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Timeless Sentiments
Posted by News Fetcher on April 23 '15 at 11:15 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I feel compelled to tell you that I am not at the office. I’m not even writing this! I am having a man I barely know dredge a needle through the skin of my forearm, over and over. And, as if that weren’t enough, he’s dipping the tip of this needle in ink so that even once they’ve healed the scratches this miscreant is scratching will leave permanent marks. It’s rude at best. What’s more, I’m paying this highwayman for the privilege of being thus savaged!

It’s a gruesome inversion of the natural order.
If there is anything to be said for this violent werewolf, at least he is giving me some say in the shapes he indelibly carves. I work with text enough to know that it only holds meaning for so long when looked at; words become shapes very quickly. That’s one more reason not to get the tattoo rendered in the strip</i>. I make these posts out of what is, essentially, dry sand; I have to pile it up fast before it becomes a big ol’ heap of bowls and serifs. That’s what I like, though, words I guess, and I think I’ve squared the circle. I’ll post a picture of it later. I mean, you tell me.

The problem is that I’ve had too much time to think about what to get, now; I’ve wanted to do it for, oh, twenty years let’s say. Of course, back then I wanted to get <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goliath_%28Gargoyles%29">Goliath
. From Gargoyles…? Or some shit? I can’t really see my back, just because of, like… where it is on my body, so I have often fantasized that I did do it. But then I think about having to explain the mystic admixture of ferocity and nobility the Gargoyles represent every time I take off my fucking shirt, and I think “maybe I saved myself a bunch of time.”

(CW)TB

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Vorvax, The Forgotten
Posted by News Fetcher on April 22 '15 at 10:00 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I got these three frames in a text message a few nights ago, and I can’t prove it but I think he may have drawn them on a pile of spare printer paper, in his lap, while also playing Destiny. I mention it, because I can barely do one thing at a time.
Hey! So, I got kind of a weird opportunity a week or so, and I jumped on it. I was asked to write flavor text for a game called “Apocrypha” on Kickstarter. Sort of surprised nobody took that name already, but there you have it. I agreed to do it, of course, because it’s being built by Mike Selinker. His name there links to his BGG Designer page that has a lot of games on it, and it’s very broad, from his Pathfinder Adventure Card Game to Betrayal at the House on the Hill to Lords of Vegas to all his other insane shit. You’ve played one his games, most likely. You may even have enjoyed it.
Apparently I was a stretch goal? It is weird to be a “stretch goal.” I was surprised that he asked me, to be honest; I thought I’d foreclosed any possibility. We were walking through the hall once when he was gonna give feedback on Gabe’s Thornwatch stuff, and at one point he stopped, turned, and said, “You’re one of those people who doesn’t believe anything is real, aren’t you.” Which was so weird, because I’m always trying to account for this belief in my conversations with people. I’m always saying, “Dude, you seem really tangible today,” or “Keep on existing, like you obviously do!” accompanied by a double thumbs up and a smile that says “There’s a reality independent of our observations!”

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Vorvax, The Forgotten
Posted by News Fetcher on April 21 '15 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Something we’re working on…
Posted by News Fetcher on April 20 '15 at 02:30 PM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:


Just a little tease.

-Gabe out

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Bass Ackwards
Posted by News Fetcher on April 20 '15 at 09:45 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Captain Forial’s finger hovers over the communications circuit, withdraws. Then it flips out straight, like a retractable antenna, only to retreat again. Now she’s holding her fist against her mouth. She would go through the cycle again, maybe, if the channel hadn’t flared open, if a tiny version of her nemesis hadn’t appeared.
“Captain,” says the tiny, glowing light man.

“Yes, Admiral… Neeb,” is her precision engineered reply. She had discovered that saying Neeb without laughing was as hard as anything she’d done in her life. And she’d recently secured Captain over a Chiss. So.
“We’re moving the AT-ATs to Endor, as you saw in my recent communique. After their tremendous success routing the Rebels on Hoth, I see no reason not to press this advantage on other fronts.”

“Excellent, Admiral. We await their arrival.” Establish a front. Then, flank: “Have we considered that there may be environments whose native terrain might deliver even greater results than on…”

“AT-ATs are All Terrain vehicles, Captain,” burps Admiral Neeb. His voice is fringed with exhaustion; he can’t believe he has to explain this. “All Terrain.”

From the observation deck, she looks out at Endor’s third moon. It’s green. Very, very green. Except where it’s blue.
“I forget,” she says, her voice thin. “Does Hoth have any trees?”

He doesn’t answer right away. She hears him typing something. And when he comes back:

“No, no trees.”

“Just a big ball of ice, right?”

“Snow and ice.”

She lets that one go. She has to. If she swings at the console, she’ll need the medical droid again. And then, the medical droid will need the repair droid. Again.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Monday Sketchdump!
Posted by News Fetcher on April 20 '15 at 09:00 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
Here’s this week’s peek at my sketchbook.




< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Bass Ackwards
Posted by News Fetcher on April 19 '15 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Exchange Rate
Posted by News Fetcher on April 17 '15 at 09:45 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I’m given to exaggeration. Example: I once said that mice were “way, way smaller than voles,” and got an earful from the Rodent Liberation Front, Friends of the Mouse and the Vole Association. But I am not exaggerating and am in fact being circumspect with my language when I suggest that redemption arcades are a spectacularly bad investment.
I’m not sure I would have thought the new Daredevil show was possible before I’d seen the new Daredevil. I thought the same thing about The Flash, I guess. If I hadn’t been forced to sit on ice and not move for a couple days, I still wouldn’t know that The Flash - against every natural law - is a worthy investment of one’s dwindling lifeforce. Still can’t watch Arrow. After the Crossover episode before, I decided I wanted to be an Arrow fan but I only got a couple episodes in. It’s not for me. And I’m not saying that I don’t like it! I’m saying that they made it for someone else, so me not wanting to watch it sorta makes sense.
It’s about the parenthesis, the containment membrane, in either of the last two cases. They cleverly play around with this idea even in dialogue: The Flash and Arrow are from different towns, and these towns have different rules. Given the thesis for Flash, they’ve actually constrained themselves substantially. I don’t feel like Arrow makes sense even according to its own rules. I’ll dip a toe back in when the seasons ends, maybe I missed something. But let’s talk about Daredevil.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Exchange Rate
Posted by News Fetcher on April 16 '15 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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101, Part Two
Posted by News Fetcher on April 15 '15 at 11:15 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
This is the last strip in this series, at least, I think it is; ol’ Gribbz gets home tomorrow, and it may be that something has occurred to him in the intervening period. Judging from the response to it and other content in this vein (something my associate alluded to in an earlier post) we, uh… hm. It seems like there is a huge group of people that nobody is talking to about this stuff, and they really, really want to know it. Complicating matters is the fact that, in their situation, to ask the question is to fail! You’re supposed to know it already, and if you don’t, that’s one more thing you’ve fucked up this afternoon. The only way for you to learn it is for someone else to volunteer it. Wheels are in motion.
I try not to let my first feeling about something be my only feeling. My initial read on the Saurids, for example, is that they were amphibious reptilian bipeds. That isn’t a good example I guess because that all ended up being true. But, let’s say we were talking about Mortal Kombat Easy Fatality Packs. These are packs for Mortal Kombat which allows players to execute Fatalities easily. On the surface. But is that what they actually do? Yes.
I think I need to have my, uh… metaphor thing calibrated.
One hearkens back to the environment fighting games hatched in, an agar plate of teenage anguish in which all manner of dark creatures grew, and when I think about a person beating you in the arcade and then putting in another quarter to do a Fatality, or to perform some other literal or figurative emasculation, I try to imagine this person escaping with their life.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Some fun Games!
Posted by News Fetcher on April 15 '15 at 08:00 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
I took two awesome games with me on our spring break trip to Oregon.

Spirit Lords

This game is a combination of Diablo and Pokemon. Maybe that’s all I need to tell you? It’s FTP so you have to put up with “energy”, a bunch of different kinds of currency, and (the mechanic I hate the most) Powering up the monsters you’ve collected by feeding them different monsters you’ve collected. I don’t know why that one drives me so crazy but I really hate it. Despite all the FTP bullshit Spirit Lords is super fun. The various Spirits you collect slot into your character and grant you special abilities. They fall into certain categories like defensive, movement, or offensive. You take these powers into a Diablo style dungeon crawler that’s beautiful and honestly fun. I’ve been playing a bunch of Dungeon Hunter 5 recently and I actually prefer the combat in Spirit Lords even though (or maybe because) it only requires one finger to play. Since it’s free there’s not much need for me to go on and on about why I dig it. Just go grab it for yourself.

Implosion: Never Lose Hope

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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101, Part Two
Posted by News Fetcher on April 14 '15 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Monday Sketchdump!
Posted by News Fetcher on April 13 '15 at 08:30 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
We’re spending Spring Break down in Oregon right now so I just have a few doodles for you today.




< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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101, Part One
Posted by News Fetcher on April 12 '15 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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101, Part One
Posted by News Fetcher on April 12 '15 at 11:15 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Like the man said, he spent some time at an Honest To God PTA Meeting (H2GPTAM). He told them about a lot of stuff, stuff so rudimentary about our ways that you would be insulted if I tried to tell it to you. But that’s where you have to start.
If you grew up when we did, being a “gamer” - the kind you would put in quotes to indicate an explicitly demarcated class of person - almost required that you were acquainted with what might as well be necromancy. There is a lot of shit that goes on behind televisions, it’s already more than what most people want to deal with. But if you start talking about Java and Mods and Firewalls and shit people get the shakes like they’ve been snakebit. I can tell you that trying to make children that are better for having known you is so difficult that I don’t know if I can do it, but I know about Mods. I know about Java and ports. If I didn’t know about Java and ports - to say nothing of Youtubers or Let’s Plays or Skins or DLC or Steam or Free to Play - it wouldn’t merely be the run of the mill impossible that it already is. This would be the kind of impossible that goes to Hopeless University, and gets a Doctorate in crafting insuperable barriers.
Even if they wanted to tell you what they were doing in there, half the words they’d use to do so wouldn’t make sense. In many cases, the only crime you can pin on these moms and dads is that they had the grim, grey misfortune of parenting the first generation of cyborgs.
I have a lot of sympathy for that person. And I think there’s something we can do about it.
(CW)TB

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The Last Game
Posted by News Fetcher on April 10 '15 at 10:45 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I would have thought Disney was behind the curve a little bit with Infinity, but that wasn’t entirely true; a nice line, a novel feature set, and, um, access to the full battery of Disney’s geosynchronous branding platform seems to have squared the circle. I would have dark words for the third entrant into such an arena if it weren’t Lego. Disney’s stable is pretty legendary, but the Lego side of the equation consists of every other notable brand. Disney isn’t willing to go whole hog on the crossover stuff outside of a very specific quarantine zone, and that’s going to be the Strength (or Might, if you’re playing Pillars) of the Lego Dimensions play.
Of course, that’s to say nothing of the profound erotic potential.
My theory is that it’s just gonna be Emmet and Wyldstyle at my house, given the fact that Movie Night with my fam could be called Lego Movie Night with no loss of clarity. Ronia plays with the bricks Brenna had as a kid, and Elliot plays with all my old Lego shit. Kids don’t really perceive the hard lines between genres that are so incredibly Important to us; and there’s something fundamental about the universally capable Pip that unifies these toys physically and conceptually. I, uh… hm. I just realized that I could talk about this for another thousand words. Let this act as the final parenthesis: not focusing all of my adult resources as a coherent beam on the acquisition of Lego sets requires a substantial investment of my psychic reserves, and this shit doesn’t help at all.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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The Last Game
Posted by News Fetcher on April 09 '15 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Winnerism
Posted by News Fetcher on April 08 '15 at 09:45 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
The definitive “Mario Party Is A Shitshow” strip has already been written; indeed, it was written eight years ago. I know this because I wrote it, with my friend and associate Al-Gharib. But they keep making these things, which makes me think that someone must be playing them also. I mean, I can’t one hundred percent prove that. But I bet it does happen. There are those who wring their hands at the “messages” games communicate to our greasy, unblinking larvae, and in this case they might be onto something.

The thing about Mario Party is that it doesn’t really matter if we like it. Nintendo occupies a weird position, not entirely a creature of the industry taxonomy, like, maybe you flip the diagram over and then it just says the word “Nintendo” with a winky emoticon. They’ve had the same problem everyone else does trying to figure out what a console is supposed to mean now, with the added pain of determining what a handheld system is supposed to mean in the age of the smartphone, but if there’s somebody else making games for absolutely everybody - functionally speaking, crafting interactive television - I guess I don’t know about them.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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I spoke at our PTA about games
Posted by News Fetcher on April 08 '15 at 09:45 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
Last night I was a guest speaker during a PTA meeting at my son’s school. I spoke about video games, ratings and the importance of paying attention to what your kids are playing. I thought it went really well and I figured I’d break down my talk here in case anyone wanted to take some of my ideas and do something similar at their kid’s school.

This was an elementary school PTA and this particular meeting (I’m told) had a much better turnout than most. It was advertised as a night discussing kids and games and it seemed like a lot of parents are very interested in the topic. Before I went up to speak a woman came over to talk to my wife. This other Mom mentioned how excited she was to hear me speak because her son wants to play Minecraft on the “game system” and she was concerned about it. I knew at that point my talk was going to be a big help.



I started off my talking about the ESRB. I explained that video games are rated in much the same way that movies are. I talked about each of the ratings and broke down the sorts of things they implied. I also talked about how two games can have the same rating but for very different reasons and that you still needed to pay attention to what your kids are playing. Then I went on to talk about the idea of “online content not rated” and what that means.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Venusian Stalemate
Posted by News Fetcher on April 08 '15 at 06:10 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Being a Destiny Problem, it doesn’t overlap with my portion of the Great Diagram. I had seen it lamented, though, and heard of targeted salves applied by the developer, so I asked our resident Gabriel if logging in, joining a Strike, and then not playing Destiny was a common thing.

I know, for example, that I don’t play Destiny. I never play it. I’m content to not play the “Weekly Strike,” which I’m told is a kind of Strike, but I just keep doing whatever I was doing before. Maybe I’m absorbing one of the new Final Salads from Wendy’s, heaped with the strange grasses and black stones which grow - and some say dream - in the Omega Cleft. Very briefly, though, let me tell you what I don’t do. I don’t log in first, get matchmade, materialize in a level, and then refuse to play.
I asked Gabriel if he felt like a mark or like an awesome, capable person after he got done doing three Guardians worth of combat completely by himself, and he said it was a little bit of both. The alternative, of course, is to not play Destiny. Except it’s on his television right now, and he has the controller, so…

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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