Phaedrus' Street Crew
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Posts posted by Urthman

  1. On 3/3/2017 at 2:43 PM, Patrick R said:

    Have you guys ever thought about trying not introducing what the premise of the show is? It always sounds a bit awkward when you try to explain it, and I don't know many other comedy shows that try to explain their approach to humor up top, unless it is something as pithy as "an advice show for the modren era" or something.


    I would agree that the attempt to explain the premise of the show is both unnecessary and makes it sound less entertaining than it actually is.

  2. I enjoyed this about as much as I do Idle Thumbs (which is my favorite podcast).  A+ fictional and non-fictional robot content.


    But then, I enjoy listening to you guys talk about unfolding mattresses, domain registrars, chocolate-covered berries, and shaving implements over and over again, so I'm a big weirdo.  Very glad you're gonna keep casting pods rather than just giving up because you're tired of talking about video games all the time.



  3. Am I wrong in thinking that Important If True might occasionally talk about video games if something sufficiently dumb and amusing happens in the world of video games? It seems like the discussion of whether Wario = Older Mario would have counted as "delving into some of the more fascinating, bizarre, and stupid things going on in entertainment, pop culture, and technology" and is Important, If True.

  4. On 1/26/2017 at 4:00 PM, Chris said:

    We're trying to figure that out. We know we need an idea.


    For whatever reasons, the Idle Thumbs crew have tended to shy away from talking much about games they'd worked on.  Maybe there are reasons related to non-disclosure agreements or not wanting to step on the toes of former colleagues, but if it is just out of a sense of modesty and thinking people don't want to hear you go on too much about your own work, let me just say I'd love to hear you talk about that stuff.  I would guess there are lots of us readers who would love for you to do some shows about your experiences with Firewatch or Double Fine or Bethesda or Telltale.

  5. I have loved Weird Al for a very long time, but your description of him as making "safe" versions of pop songs made me wince with recognition.  As a kid, I always thought of him making fun, humorous versions of songs that I enjoyed listening to more than the "dumb stuff" the original songs were about.  But you could definitely also think of it as Weird Al taking songs about teenage sex, suicide, date rape, and racial profiling and "nerdwashing" them into toothless songs about bologna, bus queues, grammar pedantry, and Star Trek jokes.


    On the gripping hand, Weird Al was hardly purging the airwaves of songs about those topics.  More like offering a tiny handful of nerd humor surrounded by an endless ocean of songs about the same stuff as the ones he was parodying.


    But I also can't help noticing how many songs by black artists that I only ever knew Weird Al's parody version of. 


    In conclusion, Neil Cicierega's is a mouth of many moods. And sounds.

  6. I don't remember all the rules, but the board game was a Chutes & Ladders type game where you could jump ahead with the cannons, by landing on a Mushroom power-up, or by riding across the lake on the dinosaur. And you'd get sent back by landing on Bowser (everybody does a HAW HAW HAW laugh) or the snake or getting smashed by the Thwomp block. The Goombas would start at the other end and each turn move toward the players and you'd get sent back if they landed on you but get an extra coin if you landed on them.  You had to collect enough gold coins to get past the numbered doors.  (Or maybe when you got Bowsered, you got sent off-board to the castle and then could re-enter at a numbered door instead of the starting pipe if you had enough coin stars.)  If you landed on the clay Koopa shell, you got to ride it and it would double your speed until something happened to make you fall off.  I think we might have spent more time making up new rules than we did actually playing it.


    The Lego thing is the castle, of course, and those are two Link figures guarding it.  I think Mario, Banjo, Toad, Bob-omb, Link, the pumpkin, and Bob the Tomato were all playable characters.  We eventually made figures for Peach, Wario, Spyro, a couple girls from Snowboard Kids, and a bunch of Banjo-Kazooie Jinjos.


    Here's a couple more that show the board a little more clearly and a couple of Banjo-Kazooie close enough that you can see the Model Magic clay we used.  I think I took these with a crappy webcam because I didn't own a digital camera yet.





  7. I love that Jake lists Half-Life, which made you learn in the Hazard Course to use a long jump module that many players had completely forgotten about by the time they actually found one on Xen, as an example of a game that didn't feel the need to teach you every single system before letting you play the game.

    Of course the Hazard Course was optional and also better world-building than the mandatory tutorial sections in most games.

  8. Glad the Thumbs enjoyed my e-mail, the subject line of which was "Jonathan Blow explained my daughter's Father's Day card to me."  The card itself was amazing, but having Blow himself point out that cool detail I'd missed...I was Blown away (ign.com).


    I was hoping it might trigger a little discussion of The Witness and whether Chris/Jake/Nate have played any more of it and what they think.  As Chris said when they discussed it on an earlier cast, it's a pretty good game for setting aside and coming back when you feel like trying some more puzzles.  And I've found it's particularly good to play with other people and work on solving the puzzles together.


    Also, while my daughter's old enough not to be scandalized by such things, I was amused that I was thinking about how fun it would be to let her hear Jake and Chris talking about how smart she is when they segued right into "U R MR GAY" and dick doodles.  Maybe won't forward it to the grandparents, though.

  9. I found the clipped language to have a kind of poetic beauty in a lot of places.  And I thought it was an interesting and effective way of showing how Childan has internalized his (distorted, I think) perception of Japanese culture and thinking out in his pursuit of greater social status.


    And I was continually impressed by the way Dick folds details about the world into the narrative without infodumps.  One of my favorites was the guy talking about the difference between the two lighters, which is an intersting conversation on it's own, but also created a very natural-sounding way to drop in the detail that FDR had been assassinated in this world.

  10. The part that irked me the most about Tom Chick's review is the implication that he thinks we pretty much know all the things games are good at and the things games are bad at.  That seems like a depressingly reactionary view of the potential to discover new ways of making games.

    Even if Firewatch were a failure, surely we're nowhere near exhausting the possibilties of game design such that we could say Firewatch failed because it tried to do something Games Were Not Meant To Do and Never Will.