GWJ Conference Call Episode 92

Conference Call

A New Audio Sponsor From Mick Mize, Playing D&D 4.0 Online, The Cross-Pollination of RPG Gaming, Diablo III, Your Emails and more!

This week Michael Zenke joins us as we educate our listeners in the finer points of pen and paper roleplaying games, the crossover with video gaming and what kind of D&D 4.0 games we'd like to see. We also tackle some saucy new emails on Spore, Diablo III, tossing rabbit's salad and more.

To contact us, email [email protected]! Send us your thoughts on the show, pressing issues you want to talk about or whatever else is on your mind. You can even send a 30 second audio question or comment (MP3 format please) if you're so inclined.

Battlefield Bad Company
GWJ D&D 4 Catch All
GWJ D&D 4.0 Online Playing Wiki
Massively.com
Mick Mize Audio Sponsor

  • Subscribe with iTunes
  • Subscribe with RSS
  • Subscribe with Yahoo!
Download the official apps
  • Download the GWJ Conference Call app for Android
  • Download the GWJ Conference Call app for Android

Show credits

Music credits: 

Intro/Outro Music - Ian Dorsch, Willowtree Audioworks
"Sunflower" - (Workbench) - www.workbench-music.com - 0:17:46
"Garibaldi" - (Workbench) - www.workbench-music.com - 0:52:08

Comments

Perhaps it was the glasses-pushing RPG goodness.

Maybe he really liked MULE?

I was never hugely into tabletop when I was younger, I didn't have that many super-geek friends. (Meant in an entirely loving and hetero way of course)

But I always preferred Vampire: The Masquerade or Dark Ages to the more stat/roll heavy systems like ADnD and Warhammer Roleplaying, there was so much more scope to do fun things rather than coming to grips with the system. Although the Warhammer character generation system was great.

And I'm totally with Rob in my disappointment with Diablo 3, it is such unashamed fan-service without any an apparent attempt to do anything new or innovative. I don't blame them for a second, and having said that I will probably pick it up day one, but I was really hoping for something new that wasn't an MMO.

Gaald wrote:
LobsterMobster wrote:

Oh man, I love that, Diablo is Dress-Up. How is that ANY different from World of Warcraft? Are you grinding to 70 for the story?

The major difference between World of Warcraft and Diablo 3 is that WoW is already out, and D3 isn't. Hence my disappointment that Blizzard is coming out with yet another dress up game, instead of something new.

But Rob, you're confusing a game mechanic with a game aesthetic. The reason Diablo is popular (when there are already other games that do the same things as it does) is because the story and feel of the game are fundamentally different (to those other games). Saying what you said is like saying - "Why are we getting Doom 4? Why are we getting a new Wolfenstein? Why are we getting ANY new FPSes? Why new Prince of Persia? We have the original? Oh, 3D? Done before Sands of Time as well... Time mechanic? Wasn't Blinx out before that series?

It's not a very well thought-out argument, is it?

MrDeVil909 wrote:

And I'm totally with Rob in my disappointment with Diablo 3, it is such unashamed fan-service without any an apparent attempt to do anything new or innovative.

Actually, as a fan of the series, they're doing enough things different from D2 - in the same way that many games make something slightly different from previous iterations in the genre (e.g. Titan Quest, Sacred etc.). You don't often get genre innovation if you look accross the board...

Diablo is dress up....well bugger me I've never heard it described so well!! And as for the Commodore 64, great machine, the best games I ever played on the system were Mayhem in Monsterland, Lemmings (oh yes there was a conversion), Klax, Creatures 1 and 2 (they were bloody hard mind you!) and Flimbo's Quest (Even harder!) and yes I do have an emulaotr for occasional play. Why not?

Good show there campers, though the def-nerd state of alert was at an all time high....

Duoae wrote:

Actually, as a fan of the series, they're doing enough things different from D2 - in the same way that many games make something slightly different from previous iterations in the genre (e.g. Titan Quest, Sacred etc.). You don't often get genre innovation if you look accross the board...

As a fan of the series I don't see the innovation, it's the same repetitive clickety-click gameplay in true 3D with some new classes. This is more a case of polish than innovation.

Will explain after work

ps. <3 Duoae

MrDeVil909 wrote:
Duoae wrote:

Actually, as a fan of the series, they're doing enough things different from D2 - in the same way that many games make something slightly different from previous iterations in the genre (e.g. Titan Quest, Sacred etc.). You don't often get genre innovation if you look accross the board...

As a fan of the series I don't see the innovation, it's the same repetitive clickety-click gameplay in true 3D with some new classes. This is more a case of polish than innovation.

I didn't say they innovated - in fact i was saying the opposite. They're improving on the gameplay but not fundamentally changing it. Looking for innovation in a game is pretty mucha fruitless task for 99% of games out there at this point in time. That was my point.

Oh and before you say you can't see the new improvements... go back and watch the gameplay video again... there are some interesting things in there that have been commented on in the thread on the boards... I'm seeing the same level of change as there was from Diablo to Diablo 2.

I can't believe that on a show where more than an hour was spent talking about the 4th revision of an RPG system that has been around since I was 10 (I'm as old as rabbit, now, I think) someone can complain about Blizzard "not doing something new" and making a mere dress up game. What is D&D if not dress up for dorks?

In life there is a time to do something new and there is a time to refresh and refine that which has come before so that it shines brightly again in the light of a new day. Diablo 3 looks to me to be a wonderful re-execution of the original game which I had never actually played until now.

D&D 4, is, I suppose, the same sort of thing. I can't really say because I haven't played D&D since the original three hard cover books came out 300 years ago.

psu_13 wrote:

What is D&D if not dress up for dorks?

Technically, D&D is play pretend for dorks. It's only dress up for a very rare and oft reviled segment of the population, *shudder* the LARPer.

I guess I should have said "pretend dress up". But surely video games are also pretend dress up.

Duoae wrote:
MrDeVil909 wrote:
Duoae wrote:

Actually, as a fan of the series, they're doing enough things different from D2 - in the same way that many games make something slightly different from previous iterations in the genre (e.g. Titan Quest, Sacred etc.). You don't often get genre innovation if you look accross the board...

As a fan of the series I don't see the innovation, it's the same repetitive clickety-click gameplay in true 3D with some new classes. This is more a case of polish than innovation.

I didn't say they innovated - in fact i was saying the opposite. They're improving on the gameplay but not fundamentally changing it. Looking for innovation in a game is pretty mucha fruitless task for 99% of games out there at this point in time. That was my point.

Oh and before you say you can't see the new improvements... go back and watch the gameplay video again... there are some interesting things in there that have been commented on in the thread on the boards... I'm seeing the same level of change as there was from Diablo to Diablo 2.

Ok, I see your point. Yes, the changes are incremental, but they are there. Blizzard couldn't have made sweeping changes for Diablo 3 without having NMA levels of angst, even the small ones they have made are enough of a problem, as beautifully addressed by Michael. No matter how much you try service your fans someone will complain.

But I was really wishing for Blizzard to give us something without ten tonnes of baggage before D3 was announced.

I'm playing Alone in the Dark and have yet to come across a bug. (360 version)

The controls take some time getting used to but quite frankly compared to Silent Hill or pre-RE4, I'd say it has an edge.

I think a lot of the people who said the controls were bad compared the game's controls to a first person game or a third person game because those two viewpoints are available but AitD is really a survival horror game and shouldn't be compared to a shooter.

It's just not how it plays.

Try it people! you're missing out if you don't! well worth my 60$

Duoae wrote:
Gaald wrote:
LobsterMobster wrote:

Oh man, I love that, Diablo is Dress-Up. How is that ANY different from World of Warcraft? Are you grinding to 70 for the story?

The major difference between World of Warcraft and Diablo 3 is that WoW is already out, and D3 isn't. Hence my disappointment that Blizzard is coming out with yet another dress up game, instead of something new.

But Rob, you're confusing a game mechanic with a game aesthetic. The reason Diablo is popular (when there are already other games that do the same things as it does) is because the story and feel of the game are fundamentally different (to those other games). Saying what you said is like saying - "Why are we getting Doom 4? Why are we getting a new Wolfenstein? Why are we getting ANY new FPSes? Why new Prince of Persia? We have the original? Oh, 3D? Done before Sands of Time as well... Time mechanic? Wasn't Blinx out before that series?

It's not a very well thought-out argument, is it?

:)

All Rob said, which was a little hard to understand because Micheal and rabbit were too busy being flabbergasted to listen, was that he wishes Blizzard had announced an original game rather than a sequel. That's it. I can get behind the sentiment, they've been riding the ______craft games hard the last ten years. I'd love to see them shoot for something completely new.

Your response to that statement doesn't make sense. I'm not even sure what you're responding to. The "dress up" comment?

LobsterMobster wrote:

Oh man, I love that, Diablo is Dress-Up. How is that ANY different from World of Warcraft? Are you grinding to 70 for the story?

Not everyone is "grinding to 70".
I do play WoW partly for the storIES. Not the overarching story, but all the smaller ones that make up bigger ones.

And many folks grinding to 70 have already played to 70 before, have seen all the stories, and just want a different character to play at 70. I'm hoping the WotLK mechanic for starting a Deathknight makes it to starting other alts, as well. I think once you've been to 70 for a given faction, you should be able to start at 50 for any other character of that faction on any server.

Love the podcast, as always.

On simplicity and complexity: I can't remember who was mentioning it, but they were exactly right that the great thing about video games is their ability to handle monstrous amounts of complexity in a way that pen and paper gaming can't (well, not without a great deal of fiat). Dwarf Fortress, with its complex combat and physics systems, is a perfect example of this.

Gaald wrote:

I liked Diablo 1 and enjoyed 2, and I am sure I will play Diablo 3.

Oh, you'll play it. Complaining loudly the entire time.

And you know what, we'll all love you for it.

interstate78 wrote:

I'm playing Alone in the Dark and have yet to come across a bug. (360 version)

The controls take some time getting used to but quite frankly compared to Silent Hill or pre-RE4, I'd say it has an edge.

I think a lot of the people who said the controls were bad compared the game's controls to a first person game or a third person game because those two viewpoints are available but AitD is really a survival horror game and shouldn't be compared to a shooter.

It's just not how it plays.

Try it people! you're missing out if you don't! well worth my 60$

OH GOD NO! Do not go out and spend 60 bucks on Alone in the Dark! Rent it if your curious, and hope to god it doesn't crash your brand new 360, as it did mine! Hope to god you don't get stuck in the terrain as I did several times. I am being very serious here, this game is not worth your 60 bucks, it's a bug ridden mess ON A CLOSED SYSTEM! ATARI should be sued by everyone who purchased the game and Microsoft should be ashamed for letting this release onto their system. Having said that there are some bright spots, I think I will save that for the next show.

I can't believe that on a show where more than an hour was spent talking about the 4th revision of an RPG system that has been around since I was 10 (I'm as old as rabbit, now, I think) someone can complain about Blizzard "not doing something new" and making a mere dress up game. What is D&D if not dress up for dorks?

Holy crap! Seriously? D&D is dress up for dorks? I don't know how you play D&D but when I play it, I play for the adventure, I play to see if the character I have so patiently put together, with his abilities and feats, can best the enemies the DM decides to throw at me. I play because I find it fun to create a story out of nothing and watch as it all unfolds before us. The last thing D&D is about, for me, is running around a world with my character slaughtering enemies wholesale hoping one of them drops a new piece of armor that looks cool with great stats so I can dress my character up. I liked Diablo and enjoyed 2, and I am sure I will play Diablo 3. I am just disappointed that Blizzard, a company I have a lot of respect for, decided to do yet another sequel instead of something all together different.

It's not a very well thought-out argument, is it?

I'm sorry I didn't realize my personal opinions were considered the bases for well thought out arguments. Wow, the power I yield is incredible, I am going to have to be careful! Seriously though. I bear no hate for Diablo 3, and as I said above I will probably play it. I was just kind of hoping for something new.

Oh, you'll play it. Complaining loudly the entire time.

And you know what, we'll all love you for it.

Don't say that! We're the ones who have to try and stem the tide during the show!

Certis wrote:
Oh, you'll play it. Complaining loudly the entire time.

And you know what, we'll all love you for it.

Don't say that! We're the ones who have to try and stem the tide during the show! ;)

Sorry didn't mean to encourage him, too much.

I must say though, Rob's complaining is sort of essential to my conception of him. Perhaps one of my favorite moments in the MGO beta was hearing Rob loudly exclaiming that he couldn't get the auto-aim to turn off. It was just classic Rob.

I'm sorry I didn't realize my personal opinions were considered the bases for well thought out arguments.

He must be new to listening to the show.

Im sorry to comment this late, but I can not let slip a small mistake, as an old C64 user I can confirm that neither Skool Daze or the sequel Back To Skool were on the C64, not even Knight Lore or any of the Stamper Brothers (done under the seal of Ultimate Play The Game), those were ZX Spectrum exclusive games, thats maybe why in the US/Canada were not that popular as here on Europe.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultimat...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skool_daze

I use to revisit those games sometimes, there are very nice Spectrum/C64 emulator for the NDS or the PSP, and the roms are small size widely avalaible.

As a C64 old user I recall some years ago one of the games I really liked, Solo Flight, and looking for more information on that game, I discover that was done, one of his first games, by Sid Meier himself..

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solo_Fl...

IMAGE(http://img413.imageshack.us/img413/1443/soloflightmw9.th.jpg)

Sorry for the long post and the nosense

Watch your tone, t0W.

Certis beat me to it.

Teetering on the edge ... but I'll take it. Sig yoink!

Gaald wrote:
interstate78 wrote:

I'm playing Alone in the Dark and have yet to come across a bug. (360 version)

The controls take some time getting used to but quite frankly compared to Silent Hill or pre-RE4, I'd say it has an edge.

I think a lot of the people who said the controls were bad compared the game's controls to a first person game or a third person game because those two viewpoints are available but AitD is really a survival horror game and shouldn't be compared to a shooter.

It's just not how it plays.

Try it people! you're missing out if you don't! well worth my 60$

OH GOD NO! Do not go out and spend 60 bucks on Alone in the Dark! Rent it if your curious, and hope to god it doesn't crash your brand new 360, as it did mine! Hope to god you don't get stuck in the terrain as I did several times. I am being very serious here, this game is not worth your 60 bucks, it's a bug ridden mess ON A CLOSED SYSTEM! ATARI should be sued by everyone who purchased the game and Microsoft should be ashamed for letting this release onto their system. Having said that there are some bright spots, I think I will save that for the next show.

I can't believe that on a show where more than an hour was spent talking about the 4th revision of an RPG system that has been around since I was 10 (I'm as old as rabbit, now, I think) someone can complain about Blizzard "not doing something new" and making a mere dress up game. What is D&D if not dress up for dorks?

Holy crap! Seriously? D&D is dress up for dorks? I don't know how you play D&D but when I play it, I play for the adventure, I play to see if the character I have so patiently put together, with his abilities and feats, can best the enemies the DM decides to throw at me. I play because I find it fun to create a story out of nothing and watch as it all unfolds before us. The last thing D&D is about, for me, is running around a world with my character slaughtering enemies wholesale hoping one of them drops a new piece of armor that looks cool with great stats so I can dress my character up. I liked Diablo and enjoyed 2, and I am sure I will play Diablo 3. I am just disappointed that Blizzard, a company I have a lot of respect for, decided to do yet another sequel instead of something all together different.

It's not a very well thought-out argument, is it?

I'm sorry I didn't realize my personal opinions were considered the bases for well thought out arguments. Wow, the power I yield is incredible, I am going to have to be careful! Seriously though. I bear no hate for Diablo 3, and as I said above I will probably play it. I was just kind of hoping for something new.

Why don't you try taking your DnD approach to Diablo 3? You could easily play it in the way you described your DnD outlook.

-----

I don't even think you should be talking about the series, because you clearly don't know anything about it.

The level of change between Diablo 2 and 3 that we have seen is ENORMOUS. To name one - the new bag system for the inventory, intriguing and alarming.

If you have not yet checked out some of the screens I took of the gameplay videos you can do that here: http://www.gamerswithjobs.com/node/3...

I would now suggest watching/rewatching the gameplay trailer and playing the original games so you have an idea of what the game actually is.

^ spam.

t0W wrote:

^ spam.

Wow, that was just.....not called for.

Yeah I can't believe Blizzard is making another Diablo game.

Talk about picking the wrong franchise to complain about when it comes to 'releasing oh yet another one.'

It's also premature to judge a game that's most likely ~2 years out.

I imagine that if they didn't release a sequel for their highly popular franchises first before a new IP, you would still get people complaining, they wanted Starcraft 2, Diablo 3 dammit, not some new thing that we don't know about. Like was stated earlier, Blizzard can't really win in the complaints department.

Everyone will still buy whatever they produce though. They've made quality, they're consistent, and besides to yield the most return for money, you milk the cash teet for as long as possible. If that's their business plan, fair enough. It's going to work, let's face it!