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A Near Thing
Posted by News Fetcher on January 25 '16 at 12:23 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I didn’t actually call, but there’s a case to be made. I wouldn’t let any adult care for children, if it were up to me. No fucking way. Adults are just really tall, really weird children. They don’t know shit. The Witness - like Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak - is a game that I thought would never come out. Not because it wasn’t in active development or something, not because people didn’t want them to come out; not because a shadowy cabal managed to erect barriers at every turn. Just because, like The Force Awakens…

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A Near Thing
Posted by News Fetcher on January 25 '16 at 12:21 AM
From Penny Arcade:


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PAX South Store Banner
Posted by News Fetcher on January 22 '16 at 08:21 PM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
BEHOLD. (Click to behold a larger version.) All kinds of stuff, but actual, real PA Moleskines is a big deal to me because I’m a dork. But, like I said: - New Limited Edition PAX South Polygon pin - Moleskine (!!!) PAX Adventure journal - PAX South drawstring bag - PAX South mug Plus for the first time at PAX: - Stream Like There’s Nobody Watching tee - Video Games sweatshirt - Armadeaddon blind box pins - Enfu pins - Dare to Dream tee And of course - New pin set - New show logo tees Brian wants me to tell you that “as usual, the LE pins will be available in…

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Real World Applications
Posted by News Fetcher on January 22 '16 at 12:43 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
More great advice from me. The strip started out being about some of these weirdass monsters in Xenoblade, alien monsters, alien space unicorns, fongroids (?), and assorted other quadruped a-holes where the A does not stand for ass, but Alien. There are a few “arts” we have, special attacky things, that do extra damage from certain positions - backstab or flank type stuff. Except there are a couple of these Goddamn things that are so weird it’s not super clear what even constitutes the “back” or “front.” Luckily, they foresaw…

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Real World Applications
Posted by News Fetcher on January 22 '16 at 12:43 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Martin Randau
Posted by News Fetcher on January 20 '16 at 02:03 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
We have always called the villains you get matched with Randos of various stripes, and for some reason we assumed that everyone did, but I can’t find a lot of evidence for this connotation generally. Urban Dictionary, a wretched hive of scum and at least one other thing, suggests that it means anything from a “random person or thing” to “a nickname for Randy” which I feel like covers the entire ragged spectrum of meaning. There is nothing which cannot be called a Rando, apparently, which at the very least makes it easy to incorporate into one’s…

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Martin Randau
Posted by News Fetcher on January 20 '16 at 02:03 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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PAX Aus Sales Position Open
Posted by News Fetcher on January 20 '16 at 02:03 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Robert mentioned this on Twitter: there’s, well, a PAX Aus Sales Position Open, to coin a phrase. Check it out. (CW)TB

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Further Die Casting
Posted by News Fetcher on January 20 '16 at 02:03 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
“The die is cast” is roughly synonymous with “this is the point of no return,” like “crossing the Rubicon.” And I knew that’s what it meant, but the imagery I used to get there was different. I mentioned en Twittre that, until very recently - the last year maybe - I thought the phrase “The Die Is Cast” was referring to a manufacturing thing, like a shaping tool. The tool that will determine the shape of events is already made. I was overjoyed to learn I wasn’t the only one who felt this way. But there were…

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The Die Is Cast
Posted by News Fetcher on January 20 '16 at 02:03 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
A game called Tharsis just come out from a group called Choice Provisions, which I’d never heard of. Game development at the “triple a” level creates tons of human shrapnel, though, and I assumed that it was another ill-used cadre fleeing the mothership - but “Choice Provisions” is just what Gaijin Games is calling themselves now. If you ever liked a game whose name started with BIT.TRIP, then you like their stuff. They’ve allied themselves with designer Zach Gage, who has made at least one game you like. But it won’t prepare…

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The Die Is Cast
Posted by News Fetcher on January 20 '16 at 02:03 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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PAX South Pins!
Posted by News Fetcher on January 20 '16 at 02:03 PM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
IF you’re going to PAX South and you’ve got the pin bug, then I have exactly what you need. BEHOLD! PARTNER PINS Matriarch Pin [Greater Than Games] Available at The Greater Than Games Booth in Tabletop Surprise Attack Ninja Pin [Surprise Attack Games] Available at the Surprise Attack Games Booth #11102 Creepy Doll BBQ [Loading Ready Run] Available at the Loading Ready Run Table in Bandland Camp Weedonwantcha Haunted Beaver [Katie Rice] Available at the Katie Rice Table in Bandland SHOW PINS PAX South 2016 Pin Set Available at both PAX Merch Booths. Limited Edition PAX…

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Automata Leads And Bios!
Posted by News Fetcher on January 20 '16 at 02:03 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Hey, I thought you would think these were really cool. Filming just got underway, but right before that Dabe did some cool promo shots for you to savor. Check it out! Introducing as Verna: Jen Taylor Jen Taylor is pleased that you are reading her bio. Jen works extensively as a voice actor in radio, television, audiobooks, and numerous video games including the HALO series as Cortana and Dr. Halsey. She also voices the personal assistant of the same name on Windows phones and PCs. Jen co-starred in LEVERAGE (TNT), has filmed a handful of short films for…

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Space Holes
Posted by News Fetcher on January 20 '16 at 02:03 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I feel like we’ve established an immutable truth here. The only distinction between instances of this are how long it takes for you to realize that what came out is bad. For example, some kind of resplendent elven-type motherfucker comes out, and you’re like “God Damn!” but he keeps coming out, and his whole cape is made out of screaming faces. Right? Seems good up front, then, face cape. It’s things like that. The specific visual reference here is to the Court of Oryx, but that’s not where we were when we came up with…

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Space Holes
Posted by News Fetcher on January 20 '16 at 02:03 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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News - Unhelpful-ism
Posted by News Fetcher on January 13 '16 at 10:32 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I’m sort of slowly easing my way through That Dragon, Cancer, both because that’s the only way to do it for me probably, and also because I spent a bunch of yesterday at an actual hospital myself, doing some deliveries for Child’s Play. The combination of these two things made for a pretty brutal day. We had a cart of different bags for the floor we were on, with a list of patients and their room numbers, and as I looked over the first of the two sheets it became clear that none of the kids on that list were older than a year. Two months. Four months. One month. I knew that it was an ICU floor, but not that it was an ICU floor for babies. I have seen small hospital beds, like the one my son was in. But I had never seen an ICU hospital bed for a Goddamn baby, and yesterday I saw many of them. They are too small; they are too small. I saw a crib that was like a regular crib except full of wires and lights. There was a curtain behind these beds parents could use to make a little bedroom for themselves behind it, and these bedrooms were often in use. If you’ve ever had to sleep in a hospital, you know that it’s nearly impossible to do. People are coming in constantly to do really important things. They need to do those things. But you’re lucky if you can get any period of sustained sleep in those places, which is to say the kind of sleep you need to think correctly. It all sort of compounds itself. The enormity of the challenge seems to grow. If there’s sleep going on in there, we leave it outside with a note. Everybody in there needs it. When we come in as Child’s Play, we recognize that the families and the staff are a kind of mesh that holds everything together, so we cater a lunch for the staff and we’ve got toys and games for everybody else. We dropped off a copy of Ticket To Ride for a mom who was very excited to receive it; what an amazing tool to have in that place, a place where empty time is constantly pressing down on you. And it’s very confusing if you can’t see your little brother right now because he is too sick, you’ve got balloons for him and you can’t go in. I’ve got Skylanders stuff for that kid. It occurred to me that we founded this in 2003 and I didn’t understand until just now what we were actually doing. I have been staring at this cursor for a long time. Help me, someone else write this. I want there to be a God, there should be one, because these people deserve an answer. There was some leftover food I got to after everyone else had eaten it There is something about that environment that makes you feel starved and desperate, and I did my best to guide the shaking fork into the customary hole. I had only been there for a couple hours. It was the least I could do, and I still couldn’t handle it. (CW)TB out.

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News - Praise Him
Posted by News Fetcher on January 11 '16 at 11:00 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I told him this for real, as a joke, and he seemed to think it was really funny. Also, I felt like there should be a band named Star-Elk. And I know exactly who else is in this band. I can see the logo, too. It’s got to be one of those inexplicably rendered things that only members of the band can read. Or, maybe something more like the indomitable paraph of Queen Elizabeth I. It could go a couple ways. I’m open to interpretations of this imaginary band founded by imaginary teenagers. I backed a game called “That Dragon, Cancer” a while ago, I don’t even remember how long ago. A long time. I wrote about it even longer ago than that. Some of what I wrote about my dad ended up in there. I don’t know where a hundred percent, just that this thing is a kind of reliquary, not only for the family the game is about but for a lot of other people also. If we can say, as we do, that Ninja Gaiden is a very difficult game, we must be able to say the same thing about That Dragon, Cancer, except it isn’t hard for your fingers to do - it’s hard for your actual self to do. It comes out tomorrow, and I was looking over some art from the game on Steam, and it made me nauseous. I dread playing it. I keep coming back to this paragraph, with the intention of changing the last two sentences if needs be, but it’s still true. Actually, thinking about it, I’m pretty sure “game” is entirely the wrong word for this. Sometimes the conversation about what is and what isn’t a game has an element of rancor, where people are either trying to apply or deny the term based on the word’s inherent sanction or imprimatur. This isn’t like that, though; I wouldn’t apply the term because I think they’ve made something else, and we just don’t have granular linguistic tools to describe it. We’ll have a word better than “simulation” someday to describe what it is to bottle an experience as this family has, and then to bravely let other people inhabit it. They’ve modeled an incredibly complex human experience, and along with the physicality of it, they have modeled the emotional reality of it also, so it is a single piece. And I think that you can react to it, and you will; but at root, it’s theirs. Tread light. (CW)TB out.

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News - Beyond Immersion
Posted by News Fetcher on January 08 '16 at 11:00 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I think autocorrect is actually getting worse. Going first at things sucks. It sucks twice for Oculus, because their ability to communicate is especially bad. They need to hire one or two people of average IQ to act as acolytes and to be the agents of their revelation. They had to announce a price which was different than the price everyone expected and was, indeed, higher than one could materially have been lead to believe. it might just cost a lot pry open the sealed future, you know? Maybe everybody’s shit is gonna be this expensive. Or, maybe it was going to be, until very recently. Going first at things sucks. The cost of the unit itself is only one stratum. The videocard they want you to have to run it is something like three hundred dollars, used; I’m given to understand that other computer parts are required also. I don’t know which ones: maybe all of them. I have those, so I don’t give a shit. I could preorder now if I wanted to, and it would show up around summer? Maybe I’ll try my chances in the retail melee. I have no doubt that it will be shocking. Plus, my daughter wants it, and I have not thus far developed any defense against her. I’ve talked with people at another large company with a vested interest their game platform, it starts with M, and I can tell you they’re not super happy about how it’s looking like Sony’s Morpheus is the default, mainstream option for VR experiences. There’s things we don’t know about it, obviously. I didn’t know about the supplementary processing unit until fairly recently. But it seems like a pretty clear bet that you’ll be able to get in, end to end, for less than a grand. Gabe had revelatory experiences with the Vive, as does “virtually” anyone who dons that sorcerous helm, but he doesn’t maintain a sanctified gaming PC and that dense slug of expenditure is gonna be a heavy lift. Morpheus, on the other hand, is day one for him. And it has REZ. So. You know. (CW)TB out.

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News - Geocide
Posted by News Fetcher on January 06 '16 at 12:15 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I keep grabbing JRPGs and not liking them, and it’s got me worried, because I’ve always thought of myself as someone who liked those. Even when one worms its way through my ventral guard plates I almost never actually finish them. The more inviting they’ve gotten to a mainstream audience, the less I’ve enjoyed them I guess. I’m not trying to adopt a pose, here. I liked them more when they were “boring.” I really did like watching a bunch of people stand stock-still while I fucked around in some menus. Because of where my Wii U is in the house, more adult stuff or things that are meant to be played for long stretches don’t really get played on it. My suspicion is that Bayonetta 2 would not constitute a Living Room Game and I am very confident I would be proven right. I didn’t grab Xenoblade Chronicles X because of this restriction and also because I was afraid this one wouldn’t connect with me either and I’d have to go through the rigmarole of creating a new identity. But Gabriel has it! Of all people! And he loves it(!!!). Apparently he’s in there going buck-ass wild. And then he tantalized me with this glimpse of Victorian ankle:
So we’re going to take some time tomorrow and try to crack it wide open. Also, I won my first two games of Duelyst, and I’m afraid of my third one but I’m gonna suck it up. I wasn’t a backer; Gabe backed it, and forgot. I found the image of the Red Tree mythic and compelling, and the juxtaposition of the hand-drawn stuff and the pixels was interesting, but I didn’t know much else. I don’t even know why the fuck I started playing it a few days ago; I applied for the Beta in March of last year, and then mostly forgot? Now I can’t get my dick out of it - it’s stuck inside. I only wrote that because I thought it would look funny on the box. Don’t worry; my dick’s fine. Kiko wanted to know what the hook was here, the differentiator that would allow him to cross his arms in preemptive judgment, and this is what I like about him. We lean in like Odin with our one good eye, frowning with the strain of our appraisal. There are lots of games that do this, and by “this” I mean that you build unit decks and play them on boards. That’s not weird at all. But they don’t look this good. Their factions aren’t this coherent. And when cards become units, they don’t have the weight and physicality of a Duelyst unit. That transition has to matter; it has to seem like this is the only game it could be. Play a few rounds with the starter decks - Gabe won his first games with a starter, and at the early tiers, you won’t suffer for it. Try the single player puzzle challenges and then wonder how you managed to escape this thing’s tentacles for as long as you did. It does something strange I wanted to mention: it lets you tip your opponent with in-game currency, which I found fascinating. I have a bunch of nonsense theories about this that will never be borne out, because I won’t be in a position to do it, but ask any one of my unnamed interlocutors and they will tell you I never shut up about it. I’ve been wondering if there’s a way to establish and promote a game with a free to play economy that has Benevolence as a root value, and I’m always trying to get people to try it with their valuable IP, but they keep saying no because they like to eat food as opposed to Good Feelings. (CW)TB out.

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News - Dare To Dream
Posted by News Fetcher on January 04 '16 at 11:45 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Dogs are a theme that runs through a lot of my favorite strips in the archive. Apparently? I just found this out. Like, the one with the Canid is big with Tychos in every demo. There is an old New Year’s Resolution type strip which also features dogs that I like a lot, and today’s strip is the sequel. I know what you’re thinking! How do you top that. My answer: even more dogs. I feel like the math is clear. If Kiko puts out the call, we can usually get a solid crew together for Rainbow 6 - which is still going strong in our group, even if I never hear anything about it from outside our cloister. Any other time I have in front of a computer I spend in Elite: Dangerous. I don’t have the Horizons expansiony thing, and I’m not playing it in VR. I never do anything of note and my ship is still bullshit. And yet, for some reason, it’s all I want to do. It’s like going on vacation, I swear to God. I’m going on a road trip except there is no road and there’s no destination. This round of Elite - and there have been several - was inaugurated specifically to try to work with some friends and see in what ways we could be useful to each other, but I’ve never seen any of them yet and I’m fine with it. Such a big part of what I like about it, and it is literally both big and a part, is just using a fucking flightstick again. I mean, it’s just a Saitek X52. It’s not even the Pro! And me “playing” the game, at least for the time being, mostly involves me just undergoing the rituals of navigating, docking, launching, and travelling. For whatever reason, that’s just kind of what I want right now. The stick is a cyber-rosary, and it enables genuflection for Atheists. I’m also working through the Single Player Challenges in Duelyst, and if you are into collectible tactics type games, you should too. Basically, if you like Hearthstone but want the cards you play to become monsters on a chessboard, this is one hundred percent that. Or maybe it’s the hologram wargame thing they play in the Millennium Falcon, but with way fewer pixels. I’m not looking forward to my first multiplayer match in Duelyst, but sometimes that same fear inspires me to what you might call “basic competency.” Let’s see. (CW)TB out.

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