GWJ Conference Call Episode 116

Conference Call

Our Favorite Moments of 2008, Special Listener Contributions and more!

With all the holidays going on around here you just knew we were going to slack off eventually. This week we talk about some of our favorite moments of 2008 and not a whole lot else. There's also a ton of submissions from listeners of the show and we unveil our new call-in line! A special shout out to the fine folks from the HatchetJob.com podcast who all pitched in for a quick segment. If you want to submit a question or comment call in to our voicemail line at (612) 284-4563!

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. You can also submit a question or comment call in to our voicemail line at (612) 284-4563!

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Show credits

Music credits: 

Intro - Ian Dorsch, Willowtree Audioworks


"GWJ Crimbo Mixdown" (SamFisher) - 0:30:54

"Elysium's Fallout 3 Review Recut" (Nijhazer - http://www.broadcastgamer.com) - 0:34:25

"GWJ Techno" (Benoit Casey) - 0:35:46

"Dr. Horrible Theme" - www.drhorrible.com - 0:38:47

"Oh No You Didn't" - www.pandemicstudios.com/mercenaries - 0:40:13


"I Wanna Friend You Up" - Slumberland - http://www.luckyghost.com - OUTRO

Comments

Oh man, the recut Fallout 3 review just cracked me up.

I love that song from mercs 2 at the end (Oh no you didn't).

Oh my. Still laughing at the idea of 'conjugal brain shooting'.

I never noticed this before but you guys are harsh with Braid. Something tells me you never finished it because when you do, it all starts making sense.

Braid is my GOTY : ) It is a genre and era defining game. A pioneer for downloadable games.

Anyways, I think that while there were no games that wowed us to no end, that may be due to the fact that we've become a really tough crowd, but also because the market forces the developers to create massive appeal games. They cost so much to make now that a single flop (Haze, anyone?) can kill any good developer.

I loved Braid. However, I essentially can't finish it. The developer put a very clear line in the sand: if you get help of the internet, you're a total moron. I'm granting him playing the game on his terms, which means I will not finish the game until I go back and have some ridiculous flash of insight for a few pieces that have eluded me.

I still think it's brilliant. I don't hold it against him.

rabbit wrote:

I loved Braid. However, I essentially can't finish it. The developer put a very clear line in the sand: if you get help of the internet, you're a total moron. I'm granting him playing the game on his terms, which means I will not finish the game until I go back and have some ridiculous flash of insight for a few pieces that have eluded me.

I still think it's brilliant. I don't hold it against him.

You know, if not using a walkthrough means that you will not finish the game, then I strongly suggest you do. I'm not gonna lie to you, I looked 3 times. However every time I found out that I was 90% right and just slapped my forehead and moved on.

The website doesn't want to make you feel like a moron: It's just that the puzzles ARE the gameplay. If you cheat the puzzles you deprive Braid of its core gameplay mechanic.

I'll quote the website for a refresher:

" Some of the puzzles will be hard. But when you manage to solve those hard puzzles, you will feel very good about it. The game will feel very rewarding. Don't rob yourself of that feeling by reading a walkthrough! Please do not use a walkthrough. "

See what I mean? It's not insulting, it just re-asserts the importance of the puzzles in Braid

The ending alone is in the Top 5 greatest gaming moments of my life. It turned all of what I thought was pretentiousness on its head and slapped me in the face.

You really owe it to yourself to finish it, you will not be disappointed.

Thanks for the mention, chaps. By the way, my mum laughed at Elysium's FallOut 3 review.

rabbit wrote:

I loved Braid. However, I essentially can't finish it. The developer put a very clear line in the sand: if you get help of the internet, you're a total moron. I'm granting him playing the game on his terms, which means I will not finish the game until I go back and have some ridiculous flash of insight for a few pieces that have eluded me.

I felt like you until I looked up two puzzles. For the first puzzle, I felt that the solution wasn't clear enough so I didn't feel bad. I thought that was a flaw in the design. (I can't go into specifics for spoilers.)

For the second puzzle, the walkthrough confirmed that I had thought of the solution beforehand, but my timing was slightly off; something I thought the game should have given me more leeway with.

It's cool to grant the guy playing the game on his terms, but the designer's terms aren't always right for the player. That's why games have difficulty levels and why restaurants have salt and pepper on the table.

The 4th Wall, nooooooooooooooooooo!

Is it a GAME?! IS IT?! TELL ME!

Peter Stormare's the actor you're thinking of. He's also the voice of Mattias in the Mercenaries series.

I do have to concede, after much consideration, that Fallout 3 is a game ...

Where can I purchase (or download, if it's free) "Friend You Up"?

Decided to watch Dr. Horrible again after you brought it up... I still would've preferred a different ending. Something more... Disney-esque? (I'm assuming that's vague enough to not be considered spoilers?)

As for a niche game you want to get into that's also an MMO? (so picky with your gaming prerequisites, huh) ...well, it's kind of hard to find one that's both. It's either not an MMO (Phantom Dust, MechWarrior), not a niche, or its playerbase is wavering (PlanetSide). Your call.

Side Note: Please aim for 90-minute calls instead of 60. Go for 120 or 180 if you feel the need; it's better long than short. =)

I prefer longer shows too but I think that Rob loses a month off his life everytime the show goes more than 90 mins.

Well, he did say he is a gamer without a job, so he must have the time to spare

I vote for a daily one hour podcast.

That Fallout 3 bit was hilarious. Nice work.

I'd like to see an Elysium side-project: Podcast for the Masses.

Mordiceius wrote:

I vote for a daily one hour podcast.

I'm pretty sure Rob hates you now.

So, whose going to be the first to drunk dial the voicemail line?

McChuck wrote:

So, whose going to be the first to drunk dial the voicemail line?

It is right next to pizza shuttle in my contacts list. This could end poorly.

rabbit wrote:

I loved Braid. However, I essentially can't finish it. The developer put a very clear line in the sand: if you get help of the internet, you're a total moron.

I'll be upfront here: I gamefaq'd the hell out of the later levels of Braid. I felt that there was a certain point for some puzzles where the mechanics were rehashes of earlier sections (for instance, the level where your forward/back movement messed with time, and you had to bop 10 of the manhogs to clear) and I just couldn't be assed to sit there tweaking motion. At a certain point, when I saw one of those one-shot keys, I just ran to the internet.

I don't think Blow can dictate how we should play his game -- ESPECIALLY when he designed a sub-fetch quest that *90% of players miss entirely and *the user can frell themselves and create a situation where the sub-fetch is impossible to complete without a restart. He can pontificate about what the experience should be like, but out in the wilds it becomes its own thing. I don't care if he thinks of me as a grimy prole for not sitting there and waiting for the revelation ex machina. At the later points of the game, I felt as though the puzzles were in fact barriers to me understanding the narrative of the game. At the end of the day, Braid wasn't a game as much as it was a narrative puzzle for me.

But seriously. As Litgeek to LitWriter, you're getting a major case of story-driven blueballs by not cheating. Braid's "wrapup" is really shaking. Please, please, PLEASE just lookup the solutions. I'm willing to bet money/booze/MicrosoftMoonPoints that the ending will inspire you to write something about it. It's that good.

If you want some really good insights into great board games, this guy has some great suggestions.

I've not played Braid and i don't really see the appeal to be honest (please send me MS points to prove my miserable self wrong and i will personally send you happy thoughts upon completion of the game).

Good show guys... there's something mirroring the spirit of 2008 with you guys phoning it in for the last episode of the year.

Elysium, i have to disagree with you about Fallout 3. It's a game, sure, i agree with you in that respect. But its game is.... a game. Do you know what i mean?

I was surprised that Sam didn't go for a Beverly Hills Cop remix on his xylophonic instrument but all the contributions were great!

Oh and Rob, don't you dare! You go sub hour shows on us and i'll personally come round your house and 'friend you up'!

I thought it was a vibraphone...

in case you're wondering what it was:

http://www.iwantoneofthose.com/stylo...

and I'm working on many tunes to play to annoy people!!

rabbit wrote:

I loved Braid. However, I essentially can't finish it. The developer put a very clear line in the sand: if you get help of the internet, you're a total moron. I'm granting him playing the game on his terms, which means I will not finish the game until I go back and have some ridiculous flash of insight for a few pieces that have eluded me.

I still think it's brilliant. I don't hold it against him.

If you'd like hints rather than spoilers, I'd be happy to send them to you.

As others have said, the ending of Braid (excluding the extremely pretentious, game-wrecking epilogue) is something to witness. It is one of the most amazing moments that I have ever experienced in a game and does a lot to demonstrate what Jonathan Blow has been on about regarding story-telling through mechanics.

OK ok ok. I'm putting it on the agenda. Finish braid. Got it.

Does anybody know when braid is coming to the PC? I don't have a 360 or PS3 and I really want to play it.

Elysium wrote:

I do have to concede, after much consideration, that Fallout 3 is a game ...

... that came out this year