Diecast #43: Broken Age, Wii U, Nintendo

By Shamus Posted Thursday Jan 30, 2014

Filed under: Diecast 126 comments

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Hosts: Mumbles, Josh, Chris, and Shamus.

Show Notes:

First three minutes of the show: Mumbles is established as the Podcast Queen.

3:00 Shamus is playing SPACE GAMES and Broken Age.

Also Shamus gives “marriage advice” on the occasion of his 17th wedding anniversary.

11:00 Josh is playing the game Adobe Premiere Doesn’t Friggin’ Work Dammit Hell Shit.

Josh also talks about a Crusader Kings II succession game he’s talking part in. For the uninitiated, CKII is a strategy game where you guide a particular dynasty through the ages. A succession game is where one player runs a generation, and when power passes on in the game, the save file is given to another player and they take over.

Also we talk about the weather for like ten minutes. Sorry.

22:30 Chris kicks off a discussion about Nintendo, the Wii U and their troubled sales.

Nintendo projected 9 million Wii U’s sold, but when the numbers came in it was more like 2.5 million. Now they’re in a tough spot.

Here is the article I mentioned. In the article we learn:

  • Wii hardware wasn’t finalized until very late in development, and without a lot of communication with developers.
  • The hardware is incredibly weak, bordering on Xbox 360 level of power.
  • The people at Nintendo that designed the Wii U do not use or have any understanding of the other consoles.
  • The Wii U development tools are horrible, bordering on the barbaric.
  • Nintendo has shameful support for third parties, to the point that their few third-party devs have trouble getting coherent answers to basic technology questions.

From The Archives:

126 thoughts on “Diecast #43: Broken Age, Wii U, Nintendo

  1. Alex says:

    Not sure it it helps but right now (until feb 4 I believe) you can get HitFilms Express for free. It looks like a pretty good editor. I don’t have too much experience with it, but it looks like a mix between Premiere and After Effects. That way you wont have to have to deal with the sub fee from adobe either. I know this is a bit spammy but it might be easier to not deal with the horror that is Premiere.

    1. I downloaded it, but there’s a bit in the EULA that seems odd to me:

      “3.7 In the event that you produce and provide to FXHOME any text or images (“the Material”) from the use of the Software you hereby agree to release any intellectual property rights which you may have in the material to FXHOME and expressly authorise FXHOME to use the material in any manner or for any purpose whatsoever.”

      So does that mean if they request something from you, it becomes theirs after you send it, or what? If they see a YouTube vid I made with their software, is that the same as providing it to them? WTF?

      1. Alex says:

        I think that it means that if you produce content with the software they can use said video with no permission necessary. The only real use that a company like FXHOME would have with your video is for promotion of their own software. To me that seems pretty legit.

        1. Hmmm. It almost sounds like they own whatever characters or other IP you might throw into it, not just the right to use it for promotion.

          Can any hoodlum lawyers clarify?

        2. X2Eliah says:

          If it was just “expressly authorise FXHOME to use the material in any manner or for any purpose whatsoever”, you’d be completely right, and even though a blanket permission like that is really iffy, well.. one can deal with it.

          However, this bit: “you hereby agree to release any intellectual property rights which you may have in the material to FXHOME” is an amazing NO, HECK NO. By making stuff with fxhome, you instantly lose all your IP that’s put into the video. Note, NOT JUST the ip of the video itself (e.g. “Errant Signal” brand), but ANY IP you have *in* the vid. Including tertiary IP’s of yours that you put in for one reason or another – it’s all instantly lost, if you follow the fxhome’s agreement. (And, at least in the states, these agreements seem to hold some weight in disputes)

          1. Shamus says:

            That’s INSANE. It’s like someone selling a typewriter, “By using this device you agree that we own anything you write with it.”

            Nuts. And useless. Are they really planning on claiming the rights to everything made with their product? I doubt it. So why put that in the EULA? It’s just creepy and dangerous and off-putting. I really need a video editing program, and I’m not going near FXHOME now, free or not.

            1. Steve C says:

              Here is the forum post where that developer tries to explain themselves.

              We added the clause so we have legal rights over the information you provide. This means we can legally add it to the site. It also means in the future we could maybe add it to a cd or other promotional material without being sued. It only covers the things you actually send us (ie the description and thumbnail), the movie itself is not counted and remains your property.

              Except that’s not what their EULA actually says. It goes much much farther. “Release any intellectual property rights” means that you transfer ownership to them. They claim in that thread that you don’t send stuff like movies to them so it doesn’t count. It’s for plugins and the like so they say. However that’s still sketchy as hell. I wouldn’t touch them with a 10ft pole.

              1. Alex says:

                Yeah, I still don’t see why you would need to send them anything though. It’s not like they are doing some kind of “cloud editing”(which would be insane if you had the bandwidth for that). Youtube is not providing THEM anything it’s providing YOUTUBE something. Gah! This is why I hate legal jargon and IP stuff. Nothing is clear all is murky.
                For what it’s worth I found out about the software from the Foundry Forum. Everyone there seems to like it. I mean they yell at it for its missing features( no open EXR support) not for the EULA. Still haven’t spent any time with it so I’m not even sure if it is any good either.

                1. Steve C says:

                  Thing is they didn’t ask for permission to use material. They could have, but they didn’t. They wrote into the fine print full transfer of ownership. It doesn’t matter to me if it’s important material or nothing. It’s highly offensive and demonstrates what kind of company they are.

          2. Alex says:

            Wait, wait, wat but what about the “In the event that you produce and provide to FXHOME” Doesn’t that mean that you need to provide it to them first? I must have miss read it at first. I also thought that they might just take it but it does say “in the event of” it happening. Hmm.

            Ah well legal jargon aside I thought it looked nifty. If you still think it’s sketchy I would probably say it would be safest not to use it.

  2. krellen says:

    I’m excited whenever there’s any new content on this site, and I don’t much care what form it takes.

    1. Tizzy says:

      Me too. But reading stuff is so much more time efficient. So I read everything, listen to most podcasts, and watch a few videos. And I reread a lot, but essentially never re-listen or re-watch.

      1. CraigM says:

        Writing is my preferred MO too. It’s very easy, and works great on a smart phone, for times like… well you can imagine plenty of scenarios I’m sure.

        I also listen to a plethora of podcasts, but those are the sole domain of my commute and running time slots. At home I’m not going to listen to a podcast.

        Video is entertainment that I have a limited slotting for. There are a few things I set aside time for, usually before getting to work at home, like Loading Ready Run or Scott Manley, but to watch another video usually precludes watching one of my normal 10 minutes allotted per day slots.

        So yeah, I’m one of the (apparently) many regulars here who reads every word, but almost never watches the Spoiler Warning vids.

      2. Daemian Lucifer says:

        Me three.I like text because its short and to the point,and I like lets play and podcasts because I can do other things while Im listening to it(though sometimes I do watch the spoiler warning to see the hijinks,like jumping on monsters heads).

        1. Andy Panthro says:

          Me four.

          I generally avoid video-based content, unless it’s something that really interests me (also podcasts, other than the diecast).

      3. Humanoid says:

        The efficiency of reading is why I prefer the audio. I *need* something to chew up some time, with text I spend a few minutes reading then get bored again, complaining about why Shamus hasn’t written another full post in the 5 minutes it took to read his last one.

    2. I'm excited whenever there's any new content on this site, and I don't much care what form it takes.


  3. Tychoxi says:

    I’m waiting for Broken Age’s second part in order to play it all together, but I played a couple of hours to get a taste and I like it too. It’s pretty, nice characters, superb voiceacting, engaging main characters… a nice adventure game all in all.

    The only thing I miss from older adventure games is that there’s only one button, you don’t get to look/examine, talk, use… you just get to click and your character performs appropriate action.

    1. Humanoid says:

      Have done the same thing, played a bit and I guess if I were to pick one word, I’d call it charming.

      Not sure about the removal of the various typical adventure actions myself. 9-12 as in the older games felt like way too many redundant options, but boiling it down to one potentially removes a number of potential puzzles that might be had by associating one or two more interactions with said object. But on the other hand, I got a little impatient with holding down the mouse button for the context menu to pop up in Monkey3 or Full Throttle, and cycling through actions like in Sam and Max was even more tedious. Hmm.

  4. Cybron says:

    “We hardware wasn't finalized until very late in development”

    Guessing you meant Wii

  5. Hal says:

    I went to read that article on the WiiU, and now I’m very sad. I really wanted this console to succeed. Nintendo consoles have always been my platform of choice. I get the impression from that article that they’ll basically be sitting on the sidelines for this console generation because of managerial incompetence and shoddy development tools.

    1. Humanoid says:

      It’s interesting to me that a console is fundamentally expected to require strong third-party support in order to survive, if only to ensure that the first-party titles continue to be churned out. I guess you could say they’re like the bun and the sausage respectively, you need both to make a hot dog, but only one is actually tasty.

      Uh, I don’t really know where I was going with that. But if I buy a console this generation, it’s still only going to be the Wii U, because *shock* I have a PC for anything else.

      1. Thomas says:

        I think consoles without good third-party support still tend to churn out decent first-party titles. See the Wii, Gamecube, N64

        It’s just really limiting to have a console where you can basically only play games from one publisher, even if they are a really good one.

        1. Humanoid says:

          It was more or less my (poorly made) point, yes. Regardless of whether a console has a multitude of good third-party titles or has none, likely I’m going to just buy the first-party titles anyway and play the third-party stuff on the PC.

          The concern, I guess, would just be whether such a sales pattern would be sufficient to keep a company afloat.

          1. Thomas says:

            Nintendo will be fine in that they’ve got more than enough money saved up for one more flop. But the PC market is still the smallest AAA market (by a little bit) and then the crossover of people who are PC gamers but also want to spend $300 to get access to Nintendo IPs must be much smaller than that.

            So it’s probably not enough to make the console by itself profitable, and it’s not enough for the people who are just straight looking to buy a console but as long as Nintendo don’t abandon the console entirely (which admittedly would be my strategy) there’s definitely still a small niche there for them

  6. Paul Spooner says:

    Topic: Queen
    We need some fan-art of “The Fucking Queen of the Diecast”

    Also, could we get a version of the Diecast that is safe for me to listen to around my kids? I’ve got a four year old and a two year old, and I’d like to expose them to these excellent dialogues without the wholly unnecessary vulgarity. While we’re on the topic, a safe-for-family version of Spoiler Warning would be great as well.

    1. Mormegil says:

      With Mumbles and Josh? Good luck with that.

      I have mixed feelings about that idea – on the one hand I have a 6 year old so I understand the desire to have media you can listen to without headphones. On the other hand, the shows have evolved with a certain style and having the hosts having to break that style by self censoring would disturb the flow. Plus we never would have gotten Mumbles doing her marine biology rant.

      1. Paul Spooner says:

        TLDR summary: Swearing does not aid in emphasis, and makes you sound like an idiot.

        I LOVED the marine biology rant! But I loved it despite the swearing. Besides being offensive it’s a bad habit on par with saying “um” and “like” all the time. It wastes the listener’s time without providing any additional information.

        If it is a style, then I simply ask that the style be changed. This is (ostensibly) a “game discussion” podcast. It doesn’t have to be X-Box Live chat.

        I feel like people justify swearing to themselves (and maybe others) by saying “No! I’m fucking swearing for fucking emphasis!” But that, smacks of a lack of confidence. If you believe something strongly, respect your listener by telling them why you do so. I have no doubts about the strength of Chris’ or Shamus’ convictions, despite their lack of offensive verbal filler. In this light swearing is a simple bullying tactic. It says “Believe me not because what I am saying is true, but because I am overwhelming you with coarse language.”

        To my ear, it also seems to belie the speaker’s lack of confidence in what they are saying. Why not just pause to collect your thoughts? Because you are afraid of being interrupted? But this is a controlled format! Make an agreement with the other hosts that they won’t interrupt your train of thought. Because you’re so distracted that your brain will switch off if you stop talking? No. If you’re going to be speaking for the benefit of other’s listening pleasure, I am going to expect you to practice some verbal and mental discipline.

        I have the same problem with Tarn’s speech on “Dwarf Fortress Talk”. He is a smart guy, but his constant hemming and hawing are a huge distraction and waste of time. Plus they make him sound like an idiot. Swearing does the same thing. When you swear you don’t sound smart to me, or convince me, or provide me information, or entertain me. You just make me think you’re probably a stupid lazy bully.

        I believe none of the people on this podcast ARE stupid lazy bullies, so I would prefer that none of them sounded that way.

        1. Nytzschy says:


          1. Judging someone’s intelligence by their conversational style is a terrible heuristic. Change that about yourself before you demand that others change.

          2. Swearing is fun.

          All things considered, you’re probably just going to have to not listen to the Diecast or SW while your kids are around, or use headphones, until Josh decides to take the time to produce censored versions.

        2. Rutskarn says:

          That’s not at all how I use or see profanity. Profanity is by no means a substitute for content or explanation, however you see it–or how you see, from an external perspective, the people using it. In my discourse particularly, profanity is an ingredient that enhances far more often than it detracts.

          Words are like old teakettles. When you brew a pot of tea in an old teakettle, it doesn’t just taste like that tea you put in–it tastes a little bit like every batch of tea the pot’s ever brewed. Tea fanciers will sometimes say that a kettle has “character,” and as an English major, the “character” is my favorite part of any word. Context. Connotation. Subtleties of how a few words together alter meaning.

          Among many other excellent reasons to use so-called profane language, the character each individual obscenity has is my favorite. Swearwords have excellent accumulated value and are uncommonly versatile in how their character can be employed.

          Por ejemplo: I might say my computer is “ruined,” or I might say it is “trashed.” Denotationally similar, but in terms of context and connotation, the meanings are very distinct. A computer that is “ruined,” in all probability, has either suffered some sort of fatal virus or has been shorted out by liquid. In other words, it’s rendered inoperable through nonobvious means. A laptop that is “trashed” probably literally fell off of something, or was hit by a bus, or someone through a speedball through the monitor. These connotations might vary subtly depending on geographical location, but I think I’m right in saying that around here most people would instinctively grasp this difference.

          However! If I come in ashen faced, grimacing–exhausted–and inform you my computer is “fucked…” that absolutely means its own thing.

          Try to hear that in your mind’s eye. “My computer…is FUCKED.”

          As distinct from the other two words as they were from each other! A computer that is fucked has on a very basic level altered its state. It is no longer the computer I knew. There is nothing to recognize there. It’s not physically destroyed, or at least that’s not the profoundest damage. It carries the sense of a truck skidding upside-down and backwards down a freeway; of a wrist that just involuntarily rotated 720 degrees; of a cake someone tried to make with all the usual ingredients minus eggs plus rancid yak’s butter plus dead spiders plus a dollop of cooking oil. It is…really, the best way I can put it is to say it is badly tangled, inoperable, almost maliciously poised against the user. I could say all of those things, just like I could say something was “a rich, blood-red, salty hue” instead of saying something is “scarlet.” Why would I? That would get gratingly old very fast. What a ponderous way to carry on all communication when I can just say “fucked” and people get it. There’s no direct alternative to that word–although I could say it’s “borked” and that’s similar, but “borked” is (in practice, if not scrupulously in etymology) a minced oath for “fucked.” So why bother? Apart from anything else, I’ll go ahead and say it: “fucked” is more fun to say.

          And that’s another thing. Generally speaking, curse words are fun! Not just because they’re curse words, but for the same reason that words like belfry and barrister and shack are fun: because they are lingually pleasing. They please the lips and tongue to say. “Bullshit,” in my estimation, ranks up there with the sound of popping popcorn.

          I particularly miss the logic in saying that using profanity is a “bullying” tactic, any more than using any other words to add emphasis to your point is a “bullying” tactic. It’s direly confusing the person’s sentiments with their goal. Let’s say someone uses “fucking” because they’re mad about a topic. They didn’t decide, “let’s use fucking because I want other people to be mad,” they use “fucking” because that word is in their heart. They are angry and they are using words to demonstrate their anger–this is a thing people should do. Communication is one part of speech, but expression is another, and I think one that’s badly neglected in some circles! You shouldn’t censure obscenity in this context any more than you should demand a uniform volume, or inflection, or pattern of speech–or that chefs withhold salt from their dishes, or visual artists eschew blue when they’re morose or red when they’re ill-tempered. Word choice is important to carrying across one’s feelings.

          As to your point, “If you believe something strongly, respect your viewer by telling them why you do so,” we do that. Believe me: when we want you to know why we feel a certain way, we absolutely tell you. That’s why this podcast is an hour long. None of us have ever said “I AM MAD BECAUSE SHIT FUCK PISS.” That’s an obvious non sequitur, and that is the only possible example of replacing expression with obscenity. What we actually say is “I’m mad because this behavior is fucking unacceptable!”–and the word “fucking” did not diminish that sentence one bit. It added a small part to it–because it colored an otherwise sterile comment with a dash of personal feeling. You can say bad language detracts because it’s bad language, and therefore “low”, but that’s nakedly a case of taboo.

          I love language more than almost anything. I work with it every day. I create with it every day. And here’s the thing: I actually held off on swearing AT ALL until I was twenty, and I sure as shit didn’t start because of peer pressure. I started because I realized that allowing and properly allocating swear words provided me with more ways to communicate.

          Just like any other dozen words in the English language would have.

          I also really can’t get over your statement that swearing makes one sound “stupid.” Stupid people, when swearing, sound stupid. When Stephen Fry or David Mitchell calls something a “fucking disgrace” they sound like the smartest people in the world. Because they are smart, and the things they are saying INCLUDING the profanity are almost always smart. Saying profanity makes someone sound stupid is presenting as unambiguous fact a very personal interpretation.

          1. KremlinLaptop says:

            Well fuck, I feel like I just got told and I wasn’t even the one who got told!

            Also did you know you have blog called Chocolate Hammer? You might wanna look into posting amazing stuff like this response there every now and then–

            Actually that leads me to a question. The four (or five) of you do all this stuff together (diecast, spoiler-warning, etc) why the fuck do you all keep separate blogs? Honestly! Would make much more sense for you all to post in one place, I’mjustsayin’!

            1. Chris says:

              The tone, post frequency, and subject matter would be all over the place, really. The things that unite us are our friendship and the shows we do; but the actual content we produce individually is pretty varied and the result of combining them would be an uncategorizable hodgepodge. Our varied interests and temperaments make for a more entertaining show, I think, but a single place for all of us to post would be bedlam.

              1. KremlinLaptop says:

                But I want a hodgepodge of bedlam!

                It’s just that between your comments on Reddit and Rutskarn’s essay of a comment there? You do write things that would do just as well being content on a blog-space-type-thing, twentysided has the biggest audience for that (I presume), and as Shamus mentioned in the diecast there’s this weird thing about people here wanting more written content!

                Collaborative blogs with varied areas of interest exist elsewhere on the internet, after all. Just from my outside perspective? It seems like there is so much crossover between your readership/viewership that having it all in one place would draw more of a crowd.

                If you all think it would be no good though? Fair enough, I’m just out here spitballin’ suggestions.

                1. ‘the things that unite us are our friendship…’

                  Chris, have you been writing MLP fanfic or something? jeeze! :P

                  ftr I think having just one blog for the whole group isn’t really necessary. I ALSO think rutskarn should use chocolate hammer more. I’d ask for more elder scrolls content, but.. umm. I think we’re going to get plenty of that.

          2. Humanoid says:

            We assumed you started because of Mass Effect 2.

          3. aldowyn says:

            this was super fun to read rutskarn, thanks :D

            also, this part: “I actually held off on swearing AT ALL until I was twenty, and I sure as shit didn't start because of peer pressure. I started because I realized that allowing and properly allocating swear words provided me with more ways to communicate.” reminds me of the episode of Firefly (jaynestown) where Simon says he swears ‘when it’s appropriate’. (It also fairly closely matches my own experience with swearing, incidentally)

          4. krellen says:

            I probably would have just gone with the simpler “hey, fuck you buddy”, but laziness is one of my biggest flaws.

          5. Shamus says:

            I always liken language to clothing. I wouldn’t show up to a wedding or a funeral wearing my bathrobe and flip-flops, and I don’t put on a tie to go buy a Slurpee and a bag of chips. I see swearing as like that. The words have their proper time and place and usage, and it’s something of a taboo to use them outside of that context. You generally don’t curse in front of your elders unless they’ve done the same, and you don’t typically curse above their level. (If grandpa says “hell” that’s not a license for me to say “fuck” in front of him. Perhaps another way to look at it is that elders set the tone of the conversation.)

            It seems to me that cursing socially implies some level of familiarity with the listener. Kind of like, “Hey we don’t know each other well enough for you to talk like that in front of me.” You generally don’t curse in front of people you’ve just met in a professional setting, particularly the first day on a job or during an interview or somesuch. I think there’s this really complex little social dance that takes place in a situation like this. If you’re the New Guy meeting a bunch of Old Timers (even if you’re the same age) then it’s sort of expected that one of the OT’s will be the one to say the first swear words in front of the NG, and by doing so it’s kind of signalling that the NG is welcome.

            And in defense of the “swearing makes you sound stupid” line of thought: I think it’s true that someone who swears constantly and without modulation in swear levels or complexity does kind of sound dumb. It’s like shouting all the time or always typing in ALL CAPS. If you do it all the time, then you can’t use it for emphasis. If I say my laptop is fucked, people around me will understand that my laptop is having a serious problem. But if “fucked” is my adjective for EVERYTHING, then it might just mean I’ve got too many unused icons on the desktop. It’s your way of saying THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT AND A BIG DEAL AND YOU SHOULD PAY ATTENTION. But if someone does it all the time then they come off as a simpleton who thinks everything he talks about is a big deal. I’ve known people like that, and they are tedious.

            Of course the rules are slightly different in a one-way thing like a podcast or book or presentation.

            1. Shamus says:

              Addendum: This is also why people don’t swear in front of kids. The rules for swearing are incredibly subtle and kids don’t yet have the ability to perceive them or the discipline to follow them. Teach a kid “fuck” and they’ll run around yelling it all fucking day. Thus the kid will blunder into taboos they don’t understand, cause offense, and ruin the established mechanics for signalling levels of formality and familiarity.

            2. I do have to say, Shamus, you’ve become a bit more of a free-swearin’ reviewer since you started SW. “Oh my goodness” has gone out the window pretty much. I think it was around Fallout New Vegas where I noticed it creeping in when it wasn’t linked to a bug or aspect of a game you didn’t like (where swearing is perfectly appropriate). The exact line was when you were noting that Deathclaws weren’t the pushovers they were in Fallout 3, saying “They will WRECK your SHIT!”

              And this isn’t a complaint or request you dial it back. I just find it interesting that you’ve gone from “dad-speak” in the early days to being willing to drop an F-bomb when the situation demands. I think perhaps your co-workers may be a bad influence. Or maybe it’s those kids you hang out with at home. :)

              1. Shamus says:

                I’ve noticed the change too. And I think it ties into what I was talking about above. It takes me a long time to warm up to people and feel comfortable around them. Like, years sometimes. But as I got to know the rest of the cast, I felt more comfortable wearing my verbal flip-flops around them.

                But I can’t imagine swearing in my own show. When I make a Reset Button (remember those?) I get all formal and put on my tie, because that feels more right and natural.

                So the rule seems to be: I’ll generally adopt the tone of the conversation going on around me, but only if I’m comfortable with everyone else present.

                1. Alexander The 1st says:

                  Wait…you said that the elders set the tone, and that you’ll accept whatever tone is set of the conversation going on around you…

                  Aren’t you the eldest one in the podcast?

                  Apparently the entire podcast is full of rebels.

                  1. Shamus says:

                    Understand that social rules are incredibly malleable. In fact, calling them “rules” is a misnomer. It’s actually more like “tendencies, as formed by observed behavior”.

                    Having said that, we actually knew each other for quite a while before any of the cast swore in front of me. The exception is Mumbles, but we sort of met through mutual friends and I was the interloper in her group and she was playing TF2, so the rules were a little different.

            3. Sleeping Dragon says:

              I’m just going to add that it reminds me (in the best possible way) of my introduction to (applied) linguistics teacher who always said that things like profanities and (socio-)lingual taboos were his favourite research fields (he was also very interested in how different cultures express politeness and offense). When you’re on your first year starting to look at and analyse lanuage “from the outside” like that is a really interesting, eye-opening experience.

              1. Sleeping Dragon says:

                This was meant as an answerto Rutskan’r post. Also, curse you lack of edit option!

              2. One of my college English courses covered the Canterbury Tales, and it was interesting to see how long some words have been in use (“fart” was one, though it may have been spelled with a final “e”).

          6. Ithilanor says:

            That was an awesome essay, Rutskarn. Best defense of profanity I’ve ever read.

          7. Benjamin Hilton says:

            Because he says it so well:

            Lewis Black

          8. IronCore says:

            This is one of my favorite things that you have ever written.

        3. Steve C says:

          Why don’t you ram it up your pimhole, you fusking clothprunker. (source) No swearing. No problems right?

          I do not want any of the material here sanitized for four year olds thank you very much. That is not the intended audience. If you don’t wish to expose your children to it then don’t. Please do not ask a content creator to change an established style. That smacks of arrogance. I’m not offended by swearing. I am somewhat offended by what you have just written.

          1. Shamus says:

            He was polite and just said he’d like something different. Please don’t escalate offense. I don’t take more offense to this than someone asking for (say) more games focused on the Playstation because the Playstation is better. As long as everyone is polite, I’m happy to see these discussions take place. Particularly when it comes from people who have shown an interest and participated in the community for some time now.

            1. Benjamin Hilton says:

              For what it’s worth, I believe this is one of the few places on the internet where a conversation about curse words could be this civil.

              It’s one of the reasons I enjoy the Twenty Sided community as a whole.

            2. Steve C says:

              My offense was in contrast. My point was that words do not and cannot offend me. Ever. It’s the sentiment expressed behind those words that have the capacity to offend me. Offense is significantly different than hurt feelings. Vulgarity is vulgar and that’s the point. Calling it offensive verbal filler ie inherently offensive by it’s very utterance is both a loaded descriptor and narrow minded.

              Or to say it more succinctly: “Why don't you ram it up your pimhole, you fusking clothprunker.” Is far more offensive than, “Mind your fucking language.”

              How you insultingly described people who use vulgarity, (and then dismissed the feelings of those who took insult) is far worse than throwing a few fucks around.

          2. Paul Spooner says:

            Good content creators are always open to feedback; They are always looking for ways to grow their target audience. For example, MLP:FIM and Veggie Tales are famously popular among children and adults alike. The same could be said of many games, the topic of this podcast. I am offering my views on how the audience and appeal of the show could be expanded.

            In addition, there are a preponderance of foul-mouthed gaming commentators, just like there are many foul-mouthed comedians. I understand this. But I also avoid it, because I consider the best comedians the ones that don’t have to rely on swearing to amp-up their act. Brian Regan is a good example of this, and he has found success in part by appealing to a broader audience than his contemporaries. I suspect the same could be true of gaming commentators, and I would like it to be this set, because (as a whole) I like these people.

            Your stated offense, of itself, means nothing to me. If you met me, I suspect your premonitions of arrogance would be heartily confirmed, and I’m okay with that. So what if I think I’m better than other people? Maybe it’s true, maybe not. I clearly suspect so, anyway, and your hurt feelings (so easy to feign remotely) do nothing to convince me otherwise. It actually confirms my suspicions, since you confess to being jaded to the manner of speech which I consider (and have attempted to explain as) being wasteful, un-entertaining, and offensive.

            So, if I think it will improve their work, I most certainly will ask a content creator to change their established style; Especially so since I happen to like said content creators as people instead of simply as a entertainment personalities.

            1. Rutskarn says:

              The greatest downside of arrogance is not that you “offend” people. It’s that it ruins the lens you view the world through. Arrogance is an assumption that colors every evaluation you make of another person’s behavior. It’s like any other reflexive bias: it is the death of critical, rational, and objective analysis.

              My statement, which I will leave you with, is that there is nothing objectively wasteful or unentertaining or offensive about profanity. I understand if it comes off that way to you, and I don’t think less of anyone who doesn’t care for it, and I certainly won’t tell you to enjoy it–but I think that there is an objective case to be made that it does not materially and measurably degrade communication, and it was this point I was responding to.

    2. Peter H. Coffin says:

      Short of scripting the whole thing or resorting to bleeping, I’m not sure how that would happen. And then you get the fun of explaining the bleeping.

      1. Axe Armor says:

        Novelty censoring! Dub over all swears in a video with a replacement sound effect, such as an elephant trumpeting or a kitten’s meow.

      2. Alexander The 1st says:

        To be fair, they did it for the spoilers for Gone Home when Mumbles mentioned the spoilers for that game.

        And that can be some of the fun. “Uh…the stuff that was censored was about bubbles. Yes. Totally.”

    3. Ithilanor says:

      Given that is a very casual, off-the-cuff sort of podcast, I think you’re going to have a hard time getting Mumbles and Josh to change some of their basic conversational habits.

    4. Humanoid says:

      For a family-friendly Spoiler Warning you’re going to have to contact Bethesda. And also retroactively, the likes of Bioware, Ubisoft, whoever made Bioshock, and Square Enix. Especially Square Enix.

    5. Mumbles says:

      I’m not gold because I forgot how. ANYWAY. Okay, I swear because it’s fun. I like it. It makes me feel like I have a rhythm to how I talk. But, I am dating a guy who hates swears and somehow loves me anyway. So there you go. Stone Cold does a podcast where one is “family friendly” and the other is swearing and jokes about butts and some such. I could do a family friendly show. I can turn the swearing off if that’s what people want lol. I can also talk whisper quiet. Whisper quiet family time talk.

      1. Steve C says:

        Fuck no!

      2. Eruanno says:

        I fucking love it when Mumbles goes on a goddamn swearparade. Never fucking stop the swears. Butts.

      3. Benjamin Hilton says:

        On the note of cursing on the podcast/ Spoiler Warning:

        While some members of the cast may catch flak for cursing allot *cough Mumbles *cough, it is important to remember that this site is merely one venue.
        Shamus is right that cursing all the time would be silly, and from these shows it may seem like Mumbles is one of those people. However this is only one part of her day, wherein She and the others talk about subjects which they are passionate about. So yeah, cursing will happen.

        On Josh Cursing:

        Here is an example of cursing that Rutskarn did not cover. That being a release of energy, a verbal exhalation of frustration.
        Games, while fun can also be infuriating. Yes, later that anger may not seem appropriate, but in the moment it is there, and real, and will be expressed in one way or another. To wit either Josh curses or he breaks a keyboard….I think he’s making the best choice.

        1. Disc says:

          It’s gotta be said though, a non-swearing Mumbles can really be a minor culture shock (at least for those of us who’ve only ever heard her through Spoiler Warning or Diescast).


          A rare non-swearing Mumbles from a couple years back. Related twentysided post:


      4. Paul Spooner says:

        Yeah, I know what you mean. It is (among other things) a cheap way to inject meter into prose. And meter feels good, especially in English. Have you ever tried speaking in Iambic Octameter? Or some other form of structured verse? It’s quite rewarding in many of the same ways. But it certainly is harder, and I respect that. None of you are getting paid for this, or have obligations to anyone (except, ostensibly, Shamus).

        I, personally, would like you (and the other hosts) to turn the swearing off. That is what I want. That my views may not be widely shared is a foregone conclusion at this point; But I’m not ashamed to ask, and I’m glad you’re not ashamed to say “Yeah, I could, but no thanks.”

      5. why isn’t it just connected to your gravatar or whatever?

        I suppose that’s a question for Shamus.

        1. It’s a cookie thing. According to the latest Amnesia SW, she’s got to guess a new password every time she “finds” a new laptop to use after, ah… “saying good-bye” to the previous owner.

    6. Bruno M. Torres says:


      Warning: Just a first sketch, not finished. Beware of bad art.

  7. Paul Spooner says:

    Topic: Text Content
    There are several advantages of reading over watching videos or listening to audio. The foremost is that (for most people) it’s faster. You can get through more content more quickly by browsing text than by listening to someone talk. If you’re willing to skim a bit it’s faster still, and you can also quickly go back and review things that you didn’t catch to ensure comprehension. Text also tends to be more thoroughly edited and better structured than audio, which further increases its chrono-value density. Computers can also search text quite easily, which means that written content has greater value in the long run, as it can be easily accessed again and again.

    On top of all that, Shamus has many many years experience writing things, and so the things he writes tend to be well worth reading. Given the above, I don’t think it’s any mystery why people would prefer text content here.

    1. Shamus says:

      Also, my audio stuff is the very opposite of my writing. With practice, I’ve learned to shave my writing down to increase the information density. (Brevity being the soul of wit and such.) But in my 40 years of speaking I’ve never mastered the art of being verbally concise. I cringe when I hear myself on the Diecst or Spoiler Warning where I have an idea in my head about some complicated point that I want to say, but it takes me two minutes of jabbering to zero in on it, often repeating myself in the process.

      It’s almost like I’m writing orally, with each statement being a more concise re-write of the thing I just said. It’s good when I nail it at the end, but then the end user has to listen to that, plus the stumbling run-up. It’s like reading an article where all of the previous drafts are mixed in with the final version.

      Makes me NUTS. I’m amazed people can listen to it.

      1. Cybron says:

        I just put it on in the background while I do other things, like code. Even when you guys are rambling about stuff like the weather, it makes great white noise that also makes me laugh. And of, course, you do eventually get around to making some great points.

        Incidentally, this is also why I listen to every Diecast and only occasionally watch Spoiler Warning – video content requires a great deal more of my attention, while audio-only I can multitask with.

        1. Paul Spooner says:

          I do the same thing, and enjoy it in the same way. Usually I’ll listen to the Diecast two or three times to catch interesting points of discussion that I missed because I was concentrating on other things.

          Fortunately, this technique also works for Spoiler Warning. I very rarely actually watch Spoiler Warning, but I do consistently listen to it. I feel like I’m not really missing much, as nearly all the useful information can be perceived audially.

        2. Leviathan says:

          I follow a similar pattern: work on something while I listen to or watch something else. Unfortunately, the listening/watching slot is already filled (typically by Netflix), so I strongly prefer text content.

        3. Ithilanor says:

          That’s usually the way I listen to the Diecast. In general, I prefer text content, but audio/video is fine too.

        4. aldowyn says:

          I often spend my time mostly dedicated to listening, with my eyes and fingers occupied by Super Hexagon.

          Took a while, but I may have actually beat Campster’s record while listening to a diecast. (I’m waay past it, now. 210 seconds on the last level)

      2. ET says:

        The thing that more than offsets the stumbling/unedited-ness of your audio, compared to your writing, is that the DieCast and Spoiler Warning are dialogs between four or five intelligent, well-researched people.
        It means that a lot more things get discussed, and by enough people that you get a wholly well-rounded idea of whatever is being discussed.
        As good as your writing is (and is is very good), it’s usually only one person’s viewpoint/research, with the other guys sometimes writing a short little addendum in the form of a comment.

        I’d like to state plainly, though, that I thoroughly enjoy all the types of content on this site. :)

      3. Paul Spooner says:

        Okay, I think you bring up an interesting point here that highlights one of the key differences in the way we process audio and visual information.
        I have an idea in my head about some complicated point that I want to say, but it takes me two minutes of jabbering to zero in on it, often repeating myself in the process.
        In general, visual information is persistent, and audio information is transient. If I look at something, I can “take a closer look” later to catch details I missed. Things generally don’t change that much over time. But if I hear something, it’s generally gone by the time I want to hear it again. This is why conversations are so spread out and repetitious. We need to hear the same thing multiple times in order to “take a closer look” at it. It also affords the other participants in the conversation the opportunity to participate in developing an idea. If you always spoke in complete refined ideas, it would be more of a lecture, and less of a conversation.

        So, I think it’s actually good that all the drafts and re-statements are in there. It’s a very natural and helpful way to speak, even though it would be a wasteful and sloppy way to write.

  8. Paul Spooner says:

    Topic: Nintendo is Stubborn
    So, I’m going to be working in Japan for six months this summer. As a result I’ve been doing quite a bit of reading about Japan, their history, and their culture. Here’s some of what I’ve gathered.

    A major element in the Japanese mindset is that the Japanese Way is the Only Way. The Japanese culture is also highly traditional. Nintendo is a Japanese company in every sense of the word. They don’t want to change. Why would they? They are Japanese, so everything they are doing is clearly the best thing ever! Really, the best outcome would be if all those gaijin just forgot their silly ideas and adopted the Japanese Way. It would be better for everyone!

    In addition, I feel like the culture as a whole is still, for lack of a better term, “pouting” about the Americans shaking things up with the Opening of Japan. Now, they are probably quite justified in that. But it makes their reticence to “just get along” with the other console platforms make at least a bit more sense.

    Perhaps Josh would like to chime in here with his own insights, as he seems to have been a student of Japan for longer than I. I think, though, that the issue is more complex than simply “Nintendo needs to get their act together”. I suspect they believe the problem is everyone else.

    1. Axe Armor says:

      That’s what Nintendo’s always thought; I’m not sure if I’d call it revenge for Perry. Nintendo was terrible with third-party developers occidental and oriental alike up until the Gamecube, when they realized that clinging to the hard-to-pirate cartridge format had let Sony sweep up all of their support, including pure Nipponese Capcom and Square-Enix. I suspect Nintendo’s more recent problems with the Wii-U have less to do with distrust for the nanban and more to do with the fact that there’s nobody anywhere on Earth who knows what to do with the Wii-U.

  9. silver Harloe says:

    Finally read The Witch Watch – not sure whether to say so here or resurrect an old thread, but, uh, I guess I chose here. I sorta finished reading it overnight (messed up my sleep schedule pretty badly). Thanks for writing that. I had great fun.

    1. Shamus says:

      Thanks! Really glad you enjoyed it.

      1. Mersadeon says:

        By the way, I am in favour of another Shamus-book, and if I could wish for a genre I would say cyberpunk. I loved Free Radical.

        Also, I always wanted to ask: what do you think of Shadowrun as a setting? Are you more of a cyberpunk purist or do you like the mix of magic and cyberpunk?

        1. Fawstoar says:

          Oh my goodness. Yes, please: more cyberpunk! Free Radical completely sucked me in over the course of the day that I read it. Shamus’ writing far and away surpasses the source material, which is a wonderfully rare case when it comes to fan fiction.

      2. Peter H. Coffin says:

        It’s always fun when “Thanks for ruining a night’s sleep” is actually sincere… (:

      3. Warrax says:

        I was recently given an older, second-hand Android tablet* that I’m using as an e-reader. The first thing I did was finally buy The Witch Watch. It is quite good, and I would recommend it to anyone around here that hasn’t checked it out yet. Well, I’d recommend it to people not around here also. But those people aren’t reading this.

        (* If I might digress for a bit; as someone new to owning a tablet, even a crappy, slow, wifi-only tablet is a very handy thing to have. So if anyone has been thinking about getting one, but you don’t want to pay for a good one, cheap ones are pretty alright too. My one gripe would be that Kindle’s pricing on e-books is surprisingly high. Self-published books like Shamus’ are reasonable, but major publisher stuff is close to hardcover pricing.)

        1. Humanoid says:

          I got one of those convertibles with a detachable keyboard as a holdover waiting for Lenovo to refresh their Thinkpad line for the current gen. After the first week or so, I’ve just left the keyboard attached permanently and never felt any reason to use it in tablet mode. So in hindsight it sort of vindicates my decision to not consider standalone 10″ tablets.

          I expect it’d be a different situation if I ever got around to trying a 7″ tablet of course, but I don’t really have any use cases for it that wouldn’t be better served by a proper e-ink reader.

      4. Mintskittle says:

        Whatever happened to the sci-fi book you were supposed to be writing way back when? Did that get launched and I missed the boat, or did you end up burying it?

        1. aldowyn says:

          I’m pretty sure he was writing something before good robot derailed everything. Haven’t heard about it since?

        2. Shamus says:

          Yeah, I’ve shelved TWO books now. One I posted here to the site in its half-finished state. The other is sitting on my HD making me feel guilty. I just don’t feel like they’re good enough, or at least not turning out the way I wanted.

          1. Good luck, whether you go back to that one or start a new one, or whatever.

            At least the escapist seems fine with you randomly starting the column back up for a month or so every once in a while. It’s like you’re a professor emeritus who gives talks once in a rare while.

  10. Daemian Lucifer says:

    One great thing that came up from this nintendo failure is:Satoru Iwata shows amazing integrity by cutting his own salary for this.Say what you want about japan,but their leaders act like all leaders should.

    1. Thomas says:

      I do like the way Japanese companies tend to do that. You can snark about someone punishing themselves by ‘only’ earning $500,000 for a year, and sure it’s probably easier to cut your wage when you’re earning millions than it is when you’re earning $30,000. But at there’s a notion of responsibility and accountability that’s still important.

    2. Humanoid says:

      Not Japan as such, but is it not just like that recentish trend for CEOs to, with great fanfare, announce that they’re cutting their salary down to $1. With no mention of the retention of their stock options, bonuses and whathaveyou.

  11. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Also,wasnt the biggest problem of WiiU that practically no one focused on its strength:Local area LAN network gaming?Seriously,this is a great console for CCGs,RPGs,competitive puzzlers and such.The success of Wii was that it focused on stuff that required flailing that thing around,like tennis,fencing,skiing,etc.What they tried to do with WiiU was akin to trying to make the next xbox with just RTSs.It just doesnt work.

    1. Thomas says:

      But in some ways the Wii U is just an unnecessary version of the Wii in terms of LAN, unless you’ve got quite sophisticated tastes.

      Wii-mote flailing is fun because you look silly whilst doing it, so if you’re playing a game the people playing with you can have fun by laughing at what you’re doing and the people spectating can have fun too. Wii U LAN is the same except this time one less person is looking silly (and potentially there’s one silly person and one cool one).

      To be horribly snobbish, the people who enjoyed Wii Sports probably aren’t going to enjoy the cleverness of asymmetric competition in the same way. And for the people with those tastes, the internet has been providing us with it for years

      1. Daemian Lucifer says:

        “To be horribly snobbish, the people who enjoyed Wii Sports probably aren't going to enjoy the cleverness of asymmetric competition in the same way. ”

        Well of course not.You have to target different demographics with different controllers.You certainly wont try to sell a controller to an rts player,or a keyboard to someone who likes brawlers.WiiU is great for games where one or more players needs to hide some information from the others,like in CCGs,or spy games,or where one person is a GM,etc.

        1. Ciennas says:

          Wait a sec- that’s it! The final barrier! You could actually play D&D or equivalents in just shy of real time!

          The tablet lets you drop encounters into maps, and the other players could respond. you could also plot some scripted actions as well. yes, you’d have to build maps, but with a simple drag and drop interface, not unlike farmville, you could put together a fairly complex and cohesive dungeon or play area in no time. they wouldn’t be pretty- they wouldn’t need to be. you could almost build the game as fast as the players in the room run through it!

          Could the Wii U set up be ported to a hardier console? I’m thinking like building a Fallout 3 dungeon or building. That sounds like it’d require at least a modern desktop.

          Anybody else think this sounds good?

          1. aldowyn says:

            well, it does to US.

            But we’re on a site called twentysided.

        2. Thomas says:

          Yeah but the thing about those games is, the people with those tastes are probably more than comfortable playing with people over the internet and those mechanics are even better when done like that.

          The Wii U doesn’t have anything as good as Spy Party yet and Spy Party doesn’t require a good controller. The problem is it’s specifically a LAN thing and tbh it’s not that amazing in a LAN environment.

          Especially since the Wii U excludes the ability for non-asymmetric non-wagglestick co-op. A PS3 guy can play asymmetric games online and then normal co-op games with a friend in LAN, a Wii U player can’t.

          And worse both the PS4 and Xbox One do support asymmetric LAN gameplay through anyone owning a smartphone/tablet and have probably made a better success of using that capability in terms of the target audience of something like this

  12. Cybron says:

    The Wii as not an accidental success. Not at all. I’m sure it’s hard to remember, but back then, casual gaming was basically not a thing. Gaming was for small children and the strange creatures known as ‘gamers’. There weren’t facebook games and mobile games. Now, video games are an ubiquitous part of mainstream culture. Zynga and Rovio have made a million billion dollars. But you know who got in on that market first? Nintendo. They had the vision to pursue that while everyone else was busying chasing the hardcore crowd.

    I remember an article from the days where the Wii was new – before it was even out I think – when the hardcore crowd was laughing at Nintendo and predicting the Wii’s imminent failure. It explained, using quotes from Nintendo’s own press releases, how Nintendo was pursuing a ‘blue ocean strategy’. It predicted a runaway success for Nintendo and the creation of a new demographic for gaming, as previously uninterested parties would be drawn in. Sound familiar?

    There are plenty of things to give Nintendo crap over. I was disappointed with the Wii and how I was clearly not the target demographic for it. I haven’t even touched the WiiU because it’s such a mess. And I think Nintendo is pretty dumb with how they’re operating at the moment, so ignorant of stuff like online gaming which is central to modern gaming. But give them credit where credit is do. The Wii was a stroke of genius.

    1. Axe Armor says:

      It definitely worked out too. The NES and SNES gamers were getting old and wanted explosions. X-Box was selling explosions to North America (like Sega had done previously), and Nintendo would have to fight Sony for Japan, and Sony still had the goodwill of all the third-party devs they’d won from the N64. Nintendo tried it for a while with the Gamecube (Resident Evil 4 was originally a well-advertised GC-exclusive), but when Microsoft and Sony were getting ready to bring out even bigger, noisier hardware juggernauts, Nintendo basically said “fuggit, I’m selling more Mario”. Hence, a cheap, family-friendly little box marketed to trick young parents into thinking swinging a Wiimote might be a little like exercise and designed to deliver payloads of quality first-party Nintendo mascots into impressionable young brains.

      I expect the Wii-U was intended to build on that paradigm, but I have yet to figure out what the Wii-U does.

  13. hborrgg says:

    Wait, Mario has actually plumbed something?! When did this happen?!

  14. Nytzschy says:

    I was very amused when Josh mentioned “some kind of nintendo chinese zodiac” (not his exact words) because, well,


    Regarding the failure of the Wii U, I found this analysis on Reddit pretty interesting and insightful:


    I hate to recommend a Reddit link because the place is such a sewer, but Piemonkey elucidates a lot in their comment. Although I reacted with a sort of glee about the Wii U’s probable failure when it first came out, simply because it seemed so ridiculous to me at the time, I now find myself sad that it’s failing. Probably just because I really like the thought of playing Windwaker HD on a “tablet”, but still. In the end, the Wii U probably shouldn’t have been a console to begin with; it should have been the tablet that came with a Wii successor that was actually competitive. Personally, I suspect it actually was conceived of as an accessory to the Wii, and Nintendo decided to hang its hat on that peg, but they realized the Wii itself couldn’t support it. So, believing that the Wii U could ride the Wii’s wave, they went ahead with this muddled advertising/hardware building strategy.

  15. Until Shamus mentioned a nuclear winter, I could almost see everyone recording this podcast in the retirement center, playing cards while adjusting their shawls.

  16. StashAugustine says:

    Hey, I lost Castile and France, but that was beyond my control; and I did conquer half of Ireland and would have handed us England on a silver platter if the next guy hadn’t messed it up.

    (or if I hadn’t been murdered by a six-year-old.)

  17. Cinebeast says:

    I’m interested in this Crusader Kings II succession game Josh’s playing. If it’s open to spectators, could I get a link?

    1. Humanoid says:

      As much as you can spectate text writeups with screenshots, it’s run on this site’s forums

  18. Steve C says:

    Speaking of weather, this image amused me greatly. People in the south really can’t handle a little bit of snow. Kind of like this. I face-palmed when I heard kids were having to stay the night in the schools.

    1. Tizzy says:

      I got to listen to the podcast comfortably at home for a snow day. I mean, we had almost a whole two inches of the stuff!

  19. massive failure says:

    The whole 3 million dollar kickstarter that keeps getting thrown around needs to die. Admittedly it’s partially Double Fine’s fault for focussing their communication strategy on the existing backers rather than the world at large, but they gave a breakdown of what happened with the money in their first production update. I’m going to break their terms of service and quote it verbatim:

    We really want to share the whole process with you, and that includes something that is usually a big secret on a game: Where does all the money go? Sorry if you don't talk about money in your family, because we're going to talk about it here. As you may know, we recently raised quite a bit. $3,446,371 to be specific. But that money has to go towards a lot of different things, and that's what we've been working on figuring out over the past couple weeks. In order to schedule out and staff this game, we first had to actually figure out what the game's budget would be. And now we can share a bit of insight into that process!

    The first thing to be deducted from our total was Amazon fees. For every payment made through Kickstarter, Amazon took 5%. After that, Kickstarter took their 5%. There were a handful of failed transactions that were never corrected as well, leaving our final total after fees and failed transactions at $3,099,660.

    The next step of this process was figuring out how much it would cost to make and ship all of the physical rewards we offered. It was important that we set aside all this money up front so we could deliver products that live up to our high standards (holy cow you guys are going to be so stoked when you see this stuff). We also wanted to make sure the process of getting this all shipped out had as little impact on the team as possible, so we hired the amazing folks over at Fangamer to handle manufacturing, storing, packing, and shipping all of the rewards. Here's the breakdown on where it landed:

    Manufacturing: $ 246,375
    Fulfillment: $ 35,840
    Shipping: $191,016
    Total: $473,231

    It may look like a lot of money, but hey it's a lot of rewards! These numbers were actually all being run while the Kickstarter project was still underway. Each time we prepared to add a new reward we ran the numbers to see how much it would cost to offer the new reward to existing backers. For each new reward, that amount was covered within hours of adding the item to the project, so this amount paid for itself and then some by enticing more of you lovely backers to sign up.

    After Kickstarter, Amazon, and rewards had been accounted for, we were left with $2,626,429. At this point we were ready to split the money with 2 Player Productions. Originally, 2PP was asking for $100,000, but just like us they were asking for a bare bones budget and their production has expanded quite a bit in reaction to the unexpected amount of support and interest in the project. It meant not just following us for 6 months, but for an entire year. It also meant covering a lot more travel (they're in Portland, we're in SF), buying new equipment, and paying for an amazing score from Terrance Lee. Taking this all into account, we agreed that a fair split would be to give 2PP 15% of the money after fees and rewards. This put the documentary budget at $393,964.

    Using the modern miracle that is math, that means we can now deduce that our game budget is $2,232,465. That's way higher than $300,000! And will most definitely ensure that this game is suuuuuuuuuuper awesome! Here's a neat lil' pie graph to help visualize the breakdown:

    At this point things became much more familiar for us. It turned into an exercise in allocating money for expenditures such as VO, localization, music, marketing, and QA testing, then determining how large the team can be and how long the project will run.

    In the end it means we're in a much more ideal situation. Instead of a team of 3 working for around 6 months, we'll have a team of 11 working for around a year, which ultimately will result in a better game. AND IT'S ALL BECAUSE OF YOU!!

    [end quote]

    1. massive failure says:

      I forgot the edit button no longer exists. Anyway: Full Throttle had a budget of $1.5 million. Source: http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2012-02-10-double-fine-adventure-passes-day-of-the-tentacle-budget

      Adjusted for inflation this comes to 2.2 million.


      Just to put the budget in perspective.

    2. Torsten says:

      So after getting over ten times the budget they asked for, they now spend nearly three times the original budget into things other than what people funded their project for. I have always had a feeling that Tim Schafer and the other big names of yesteryear disappeared from the buzz because while they have great ideas for games, they have poor skills to actually manage the modern game making process.

      1. massive failure says:

        Let’s see. Double fine was created in 2000 after Shafer left Lucasarts. During the 14 years since it was created, it’s grown to a 65 employee size and has remained independent all this time.

        Yeah, double fine leadership is clearly doing things completely wrong.

        1. not to mention the fact that apparently broken age is pretty much exactly what everyone wanted except, y’know, with 10 times the budget.

        2. Torsten says:

          While they make good games, they have a history of cancelled publishing deals, delayed publishing, and generally games that while critically acclaimed, have not been financially successful.

          1. dqdf says:

            Again, the studio has remained afloat and independent for 14 years. After Psychonauts they split the company into smaller chunks to make games like stacking and costume quest that don’t require as much manpower to develop and recoup their costs more easily. You also see this as the company is simultaneously developing Broken Age, Massive Challice and Spacebase DF9 (and god knows if whether there is more being prepared as we speak).

            There aren’t many studios around after 14 years, never mind studios that haven’t been absorbed by a publisher, so while Double fine will never make COD-level sales, but they don’t need to. So I don’t know about them being financially unprofitable.

            And what the hell are we, consumers, giving a crap about a dev’s financial situation. The only thing we should care about is the quality of the product, and its price point. Let’s leave the market analysis to the banks.

  20. Benjamin Hilton says:

    So as an aside about console naming conventions, this morning I walked by my local electronics store and they have a sign in the window that says “We have Xbone systems in stock”.

    When even the retailers are advertising your product as “The Xbone”, you have officially failed as a marketing agent.

    1. Ciennas says:

      Maybe it was on purpose. Maybe the marketing staff didn’t actually like what they were being asked to sell any more than we did?

      So they gave it a silly name. Like in Galaxy Quest:

      “I gave you the ‘kill’ gesture.”
      “No, you kept signaling the word ‘dead’. I was agreeing with you.”

  21. Judy says:

    WiiU Drinking Games
    My boyfriend and I went to go visit some friends over the weekend and the best part of the visit was playing the WiiU with 6+ people and having alcoholic butterbeer on hand. I understand it’s not enough to keep Nintendo afloat, but I honestly cannot think of any PS4 or Xbone game I would like to play with a group of people. You’re right (I don’t actually know who exactly mentioned first-person gaming), Nintendo needs to step up on the first person games but I think they have a pretty good thing going with group games. Now if only they could take it online…

    I would love, love, love to play D&D on the WiiU. That would be so freakin’ fun! Or how about board games on the WiiU? Get some third party companies in on it. Cards Against Humanity and such… Then again who wants to pay hundreds of dollars to play board games on a screen?

  22. On the video editing front, I’ve had some good luck with Sony Vegas for editing gameplay footage. I have had to transcode the footage from AVI to mp4, but there are enough free programs that do that (like Freemake Video Converter) that it isn’t much of a hassle.

  23. Neko says:

    Late to the thread, been catching up with the podcasts, just wanted to talk about the point Shamus mentions about “games don’t need triple-A graphics to be good” vs “the Wii U is severely limited by its graphical power”.

    I absolutely agree that from our perspective as users and developers of games, graphics that are a few generations old are no big deal. If it lets you focus on gameplay or put the hardware to other inventive uses, that’s great. But from the point of view of a large company bringing a console to market that competes with the other big two, it’s an absolute necessity to support the potential for games with HD graphics, even if the bulk of your catalogue won’t need that power. Because having the hardware on-par with the other platforms means multi-platform titles can come over to your console. Not having the hardware to do so means you miss out, which means you lose the popularity war.

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