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We’re kind of divided on The Division at the following link.

It’s been a week and while I said I would wait on playing The Division until the community had spoken, I broke down and redbox’d the thing on Friday night. My will is weak, folks. However, I’m still not certain on how I feel about the game. Is it the lack of anything new to play? Is it the 8 or 10 other people on my friends list playing the game any time I log in? I can’t put my finger on it, but I keep finding myself playing this game that I can’t walk away with a straight opinion on. It doesn’t feel like a good game, but I keep going back in. I don’t like the shooting, but I keep going back in. There are some good aspects of the game and what it’s doing, but it doesn’t feel like it would be enough to make me purchase any other game doing that and ONLY getting that part right. It’s very strange and I’m completely torn on it, but I went and bought it anyway. If anything it’ll hold me over until Quantum Break and Uncharted 4.

We also talk about E3 again, too. I need to write about that at some point. Maybe if I can awkwardly pull myself away from a game that doesn’t feel great but I keep playing it – I can get around to that. This is weird.

 

We’re remembering fondly things we’d like to forget at the following link.

I’m not sold on The Division. I want to be. I seriously hope it does well because I’d like to play it and enjoy it. But I can’t put my faith there right now. The demo/beta really didn’t help to get a handle on that game and given how wrapped up I was in Destiny’s alpha, this doesn’t bode well. But whatever, I’m fully prepared to pass judgement on the full title and not a small slice of whatever Ubisoft wanted us to experience. Except I’ll need that faith to come from others playing the game, since Ubisoft decided to withhold copies from reviewers. I don’t really place a whole lot of weight in my decision on a game because of what a reviewer said, but other releases that have done this haven’t turned out all that well. Besides, as community driven as this title is likely to be…I’d like to see what the community has to say about it.

 

We’re moving slowly and dying often at the following link.

So this is an interview episode. We’ve had others but this one goes a bit long. The first hour is all about VR and SUPERHOT. With Matt gone we get to meet Amber, who’s been a lifelong gamer and even works at a local gaming bar.

The second hour right to the end of the episode is a wonderful interview with Barry Meade from Fireproof Games. Talking to the people who create these games will NEVER get old for me. And that goes even further when it is the creators of the games I personally love. The Room series of games are exactly that. You can also hear the giddy-ness in my voice…it just so happens the team of Fireproof Games were once members of another studio I so dearly love.

 

We’re completely wrong with our price predictions at the following link.

Consider this my stance on VR. It’s expensive. Of course it is. It’s the first iteration of it and, like all firsts when it comes to new technology, it’s going to be priced exceptionally high. Blu-Ray players were so high getting an original PS3 at $600 was a DEAL! It was the cheapest you could get a BR player and it played games. Jackpot!! So yeah, it’ll start high and the price will come down.

VR is also here to stay. As much time (which isn’t too much, but enough) as I’ve spent with it, it has drawn me in hook, line, and sinker. I have tried the Vive with the controllers, the Rift with the controllers, and the Playstation VR (Morpheus model). Haven’t had a single bad experience with any of them in fact, I wanted more. Devs are on board as well with most saying they’re excited for what VR brings to the table. Most of the criticism I hear about VR come from people who just haven’t tried it yet. And that’s the biggest problem with VR, outside of the high price of entry at the moment for most people, is that it’s extremely hard to describe to people without actually having them experience the technology. It really does fit the cliche of “you have to see it to believe it.”

 

We’re playing with our [insert your dog of choice here] at the following link.

Just to make this quick and get it out of the way – our spoiler discussion of Firewatch starts around the 90 minute mark of this episode and we do warn you about the spoilers before we get to them so you’ll have time to keep yourself free of them.

Having said that, we probably should have just taken the whole second hour to talk about the game. It isn’t a very long game in the story sense but you could put countless hours into it just exploring. And you can do the same when talking about the game Firewatch is and the game some people thought it might be. Or maybe wanted it to be. Or…maybe have no idea what is was the way it was. It’s a fun discussion to have and it isn’t often we get to have them. Enjoy it while it lasts, cause it might be even longer before it makes its way back round again.

 

We’re recovering from a diabetic coma at the following link.

Nothing like being surrounded by games for 3 days to make you want to play more games. Market is a bit flooded right now with things to play. Do you like puzzles? The Witness came out. Do you like adventure? Tomb Raider released on PC. Do you like addictive game play but also don’t mind getting killed over and over? XCOM 2 is for you. Do you like whatever Firewatch is? Also Unravel…that’s out now too.

PAX South is over and while I’m telling you about it in this episode, I’ll still be telling you about it in the next episode. It doesn’t feel like I saw a lot of games, but there was enough of what I did see to continue talking about it on the next show. So yeah, the market’s flooded, but that isn’t me complaining. It’s like the cartoon cliche of being buried in chocolate…we’ll just have to eat our way out of it. The best kind of way to survive.

 

They’re probably talking about games at the following link.

I honestly have no idea. I had to edit the show and bits I heard were of Elite Dangerous. I’m sure that isn’t ALL they talked about but that’s the fun of these shows when I’m out away at PAX South. James is back on this one while I’m gone and yeah, they talk about Elite Dangerous.

Look, it’s a grab bag. It’s a surprise, pot luck, random, wheel-of-topics. I really have no idea what’s talked about in this episode since I wasn’t there and haven’t had enough time to listen to it all and get this out on our usual Tuesday. So enjoy….whatever this is.

 

We’re editing our show to the music of Queen at the following link.

I know video games pretty much get released every single week but it feels like it has been months since anything new and interested has hit the shelves. For me, it probably feels even longer since I didn’t do the Fallout thing. But now, this week in fact, we’ve got two new releases popping up on my radar with The Witness and Tomb Raider.

And I’ll have very little time with either of them since I leave for PAX South on Thursday. I’ve waited this long. I guess I can wait a few days more.

 

We’re dealing with a crap week at the following link.

I have slumps sometimes where gaming is concerned. And while this isn’t near to one of my biggest, it is somewhat of a slump. I’m done with Just Cause 3, and Assassin’s Creed Syndicate may have a bit better quality in the story it’s telling or the characters I am playing, it just can’t compare with the sploding and the tethering and the jumping and the flying and the sploding of Just Cause 3. Doesn’t mean I won’t get around to playing it, but it’s taking some time for me to adjust, I suppose.

This isn’t a slump to last very long. Next week is Tomb Raider and The Witness. And PAX South, so it’s nothing major but a possible calm before the eventual storm once again. This one that should take me into Firewatch and Unravel and leading into Uncharted 4. There’s likely plenty of other games I missed in that list that I’m going to put time into but off the top of my head, that isn’t bad for the next few weeks and months.

As for the crap week. Well, that had nothing to do with gaming. It’s just really very sad when people you really like and admired aren’t around anymore.

 

We’re hitting it harder at the following link.

I need an Oculus Rift like I need a hole in my head. That’s probably something I thought a long time ago when it was announced. Maybe. Still, it’s been refined since then so how far off that statement am I at the moment?

Oh look at that! The same intro works two weeks in a row. Actually, I just did that for shits and giggles. Seriously, I want a Rift. Or well, I want VR. I’ll take a Rift, a Vive, even Sony’s offering, but I want it. I’ve been in that world and I want to go back in any way I can – preferably the best way on offer. We know in the console world, that will be the thing for the PlayStation and for PC…well, the jury is still out on that isn’t it?

Whatever happens, we’ve come to the understanding that the cost of entry this year won’t be cheap. Some prices will look better than others, probably, but we won’t think of it as anything affordable in any sort of standards we’re currently…standing…on.

Still, 2016 is the year VR comes into the homes of the consumers. This isn’t Nintendo’s waggle. This isn’t Microsoft’s Kinect. This isn’t Playstation’s Move. This goes beyond gimmick (I know you think I am wrong on this, right now, but I’m more than willing to stand my ground on that statement), goes beyond fad. It’s here to stay for a good while, probably on into the next console cycle. It’ll get refined, become cheaper, better, more comfortable, and will be as competitive as the consoles are now. This is all good news, though. For people like us, anyway.

 

We’re reminding ourselves to say 2016 at the following link.

I need a Steam Controller like I need a hole in my head. That’s probably something I thought a long time ago when it was announced. Maybe. Still, it’s been refined and released since then so how far off that statement am I at the moment?

Nate and Dennis both got one over the holidays and Nate brought his into the show this week. It’s unique and feels perfectly fine in my hands, though Matt had some issue with that. It has my curiosity just to try it out (as almost anything new like this would do – he says as his eyes wander over to the Rift announcement tomorrow), but it still doesn’t feel like it’s replacing a need.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying it’s crap and I’m not saying it’s pointless. I’m saying that for me, right now, there is no hole that this fills. There was never some question I ever had that this controller answers. At least not that I can see, but that can easily change. I’m becoming far more lazier in my gaming and have both my PS4 & Xbox One hooked up to the TV in the bedroom. If this controller and a Steam Link can put my PC gaming in there with them and allow me to comfortably play all my PC games – then the need may have just been met.

 

We’re going out to the coast, getting together, and having a few laughs at the following link.

While it may be a day late we’re still putting on the Christmas tunes and having a jolly old time on the show looking back again at 2015. Nate’s joining us this time and we’re talking about what he liked most from the year. We also talk about Steam and the underwhelming sale season (along with the almost as underwhelming security breach).

This is our last episode. Of 2015, anyway. This puts us right around episode 400 and closes out season 9. As we always do at the end of a season we want to thank all of you who still listen, call in, write to us, and join us live in the chat room from time to time. We do this for you. It’s fun for us and we do it even when an audience isn’t around, but the public part of this – the radio show, the streams – it’s all done for all of you and we cannot thank you enough for your support over the past 9 seasons. We hope you’ll continue that support into season 10…yeah, it’ll be nearly 10 years since we began this little show back in 2007 (the dates are a bit strange but our anniversary happens every February).

Thanks for listening. Thanks for everything. And we’ll see you in the new year.

 

We’re doing the usual end of the year thing at the following link.

So this year had a few standouts in gaming. I never thought Destiny would bring me back like it did and City Skylines was a gigantic surprise. But even with the good we got, the bad was heavily outweighed and, for me, by one single game.

It is likely very obvious my love for the Batman Arkham games and this year’s Arkham Knight was to be the final slice of one extremely delicious cake. But, as it turns out, the cake was a lie. One of if not THE biggest disappointment of 2015. If you played it on PC, of course. You folks on the console got out of it, but those of us on PC still to this day have issues playing that game. It was a massive failure and surpassed the failure of the year before, Assassin’s Creed Unity. It will become the benchmark by which all broken games out of the box will compare. And that really is the big disappointment here. They released 2 prior games in the series to PC without issue and then this one – the one marketed as the last and biggest and best – this is the one they drop the ball with. With one single game, they ruined MY 2015.

Here’s hoping, perhaps, that yours was better.

 

We’ve been here before at the following link.

I’m not a very smart person. There’s evidence of that every week on our show. No more so than this week’s episode when I tell my epiphany of finally seeing the pattern. I’m still not sure how I feel about it, honestly. I’m writing this on Sunday and I’ve spent almost all of today going back and forth between Just Cause 3, Destiny, and Assassin’s Creed Syndicate. In two of those games, I’m doing pretty much the same thing while in one of them, I just keep doing the same thing over and over. I’m currently having more fun in JC3 than I am in either of the other games. This is to be expected, however, since Destiny is just a weekly loot run and hoping for the best, while Assassin’s Creed is the more boring alternate of JC3 – London looks nice but it doesn’t blow up very well.

Then again, nothing blows up as well as Just Cause 3.

 

We’re asking for the envelope please at the following link.

There’s a lot of game companies that get a lot of bad reputations. EA, for example, had their logo transform into a swastika. There was once a pretty obscene one for Steam back in the day as well. Ubisoft, Sony, Microsoft…they’ve all had their share of hate from the community over the years and the trend will continue, I’m sure. But I can’t think of a single company, not one of those previously mentioned or left out, that can top the outright asshole dickery of Konami and their relationship with Kojima. Like, I knew it was bad, but nothing like the level it was revealed during the Game Awards last week. I don’t think there is a ladder tall enough or a rope long enough for them to climb out of the hole they have dug themselves in with the gaming community. I mean, they were already in a hole, but damn…whatever floor they stood on just fell out from under them and became a bottomless pit of unforgiveness.

On the other side of the coin, however, and to bring up something positive cause everyone always says the bad news gets more talk (and it does), I tip my hat to Nintendo. A company seemingly without competition. Whose sales this year haven’t been great but have released some great games. And a company who experienced a tragedy and took the time to mourn, grieve, and pay their respects while letting their community do the same.

Two companies at opposite ends of the spectrum. One, the lowest of the low. The other on the highest pedestal – not with sales or campaigns or deals or systems, but respect, love, and admiration. Dear every other game company out there, when the time comes, don’t be a Konami….be a Nintendo.