At the top of the show I joked that we weren’t going to have an editor because Issac was feeling sick. But he bounced back quickly and was able to edit the show, so this episode isn’t unedited chaos as I anticipated.
Oh well. Better luck next week.
Hosts: Paul, Shamus. Episode edited by Issac.
00:00 No editor
Issac is better, although I think he used my joke as an excuse to cut some corners. We’ll see.
01:14 Tin Can
08:53 Archive Arcade
I see a lot of people say thing like, “That was my childhood!” when looking at the Nintendo 64 or the Gamecube. But for me, this stuff was my childhood. I remember sitting at one of the tables at Village Pizza, hypnotized by the demo on the “1943” machine. How can the machine make the ENTIRE SCREEN scroll like that? That must take an unimaginable amount of RAM and processing power. Computers are getting so powerful these days!
Check it out: The Internet Arcade.
10:44 Planet Crafter
20:29 Linux gripe, The alt-tab
Great. Another terrible shortcoming with Linux.
26:26 Mailbag: Game and Real Life Overlap
The appeal of video games is in how they intrigue human psychology with puzzles, competition, adventure, satisfaction, etc. When I’ve spent a year not gaming, I’ve always adapted by picking up hobbies. It was in these periods that woodworking became appealing. Perhaps this was because, like a game, a hobby offers possibilities, projects that progress to conclusions, opportunities to compare oneself to others (including aspiration to achieve what they achieve), and all that sort of thing.
Video games and hobbies have much overlap in how they tickle our monkeybrains. What do you think of this idea? Do you put gaming on hiatus when you need to get a big work project done? Does gaming artificially satisfy and pacify us, leading to a society of people who don’t know which end of a hammer is used to unscrew the staples?
Health and happiness to you,
29:15 Mailbag: Niche Game Interests
Once in a while gaming regresses. Perfect Dark allowed players to create customized bots to fight against, leading to some of the favorite memories from my teenage years. We felt joy and despair in our wars against the hyper-accurate glass cannon bot army.
Worse, FIFA Soccer games disposed of the control scheme that they’d used up through FIFA World Cup 2002 on Playstation 2. This allowed for the player to use the controller to intricately control:
a.) the power of a kick by holding the button to charge up power and release at the right moment (there were different buttons for different kinds of kicks)
b.) the angle of the kick with one of the joysticks. You could kick the ball to any of the 360 degrees
c.) the curve of the kick, modified with the shoulder buttons, allowed the player to swerve a ball around a defender or away from a goalie.
It was a skillful game, especially enjoyable if sharing a team with a buddy while making amazing plays. The ball went where we were skilled enough to put it. Every pass had to be aimed and weighted appropriately.
If you’re curious, here’s a clip with a timestamp. Every kick that you see the player implement here is sent to a spot on the field. If his teammate is at that spot, then he earned that completed pass. The game didn’t automatically aim passes for him. It was glorious. I miss it.
Is there a game, series, control scheme, or genre that you lament as being lost to the past? Something that was just OBJECTIVELY better and is inexplicably gone?
32:53 Mailbag: Game AI
Did cover shooters kill the good enemy AI in shooters?
What are some of the late 90s/early 00s game with the best AI?
Are there any games after 2010 that had great AI?
43:23 Mailbag: AI Shamus
Since AI generated writing technology seems to be developing at a fast rate. How would you feel Shamus if in like 10-20 years, people could compile all your Twenty Sided posts and throw into an AI app or site that can write articles that seem like it was written by you?
Sort of like how we might still see old celebrity actors in 2050 movies because of improving deepfake technology. Maybe you could even do this with all the audio from the podcast and use it to make an AI Diecast? Eternal Shamus Young content!
46:18 Mailbag: Fantasy Epics
On a friend’s recommendation, I’ve been reading Brandon Sanderson’s Storm Light Archive books.
Each of these books is over 1,000 pages, and there are 4 books out with 10 planned.
There are dozens of developed characters.
Do you like stories setup like this?
Or do you prefer when books are brief and the characters are mostly ordinary while the exceptional ones are left mysterious?
Batman v. Superman Wasn't All Bad
It's not a good movie, but it was made with good intentions and if you look closely you can find a few interesting ideas.
A Lack of Vision and Leadership
People fault EA for being greedy, but their real sin is just how terrible they are at it.
A programming project where I set out to make a gigantic and complex world from simple data.
Skyrim Thieves Guild
The Thieves Guild quest in Skyrim is a vortex of disjointed plot-holes, contrivances, and nonsense.
Raytracing is coming. Slowly. Eventually. What is it and what will it mean for game development?