and unprepared interview. I only mention that because of how easy it was to conduct given the subject matter – something worth talking about, and something worth making a documentary over. If you’d like to contribute, there’s still time left before the Kickstarter is over.

 

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We’re down to our last save-ribbon at the following link.

No matter where we look recently we feel we’re being met by a horror game of every type and kind you can imagine.  Except the kind we used to love, that is.  It’s awfully hard to scratch the Resident Evil 2 itch without actually playing RE2, and sometimes that just won’t sate the hunger.  Something modern but very much in the same spirit would be welcome.  Sadly, a plodding adventure game with tank controls that’s as much about inventory management as it is about the zombie apocalypse doesn’t seem to be everyone’s idea of a good time, though it should be because they were awesome!  Says the old man.

 

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We’re live from a galaxy far, far away at the following link.

There are any number of satisfying outcomes that could have followed Amy Hennig’s departure from Naughty Dog, and as lifelong fans of the Star Wars universe we’ve found ourselves as satisfied as could be.  There are endless numbers of people who had some other dream job or personal project in mind for her, but we’re frankly glad they didn’t get their way.  Star Wars – as a universe in general and a universe of games, in particular – has always held a special place in several of In-Game Chat’s hearts, but the quality has dropped in recent years and by no small amount.  Star Wars is in need of saving, and we expect Amy will play a part in its rescue.

 

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We’re less than the sum of our parts at the following link.

We did our level best to present a lively discussion this week, but there’s no getting past how awkward the hosts are without Scott at the helm.  He was in hospital, flat on his back and high as a kite, suffering from a gruesome affliction.  Those of us in the studio were more than a little uncomfortable, like lost children who needed an adult.  Scott made it through his ordeal, somehow, and so did we, but our typically flawless (not really) execution wasn’t to be had.  In any case, we apologize for the lateness of this posting, but it couldn’t be avoided.

 

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We’ve raised no alerts and triggered no alarms at the following link.

We take real issue with a lot of Kojima’s shenanigans, and we’ve failed completely to understand the story material behind Ground Zeroes, but there’s something curious and wonderful about playing through such an exquisitely polished…something that’s probably almost a complete game, maybe?  We don’t generally think it’s a great idea to go on the record about the value of a game, unless we’re talking about ourselves alone.  But it’s hard to imagine anyone stumbling into a game like this unawares, and even harder to imagine that well-informed gamer being displeased by what they find.

Also we played inFamous and HOLY CRAP THAT GAME LOOKS GREAT!!

 

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We’ve got eyes in the backs of our heads at the following link.

It matters more than we can possibly say to invite one of our very best friends on the show for his first appearance ever, really.  It matters something extra that it might, in the future, be  more than a rare event.  To some degree, we all became who we are together – the ‘who we are’ on the show, at the very least – and at the ripe old age of late-ish thirties, you begin to wonder how you came to think and feel the things you do, especially as regards the vidja games.  It’s super swell, then, to touch base with someone else who knows where you’re at, because he’s been where you’ve been.  You, too, may one day have to reconcile the grey hair with the midnight launch, and when you do, you’ll be chuffed to find you’re not alone…so long as you’re not alone.

 

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We’ve seen the shape of things to come at the following link.

It’s not as though we ever imagined getting through the spring months without turning out our pockets, so the only comfort now is knowing exactly when, where, and for which games we’ll be going broke.  We’re all over menu as well, with triple-A product at a premium price, and mid-priced digital games that are damn near impulse buys.  And there’s a Steam sale out there, somewhere, no doubt, which puts our extensive wish lists in play as well.  We were recently, and fleetingly, sad to hear of more than one release date delay, but a quick glance at what we’re already due this month and the next has brought us to our senses.

 

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Claim your five-finger discount at the following link.

After long years of skeptical previews, rumors of development strife, and the unmatchable expectations of the elderly, Thief the Younger has been released to hilariously uneven industry reviews and community impressions.  There’s a good chance that without the marquee nameplate and the years of cloudy recollections this game would have been received to general acclaim, but there’s no fair shake for anyone who thinks they’re deft enough to follow in Garrett’s nearly silent footsteps.

Perhaps, though, in a year or two, Thief could conjure the embarrassing levels of praise currently being hurled toward Blizzard for making their game what it should have been at launch.  Diablo 3 has, with the surprise release of a not-objectively-horrifying loot system upgrade, banished a large part of the angry fog that’s clung to the game and subdued its legacy.  I’m not usually a fan of the idea that the customer is always right, but as one such customer who’s finally gotten his way, I’ll gladly cling to it in this case.

 

 

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Don’t call us bots at the following link.

Four days of wall-running, jump-jets, ejector seats and the roaring atmospheric entry of the Titanfall beta haven’t done a damn thing to help us decide what we actually think of Respawn’s imminent multiplayer shoot-bang.  A huge number of people seem to have fallen head-over-heels for this thing, but we’re still absolutely certain that we’ve missed some important element that’s only been experienced by other people.  It’s a good game, no doubt, but we’re more than a little sad to be left off the hype train.  Maybe all of this excitement will suddenly make sense if I give EA some money?

That is, of course, if I have any left after giving it all to Blizzard, who seem dedicated to offering new and controversial paid options in World of Warcraft, so long as those options don’t involve giving us new content.  Their newest addition involves paying what many consider irrational sums of money to skip the only content that matters; hand over sixty dollars and go straight to level 90.  It’s hard to say if this is truly the pay-to-win scenario that we’re all afraid of, but it’s clear this is Blizzard’s favorite sort of feature creep, and buying levels may one day seem quaint and simple compared to what they have planned.

 

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We’re piloting our mechs all over the place at the following link.

Right, so mechs and titans. You could easily say most of the show was focused on big giant metal destruction, and it was, except for the 30 minutes or so we spent talking to Ben Ruiz from Team Colorblind. Their game, Aztez, involves no mechs or metal at all. But it does involve quite a lot of blood. If you’re curious to what the game is, find some videos, but then come back and listen to our interview to understand exactly what you’re watching and how it came to be.

As I said, the rest of the show is focused on mechs, from the Titanfall beta to our second guest of the night, Jason Hughes, from Adhesive Games talking to us about their game, Hawken – now available on Steam.

We really enjoy talking to developers, especially from places like Team Colorblind and Adhesive. You can hear in these interviews the passion they have for what they’ve created and what it means to them for you to play their games. We’ve heard it before from other small (and large) developers. It’s a privilege to speak with them and our hope is to only have more conversations with people like them. Having said that, if you know of a developer or someone working on a game you’d like for us to have on the show, let us know.

 

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We’re recording two hour broadcasts and selling them for $40 a pop at the following link.

First we have to thank Steven for calling in about his experience with the Titanfall alpha and Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition. Also, another big thank you to Mr. Angus for calling in and talking about his time at Criterion studios, and also for putting up with my gushing of their work.

We won’t tell you how to spend your money. We won’t tell you that it’s wrong to pay the asking price for MGS: Ground Zeroes. Because it isn’t. It is your money to spend as you wish and I’ve personally committed far greater sins in the amount spent per entertainment value department (kickstarter projects come to mind).

While we aren’t too troubled by what Konami is charging for the game because if people will buy it, then why shouldn’t they? We are a bit concerned that it might catch on and become a regular thing. Right now, for me, it has no effect and Matt doesn’t seem to have too much of an issue spending the money on a franchise he loves – but what is this was Burnout, Uncharted, or (insert your beloved franchise here)? What are you willing to pay?

Don’t worry though, our episodes are still free, though we might hold James’ return for ransom. After all, we’ve got an E3 trip coming up.

 

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We’re thanking you all for 8 years and 300 episodes at the following link.

It really shouldn’t be me writing this. James does these and better than me, but he was unable to attend our 300th episode due to work commitments. I can’t say what he would write here, but I know at some point he’d thank you. And I think that’s a lot of what this episode is. As much as it’s a lot of you and our guests over the years calling in to congratulate us on 300 episodes, it’s just as much all of us involved thanking you for listening for so long and over so many bumps along the way.

We’ve gone from weekly episodes to near daily episodes all the way down to sometimes monthly and even less, but you’ve all stayed with us during that time, right back to where we are now – a weekly live radio broadcast. You can’t possibly know what that means to us because we can’t properly express our gratitude for it. What we can do is give you 2 commercial free hours of your calls, past memories, and some special guests calling in.

Some of those guests we hear from in this episode include Phil Kollar, Bobby Loertscher from Zen Studios, David Hayter, John Lowrie & his wife, Ellen McLain, Naveen Nattam from Twisted Pixel, previous host Daniel who now works at Bungie, Major Nelson, & Amy Hennig from Naughty Dog.

So, for the past 8 years, 300 episodes, location changes, host changes, surplus of episodes and lack of episodes…thanks for listening. And enjoy the show…

 

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We’re trademarking EVERYTHING at the following link.

The topic of the episode is “things that aren’t fun to talk about because there doesn’t seem to be any silver lining”. It’s a long title for a topic, but it seems to fit the subject matter: copyright law and skeevy things that should be illegal, but aren’t.

As I said, these kinds of things aren’t very fun to talk about, so I’ll tell you a bit about next week’s 300th episode. You should really try and make the live show. There are things being planned that you’ll miss out on if you aren’t listening to the live show…or at least in the chat room. I like giving hints and using wordplay to do so, but, really, anything I give you here would be WAY to obvious, and I’m not allowed to do that.

You’ll just have to trust us.

 

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It’s an honor just to be nominated at the following link.

We’re still harboring an awful lot of suspicion surrounding the early hype and imminent release of Titanfall.  It’s one thing to mistrust the wave of praise from reporters of various stripes who might well be overstimulated and over-handled at any number of media events, but it’s another thing entirely to mistrust the legions of regular gamers with access to this past weekend’s alpha test.  Try as we might, though, some of us can’t see our way past the pedigree of the developers and the incredible baggage carried by their previous franchise.  Jetpacks, wall-running, and not-mechs might not be enough to turn it around, but we’ll find out for sure in a few long weeks.

 

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We’re part of a well-balanced meal at the following link.

It’s looking less likely over time that we’re going to find love in our hearts for the Steam Machine.  We wish it well with whatever it’s trying to do, and we’re happy on behalf of everyone who finds it compelling.  We haven’t written the idea off completely, though, as the only thing we like more than being proven right is having our negativity proven wrong.

PlayStation Now, on the other hand, has (by doing nothing whatsoever) generated many lustful and love-filled thoughts among the hosts.  We’re perfectly aware of the limitations and restrictions we’re likely to encounter, but we nonetheless choose to dream sweet dreams of all games from all eras available at all times wherever the hell we want.

 

 

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