Here are the show notes for part three of of this ordeal / episode. If you’re reading this in the archives, then the audio is here. I’m not going to embed it again because that seems to cause problems for RSS readers.
Interesting side-note: Josh edited the podcast this week. I usually do it. We both tend to edit according to our tastes. I like to edit out long pauses and cross-talk. (If three or more people talk at once, I mute people until we’re down to one or two.) I also edit out “backstage” discussions. Did Rutskarn go AFK? Is everyone ready to start? Can we move on from this topic? How long have we been recording? Josh keeps things pretty raw. I don’t know that one is definitively better than the other, but that’s what each of us prefers so that’s how we edit.
This segment of the show is where we finally get to the mailbag. Note that I purged the queue after this, so if your question wasn’t answered, it’s gone for good. That doesn’t mean it was a bad question. It just means it had bad luck and we ran out of time before getting to it.
I have two questions, not necessarily related.
1. What are your thoughts on the recent features that have been added to Steam lately? (Such as User-Defined tags, in-game music player, broadcasting services, etc etc etc…)
2. Recently on the DieCast, I’ve been hearing some sort of odd ticking sound whenever it was Josh’s turn to talk. What is that ticking noise? Does anyone else notice it, or am I just slowly going insane? My guess is the latter.
2:13:00 Don’t make this into a game!
Dear The Diecast,
Are there any books/films/concept albums/TV shows/other things that should be barred from being made into games, and if so why?
Also if Ruts was a Mongol would he be Ruts Khan?
Cheers, Neil from England.
2:17:00 No-kill policy.
die Cast, die
Have you ever adopted a “no kill” policy in a game, either as a challenge to make things more difficult or a roleplay mechanism? How did the game react? I’m playing Hitman: Blood Money at the moment and trying to be professional and only kill the designated targets … but although the game supports it, it certainly doesn’t make it easy. Other games like FTL have a “Pacifism Run” achievement but it only counts getting to sector 5 of the game, since beating the final boss mandates that you destroy at least one ship. Is it a valid playstyle? Should more games cater for it, or is it a weird meta-game in the same class as speed runs or 100% runs or playing while blindfolded?
I find myself frustrated right now that I can’t buy warcraft 1 or 2 in a way that actually gives money to blizzard, and in the case of warcraft 1 without paying a collector price.
Where do you all come down on a title like this, which belongs to an active company, hasn’t gone the Good Old Games route,and hasn’t made it available through their own site at a reasonable price.
Currently Torn Between Ebay and Piracy.
2:39:00 Valve v. Better Business Bureau.
Valve, the company that seemingly everyone on the internet loves super huggy much, has a F grade by the Better Business Bureau. Any thoughts? Here’s the link:
2:48:00 Casual Games.
Dear Rutskarn is cool,
Your discussion of hidden object games last week got me thinking. I play a lot of casual games with my family on the TV computer. They’re generally non-violent and often have gameplay where it’s easy for other people to participate even if they’re not the one with the mouse.
Unfortunately, most of the sites that actually sell casual games make Steam look like a masterpiece of ecommerce design. Trials are a necessity rather than a luxury. On the analysis side, I’ve come across a few games that I really enjoyed but couldn’t put my finger on exactly what worked. Aside from a couple episodes of Extra Credits, I haven’t come across anyone who gives casual games the same attention that you all give to the AAA titles.
In your explorations of the games media, have you ever come across a decent review and/or analysis site for casual games?
2:52:00 Valve’s Cabal Structure.
Dear Rutskarn is sweet butts,
I’ve been rewatching the Half-Life 2 “season” of Spoiler Warning, and I’d forgotten that at the end you talked about Valve’s freeform organizational “structure” or lack thereof. Each member joins the project team that appeals to them the most, etc, etc. How does that model square with the way the company has been operating lately? Valve hasn’t really released a game in years, and in fact seem to be offloading the mechanics of game development to third parties (and through the Steam Workshop, their player base) How did a freeform game developer/publisher transform into a purveyor of hardware, like the Steam Boxes, Controllers, and forthcoming VR headsets? Where did all the software people go?
Sincerely, Adam S.
2:56:00 Everything is 3D.
The new season of Spoiler Warning has made me curious about 3D graphics. Specifically, why do so many games use 3D graphics when the gameplay does not obviously benefit from being in 3D? If you added a disguise mechanic to Hotline: Miami you would be more than halfway to a Hitman game with the advantage that you would not be depicting life-like 3D figures doing jarringly un-lifelike things.
Is it the audience’s fault? Are we graphics snobs who look down on 2D? Are developers snobs? Or are there just a whole bunch of 3D graphics programmers and artists these days, so why not?
Yours in befuddlement,
With the release of Cities: Skylines and the positive hype/sales that it got, there is no doubt many a pundit and critic having a compare and contrast discussion about it and the recent SimCity. Do you think there’s anyone at EA having that discussion?