Spoiler Warning S4E41: It was the Best of Episodes…

By Shamus
on Feb 22, 2011
Filed under:
Spoiler Warning

Here is a fun game to play. During this episode, one of the hosts says something incorrect about a videogame. Did you catch it?


Link (YouTube)

The first four minutes of the episode were some of the most fun I’ve had in ages. I’m just picturing a newcomer to the series hearing our review of Halo, the Wiimote-based PS3 exclusive. Yes, 99% of the people out there will dismiss the discussion as the ravings of silly people. But you know, somewhere on the internet, lurks that last 1%. The people who will hear this, and the red curtain of rage will descend, and they will experience an epic level of indignation that “this review is so bias and inacurate”. I realize this is a really childish thing to enjoy. Sorry.

We did manage to sneak in a few words about Mass Effect 2. So there’s that. Anyway. Come back tomorrow and see if the show improves! The suspense must be killing you!

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A Hundred!201There are 121 comments here. I really hope you like reading.

From the Archives:

  1. Raygereio says:

    I think I’ve said this before. Those loyalty mission have the wrong name, in practice there more of a “leave your emotion baggage behind so that you can focus on your tasks”-mission.

    That said, Garrus’ mission is indeed a bit odd. It would made more sense if they dropped some hints somewhere that indicated that Sidonis betrayed Garrus’ team because he was forced to. That way this bit at the end where you can talk Garrus down and make him hear out Sidonis’ story wouldn’t have come out of left field like it does now.

    • jdaubenb says:

      Well, talking to Garrus (the one or two times he will actually talk to you, rather than excuse himself), you could get the feeling that he is less Batman and more Frank Castle.
      Or you could (have) read the Codex entry on Turian culture, which emphasizes the importance of military and social superstructures.

      Both points could, maybe, make you inclined to find out why Sidonis chose to quit Garrus’s little League of Reformed Gangbangers.

      • Entropy says:

        Can it wait? I’m in the middle of some calibrations.

      • Mumbles says:

        I tried to call him Punisher a couple times, but I don’t think the Spoiler Warning boys know who he is.

      • Sleeping Dragon says:

        I do admit that a lot of info comes from the codex and this is perhaps a better solution than trying to weave stuff like hundreds of years of history into a casual dialogue but let’s be fair, the codex is not absolute. Yes, it gives the general feel of the race but it is a generalization, furthermore large portions of it appear to be “government approved information” (propaganda).

        As such I do not think it’s fair to say “Well it’s clear Sidonis couldn’t have done this without some good reason since Turians as a race respect their chain of command and are fiercely loyal”. There are sneaky, traitorous Turians just as there probably are lazy Salarians (though in their case there is a chance that they have bred laziness out of their population, or at least they have mastered the art of appearing to be very busy, hard working Salarians), generous Volus or Quarians who simply hate the migrant fleet and have decided it can rot for all they care.

    • Ringwraith says:

      Though “solving personal problem missions” doesn’t have the same ring to it as “loyalty missions”, neither does a slightly more sensible suggestion of it being “focus” or something instead of “loyalty”.
      It simply doesn’t make sense that both Tali and Garrus have to have their loyalty earnt when they’ve been with you through a galactic crisis before.
      It instantly makes more sense if you dismiss the term as a meta-game label of some sort, as they’re never actually called such by anyone within it.

  2. qwksndmonster says:

    Shamus’s heart was too kind to continue the trolling. You guys forgot to mention the new sequel to System Shock 2… Bulletstorm. Also: Best. Episode. Ever. Maybe even better than the episode in which Josh kills Three Dog… bow wow.

  3. Fede says:

    No doubt in my mind, it’s totally the best episode.

  4. Chris Headley says:

    This was a great episode filled with wonderful informative game information. Love the series.

  5. DanMan says:

    Hey Mumbles,

    Batman would totally lose to Garrit in a fight! *trolling*

  6. eric says:

    That was a pretty entertaining episode, guys. Most fun I’ve had with Spoiler Warning in a while. I think Mumbles must have had extra caffeine in her that time. Unfortunately the commentary had nothing to do with the game, but hey!

    As for that glitch during the loyalty mission: yeah, basically it seems like there’s a missing skybox, background texture or something along those lines. Not sure if it happens in the Xbox or PS3 versions, but the problem is widespread on PC. Naturally, BioWare haven’t just ignored it, but they have refused to officially acknowledge its existence. They’re very good at that… “if we get a thousand bug reports, as long as one of our representatives doesn’t respond, it doesn’t exist!”

    • Piflik says:

      These streaks are a typical effect of geometry rendered against the void…happens across all systems…New Vegas for example showed that behavior, too. The system simply doesn’t know what to show at these pixels (since there is nothing there), so it shows the pixels that were there a frame before.

      • Josh says:

        Specifically the renderer isn’t taking the time to clear the pixels from the last frame so it just draws the current pixels on top of the old ones. It’s an old performance boosting measure, though at this point it’s such a small boost that I don’t really understand why it’s still used with the graphics technology we have today.

        • Piflik says:

          Well…you can have one additional polygon on screen :D

          But I guess the credo is ‘never change a running system’…every additional step inserted in the pipeline can introduce additional bugs or glitches. And it takes time (and by extension money) to implement it, when you can simply reuse the existing code instead.

        • Volatar says:

          Everything adds up.

        • Simon Buchan says:

          Some geometry breaking speedruns on Portal and Metroid Prime show those engines clear the render buffer. A good tactic for debug builds is to render a different bright color each frame so you can see the “void” flashing through holes in your geometry.

    • Irridium says:

      Kind of like the bug that crashes the game when you try to move something out of the quickbar after you’ve been playing for 30 or so minutes.

      Go ahead, start up the game, play for 30 minutes to an hour, and try to remove a power from the quickbar.

      • lowlymarine says:

        I got a fun bug the other day: In the hallway below Liara’s office on Illium, leading to Thane’s recruitment mission, the game would crash over and over as I walked down the hallway. It didn’t do this when I headed that way before for Samara’s mission, and it didn’t do it again after recruiting Thane. How did I fix it to get to Thane, you ask? Simple: Walk down the corridor as usual, except facing backwards.

        I’d pay good money to know how Bioware managed to code that particular bug.

  7. Christopher M says:

    My favorite of the Bioware shirts is the “I should go…” one. That one I’m actually considering buying.

  8. Hitch says:

    We need to get Shamus and Josh in on the singing now so we can have an all musical episode of Spoiler Warning.

    As far as Grunt walking in front of the camera at one point: he finally realized that if it’s not your loyalty mission you don’t actually get to do anything, so photobombing is about the only way to get screen time.

  9. poiumty says:

    Mumbles has the cutest voice when she’s trying to act like a 13-year-old.

  10. RTBones says:

    Funny. About 3-4 minutes in, I half expected to switch to a scene of Josh playing Donkey Kong – because ME2 was pretty much irrelevant at that point. I wonder if that’s why Josh died several times in this episode – the game just seemed so out-of-body. Frogger. Maybe Josh was playing Frogger, not Donkey Kong, and was dying crossing the road. Yeah, thats it.

    Entertaining, if not exactly ME2 related.

  11. Jennifer Snow says:

    Holy moly, is this part of the game messed up. I love how even the dialog is a mess, as when Garrus says “thanks for helping me with this Shepard” and Shepard says “I’d do the same if I were you”. WTF? If she were Garrus she’d ask for help with her loyalty mission? You’re supposed to say “You’d do the same if you were me” indicating that you know your friend would help you out if you were in a tight spot. I don’t know WHAT the writer was thinking there.

    Granted, I think I can say that about 95% of the game. :P

    • Taellosse says:

      I think the intention of the line is “I, too, would take justice into my own hands if a member of my team betrayed us to the enemy,” not “I would also ask for help in executing my personal vendettas.”

      • anaphysik says:

        Agreed, but still very poorly worded. “I’d have felt the same in your position” or somesuch would have been better.

        Or a simple “NP, good sir” which is basically what the dialog wheel indicates.

        • Newbie says:

          But Regina “Oblivious To Reason” Shepard can’t possibly act like a normal human being if everyone else is being crazy… or even if people are acting like normal human beings.

  12. Ragnar says:

    This speaks volumes about the game. I mean, they can’t even do 41 episodes without starting to troll instead of commenting the game.

  13. Sydney says:

    Y’know, Paragon Shepard really fucks up a lot of people’s revenge. Zaeed, Garrus, Mordin, Jack…I’d love to see a “mutiny” nonstandard game over.

    • Taellosse says:

      Mordin’s isn’t about revenge. It starts out as a rescue mission and when he learns the truth, he’s proposing to kill the guy out of a perceived necessity, not to satisfy a thirst for vengeance. Mordin thinks if he doesn’t kill the guy, then the genophage would be cured and the krogan would once more overrun the galaxy.

      • Grudgeal says:

        I always saw Mordin’s attempted shooting as more as a ‘heat of the moment’ thing. He seems to be thankful if you Paragon Interrupt him.

        As for Jack, Paragon doesn’t stop her from blowing up her facility in ‘revenge’. It just stops her from shooting some meaningless insane schmuck who went through the same hell she did. Arguably, being Renegade and denying her access to the Cerberus files is a lot more revenge-ruining for her than being Paragon and handing them over.

        As for Zaeed and Garrus… Yeah, got nothing. You’re ruining their revenge. Though at least in Zaeed’s case that means getting paid twice as much and getting to punch Zaeed in the face for almost setting you on fire, so it’s all good.

  14. rayen says:

    can i just say you guys actually sounded awake this episode? It was jarring. Like the last 5 episodes you guys have been like dead or sounding really tired. Today you sounded like you actually got a good nights sleep at some point. I don’t know if you guys just ate a happy meal, drank a good cup of coffee, or gots the last slice of pizza but keep doing it. awake funny people are better than tired strung out bored funny people.

  15. droid says:

    Blue Suns T-shirt => more evidence that you work for Blue Suns in ME3.

    Mind blown.

    • Jarenth says:

      I immediately thought the same thing when it was brought up.

      Uncanny.

      • anaphysik says:

        They also have Eclipse shirts, so maybe instead of being forced to join the Blue Suns, you’ll die in the first five minutes and be reconstructed as an asari space Jesus by Eclipse.[/Goldun Riter Awward material]

        • Daemian Lucifer says:

          Theyll give you a choice whether to work with blue suns or with the eclipse.After all,its an rpg.

        • krellen says:

          The choice will be based on whether you supported Zaeed or not; if you did, Blue Sun (run by Zaeed). If not, Eclipse.

          • Klay F. says:

            No, no, no. You’ve got it all wrong. It’ll be based on whether Mordin kills Mealon or not. If you let him live, you’ll be killed and resurrected as a Blood Pack vorcha. If you let him die, you’ll still die, but when you come back to life, you’ll work for the keepers on the Citadel who have formed their own Shepard worship cult.

          • Irridium says:

            No, they’ll make you think you have a choice, then railroad you into working with the Blood Pack.

            • Daemian Lucifer says:

              Guys,guys,the blood pack has krogan,the only formidable mooks in the game.Theres no way youll end up working for someone who actually can present a danger.

        • Sleeping Dragon says:

          I am officially adding the merc bands (at least the Suns and Eclipse. Cause the blood pack is Vorcha run by Krogan so too good to just make go “Raaaaar rage for no apparent reason! We be evil! Throw thousands of mooks at the player at every turn!”) to my “list of factions we’ll get to recruit to save the galaxy in ME3”.

  16. Exasperation says:

    I figured out which statement is inaccurate: it’s when you guys claim to like games. ;-P

    Also, I think their selling Blue Suns shirts makes perfect sense; they’re hoping people who are looking for Firefly merchandise will accidentally buy them.

    • Kavonde says:

      I’m thinking there’s got to be some significant overlap between the people who know enough about Firefly to have any idea who the Blue Suns were, and people who’ve played ME2.

  17. Dromer4ever says:

    The statement that’s innacurate was that no N7 shirt exists; you can buy one here (http://biowarestore.com/mass-effect/n7-armour-stripe-charcoal-tee)

  18. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Mumbles,why are you trolling?The first sonic game was utter garbage!

  19. Veloxyll says:

    I love how, right to the end, Mumbles keeps on trollin

  20. Caldazar says:

    You Know you would die a lot less if you took advantage of your squad members powers. Can’t they be hotkeyed or something?

    Also poe’s law is in effect.

    “get it off the youtubes”
    I am stealing this.

  21. Skeletor says:

    There was something familiar about how Rutskarn and Mumbles interact in every episode. It is exactly like how me and my sister talk to each other. I know that comment doesn’t really matter but I felt like saying it.

    Also I love how you guys trolled this episode. Also the singing was awesome.

  22. KnightLight says:

    Every time you skip an upgrade because it’s behind a hackable terminal you make me sad. :(

  23. Vect says:

    Lawlz.

    Also, “Dedication” seems to be a better word to use than “Loyalty” in this game. By that I mean “Dedication to the Mission at hand” or something around that line.

    Also, Harkin doesn’t know Fade. Harkin is Fade, I think.

  24. Gantidae says:

    RED CURTAIN OF RAGE

    This should allow for the 1%.

  25. Jjkaybomb says:

    Best. Episode. Ever.
    Laughing too overwhelming! XD Right up there in humor with your Amnesia episode!

  26. Slothful says:

    Does Garrus’s face-tattoo remind anyone else of bifocals?

  27. Kavonde says:

    So off-topic, but has anyone else played through the Dragon Age 2 demo yet?

    I bring it up because, in the grand tradition laid out by the Mass Effect games, Bioware’s advertising campaign is all about the heroic, masculine version of the player character. And just as in the grand tradition laid out by the Mass Effect games, the female version of the player character has much better voice acting. Is this going to be a thing with Bioware games from now on?

    (To be fair, I’m really just comparing the “smartass” dialogue choices. Male Hawke sounded a little too amused by the slaughter of everyone he ever knew, in my opinion. I much prefer femHawke’s bitterly sarcastic tone.)

    • Narida says:

      I did.

      It could be worse: For some reason it forced the german version on me, so everyone had terrible voice acting :-/
      And the voice and mouth movements were totally out of synch.

      Also, the graphics do seem kinda subpar…

      • 8th_Pacifist says:

        Did you play the first? It was worse. It wasn’t so much that the graphics were horrible (though they were pretty dire technically), but that every aspect of the visual presentation of the game looked absolutely hideous. From the super low-res textures to the four colours of brown they painted all the environments and characters with to the super bulky deformed-looking character models to the impractical, heavy and oversized armour that clipped through itself every time the person wearing it moved their arms…

        Evidently all of Bioware’s talented artists were off working on Mass Effect 2 so all that was left was a twelve-year-old boy with MS Paint and an Orangutan with a crayon. A brown crayon.

        Oh sorry, you were talking about voice acting?

        • Kavonde says:

          Eh, the graphics are a point worth mentioning, too. DA:O’s graphics were very…muddy’s a good word, I think. DA2’s gone for a much cleaner look. Everything’s simpler, less detailed, and more stylized. I like it, personally. I think it’ll hold up better in the long run, like WoW’s artistic style has. Granted, it’s not as well done as Blizzard’s work (at least, the parts we see in the demo aren’t), but it’s a huge improvement.

          Plus, I didn’t see a trace of those goddamn plate shoulders with that little piece that clips through everywhere and drives me friggin’ nuts because seriously JUST TAKE THAT BIT OFF it serves no purpose but to draw attention to the fact that the game has clipping issues seriously Alistair stop moving your arm, just hold still and let me saw that damn thing off!

          Ahem.

          I like the combat animations much better, too. Rogue seems like it’ll be a really fun class to play, if only to watch Hawke tumble around the battlefield, stabbing people and imitating Nightcrawler.

          The one major complaint I had was the abundance of annoying little scene loading things. They were really sloppily done and jarring. Really, guys? You need to load the ogre’s entrance, load the fight with the ogre, and then load the post-fight cutscene? I mean, sure, of course you do, that’s how this works, but I’ve never seen it so poorly synced up. It’s really noticeable and distracting.

          If this problem persists in the main game, it’d sure be nice to get the opinion of a real programmer on it. If only there was one I knew of with a blog where he occasionally wrote really insightful posts about programming stuff that were accessible and enjoyable even to a layman like me. Ah, to live in such a world…

          • Raygereio says:

            ‘The one major complaint I had was the abundance of annoying little scene loading things.’
            Over on the BioWare forums some dev mentioned that was a problem they had with the demo’s build on certain PC setups. It’s supposedly been fixed in the build that has gone gold since then.

            • Mathias says:

              One thing I like is that instead of Paragon/Renegade/Neutral, we now have Hero/Asshole/Snark. Basically the neutral options involve you being an absolute ass.

              One thing that I did like is when (spoiler) Carver/Bethany dies, and no matter which option you pick (even the asshole option) makes Hawke sound like he/she is grieving. It’s really, really well voice-acted on both sides.

  28. Cybron says:

    It was a good episode…

    But the Amnesia episode is still better.

  29. Zaxares says:

    I refuse to dignify the comments from the first 5 minutes of this video with a response. ;)

    Also, about Rutskarn getting shot in the penis every week? Call me depraved, but I immediately thought of a certain fetish where guys (and some girls) inject saline fluid into their genitals.

    No need to thank me for that mental image. We all need to get corrupted a little more by the Internet each day. ;)

    Oh yes, and that weird rippling effect in the background is a known video glitch in ME2. I get it all the time in that scene too.

    Regarding the Paragon choice in this mission… I think it’s because Shepard knows that if Garrus went ahead with this assassination, it would change him forever. Make him harsher, meaner. Up until now, Garrus has only ever killed in self-defense or killed targets that were themselves murderers. Sidonis did indeed betray Garrus and the rest of his team, which makes him guilty and deserving of punishment, but this mission would be the first cold-blooded, pre-meditated murder that Garrus has ever done. The Paragon option is Shepard not wanting Garrus to go down that path.

    Incidentally, if you DID let Garrus take the shot, the Illusive Man FINALLY does something helpful and has his legal team ensure that neither Shepard nor Garrus will be called up by authorities for their part in Sidonis’ murder.

    • Raygereio says:

      “Call me depraved, but I immediately thought of a certain fetish where guys (and some girls) inject saline fluid into their genitals.”

      I’ll admit that most fetishes in general confuse me; this one has me baffled. What’s the turn on from injecting a solution of salt in water in to a female’s genetalia? I can sort of, maybe, understand injecting it into the penis or breast and they’ll swell up temporarily, but the vagina? o_O

    • TSED says:

      … Sidonis is, in Garrus’ eyes, a pretty terrible murderer. Garrus pre-meditated his murder.

      Garrus became famous – FAMOUS – in the scummy rings (listen to the dialog in Kasumi’s loyalty party) for being, well, a guy who goes around and premeditates murder ALL THE TIME.

      Your argument’s a bit flawed by my interpretation.

      • Avilan says:

        The point is that you do not tell Sidonis to walk away and protect him. What you do is to get him talking about WHY he betrayed the team, and eventually (since he is listening in) Garrus desides to show him mercy, because he is already punishing himself so hard.

      • Zaxares says:

        You make a fair point, but it’s not actually clear whether Garrus had a strict ‘take no prisoners’ approach. For all we know, his M.O. was simply screwing up shake-downs, sabotaging shipments, and the only people he killed were those who put up resistance or who fired first. Considering that Garrus was wearing a helmet, concealing their identities would probably not have been too difficult, so witnesses may not have been a huge problem.

        Sidonis screwed the team over badly, but it should be noted that he did not actually kill any of them; Sidonis may have sold them out thinking the rest of the team would be good enough to pull out of it anyway.

        For the record, my personal favourite way of completing this loyalty mission is to warn Sidonis, let him explain what happened, then have Sidonis himself allow Garrus to take the shot because he can’t live with the guilt anymore. (He even thanks Shepard for the release!)

  30. SpammyV says:

    “Too” zetta slow? For shame, Mumbles. For shame. And for shame to the rest of you for not catching it.

    You’re out of your vector!

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