This week we clean out the mailbag and answer a bunch of questions. Also note that we’re going to spoil the new Wreck-it-Ralph movie. I haven’t seen it, but Paul has and he has things to say about it.
Hosts: Paul, Shamus. Episode edited by Issac.
00:00 Prey Mooncrash
Spoilers for the ending of Prey 2017.
08:37 Wreck-it-Ralph 2: Ralph Breaks the Internet
Why is this movie called “Ralph Breaks the Internet” instead of “Ralph Wrecks the Internet”? The current title is just a re-hash of an old meme, while the latter references the old meme while connecting it to our lead character.
Also, I noticed that during this section I said “sartirial” instead of “satirical”. I vocalized a typo. That’s hilarious.
26:36 Mailbag: The New King of PC Gaming?
Activision Blizzard has fallen out of favor. Activision are encroaching ever more on Blizzard’s territory with demands on revenue, use of their platform(s), and new, more lucrative business strategies. Eurogamer cites a concern within Blizzard about Activision relationship. We can draw only one conclusion: the king of PC-gaming has fallen.
Who will take up the mantle? Who is the new king of PC-gaming?
35:51 Mailbag: Avatar
I’m a little surprised with your plans of tackling the Last Jedi movie. But in this light, I’m more interested in seeing you writing about the biggest blockbuster of them all. The Avatar. Would you be interested in doing it?
Also, considering that its still the number 1 movie in the worldwide box office, I think its kinda forgotten by now. I find it curious.
Best regards, DeadlyDark
40:50 Mailbag: Paradox Interactive games and neverending DLC.
I have read Shamus’ columns regarding the EA, lootboxes, marketing and the state of the gaming industry in general. I found his takes to be collected and insightful in an realm that I think is often fraught with misunderstanding. What I would like to ask the diecast is whether they have paid much attention to Paradox Interactive games and their policy of neverending DLC.
As you likely know, Paradox publishes and develops Crusader Kings, Europa Universalis, Stellaris, and Hearts of Iron. As a simple example of their business policy, look at Crusader Kings II. CK2 was released in 2012 and as of this writing has just short of $300 worth of DLC and a new large expansion is planned to be release this coming week, nearly seven years since its original release. This seems like it creates a weird situation for buyers; if you’re buying the game today, you’re not going to want to buy all the DLC and you might feel like you’re being cheated having all these features locked behind paywalls (about half the characters are unplayable without two of the DLCs). That said, I bought CK2 at release and really enjoyed it and playing the game today without DLC is really a more expansive game than it was at release.
A cynic could say that Paradox should have released a “finished” game back in 2012, but I personally am always satisfied with their updates and am happy to pay for them to keep them coming (for CK2 and Stellaris, anyway). What’s your take on all this? Are there some perspectives I’m missing?
51:44 Mailbag: Ray Tracing
Reminder that when we recorded this, my comments on ray tracing were a couple of years out of date.
Greetings, Diecast and friends.
I recently found the Youtube channel GameHut, hosted by Traveller’s Tales/Tt Games veteran Jon Burton. He posts videos explaining the various hacks he had to implement to make games back in the 90s and early 2000s. Stuff like the fading geometry in Sonic R or the fake 3D perspective in Toy Story on SNES.
His content is pretty interesting, but this video stood out to me. In it, he showcases a demo meant to entice a publisher to fund the development of a whole game, which eventually became Haven: Call of the King.
Amazingly enough, this demo showcases elements similar to No Man’s Sky, except it’s running at 60 FPS on a PS2 and was made 2001. It’s rough, but you can take off in a space ship and traverse into space without any loading screens. The terrain is preset, but was created using procedural generation.
Now for my questions:
What do you think of the demo in comparison to No Man’s Sky knowing the hardware they’re each running on?
With this technical achievement in mind, do you think the industry has moved on from letting coding wizards optimize games to the very limit of consoles due to the increased demand of content and the reality of making games at modern graphical fidelity? And if so, what do you think could be done with modern hardware given enough time?
Cheers, and sorry for bringing up No Man’s Sky again. Consider it an out of season April Fools joke.
What is this silly word, why did some people get so irritated by it, and why did it fall out of use?
Final Fantasy X
A game about the ghost of an underwater football player who travels through time to save the world from a tick that controls kaiju satan. Really.
Crash Dot Com
Back in 1999, I rode the dot-com bubble. Got rich. Worked hard. Went crazy. Turned poor. It was fun.
Secret of Good Secrets
Sometimes in-game secrets are fun and sometimes they're lame. Here's why.
The Biggest Game Ever
Just how big IS No Man's Sky? What if you made a map of all of its landmass? How big would it be?