GWJ Conference Call Episode 271

Conference Call

The Old Republic, Pushmo, Trine 2, iOS Games, Chasing The Launch Day High, Your Emails and more!

This week is all about the MMOs! Mainly The Old Republic, but Sean, Shawn, Julian and Cory also get into their fondest memories from MMO launches of yore.

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.

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Good Old Games

Pushmo
Trine 2
The Old Republic General
The Old Republic Grey Council
The Old Republic Imperial Paper Pushers
Pollinate Worlds
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iPad Boardgames
Containment

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Show credits

Music credits: 

Intro/Outtro Music - Ian Dorsch, Willowtree Audioworks

The Mandalorian Blockade - Star Wars: The Old Republic - http://www.swtor.com - 42:43

Main Theme - Everquest - http://www.everquest.com - 52:19

Comments

Thanks so much for the mention guys! I cannot tell you how much I appreciate it! The AppStore is brutal and I'm very glad I kept my day job throughout the making of Pollinate

You guys are awesome!

PAR

Oh man, that Everquest theme in the second break instantly brought a grin to my face.

And filthy enablers! Now I'm thinking about going to pick up ToR tomorrow.

Xeknos wrote:

And filthy enablers! Now I'm thinking about going to pick up ToR tomorrow.

They literally made me do that during the recording.
A fitting title for that episode could just be "PushMo ToR"

Bad thing is that I instantly saw and loved the stuff that they are praising and now it is at least IPP for another 6 months for me.

00.01.41 Certis' moment of appreciation
00.02.31 Trine 2
00.05.16 Pushmo (what the terrorists play)
00.07.24 Containment - a zombie game with an original twist (it actually is)
00.10.05 A game by one of our very own: PAR! Pollinate Worlds, 99 cents in the iOS app store. BUY IT.
00.10.45 Star Wars TOOOOOOOOOOOOOOR
00.16.07 SWTOR: why the game is good and everything else. No overt spoilers, but those who wish to remain completely in the dark (side) might want to come back later.
00.41.44 Certis recommends a great book you could get FREE on Audible.com
00.43.11 MMO Launches
00.52.46 your emails

Anyone have a link to the Confinement iOS game mentioned near the start of the podcast? Can't find it on iTunes (which has a pretty abominable search function)

EDIT: It is because I got the name wrong. Actually called Containment

The Chrome native client thing is cool, but isn't that just the second coming of Java's "compile once, run everywhere" mantra?

Yay! Certis is playing Pushmo!

Mrtomaytohead also pushed me into getting Pushmo, and I've really enjoyed it so far. The puzzles amp up in difficulty nicely, and Certis is right that the 3D effect really does help with solving the puzzles. It's not critical, but I prefer to play with the 3D rather than without it.

And yes, you can create your own puzzles and share them via QR code. You just scan the QR code with the 3DS camera to add a new puzzle to your gallery.

Also, mad props to the Chairman for his show breakdowns.

In beta i made a point to stop the class story quests around lvl 25. Picking back up on the live and 30+ and i'm loving the story even now. Cant wait to finish it.

dark/light side

To get the most benefit you should go as far to one side or the other.

As it stands now there's no benefit being in the middle and miss out on the extra gear for being one side or the other.

BW has stated that they do plan on adding grey equivalent items at a later date.

Oh there were lvl 50s on our server as early as Tuesday.

hehe, I've been outed by Clocky!

btw, nice house, Certis.

I actually only kept bringing it up because the CC'ers were going on about how there isn't anything to play on the 3DS and specifically nothing that makes the 3D effect useful as well as the fact that barely any media outlet was giving the game much attention, but the ones that did, were loving it. So there you go.

Saddest fact about all of this: I don't even own a 3DS.

mrtomaytohead wrote:

btw, nice house, Certis.

I especially like his bedroom set. Did you check that out when you were stalking him?

Xeknos wrote:

And filthy enablers! Now I'm thinking about going to pick up ToR tomorrow.

You guys and your gushing about ToR. I had to hit up a friend on IM to talk me off the ledge of buying it. Charging for the client (above and beyond the cost of that first month) when the game has a monthly fee is something I shouldn't support with my moneys.

juv3nal wrote:
Xeknos wrote:

And filthy enablers! Now I'm thinking about going to pick up ToR tomorrow.

You guys and your gushing about ToR. I had to hit up a friend on IM to talk me off the ledge of buying it. Charging for the client (above and beyond the cost of that first month) when the game has a monthly fee is something I shouldn't support with my moneys.

I have a buddy making that argument. He's wrong, of course, but I'm finding a compromise: I'm getting him the game for Christmas.

It's not too late to wishlist it, juv3nal. We could use more good guys in the Grey Council.

On monster leveling:

The "only finding out you've wandered into an area too tough for your level when you get killed by a horrible monster" thing is a problem (or it's a problem for most people; Dark Souls players seem fine with it, but that's a pretty niche audience), but I think it's symptomatic of a larger problem, which is that game designers have proven remarkably bad at communicating, "hey, you're not supposed to be here yet" to the player short of physically preventing them from accessing the area with a broken bridge or whatever.

It doesn't help that devs have trained us over the years to interpret thing like "Danger! Keep Out!" signs and NPCs warning us, "Hey, this area has some pretty tough monsters. You shouldn't go there," as video game code for, "You should go there right away and murder everything to prove what a badass you are."

The problem is compounded when there isn't necessarily a direct correlation between how badass an enemy LOOKS and how tough it actually is to kill. Common sense should tell us that, in Skyrim, a dragon would be much more dangerous than, say, a bear, yet most players find the exact opposite to be the case. If one could use common sense to judge which challenges were most appropriate for their character level, that would solve a large part of the problem right there.

It's all too bad, because I think it adds a lot to the immersion in an RPG when there are places you just shouldn't go and things you just shouldn't fight until you get stronger. In New Vegas, for example, I thought it was awesome that very near the beginning, you have to take a big detour to get around a stretch of highway infested with powerful endgame-level enemies. The thing is, I already knew from previous Fallout games that Deathclaws are bad news. If I hadn't had that past experience to draw on, I might have banged my head against that wall through several deaths and reloads before figuring out that Obsidian actually MEANS it this time when they tell me not to go there.

TheHipGamer wrote:

It's not too late to wishlist it, juv3nal. We could use more good guys in the lame guild. :)

FTFY

ranalin wrote:

dark/light side
To get the most benefit you should go as far to one side or the other.

Just saw that there is an interview up with SWTOR's lead writer on GiantBomb (http://www.giantbomb.com/old-republi...).
He says that dark/light side equipment doesn't matter at all once you get to level 50 and elaborates a little bit on the whole story-driven approach.
Quite interesting to listen to if you want to get a bit more background info on the classes and what choices went into crafting the story quests the way they are.

Jeepers - despite swearing off MMOs you guys had me ready to run out and buy SWTOR. Thankfully I came to my senses later in the day and remembered that MMOs are grindy garbage, even when decorated with pretty stories. It was close for a while there though.

Must say I'm surprised to hear the positive TOR stuff. All I ever heard was negative stuff that it was a bad reskin of wow, with dialog trees and cut scenes.

I loved the episode, but that's because I have fallen for SWTOR. My first MMO since Guild Wars. Most of the gushing is well deserved, but even on a "full" server there doesn't seem to be that many people around. Maybe everybody is ahead of me.

Virduk wrote:

Must say I'm surprised to hear the positive TOR stuff. All I ever heard was negative stuff that it was a bad reskin of wow, with dialog trees and cut scenes.

There is some truth to that, but those cutscenes and dialogues make it feel like a solo game in the first place, which also happens to allow you playing with friends.
The lead writer did make a point in the GB interview by asking "Do you remember what you character did in the first 30 hours? Yes? Then i win." and that pretty much sums it up.
SWTOR feels a lot more like a real RPG that was built using MMO gameplay than the other way around.
Well, except for the space combat which reminds me heavily of Rebel Assault (sans the frustrations of dying instantly).

Damn you enablers. I don't even like MMO's that much, but this sounds great. I played for about 30 min. in Beta.. but now I'm considering picking it up.

Wish it wasn't so bloody $$$

I can't help but shake my head at all the anti Dark Souls sentiment on the podcast. Seriously! Rabbit often talks about how hard Mario is, but you don't see him talk about it being a masochist's dream the way he does Dark Souls.

Maybe they should actually give it a good try instead of just rolling their eyes and dismissing it.

AndrewA wrote:

Jeepers - despite swearing off MMOs you guys had me ready to run out and buy SWTOR. Thankfully I came to my senses later in the day and remembered that MMOs are grindy garbage, even when decorated with pretty stories. It was close for a while there though.

I'm not even sure what level I am. 11? 12? Something like that. Way too interested in the story to care.

I think my NPC companion is off doing something grindy, though -- he brought me stuff to make weapons and armor with.

Virduk wrote:

Must say I'm surprised to hear the positive TOR stuff. All I ever heard was negative stuff that it was a bad reskin of wow, with dialog trees and cut scenes.

WOW stinks (so I've heard) because it's clearly just a bunch of game systems loosely hung together, with little to no compelling reason to believe in the fiction. SWTOR has an MMO component, but it incorporates all of the good things that make single-player Bioware RPGs enjoyable (interactive dialog, plot, party, and character progression, decent-to-good writing, well-done cut scenes, and voice acting.)

What more could you do to an MMO to avoid the "bad reskin" moniker? Heck, I hate MMOs, and I'm enjoying SWTOR immensely.

ranalin wrote:

dark/light side

To get the most benefit you should go as far to one side or the other.

Boo to that!

TheHipGamer wrote:
juv3nal wrote:
Xeknos wrote:

And filthy enablers! Now I'm thinking about going to pick up ToR tomorrow.

You guys and your gushing about ToR. I had to hit up a friend on IM to talk me off the ledge of buying it. Charging for the client (above and beyond the cost of that first month) when the game has a monthly fee is something I shouldn't support with my moneys.

I have a buddy making that argument. He's wrong, of course, but I'm finding a compromise: I'm getting him the game for Christmas.

It's not too late to wishlist it, juv3nal. We could use more good guys in the Grey Council. :)

I have the same reservations. Hang on while I make sure it's on my wishlists.

What's stopping me from buying it, is that at $59.99 it's almost $80 with taxes here. I don't pay that for any game.

Valmorian wrote:

I can't help but shake my head at all the anti Dark Souls sentiment on the podcast. Seriously! Rabbit often talks about how hard Mario is, but you don't see him talk about it being a masochist's dream the way he does Dark Souls.

Maybe they should actually give it a good try instead of just rolling their eyes and dismissing it.

The insane thing with Rabbit is that he'll turn around and gush about that mech game with the insane controller, which I gather is way harder than Dark Souls.

"Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)"

Elysium wrote:

"Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)"

Oh baby, I love it when you talk like that. You so PoMo.

shoptroll wrote:

The Chrome native client thing is cool, but isn't that just the second coming of Java's "compile once, run everywhere" mantra?

It's probably the 3rd or 4th coming, at this point. Suffice to say virtualization and sandboxing tech has gotten very mature over the past decade and it's like comparing muskets with sniper rifles. We've gotten much better at handling virtualization like this (and computers have gotten faster).

If we do ever get a gaming "virtual machine" platform, it'll probably look alot like Native Client. I'm not convinced Native Client is that platform, but it's proof that it's viable.