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Monday
Mar092009

Gamespot Podcast

I was on this week's HotSpot podcast at Gamespot. If you have over two hours to spare, check it out. They had a lot of topics ranging from the Watchmen movie to emotions in games to the awesomeness of Quiz and Dragons, and more. I don't even know how to summarize it all.

Reader Comments (11)

You kinda undersold HD remix; being able to see hit boxes in practice mode was a great addition that I think should be standard in every 2d fighting game (I'd also like to see it in 3d games but I'll cut them some slack since frame advantage is generally more important). True, it's not as helpful to a completely new player as a direct tutorial, but it is extremely helpful to an intermediate player trying to make the jump to skilled since it gives you the ability to quickly gain an understanding of what your moves actually look like. To me anything to help with that jump has allot more value. Something else I'd like to see is the ability to program frame by frame a sequence of commands for the computer to repeat such that you could test yourself against things you don't actually have the dexterity to preform in a command record environment.

I would love to see what Sirlin would make out of the Mortal Kombat franchise... I probably still wouldn't play it because I think the character design is bland and generic but it would be interesting to see if sirlin could fix the nightmare of poor balance and design that is Mortal Kombat.

March 10, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterbbobjs

really worthwhile listen overall I thought, and you were pretty funny at some points too. but who was it that said (unless I misheard) Ken got second on Survivor? I thought he got fifth?

Response by Sirlin: Ken got 2nd in the Smash tournament mentioned.

March 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKristoph

I thought for certain you were going to mention Starcraft 2, with the blizzard references (diablo 2, starcraft), dangerously close to mentioning mbs/automine while talking about accessability...

March 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterRoie

1: Fable 2 was horrible, feel lucky you never played it.

March 11, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAuspice

Someone is on point with SNL updates!

March 11, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterScamp

I regularly listen to the hotspot so i was quite shocked when I heard them introduce you at the beginning of the show. I don't usually read the synopsis of the podcast so it was definately a pleasant surprise.

Was hoping you guys would talk a bit more Street Fighter but i'm glad you guys did touch on the subject..!

Good job ! You provided plenty of insightful information.

March 11, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterNate

I loved the podcast, I really enjoy listening to you when I can Sirlin, even though I may disagree with you on some things.

March 11, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterIxxan

Wouldn't Quiz and Dragons (and variants) be awesome for Kongegrate or Xbox Live?

March 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterRobert August de Meijer

That was totally awesome, you brought that show from merely entertaining to educational and more entertaining.

March 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterThomas Grové

Gamespot podcast and a front page nod at Penny Arcade today? It's a good thing you're attending Starcraft class, because your site is going to get zerged.

March 13, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterforty

Let me preface this by saying I usually hate trying to talk about videogame story, because, frankly, most videogames don't have a story worth telling, and I'm just happy when the developers are smart enough to keep it out of the way for the most part. However, I just gave this podcast a listen after you linked it, and during the "silent protagonist" segment I was reminded of one of the few exceptions, and I wanted to ask: Have you played "Marathon," Bungie's pre-Halo trilogy of First-Person Shooters? I believe you've mentioned elsewhere that you're not a fan of FPS's, at least on a competitive level, so I imagine it's a long shot, but I think there's some great ideas in Marathon from a game-design and storytelling perspective, specifically on how to handle a silent protagonist. Oddly enough, this is the game that I thought of during two other segments, when talking about humor in games (specifically when it isn't the specific point of the game), and talking about those games that try to say something.

If you haven't played Marathon, a general description of it probably won't convince you of any narrative quality, as it sounds very typical at the surface level. The Colony ship "Marathon" is under attack by a group of alien slavers. You play as a solitary security officer whose duty it is save the ship, with the help of the ship's AI personae. Sound just a little too bland and familiar? Yeah, I'm sure it does. This simple setup allows the game to create a comfort zone that gives it all the more impact when it is taken away. Now, I could write endlessly about what the story does well, but I'd wind up writing more here than you or anyone else would likely want to read about it. The point I'm getting at is that Marathon uses its silent protagonist to as a vessel to give the player experiences that they cannot get from simply observing a character in those situations. Specifically, throughout the course of the first game, and then recurring in the sequel, the player is put in a position where they develop a feeling that is much like Stockholme Syndrome toward his or her in-game captor (though obviously not in a real-life emotional scope).

I know, I know, that's a big claim, and it's hard to support in a short explanation--last time I tried to elaborate it, I wound up writing a three-article blog summing it up. If you haven't played it, you're likely sitting there thinking I'm just some nutty over-enthusiastic fan of the game, and really, there's probably nothing I could say here that would convince you otherwise. So if that's the case, here's hoping you some day play it and see for yourself.

March 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDan Harris
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