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Demography
Posted by News Fetcher on October 23 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Pinny Arcade
Posted by News Fetcher on October 23 '12 at 02:30 PM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
I just got back from a five day vacation to Disney World. Kara and I had never been before and we had a great time. Every time I go to a Disney park I get the pin collecting bug. In fact it was about four years ago that I came back from a trip to Disney Land and told everyone here in the office that we needed to make Penny Arcade pins. I’m happy to say that Pinny Arcade is finally happening and (fingers crossed) we should have the first selection ready before the end of this year. The plan is to do tons of great PA pins but also pins for games and publishers. I’d love it if you could get an Assassins Creed pin at the Ubi booth during PAX or maybe sit in on a panel for the next Halo and walk out with a sweet pin. I really want pin trading to be big at future PAX shows!

While I was gone we ran a little three part Thornwatch series. With all the work I’ve poured into the Thornwatch RPG over the last couple months it’s been all I can think about. I had a lot of requests for larger versions of some of these comics. Here are some detail shots:




< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Thornwatch, Part Three
Posted by News Fetcher on October 21 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Thornwatch, Part Two
Posted by News Fetcher on October 19 '12 at 11:00 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Okay, now we’re getting into it. I could explain it now, but I think it would be more fun for you to learn in your first few adventures, or in a story. I don’t really like it when people do that, either - that is to say “tease cocks or cock-equivalent manifolds” - but now I know why they do it. Some of them are simply bastards, some don’t actually know, but occasionally it’s about delivering intent and context in a tidy package. That’s what I hope is happening here. Believe me, we have every intention of paying up.
I am big, big into Etrian Odyssey Games, they’re more or less what I want to play when I sit down with Intent To Leisure. They’re mean and I want to be mean back. XCOM is something you can make mean with some checkboxes and aftermarket tweaks, and it essentially owns the Interpersonal Dialogue around here. The only thing these games are missing is multiplayer that compliments the thesis.
Etrian Odyssey III had multiplayer, big boss fights in the you could tackle as one barely sufficient party. And XCOM has multiplayer, also - competitive multiplayer, that is - point-buy tactics that I haven’t played yet but I would be surprised if it wasn’t interesting, given the rest of the package. But being able play the same map at the same time is almost too literal; these are games where being alone is a huge part of the atmosphere. Being exposed, where the decision-weight is not diffuse. XCOM is a great game to play with friends on the couch, but somebody is still pushing those buttons. They know whose fault it is.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Thornwatch, Part Two
Posted by News Fetcher on October 19 '12 at 07:00 AM
From Penny Arcade:


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Oh, Also
Posted by News Fetcher on October 17 '12 at 11:00 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
If you play the Preview game like we do, that cut of today’s Wolf/Bat thing in the upper right is pretty choice.

(CW)TB

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Thornwatch, Part One
Posted by News Fetcher on October 17 '12 at 10:30 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
This is what we’re thinking about all the time, the wayward (?) inheritors of the Lookouts’ creed, so when we needed to get a few strips done ahead of time it was the first thing I thought of. It’s three parts total, running until Monday.
The second Lookouts comic is out today, in digital format as well as in your human stores, and its purpose - aside from being fun - was to give us a place to think about the world they live in. It has done exactly this: I know so much about this place now that it is constantly shooting out of my head and occasionally needs wiping up. I now know Goddamn near everything about the Daughters of the Eyrewood, and I have every reason to believe you will like it. That’s in addition to a hard boil on Thornwatch that I’ve now turned the heat down on. Most of that work is for Gabriel’s project, so you’ll learn about it around your own table most likely. Some of the ideas are in the next couple comics, though, to give you a sense of where they fit in the overall scheme.
I can tell you that it’s very strange to have something you made up at Arby’s rapidly unfold into a strange triptych larger than your skull. Eventually, they’re going to need books: Lookouts, the Daughters, and the Thornwatch all. It’s not an “If” proposition. Is that going to be my job, I wonder? Is that the next horrifying, way-out-of-my-comfort-zone task that’ll fall into my hands because I made a jpeg with my roommate, like, fifteen years ago?
I can see a time approaching when I don’t do anything, all day, but invent names for imaginary medicinal plants. I like to think of this time, and would hasten it.
(CW)TB out.
<a>we picked the right horse</a>

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Thornwatch, Part One
Posted by News Fetcher on October 16 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Granularity
Posted by News Fetcher on October 14 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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No Quarter
Posted by News Fetcher on October 12 '12 at 09:45 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I knew Gabriel when I was an X-Com enthusiast, certainly; I’ve known him since the Earth’s crust was still warm to the touch. We hung out a lot then, but he didn’t approve of my weekly spirit journeys and, if it is even possible, he approved of my tactics games even less.

I pitched Robert a show once where I installed the ancient shit I like (with all the necessary accoutrement) and demanded that Gabriel enjoy them also. If he did so, that would be rad, but these games are the digital equivalent of cave paintings. 320x200 is not a lot of two hundreds, any way you slice it. And there’s none of the inherent woogitude that smoothed over old console games on a television. Those pixels are just there, in all their serrated glory, sawing through his optic nerve.
The new X-Com is the raw, crystalline manifestation of what I was talking about before: evocation versus invocation. I don’t want him to do what I did, I want him to feel what I felt. You don’t get there by accident, not with twenty years of attenuation. Just like Hellgate - which, similar to Horse Armor, is an unassailable rhetorical device - you can’t simply “build up” from the earlier concepts. X-Com as a series is almost an object lesson in the dangers of building up, with a steaming side-order of the dangers inherent in chasing “today’s” elusive “gamer” at every turn.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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No Quarter
Posted by News Fetcher on October 11 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Thornwatch and Cryptozoic!
Posted by News Fetcher on October 11 '12 at 11:00 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
Yesterday I had the chance to demo my Thornwatch game for some friends from Cryptozoic. In case you don’t know, these are the guys who make the World of Warcraft TCG, our Penny Arcade deck building games and are also responsible for the totally fucking amazing Lookouts comic book. Cryptozoic makes a lot of great games and I figured if I really wanted to know if Thornwatch had potential, I needed to show it to some professional game makers.

To say that I was nervous was an understatement. I ran them all through a simple encounter against some vampires. As I’ve mentioned before Thornwatch is a card based game. Each character has a deck and a hand of cards that they play their powers from. Each card in their deck is associated with a skill type. There are six types of skills in Thornwatch and each character is a combination of two usually. In the Thornwatch the skills are:

SPIRIT

You know the songs and ways of the secret Gods. You have walked alongside the invisible spirits who shape the Eyrewood and you can call upon them to help or harm. You can communicate with the denizens of the wood and sense the motives of beast and human with incredible clarity.

MIND

All your life you have been drawn to the study of books and scrolls. You have cultivated a sharp mind and you wield it like a blade. Ancient Puzzles and devious riddles unravel under your gaze. You are perceptive and mindful of your surroundings and no detail escapes your scrutiny.

STRENGTH

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Jambalaya
Posted by News Fetcher on October 10 '12 at 10:00 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
We were lucky enough to receive copies of Dishonored before release, but I am afraid we may not have been terribly good investments thereof; neither of us were particularly taken with it. For Gabriel, that’s it. He’s comfortable having opinions on things. Apparently every person on Earth loves the game except for the two of us, though, and that has made me incredibly curious.
I don’t doubt for a moment that this is precisely game they intended to make. Intention isn’t supposed to matter, of course: how one “feels” at any given moment is the sum total of human endeavor, a custom religion, and to deny your primacy in the universe is the Ur-Crime tantamount to suicide. There is no past, and no future, just momentary stimuli which much be responded to. But I make things too, on occasion, and so for me there are nested aesthetics here: we have craft, and we have taste. I can recognize that seawater sorbet is an interesting, intentionally elemental food without wanting to eat it. And I can see the particular coordinate of Dishonored, and appreciate its pluck and lineage, without especially wanting to go there.
The grab-bag setting really bothered my cohort; I found it charming. For Gabriel, it never got beyond pastiche. I chose Jambalaya on purpose: the difference is all in whether you like the flavor.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Jambalya
Posted by News Fetcher on October 09 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Calling the Thornwatch
Posted by News Fetcher on October 08 '12 at 03:45 PM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
Working with Jerry is pretty great. I can say something like “how do people call the Thornwatch” and five minutes later he comes up with tying a wreath of thorns around a birch tree. He then cooks up a system of knots that tell the Thornwatch what the mission will be. Oh and a poem.

Twainward for burdens that no man should carry,

Bent Bow for battles you can’t fight alone,

Wagon-Wise for when the Watch must not tarry,

Crow’s Loop for travelers far from home.

It was so cool I just had to draw it. This little girl has just finished her wreath and pricked her finger on the knot.



(click for a nice big version)

I’m still working hard on Thornwatch. I have a big play test coming up Wedesday. I’ll make another post about the game after that.

-Gabe out

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The One-Oh-Furst, Part Two
Posted by News Fetcher on October 08 '12 at 10:45 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
We were trying to figure out what “thing” we would be unable to process as society marched forward, what would possess some configuration which would render it unable to be absorbed by our aging brains, in the way that “rap” or “rock & roll” once found themselves in the twilight between exile and ubiquity.
It’s difficult to tell what cultural offers will be elevated, granted Big League status; whatever it ends up being will be wholly inexplicable. By us, anyway. We won’t even have the words to contain our disapproval, and we won’t recognize it as disapproval. It will be a function of these Damn Kids and how they don’t approve of the world we made for them. I’m ready now to love my raccoon son; I’ll stroke his phantom fur while he dozes in his sleeping crate, and leave the lid on the garbage can a little loose. Not too loose, of course - I don’t want to rob him of the little victories that make life so sweet. And I need to prepare him for a world characterized by rugged, stubborn lids.
But what’s it going to be, I wonder - the real one. What will make me beg, beg, beg to have sired an aardvark? Amateur magnet surgery? Spinnerettes? Nose removal? There might be a link for that somewhere, I’m choosing not to look. If I could imagine it, I could prepare for it. I flex my imagination constantly! I make worlds while I’m waiting for my gyro to arrive. If it’s something I can’t imagine by definition, I’m appropriately terrified.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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The One-Oh-Furst, Part Two
Posted by News Fetcher on October 07 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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The One-Oh-Furst, Part One
Posted by News Fetcher on October 05 '12 at 10:30 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I am a “good boy” when it comes to the vast majority of correct opinions. Some I believe because they are right, some I make peace with because they are inevitable, and some I honestly can’t believe we’re still arguing about, but that’s what’s it’s like when you live in a world filled with evil people who will not, can not be wished away. They stay, defiantly, even when you’ve put in a firm request with natural law that they evanesce.
If my son came home from high school one day and told me tearfully, haltingly, that he was double gay, I would love him twice as much. I don’t give a shit about that. If he was a llama or something I guess don’t have a bin for that yet. It seems like if I have to put up with a notoriously ill-tempered packbeast, I should be able to get wool and milk at a minimum. At a minimum. I assume shearing and milking your son is a form of abuse, but I don’t actually know if that’s true. Do you see what I mean? This is the wild-ass motherfucking frontier. Nobody knows the answers yet. I already have a hobbit for a wife, and a “pirate princess mechanic” for a daughter. I don’t need no proto-cameloid for son besides.
In our inimitable way, we tried to imagine our polymorphic, highly granular, identity performance culture occurring in or at any time but now. You’re welcome to be insulted by it, but we actually fell in love with this man, so much so that we wrote two strips about him when we intended to write one. I know where it goes from here - think graphic novel/Hitler in a fursuit - but this may not be a real genre. Two strips is probably plenty. One strip may be too many!
Welcome to Penny Arcade.
(CW)TB out.
<a>the finest words you ever said to me</a>

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The One-Oh-Furst, Part One
Posted by News Fetcher on October 04 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Pac Man Meets Art History.
Posted by News Fetcher on October 03 '12 at 11:45 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
I honestly thought today’s comic would not appeal to people outside the target “people who are me” demographic. So I was pleasantly surprised to see my Twitter blow up with readers asking for larger versions of each panel.

Enjoy!

This one was supposed to be Van Gogh but I think a case could be made for Munch.



(click it for the big)

This is my Picasso or may PACasso? Sorry.



(click it for the big)

I’m most proud of this Salvador Dali one.



(click it for the big)

-Gabe out

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