GWJ Conference Call Episode 237

Conference Call

Portal 2, Portal 2 Spoiler Section After Credits, Pinball Insanity, Wii HD, Amazon App Store, Games We'd Like to Resurrect, Your Emails and more!

This week Shawn, Julian, Lara and Allen cover a wide range of topics. After the credits, Portal 2 spoiler section!

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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Good Old Games

Portal 2
Dragon Age 2
Rumored Wii2
Amazon App Store Controversy

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Show credits

Music credits: 

Intro/Outtro Music - Ian Dorsch, Willowtree Audioworks

Portal 2 - Robots FTW - http://www.thinkwithportals.com/ - 0:15:17

Portal 2 - The Halls of Science - http://www.thinkwithportals.com/ - 0:41:55

Comments

Well, I feel dumb now. My skepticism proved wrong -- and spectacularly so -- less than 12 hours after we finished recording.

That said, I stand by my original assertion: Wii HD won't be real for me unless it turns into a tank.

Certis, are you telling me that you never played Legacy of Kain: Defiance?

Basically, here's the rundown of the series:
Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain - Top-down Zelda style adventure game; you play as Kain, the fledgling vampire.
Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver - Third person adventure game; you play as Raziel
Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver 2 - Third person adventure game; you play as Raziel, plot gets very timey-wimey
Legacy of Kain: Blood Omen 2 - Third person adventure game; you play as Kain; the red-headed stepchild of the series because the main writer was not working on it and they tried to shove in more actiony elements; plot and setting is also very different from the rest of the series
Legacy of Kain: Defiance - Third person adventure game; you play as both Kain and Raziel, switching them through the chapters; this one brings resolution ot the 90% of plotlines set throughout the series and brings it to mostly satisfying end

I'm sorry for this display of blatant fanboyism towards the series, but these were the first games that I spent days and days on forums rabidly discussing the possible plots and what-ifs.
From the moment you mentioned on Conference Call that you will be discussing some old series you wished got resurrected, this was the first thing that popped into my head with a sigh because so little people even mention them these days. I was actually pretty sad when I found a book listing most memorable video game character and neither Kain, nor Raziel were among them.

KaterinLHC wrote:

That said, I stand by my original assertion: Wii HD won't be real for me unless it turns into a tank.

Someone get Shigeru Miyamoto interested in WWII armor, stat!

Rabbit, at the end of Gears 1 you fight general RAM. He is surrounded by kryll. I always pictured them as man eating bats, but crows works too.

Thanks guys and gal for another great podcast.

Right! RAM!

Yeah, I know they weren't REALLY crows, I just couldn't remember what GearsBats were.

It's "RAAM."

Mola Raam?

RAM from Tron?

Rahm Emanuel?

Slumberland wrote:

Rahm Emanuel?

That was my assumption.

KaterinLHC wrote:

Well, I feel dumb now. My skepticism proved wrong -- and spectacularly so -- less than 12 hours after we finished recording.

That's okay, I think you made up for it with the "They're loading the science" comment.

I hate to bring up the old console vs PC debate, but Dragon Age Origins is one of those games that is made for the PC (most likely due to its long development time). Even my console-only buddies agree. If Lara is having issues with it on a console, I highly recommend grabbing the PC version from Steam. It is a treat with a mouse and keyboard.

I don't see any Portal 2 co-op in my future, because I have no coordination, I don't trust any of my Steam friends and I am kind of dumb.

In terms of resurrection, I would like to see Relic take over the Command and Conquer games. Having the Red Alert world built with Relic's RTS engine… that idea gives me throbbing nerd wood.

Where do I sign up for my transformable Nintendo helmet?

Who Framed Roger Rabbit was just another in a long line of overlay hard NES games that reminded us that Nintendo hated children. And that lame seal of approval only amplified the ire.

Some of the music from F-Zero and Megaman 2 remind me of jet-skiing.

burntham77 wrote:

I hate to bring up the old console vs PC debate, but Dragon Age Origins is one of those games that is made for the PC (most likely due to its long development time). Even my console-only buddies agree. If Lara is having issues with it on a console, I highly recommend grabbing the PC version from Steam. It is a treat with a mouse and keyboard.

DA:O is actually harder on the pc, though.

And wasn't she talking about DA2?

Lara complained about how clunky DA:O was which, on console, it really is. I quit partway through my 360 playthrough to switch to PC.

I don't believe it is necessarily fair to expect journalists to be their own marketers if they were to promote their own articles for self digital distribution. As with any creative work or artist, how much of a responsibility are we to expect them to know copyright law? Some people just do not have the talent or knowledge for these aspects of business. If we are to desire independent contractors in games journalism to have this same level of competence in this area of self digital distribution creates a barrier, I fear it can also hinder our access to quality over obtainable publication similar to the complaints that ads have taken up space away from writers.

burntham77 wrote:

I hate to bring up the old console vs PC debate

Liar!

Original Portal, they hid the loading between levels as you rode the elevator between 'test chambers'.

Thanks for reading the email too, gave me a laugh at work.
Battletoads = diabetes FTW.

m0nk3yboy wrote:

Original Portal, they hid the loading between levels as you rode the elevator between 'test chambers'.

Yeah, I replayed the other day and that's the case, no fade to black or anything. Just a little hitch as you ride the elevator.

demonicmurry wrote:

I don't believe it is necessarily fair to expect journalists to be their own marketers if they were to promote their own articles for self digital distribution. As with any creative work or artist, how much of a responsibility are we to expect them to know copyright law? Some people just do not have the talent or knowledge for these aspects of business. If we are to desire independent contractors in games journalism to have this same level of competence in this area of self digital distribution creates a barrier, I fear it can also hinder our access to quality over obtainable publication similar to the complaints that ads have taken up space away from writers.

Yes and no. Fact is there are a lot of writers out there and not enough good outlets. Journalists don't get well paid by the outlets unless they are a huge name so Keighley (sp?) is to be lauded for trying something new. It's not a route suitable for everyone to take, but it's an interesting one with a lot of potential.

Great show, all.

I wanted to get back to the Amazon Appstore, something I've been waiting impatiently for ever since Amazon released it...yet AT&T still won't allow it on my shiny Android phone (grrrrr...).

The thing the Amazon Appstore does for you that the existing Android Market does not is a). provide you with a free application or game every day; b). provide extra marketing for your product; c). allows you to "test drive" many of the apps within any computer web browser for up to 30 min; and most importantly, d). make suggestions just like Amazon does for all its other products. So if you liked a particular app or game from a given developer, Amazon can highlight that product for you.

So, much like Wal-Mart or other stores, you are allowing them to set the pricing, but you are getting the extra marketing muscle and features they provide you, including recommendations. As a consumer, I find the Android Marketplace to be ridiculously difficult to navigate, and it's practically impossible to browse. I would much rather do my app browsing from within a computer web browser and queue up the download remotely, and then just pull it down on my device. That, and if I'm looking for a product, or similar products, Amazon can highlight those products for me, and they have been pretty good at it using their regular website over the years.

I think the Amazon Appstore is pretty revolutionary, at least on Android. Now I just need AT&T to stop sucking and give me the damned thing...

I'm not sure about the math in the podcast, but there's the official IGDA Board post containing the warning.

And here's the IGDA's follow-up.

For what it's worth, I am a member of the IGDA.

@KaterinLHC, if you're looking for a Noir-type adventure game, you should check out Gemini Rue. It's gotten a lot of comparison to Beneath a Steel Sky in the press and has been on my "To play" since I played it on the IGF floor early last year. It's hardly a step forward in tech that you desire, but seems to handle its medium rather well.

SuperDave wrote:

@KaterinLHC, if you're looking for a Noir-type adventure game, you should check out Gemini Rue. It's gotten a lot of comparison to Beneath a Steel Sky in the press and has been on my "To play" since I played it on the IGF floor early last year. It's hardly a step forward in tech that you desire, but seems to handle its medium rather well.

Oooh. Point-n-click graphic adventure with sci-fi noir elements? YES PLZ.

KaterinLHC wrote:
SuperDave wrote:

@KaterinLHC, if you're looking for a Noir-type adventure game, you should check out Gemini Rue. It's gotten a lot of comparison to Beneath a Steel Sky in the press and has been on my "To play" since I played it on the IGF floor early last year. It's hardly a step forward in tech that you desire, but seems to handle its medium rather well.

Oooh. Point-n-click graphic adventure with sci-fi noir elements? YES PLZ.

Giant Bomb just posted a Quick Look of it, too. If you want an ~30 min taste of the game, you should check that out.

As for games that I would love to see them bring back, I want to see updated versions of Starflight and Starflight 2 or Star Saga. A huge galaxy to explore and a mystery to solve with a mix of economics and combat mixed in. Sorry, something like Mass Effect ain't it.

ilduce620 wrote:

I wanted to get back to the Amazon Appstore, something I've been waiting impatiently for ever since Amazon released it...yet AT&T still won't allow it on my shiny Android phone (grrrrr...).

...

I think the Amazon Appstore is pretty revolutionary, at least on Android. Now I just need AT&T to stop sucking and give me the damned thing...

AT&T claims they won't let you install anything not from the official Android app store as a "safety precaution". According to the manager of a local Sprint store it's because of the agreement between AT&T and Apple; Apple forces everything through their app store and their agreement with AT&T prevents AT&T from offering any other smartphone with "open" installation of apps.

Dunno if that's true, given the source, but it makes some kind of sense.

tanstaafl wrote:

AT&T claims they won't let you install anything not from the official Android app store as a "safety precaution". According to the manager of a local Sprint store it's because of the agreement between AT&T and Apple; Apple forces everything through their app store and their agreement with AT&T prevents AT&T from offering any other smartphone with "open" installation of apps.

Dunno if that's true, given the source, but it makes some kind of sense.

I hope it isn't true. You'd think that, now that the iPhone is on Verizon, that AT&T and Apple would have more "lax" agreements." Regardless, AT&T is shooting themselves in the foot over things like this. It's ridiculous that my Inspire "4G" pulls barely 1.5 Mbps, while the (practically) identical Thunderbolt, on Verizon's LTE network, can pull closer to 40 Mbps. Then things like installing third-party apps and the Amazon Appstore. AT&T will continue to lose customers to Verizon here in the Midwest unless they start to do better by their customers.

That aside, I want that Amazon Appstore. I tweet at @ATT every other day to complain. Ridiculous.

Crows make me think of Resident Evil 4. Even though those birds might not have been crows.

I would kill a man to have Bushido Blade resurrected.

MrDeVil909 wrote:
m0nk3yboy wrote:

Original Portal, they hid the loading between levels as you rode the elevator between 'test chambers'.

Yeah, I replayed the other day and that's the case, no fade to black or anything. Just a little hitch as you ride the elevator.

I think it must be a limitation of the Source engine that it has to stop and pause everything as you load in the next section, at least they could leave the elevator animation running as you go between levels (a la Mass Effect 1), to not break the illusion. You'd think Valve being so good at immersion and design would have done everything they could to make it seamless. Really, since its such a linear game, they ought to start caching the next section as you get halfway through the current section.

This episode mentioned the app, The Final Hours of Portal 2. The link is here.

Did I skim past the links to Rabit's WIP virtual pinball build?
And for that matter the pin restore from the previous conference calls?
...and the mame cab?

Certis spoiler section comment:

Spoiler:

I solved that white, blue and orange goo room puzzle the EXACT SAME WRONG WAY as you did.....only difference is I did it that way during my second playthrough! I totally forgot about that ceiling panel. And felt like such an idiot.