Jake

Idle Thumbs 279: Horrible Adorable

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Idle Thumbs 279:

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Horrible Adorable

High up in the clouds, the best pilot you've ever flown with leads you to your next target, a target the two of you cut through like it's made of tin foil. You're the front gunner, pretty new to the job, but already you two are working like clockwork, knocking fighters out of the sky left and right. "I'm hungry," says the pilot over text chat. You see he's named Nick. You're hungry too. Maybe there's somewhere to eat, maybe the two of you will go together like the great friends you've become? You look up and Nick has left the pilot seat. You're alone. The mountain fills your viewport and you wish you'd joined Jake and Chris at PAX instead. (Despite what we say at the start this truly is Idle Thumbs 279, not 280.)

Discussed: Battlefield 1, Arena Gods, Thimbleweed Park, Burly Men at Sea, Lumines, Hitman (2016), Scratch and Sniff, Credit Cards

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I'm so happy to see Burly Men at Sea listed. I played it at Day of the Devs in 2015 and absolutely fell in love with it. Burly Men at Sea, Firewatch, Oxenfree, & Night in the Woods are just a handful of games that had me so excited coming into 2016, and so far they've delivered delightfully :) 

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That video is amazing.

 

Thanks for reading my email about the delights of Tomb Raider + Thumbs. Apologies for to everyone else as they went off the rails. I was cracking up so hard.

 

You don't need to say 'Kinect' before voice commands on the Xbox One for in-game, bespoke stuff. With the newest update, you now have to say 'Hey Cortana' for any OS based stuff.

 

Because mine is set to English accents, there is quite a bit of artistic interpretation on the Kinect's part as to what you mean with your American intonations.

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I love Hitman, man so good.

 

Also, after listening to the show I went onto another of my weekly podcasts and they mentioned "hey this week I picked up, Lumines!" so apparently it really is a new game.

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The Nick's story about teaming up with a random other player really weirded me out.

 

I mean, it took me time to get used to the fact that Chris hates+fears people talking to him in the multiplayer games, but Nick too?! How could it happen that you wouldn't ever talk to someone in-game in 20 years?! I talk to other players in multiplayer games in any multiplayer game I play. That's the point of the multiplayer. You're playing with people. There are real people sitting somewhere behind their monitors and you're playing together. How can this thought be so uncommon that you would be startled about it? Are Nick (and Chris) so used to single player games that they play multiplayer games with same mentality and acknowledging that other people are real and not just game objects is an outlandish experience?

 

I wonder if Jake is more used to talking to other people in chat from TF2.

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I dunno - I've never talked to anyone in a multiplayer game either. I've typed things sometimes, but speaking out loud...? (And I've been playing multiplayer games online since the late 1990s, so before this newfangled audio chat thing even existed, which might actually be why I, at least, find it to be weird and odd. It's not that they're other people, it's that they're other people who are apparently phone-conferencing while they're playing.)

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Hearing you guys talk about thimbleweed park, it brings to mind puzzle agent? is that a fair comparison in terms of tone?

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You guys saying Xbox a lot in the episode reminds me of how the Vergecast will often tell Alexa, Siri, Cortana or Google to do things during the podcast on the off chance you are listening on speakers and your phone, amazon echo etc will respond. I love the idea of trolling voice controlled platforms.

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Man, giantrobot.club is a blast from my webcomic-reading high school past. I read Adventurers! back in 2000. I am strangely happy webrunner is an Idle Thumbs listener.

 

Same, but middle school. Got a wave of genuine nostalgia there.

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I think this video does a great job of indirectly (and somewhat accidentally) capturing the shift in multiplayer games from having a chill/hangout atmosphere to a silent (or EXTREMELY ANGRY) atmosphere:

It only covers TF2 and Overwatch, but in the past 10 years, multiplayer games have shifted from dedicated servers in which you could establish a community or stay on for a few hours to develop a short friendship, whereas now, matchmaking means that you may never see the same person twice.  Additionally, older games generally had longer match times which allowed for much more goofing off (which was also facilitated by the lack of ranking+progression, and also the existence of large skill disparities due to the lack of matchmaking).

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I don't think Chris is as behind the times with Lumines as he thinks - there's definitely been some new version/update in the last week or so, and it was significant enough for it to be at PAX, according to this article. There is also a hint at a return for Meteos too, apparently they share the same creator? I've never played Meteos, but Lumines was a lot of fun on PSP. I think I played the demo for quite a long time without realising that you could rotate the blocks, and when I did it completely blew my mind (and also felt like a complete goon).

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Something interesting that occurred to me during the conversation about Thimbleweed Park's classic approach and how unusual it is right now is that that's kind of what the original pitch for the Double Fine Adventure was, it just ended up being such a successful kickstarter that they couldn't go with a restrained project like that any more. It's strange to think about a game's early success warping it so far out of the original concept.

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I don't think Chris is as behind the times with Lumines as he thinks - there's definitely been some new version/update in the last week or so, and it was significant enough for it to be at PAX, according to this article. There is also a hint at a return for Meteos too, apparently they share the same creator? I've never played Meteos, but Lumines was a lot of fun on PSP. I think I played the demo for quite a long time without realising that you could rotate the blocks, and when I did it completely blew my mind (and also felt like a complete goon).

 

 

Yeah, he shouldn't feel too crazy. There was an old crappy version of Lumines for iOS in 2009 (TouchArcade review is 2/5), which was not well liked and was delisted at some point. I can't find anywhere talking about it being removed, which is probably why the Wiki entry doesn't list this new decent one as a separate release. A recent Touch Arcade article say the rights were acquired by someone else a year or so ago, which is why there are new games now.

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I dunno - I've never talked to anyone in a multiplayer game either. I've typed things sometimes, but speaking out loud...? (And I've been playing multiplayer games online since the late 1990s, so before this newfangled audio chat thing even existed, which might actually be why I, at least, find it to be weird and odd. It's not that they're other people, it's that they're other people who are apparently phone-conferencing while they're playing.)

 

I meant text chat for the most part. It was text chat in Nick's story.

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I meant text chat for the most part. It was text chat in Nick's story.

 

I used to chat a lot in both text and audio format but something changed around the release of Halo 3 on Xbox Live that meant that I don't talk to random people at all anymore. I think I have an article brewing at some point so I am not going to go into a lot of detail.

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