And here is the last Diecast of 2021. We even managed to clear the mailbag, so we can start next year fresh. Other content will continue as normal, but the Diecast is on hiatus until January 10th. Merry Christmas everyone!
Hosts: Paul, Shamus. Episode edited by Issac.
This was kind of amusing. I liked the damage modelling. I did find the loading screens to be sort of mystifying, though. These tracks aren’t that large. Fifteen seconds might not sound like much, but I know how much data you can move in fifteen seconds on a modern machine.
This problem isn’t unique to Wreckfest. Lots of modern-ish games have loading screens for things that ought to be close to instant. Unity game engine has an asset management system that adds tons of wait time to simple asset loads. Wikipedia doesn’t say what engine Wreckfest uses, so I don’t know if the engine is to blame.
Still, it’s one of those curiosities of modern gaming.
00:38 Deep Rock Galactic
02:46 Linux updates
05:24 Mailbag: Christmas Games
I hope you are both well.
The idea of “Christmas movies” has been around for a while. Titles like Home Alone, Santa Claus Conquers The Martians, and Die Hard are standard fare around Yuletide.
I was wondering, are there any games that you would consider to be “Christmas games”? Either games that have a direct link with Christmas, like Merry Gear Solid, or games with a looser connection, like Icewind Dale… or perhaps even games that aren’t linked to Christmas at all, but you associate with Christmas because of some other reason.
Happy holidays and best wishes for the New Year.
11:38 Mailbag: Be Evil
do you have any single player games you really like where you play as an evil character?
games like hitman and mafia have you playing an anti-villian
you are doing bad things just trying to survive and make a buck fighting against people who are worse than you
in tie fighter, you’re just a grunt following reasonable orders to keep the peace and enforce the law
the motivations of your character and the people you kill aren’t even addressed
and then there are games with morality systems such as knights of the old republic
the justifications for the evil path and choices is shallow; the motivations are just selfishness, power, or cruelty
this makes the pc tough to relate to, and is why i never play evil paths even on replays
can we make a relatable evil character, or are people too conditioned to be good boys and girls?
17:34 Mailbag: WoW Classic Transfer Shenanigans
Greetings, Shamus and Paul!
Recently, WoW Classic had a bit of a snafu in which people were able to transfer their geared vanilla characters from the Classic servers to the new, separate progression Season of Mastery servers.
To put a long story short, someone transferred in a character with raid gear that wouldn’t be accessible on one of these servers for the better part of a whole year. Needless to say, they went around causing havoc in battlegrounds just destroying everyone effortlessly.
While I’m no longer into WoW, this got me thinking about all the other times in history that silly exploits broke MMOs. Someone assassinating Lord British in Ultima Online, the in-game Corrupted Blood pandemic in WoW- all sorts of things like that.
My question to you two is what’s your favorite example of these game breaking exploits, if any?
21:24 Mailbag: Artillery Games
What are your favorite artillery games? Were you a ‘Worms’ or ‘Scorched Earth’ household.
23:43 Mailbag: Full Game to Mechanic
So, I have to say, I find golf to be extremely boring. I’m not a sports guy in the first place, but there’s something about this particular one that I find relentlessly sleep-inducing. But I’ve realized that when golf is turned into a game mechanic for a different kind of game, I find it extremely satisfying.
Two games come to mind as an example: “What the Golf?” (https://store.steampowered.com/app/785790/WHAT_THE_GOLF/) and the upcoming “Cursed to Golf” (https://store.steampowered.com/app/1726120/Cursed_to_Golf/), both of which use the mechanics of this game to solve physics-based puzzles.
My question is, does this kind of thing happen to you? Is there some sort of game that you don’t enjoy when it’s the full experience but you do when it becomes a mechanic in a different style of game?
29:09 Mailbag: GMTK
Mark Brown of Game Makers ToolKit has an ongoing series where he discusses the challenges & learning opportunities inherent in making a video game (link to playlist: Developing). As an indie game developer who has shipped a game, does Shamus have any thoughts on his observations thus far? Have you watched his series? Do you agree with his process so far?
Does Paul have any response to Mark’s approach to making a game? Would you recommend making a game in the way that Mark is pursuing thus far? Have you thought about making your own game, & how would you deal with your own admitted challenges (IE: the dreaded Feature Creep)?
33:39 Mailbag: Unnecessary Mechanics
My son was replaying Super Metroid recently, & we were discussing the Reserve Tank system, & how unnecessary it is. For a brief recap on how Reserve Tanks work, for those who are not familiar with the game, they are related to Energy Tanks (IE health upgrades), but they start off empty, need to be manually activated (or toggled to Auto-Replenish), & are generally just more cumbersome in every way possible. We concluded that Reserve Tanks could have been entirely scrapped & replaced with additional Energy Tanks, with no loss to the game or its world, & was generally a solution in search of a problem.
Have either of you encountered a video game mechanic that was just there for its own sake, contributing little or nothing to the game as a whole? Have you ever played a game & thought “this just doesn’t need to be here”? And do you find that this is common, even in games that are otherwise considered masterpieces, as Super Metroid is often regarded within its genre?
41:36 Mailbag: Level Up Systems
By the law of the Rule of Three, I suppose this is the last time I may use the same source for inspiration to throw a question your way. (Unless you say it’s okay otherwise.) Yes, another Design Doc video compels me to ask you your thoughts on something video game-related! What do you think makes a good/bad level-up system?
49:17 Mailbag: Vampire Plague
I have a bit of an unusual question this week.
How do you think society and its systems would change if vampires (that burn up in sunlight and have an insatiable appetite for blood) succeeded in turning everyone into one? How might they adapt? Could they adapt? And how long might that new nocturnal society last?
During this segment I mentioned that I recently watched a vampire show that I really enjoyed. However, I realized that one of the things I loved was that the whole “vampire” angle came out of nowhere. So if I say the name of the show, then I’ll be spoiling it for others.
At the same time, some people are going to be annoyed because they don’t care about spoilers – they just want to know what I’m talking about. For those people, this video is what got me interested in the show to begin with.
Revisiting a Dead Engine
I wanted to take the file format of a late 90s shooter and read it in modern-day Unity. This is the result.
The game was a dud, and I'm convinced a big part of that is due to the way the game leaned into its story. Its terrible, cringe-inducing story.
Do It Again, Stupid
One of the highest-rated games of all time has some of the least interesting gameplay.
The Best of 2013
My picks for what was important, awesome, or worth talking about in 2013.
Joker's Last Laugh
Did you anticipate the big plot twist of Batman: Arkham City? Here's all the ways the game hid that secret from you while also rubbing your nose in it.