George B

Phaedrus' Street Crew
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Posts posted by George B

  1. It was funny to hear the guys talk about diagetic and non-diagetic music in games a couple casts ago because I was in the midst of working on a video game inspired mixtape.

    I have been so head-over-heels for Dark Souls that I made a Cohen bros style sountrack for it. If that tickles your interest, or if you just want some good music, you can get more info and listen to it HERE.


  2. I'm with JP Sniper 100% on his Hotline Miami feelings as expressed on the cast. Wanting to be respectful to what is clearly a good video game with uniqueish hooks, while still recognizing that what is is doing is scraping the bottom of the can.

    Since Skyrim came out and then Dark Souls PC I have returned to my love of RPGs full force. I can't get enough. I even just borrowed FF13/13-2 from a coworker (I guess in an effort to stop liking RPGs :P).

    To me there is a real difference in how I experience game violence when it is expressed in a form where the actual living things of our world are hurt as opposed to inhuman opponent things. And I imagine it will be a long time before I really understand my feelings.

    I don't like games where "human beings" die or suffer. I find ubisoft's games get under my skin for this reason. For example, our patron saint of grenades rolling down hills, Far Cry 2, I really disliked killing guys up close cause then you had to hear them bleeding out... Or AssasCreed1 which I stopped playing after stabbing too many guys and having to hear them moan and roll around on the floor in pain. In FC2s case it made me play as a super cautious sniper type, keeping the bad guys as far away as possible.

    I was really excited to play Monster Hunter on the Wii but couldn't get past the initial stages of hunting where I was tasked with killing these slow moving herbivore dinosaur things that were simply walking around in fields grazing with their young... made me feel sick.

    I've explored how terrible the game Manhunt made me feel, and while Hotline Miami shared little with that game, I also made an association between the two before having played HLM. Something to do with grit and grainyness.

    So non-violence as a game mechanic might not be the grail I am seeking. I like shooting toasters in the head the same way I love balling up a piece of scrap paper and tossing it in the wastepaper basket from 10 yards. I think that is a very human pleasure, the pleasure of throwing something so that it lands where you want it to. From snowball fights to Halos. But while the game I would like to make might certainly involve killing things, I still think that video game designers need to explore non-violent mechanics and find the fun in those.

    Sorry, just thinking out loud here... I meant to look at what kind of non-violent game mechanics would be fun in an RPG style game and completely lost my train... I'll let you get back to your conversation.

    before I go though, let me just say: GAMES!

  3. Haha. I didn't mean it at all in an insulting way. I love BoI. Although, for completely different reasons. Obviously. U:

    Didn't take it in an insulting way, was just having some fun!! <3

    Edit: And I went back and played some more HMiami and had fun by not tryharding so much. Much like with BOI, I watched some guys stream the game, learned a few tricks, and did a bit better this time. I'm basically never using mouse3 other than in shift-look situations, where I don't have to hit it under pressure.

  4. I liked BOI because of the varied builds you'd get through the game. Unlocking weapons and picking a different mask doesn't have the same depth - as far as I have experienced. Playing the game is not for me, but I will likely watch a let's play of Hotline to see the rest of the story as so many folks are saying it's a strong point.

    Twig, I like your analogy of the snail and the cheetah, though I would have gone with the tortoise and hare. ;)

    Locking on with mouse-3? My mouse fingers do not use mouse-3 swiftly, they never have had to. Especially over the last 5-6 years that I have had a 5 button mouse and can bind mouse-3 things to mouse-4. With HMiami I suppose I can change my mouse's sensitivity on it's own.

    I'm of the belief that rebinding keys should almost always be an option. I want to play a twitchy action puzzler - without the extra layer of finger Twister.

    weegie weegie weegie

  5. Organ intro: great.

    Hotline Miami.

    I thought it would be like Manhunt, but it isn't at all. Manhunt draws out the gore, dwells on it, HMiami speeds it up and keeps slamming it in your face.

    I don't like it all that much. I find it has a bunch of dumb technical things keeping me from enjoying it. You can't rebind keys, you cant change mouse sensitivity, you can't lower the music volume, it crashes a fair bit (or has in the 3-4 hours I've played it). For some reason I feel like a 10 dollar game shouldn't have these issues. But I am spoiled. (also I only got to the 4th chapter before becoming too frustrated... my old man hands can't handle it)

    Kinda shocked that Sean likes the game, especially given his earlier thoughts about Tennes and how frustrating the exactness of those controls can be. I find the controls in HMiami are just crummy. It would require a bunch of time to get used to them. The atmosphere of the game, the comical ultra violence, will keep me from spending that time. And I'm a guy who put 300+ hours into Binding of Isaac.

    I understand, however, why some people will love the game. It's a unique action puzzler with a ton of attention put into it's presentation, and some folks will eat it up.

    So I dunno, maybe I'm not enough of a "twitch" gamer to do well at HMiami and get to what I have heard are interesting narrative things that come up as you approach the end.

    I can't be that bad at games though, as I went on to beat the Ornstein and Smough boss fight in Dark Souls. #braggin'

    You guys gotta put 75 hours aside to get into Dark Souls.


  6. Another gem of a cast!\

    Especially the Koster single/multiplayer discussion. I'm not sure where exactly he talked about this but this is perhaps it.

    My reaction was I believe pretty much the same as Steve's which was that single player video games require a system (a conflagration of systems) to play against. And that that's kind of it.

    After hearing the gang break it down and reading this thread I recognize that it does require due consideration though.

    Something like Super Hexagon is very much single player, but the leaderboards give it a much needed added dimension.

    Dark Souls, the game I'm currently neck deep in, also is pretty much a single player game with non-essential (but wonderfully magical) multiplayer additions.

    I guess in this day and age there are very few solitary activities of any kind. Which might help explain the weight of Koster's theory of not-One. (groan).

    Good gosh I'm excited to get my hands on Dishonoured, though I'm kind of shocked that they chose to spell it without the U. I wouldn't want them to waste packaging resources by demanding 2 print runs on cover art, but come on. Isn't honour with a U the standard worldwide? Doesn't the game take place outside of the US of A.

    I will also be upset if Bioshock Infinite has objective markers placed X meters away ;)

  7. I liked my experience playing the game, I played Gravity Bone for the first time shortly before it.

    Both games made me feel a bit lost, like my expectations of a first person view game with guns and enemies was conflicting with the game experience itself. Then I found myself peeling an orange and most of those thoughts faded away.

    One thing that's neat is that Quake-feeling movement. It wasn't a minute before I found myself trying to strafe jump along and string my hops together. So there's that.

    Then there's the excellent music. The wedding reception music in particular had a fantastic Morriconesque feel to it.

    I also really liked the colour palate of the game for what it's worth.

    I agree with tastycakes above when she says that it compares favorably to Dear Esther, though I think GB/30FOL work best presented that way to people familiar with the first person genre, and that we get much more out of it for our previous game playing experience. Dear Esther is the kind of game I could show my Mom and she would get something out of it. It's an open story to be experienced by the player, while 30FOL feels like it is written in a language best read by those with gamer vision.

    Yes, I said 'gamer vision'... deal with it 8-)

    And then there is goldblum mode, which was such a treat to try out. I find the expression "a love letter to blank" is overused, so let me say this was a well-received valentine's day card to the thumbs and to their readers!

  8. [/font][/color]

    See, you say that, but I started with LoL, and while I had fun* with it, Dota 2 is just infinitely more fun* to me. Not least because it feels so much more rewarding when I do well. I would contest many - well, actually... all - of your statements, but it really just comes down to opinion, and since that's the case, I'm glad Dota 2 became the go-to game in the genre. Yay for the superior game winning! U;

    And glad you should be! There's no reason to compare pro/con lists, I shouldn't have taken that tack, let's all just manage lords and have fun*.

    *I find LoL both fun and engaging. ;)

  9. Great episode, kudos all around.

    I'm not sure why DOTA2 became the go-to LOMA for thumbs, kind of a shame, because for those not looking to dedicate their lives to one game League of Legends is a much more fun alternative. A lot of the issues new players have with DOTA2 can be dismissed with the ol' "it's still in beta" wand, but as far as LOMAs go, LoL is top of the pops in terms of learning curve. I like the way it handles a lot better personally, and the steps they have taken to branch away from DOTA1s model have mostly all been in a positive direction. The new maps are fun, the rune system is great, the difficulty curve is tweaked to make new players feel comfortable while still having a very high skill cap on many of the champions. The competitive scene is really fun to follow and the game keeps evolving it's high ELO metagame while somehow maintaining an exciting and well balanced list of top tier champions. Dota2 is still a fun game, but as a player and e-sports watcher I just think that LoL out-classes it on almost every level.

    That being said, being a part of a consortium has always been high on my bucket list, so I've reinstalled Dota2 at work to get back into the groove and I'll try and play along with the Idle Thumbs LOMA community soon enough.

    In terms of the alternative dimension simplified polygonal world of Silent Scope or whatever, cheers to that discussion. It's what makes middling games worse, but makes a game like Demon's Souls so amazing. It is the language that a game like Demon's Souls should be written in. I would also add another, far different game, that uses this aesthetic to great success is Deadly Premonition. The disconnect we feel playing games in this style worked perfectly in adding another surreal layer to that gem of a game.

  10. My least favorite, is the stupid merchant in Bastion's Stronghold, who has an awful voice actor going on about "Tried the adventuring life. Didn't care for it!" and he says it every god damn time, with his stupid, stupid accent.

    Just think of that vendor as

    and if you were me you would enjoy your shopping experience a whole lot more.

  11. I just picked up Arma2. DayZ stories from co-workers pushed me over the edge after seeing Thumbs branded A2 events popping up in steam all the time.

    Hoping to hear some thumbs talk about DayZ as it seems right up their alleys. [||]

  12. I'm hoping the cooldown on respecs that is short enough that you can change up your build during fights but long enough that you don't end up trying to respec each time you perform an action.

    edit. Sirlin addresses this in the article.

    Really looking forward to this now.

    Demon Hunter, btw.

  13. yeah so far the "plot" is mostly carried by those dream sequences. The play experience has been a pretty great story so far. I'm down to level 5 without having to look anything up yet.

    I happen to love the combat system. It's a lil speed click mini-game to me. Reinforced by having to switch out throwing weapons/arrows and queuing up spells. Really fun, and puzzly to be sure. I would like a bit more feedback from the hidden buttons and stuff, sometimes it's tough to tell what happened exactly. That lack of feedback does make you play more deliberately though.

    The whole game is extremely deliberate, and you can tell that much thought went into the design. Real fun!

    The only hint I would share is

    not to get too caught up in torch management, I was so worried I'd run out of torches that I spent much of the first 3 levels barely using them. I probably missed a secret room or two because of this. By level 5 you will have found a better way of dealing with darkness. I'm hoping by level 6 there will be a similar way to deal with hunger :P

  14. grats boost!

    I'd be fascinated to hear about the process of changing companies in the industry, not that I have plans to leave my current job, but it seems inevitable that change will occur. Interviewing elsewhere while still working, leaving a job and then looking for new opportunities, waiting for projects to finish or not, nda's, inter-state moving, hotels, interview etiquette, balancing personal projects with job jobs. Not so much your motivations but just a discussion of the logistics. Perhaps a few guideposts for curious and career-minded readers.

    Several Thumbs have successfully navigated their way through this industry, quite visibly to those who follow the cast, over the last couple of years. I wonder if you guys would ever want to talk about these things, or does that kind of stuff stay behind the curtain.

  15. If I were GOG I'd consider taking 0.01$ out of each pre-order, buying a bundle with that cent, then give the pre-order people 2 copies of Botanicula, 2 versions of the soundtrack and a couple bonus games.

    Of course the problem would be that the bundle games could not be redeemed on GOG, but it's a funny workaround.

    Also, I found this on the GOG forums from user Gremmi:

    "From GOG's Facebook - "Hey everyone; we just found out about the Humble Amanita Bundle. We're not sure exactly what yet, but we're going to come up with something for everyone who preordered Botanicula on Stay tuned and we'll try to come up with something tomorrow""

    edit: as for the ugliness expected, is currently the second highest donor on this bundle.

    I like this kind of ugliness, where forests get saved and really fun games are made available!

  16. I'm heading down on Thursday with a carload of co-workers. We have tickets for Fri and Sat. and then hope to see a bit of the city as well.

    Went last year but spent the whole time at the convention center or at the hotel :P

    Also I got my copy of Weinhandler signed by Boost n Scoops, which was a highlight.

  17. just finished Bastion last night.

    I enjoyed it, but was kind of disappointed in the ending. There were two moments nearing the end where you suddenly have to make a choice between 2 options. I felt like I did not have enough information to make a well-considered selection, and the game's end was clearly dictated by those 2 black or white choices I made.

    I felt like the narrator was not telling me the whole story, he admits as much along the way, and so I always felt like I was missing out on something. It created a nice sense of ambiguity and distrust in me, which is a fun thing to experience from a game. But then to have me have to make these 2 choices...

    Then again, what is life but a series of more-or-less misinformed choices we make. So that was something.

    Also, I have never really appreciated 'multiple-ending' games. The prospect of replaying 4-5 hours to see a couple of extra minutes of story is not enticing enough to me.

    In the end I saved Zulf and then did what Zia wanted me to do and did not reset the Bastion. They were more or less natural choices. Save a guy as opposed to letting him die, easy enough. Even though he did get my pet squirt killed. Then I did what the girl wanted to do, again not a hard choice.

    I just wish I wasn't second guessing my instinctual choices because I feel like I missed out on prospective story content and/or a "better" ending. This is as much my problem as the game's.

    Other than that this game is great. Tight controls. Fun array of weapons. Beautiful level art. The way the world builds itself around you is so lovely. Fun narrative hook. etc..

    2 thumbs up.