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Jordan Mechner Opening up PAX East
Posted by News Fetcher on February 24 '12 at 11:30 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
My hands quake as I type it!

You almost certainly know, but just in case, Jordan Mechner created Karateka and Prince of Persia, and is currently creating the remake of Karateka, which was just announced! He was telling interesting stories in games without the use of a single word thirty years ago; I can’t wait to hear what he has to say today.

(CW)TB

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Montezuma’s Revenge
Posted by News Fetcher on February 24 '12 at 10:45 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
My recommendation is that if you want to hate your son, please take him to Disneyland. If you want a preview of his coming dereliction, and if you want to see the extent you have failed at preparing a person for life in the world, by all means take him to this cacophonous hellzone. The only succor on offer is to see how miserably your generational cohort has failed their children, also.
There are now Vitas, Vitas which exist, just as the 3DS has entered some kind of normal rotation. You will recall that these nation-states are old rivals, and that comparisons to their earlier iterations came readily; as I’ve already suggested, history has been repeated. We have a slugfest between a slow-burning, three-eyed mutant and a technical behemoth.
Again.
Even when a first generation title is good, and this has been the case with the Vita just as it was with its ancestor, the platform holder can’t resist cramming in some platform specific bullshit to make sure you know that you’re playing with power™ or whatever. The first Uncharted had this kind of ungainly crap, which mysteriously(?!?) sloughed off as it moved into its greatest installment. It’s all back, now, in the portable Uncharted, even though the fact that you are playing a portable Uncharted is actually the draw, a franchise which Sony owns, and will never exist elsewhere. It is, itself, the most pure sort of platform indicator! These people.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Montezuma’s Revenge
Posted by News Fetcher on February 24 '12 at 12:15 AM
From Penny Arcade:


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Book Club
Posted by News Fetcher on February 22 '12 at 11:00 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
I’ve been using my Nook color to tweet about the books I’m reading. I’ve had quite a few people tell me this was helpful. Choosing what book to read next is always an ordeal for me. I scour the web for best of lists and drill down through all of the “people who bought this book also bought this…” lists in my Nook. I ask all my friends what they are reading and if they think I’d like it. Maybe you are like me and maybe a quick list of what I’ve been reading will be useful. So here you go:

As you can see from today’s comic I am currently reading 11/22/63 by Stephen King. I love this book but I am a sucker for time travel hooks and this one is very unique.

- The Dig by Michael Siemsen. This was a great read that reminded me a lot of Michael Chrichton’s better stuff. A boy who can read the thoughts and feelings of an objects previous owner just by touching the thing is asked to hold a strange artifact discovered in an paleontological dig.

- Seven Princes by John R. Fultz. This is a kick ass fantasy novel that is heavy on the fantasy. Necromancers and giants and wizards and all kinds of awesome shit.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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The Flashpoint
Posted by News Fetcher on February 21 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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The Flashpoint
Posted by News Fetcher on February 21 '12 at 11:15 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I’ve talked about David Sirlin a couple times before. I think that if you were to crack open his skull, his brain would look physically different from other brains; I play his games because they’re good, but also in an attempt to figure him out. I felt confident that he’d have a useful perspective on the “clonin’ fever” that swept the web recently, and I wasn’t wrong. He makes a distinction I think is vital, and desperately missing from the utopian/free love model of creative work - what amounts to an Aesthetics Of Cloning. His games Puzzle Strike and Yomi are playable online at FantasyStrike.com.

Regarding cloning, copying, and stealing of game designs: let’s get a couple things out of the way first.

Copyrights. Never violate someone’s copyright, period. That only covers the verbatim expression of an idea though, not the idea itself. This means don’t copy exact art assets, literally identical code, etc. I think we’re all on the same page here.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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The Penny Arcade Report
Posted by News Fetcher on February 20 '12 at 10:15 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
About 14 years ago Tycho and I were roommates. We lived on Top Ramen and Kool-Aid. If we weren’t at our shitty jobs we were playing games. Then came Penny Arcade. We had some difficult years, made some pretty huge mistakes and very nearly gave up. It was at that point that you guys stepped up. We decided that before we threw in the towel we’d try one last thing. We asked you guys to support us with donations. We asked for a couple thousand dollars a month so we could pay rent, buy groceries and get games. You gave us ten thousand dollars in the first month. You supported us for a year through some very difficult times and I don’t think we can ever thank you all enough for that. What we can do is try and use the power you’ve given us to keep making things you’ll like and that make our community better.

We have a new UI element at the top of the page now. Our designers call it a “Brand Bar” and it gives quick navigation to our various endeavors. I’ve been looking at it a lot and I am so fucking proud. Penny Arcade, Child’s Play, PAX, The Trenches, and now the Penny Arcade Report. I tried for a while to think of the best way to communicate how great I think the PA Report is and how excited I am for its future. I think the best way to say it is that, I think the PA Report deserves to be up there alongside those other things we’ve built. It belongs right there between Penny Arcade and PAX. I honestly think it’s that good.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Firebird
Posted by News Fetcher on February 19 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Firebird
Posted by News Fetcher on February 19 '12 at 11:15 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Most enthusiast gamers “get” Angry Birds almost immediately, and move on. For those outside our order - that is to say, the vast majority of bipedal sentients - the ubiquitous Angry Birds is one of the first opportunities to understand what their children are always on about re: vijamagames. It’s ridiculously easy to get and subsequently play, made so by the fact that even my grandparents carry around portable touchscreen computers with perpetual access to the dataverse. This is something even a life ass-deep in science fiction did not prepare me for.
These games also introduce these neophytes to the concept of downloadable content, free and paid, which only feeds the demon furnace of their addiction. They don’t know they’re on something “soft,” they aren’t aware that they’re at the bottom of the roller coaster. They’re just doing something fun, at a chronojuncture where “something fun” often has a digital component.
It was weird! Playing videogames used to be weird. There was a point where spending your time in this way had strictly Morlock connotations. My mom used to worry about what she called my “spirit man,” my spirit man, simply because I kept my curtains closed for weeks at a time in an effort to maintain proper monitor contrast! Maybe it was more the isolation and esoteric knowledge requirements of early gaming that brought with them the attendant subterranean cache, as opposed to the strict form. And now, with a game on a phone, you could conceivably play it anywhere. You aren’t limited exclusively to the bulbous cap of some deep mushroom.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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New 4th Panel
Posted by News Fetcher on February 17 '12 at 12:45 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Just like it says on the tin.

(CW)TB

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Boston Indie Showcase
Posted by News Fetcher on February 17 '12 at 10:00 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
Our Boston Indie Showcase at PAX East will feature some of the best in mobile indie games. We got a lot of entries but we’ve picked the top six and you’ll be able to play all of them at PAX. Check out this site to see the winners.

-Gabe out

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Frigidity
Posted by News Fetcher on February 17 '12 at 10:00 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
There’s some kind of thing going on where EA is attaching things to things and then the things are whatever. It was one of many fanciful ideas, and was chosen ultimately because it had the lowest lethality index.

In another era altogether, I knew a young man who wrote for Voodoo Extreme who went by the name of Eidolon. I thought it was an excellent choice of handle, and I told him so; I tried to be of use to him while he navigated a work environment that grew increasingly strange in the fattest part of the Dot Com Bubble. That young man has since become Manveer Heir, who splits his time between working on Mass Effect 3 and talking almost constantly about a structural concerns in the industry. To say that I’m proud of him sounds insulting, but I don’t mean it to be; I’m not saying I’m in a position to confer status. All I’m saying is that “I knew him when.”
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Frigidity
Posted by News Fetcher on February 16 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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The Trenches
Posted by News Fetcher on February 16 '12 at 01:00 PM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
I I realized this morning as I twittered about the first season of our Trenches comic ending that I had forgotten something. What I had forgotten was to tell anyone that this is what we were going to do! You see it has always been out intention to run the strip for five or six months then take a one month break before starting the next season. We just didn’t tell anyone else about that plan.

So yeah…Season 1 of the Trenches ended today. Season 2 will start next month on March 20th. Our goal with the Trenches is to approach it sort of like a sitcom. We want each season to have it’s own main arc and I think that’s something we’ll get better at as the comic goes on. So far the response to the Trenches has been overwhelming. We hoped people would like it but it has far surpassed all our expectations. So thank you all for following the strip and giving us a chance to tell a different kind of story.

Anyway, I just wanted to apologize for not communicating that to you all. It was one of those things that I just assumed we had talked about at some point. Turns out that was not the case! Now I’m trying to think if there is any other important shit I’ve forgotten to tell you.

Hmmm.

I told you we’re turning Penny Arcade into a British costume drama right?

-Gabe out

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The Waiting Game
Posted by News Fetcher on February 15 '12 at 11:00 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
It’s true enough; we do have Vita software, but no Vita hardware, which is alternately worse and better. If I were creating a social media site about this phenomenon, I would call it “tantalizr.” I would register it, but the device comes out next week. There isn’t really enough time to do the IPO.

I wonder what sort of stimulation this “cartridge” might generate if I pressed the contacts to my tongue.
The Multiplayer portion of the Mass Effect 3 demo told me it was locked until the seventeenth, but then I tried to go in there anyway because I am an iconoclast. It worked, because apparently redeeming an Online Pass for Battlefield 3 is all you have to do, and I did that, and millions of other people have as well. This thing is no bullshit, and I was up way too late playing it.
The Single Player portion of the demo is just stuff I’m gonna have to play all over again, so I wish I hadn’t. The second bit has super interesting shit about Krogan society, which I thought was worth checking out, but still: you could restrict yourself to the multiplayer and still have gotten an excellent demo. The game comes out March 6th, so I mean… You could conceivably hold out. No? That’s fine, me neither.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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The Waiting Game
Posted by News Fetcher on February 15 '12 at 07:15 AM
From Penny Arcade:


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SW:TOR
Posted by News Fetcher on February 14 '12 at 12:00 PM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
I debated talking about this but I think it’s important. If you’re playing SW:TOR this post will have some spoilers with regards to the end of the first story arc.

I was incredibly disappointed and frustrated by the ending of the first arc In SW:TOR. I am playing a Jedi Consular and my class story was really the thing that kept me playing the game. Around level 35 the story started to wrap itself up and this involved a ridiculous amount of planet hopping. I kept getting sent back to Tython and then out to another planet and then back to Tython. Each time running to the space port, to my hanger to my ship to an orbital station to a different hanger to another shuttle to a space port. I was repeating this bullshit dance over and over again until my story finally concluded and that’s when the worst offense happened.

After wrapping up my storyline I was told that the Jedi counsel wasn’t quite ready to give me my next assignment and I should head to the Republic Fleet for some R&R. I assumed this was all apart of the story. I arrived at the fleet and found the person I needed to talk to standing next to my class trainer. I clicked on them to initiate a dialog and they had nothing to say. Then the quest showed up as completed and told me to return to Tython. Let me say that again. The person had nothing to fucking say to me. They did not even try and pretend that they were doing anything other then making me run around for no God-damned reason.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Big Art
Posted by News Fetcher on February 13 '12 at 01:30 PM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
I had quite a few requests for a large version of today’s strip minus the text. Kara and I have been watching two episodes of Downton Abbey every night since we discovered it. I am so in love with the look of the show that I just had to drop Tycho and Gabe into Downton.



Click for a high res version.

-Gabe out

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We Need ENFORCERS For PAX East
Posted by News Fetcher on February 13 '12 at 12:45 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Seriously, though. Are you up for it? Grab the application here, and mail it to Kristin Lindsay at klindsay@penny-arcade.com.

(CW)TB

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Doubleton Abbey
Posted by News Fetcher on February 12 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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