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Push Fight!
Posted by News Fetcher on May 18 '12 at 08:45 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Ben wrote up an article on the game already, which I think you might enjoy. But of my favorite things about it is the incredibly genuine person behind it. Watch this YouTube video, clearly converted from VHS or something, where he teaches you how to play his game.



(CW)TB

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Recycling
Posted by News Fetcher on May 18 '12 at 08:45 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
The new paradigm for loot in multiplayer action RPGs has been altered somewhat. Skeletons still explode with cash and prizes, that portion has been rigorously maintained. But the merchandise they drop essentially drops separately for each player, so you never have to worry if you picked up the wrong thing or got somebody’s money or any of these other bookkeeping things (like Inventory Tetris) that used to be considered gameplay.
I don’t mean that in a dismissive way, either. I liked Inventory Tetris! But this Diablo is smooth, smooth edges, smooth, from Health On Contact Globes to its infinitely twiddle-able skills.
Loot is smooth. The old “pinata” model wasn’t truly workable in a public multiplayer environment; it got the job done for me in the past, because I play games of this kind either in absolute monastic solitude or with people I can trust, so if a nice crossbow drops we can make certain such things are properly apportioned. That’s not how it works for the vast swath of humanity. Nobody gets screwed in the new paradigm, which is a top-tier concern. In terms of raw philosophy, we’re no longer playing the same game. Client prediction already muddies those waters, but now we’re talking about something a bit more explicit. Downing a boss and divvying up its hoard in WoW, with its rolls and attendant nail biting, is something I’d love to see performed in special cases here. I fully recognize that I am the only one who gives a shit.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Recycling
Posted by News Fetcher on May 17 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Bungie Photoset at PAR
Posted by News Fetcher on May 17 '12 at 01:00 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
One of the things we wanted to to do with The Penny Arcade Report was to accompany it with an expressive visual aspect, and to that end we secured the services of Dabe Alan. We knew about him from his excellent resume, already: he applied for Erika’s job, back in the day. I think he does great work in general, but I want to praise him specifically for the pictures he took at Bungie. Seriously, just shit hot.

(CW)TB

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Betwixt
Posted by News Fetcher on May 16 '12 at 10:00 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
This was a goofy joke when we wrote it at eleven or so yesterday morning, though it became less hilarious as the day progressed. During “normal hours,” the failure of Blizzard to recall that Diablo is a popular game was a boon: I have my own shit to write. But later, when I began to prowl for leisure activities, and it occurred to me that I might utilize the sixty dollars of congealed entertainment I had recently purchased, I was not able to. And then I was, and then I wasn’t, and then no wait it’s still okay now it’s back. Requiring that players be online is one thing - but we are! We’re online right now! They’re the ones who aren’t online. Who watches the watchmen?!?!

Reading around, it’s clear that one needs to phrase their dissatisfaction in these matters in a very specific way. This is one of the stranger new Universals, by which I mean things All Right-Thinking People Believe; things like China Miéville Is An Enjoyable Read. Before you can say that you’re unhappy about something you bought not working, you have to make the parenthetical case that you’re above the whole fray, and it can work or not work, it’s all so droll; you can’t imply that any of it matters because that would mean you weren’t concerned with matters of global import.
I should take care not attend the same potlucks as these people. The kind of family I have would eat them; I think that they would actually cook them and eat them, because these people have not done enough to distinguish themselves from food.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Betwixt
Posted by News Fetcher on May 15 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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An Edit To The Above Post
Posted by News Fetcher on May 14 '12 at 01:15 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
In place of the word Anathem - which is the actual name of a book by Neal Stephenson - I inadvertently typed Anathema, a word that means “someone or something intensely disliked or loathed.”

We regret the error.

(CW)TB

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The Verge
Posted by News Fetcher on May 14 '12 at 10:15 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Neal Stephenson was my favorite author for a very long time, and The Diamond Age remains my favorite book, even if I can’t read any if his newer books with an approximation of enjoyment.
I should emphasize that when I say “newer books,” some of these books are by now quite old: I loved the original Cryptonomicon, but every book past that has been torment. I choked down Anathema from about the half-way point, jaw set, lower teeth pressed hard against the upper, determined not to be defeated. He’d already gotten my money, but I was determined not to lose my honor.
The difference between Neal Stephenson and China Miéville for me is that I never liked the latter, even though I’m supposed to; even though it is simply an accepted fact that people of any cognition whatsoever are turning each page with a shaking hand, ready to receive his next sacred revelation. I own every one of his books, each time thinking this will be the one until his unique ocular drill begins to whir and I must hurl the book across the room or be blinded. This may be the first time you have read on a website that China Miéville is something less than a God; I’ve certainly never seen it typed, which was reason enough to do it.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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The Verge
Posted by News Fetcher on May 13 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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PAX Dev Returns
Posted by News Fetcher on May 11 '12 at 01:15 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
It’s back, and everything you could possibly want to know (including how to submit panels) can be found at the official site.

(CW)TB

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The Warrior Spirit
Posted by News Fetcher on May 11 '12 at 09:45 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Gabriel and and frequent collaborator Scott Kurtz were talking about how Draw Something barely meets the criteria for a game. Gabriel is not as good at Pictionary as you might think: he can draw, certainly, but when you apply a time pressure his whole shit falls apart. Drawing Quickly is a very particular skill, one you must choose at the time of character creation, and he took the traits “Abrasive” and “Annoyingly High Metabolism” instead.
If you can truly draw, though, and you have a capacitive stylus because you are a professional artist, and there are no limits on the amount of time you can sit there and draw, they’re right: the game disappears. The inability of most people to draw a recognizable concept quickly is the game. Right? If you look at a duck, and then correctly declare that it is one, that’s not exactly top ten good times.
While he was still a daily player, the only real complaint he had was that he found himself pulling up the same words over and over. More words, even sponsored words or words which represent common brands, were not something he found especially unwelcome but he may be in the minority there. People are pulling out of the game, some say for this reason, but if I regularly reached nine million people I’d probably say that I was doin’ prett-ty good.
This is that dang ol’ tendency to bifurcate the real into some binary proposition, play or not play, when there’s clearly at least one more approach: leverage their infrastructure to make a statement about it in your turn itself. Stepping out of the dialogue is that choice which seems courageous, but is not; the answer now, as ever, is always more art. Raise a sword in the Devil’s House. Even the answer to art you don’t like is more art - in fact, especially then.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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The Warrior Spirit
Posted by News Fetcher on May 10 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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First party
Posted by News Fetcher on May 09 '12 at 11:30 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
Sometimes it’s nice to take a break from the normal nerd uniform of a T-Shirt and jeans. When you want or need to look a little nicer we’ve made First Party. These are well made pieces that can put a little class in your wardrobe while still representing your love of games.



I’m proud to say that we’ve launched version 2.0 of our classic polo shirt. Besides new colors we’ve really improved the construction of the shirt. These 100% cotton shirts are now made with a much better fabric (a breathable, soft combed-cotton pique to be specific). We’ve also made them much easier to care for by making them pre-shrunk and machine washable. I’ve been wearing the new shirt for a while now and absolutely love it. It feels much better and I think the fit is perfect. It’s also worth pointing out that we’ve made the same upgrades to our new women’s polo as well.



We’ve also added the First Party v1.0 hooded sweater. If you watch a lot of PATV you’ve probably already seen us sporting this in many of the episodes. It’s a 100% cotton sweater in charcoal grey with the white first party logo embroidered on the chest. The reason you see us wearing it a lot is because it’s super comfortable. Our goal with First Party is always to make stuff that we want to wear and this sweater has been a huge hit around the office.



< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Dig Dug Thing We’re Doing At ShiftyLook
Posted by News Fetcher on May 09 '12 at 10:15 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Do you know what that is? It’s kind of cool: ShiftyLook is essentially a series of webcomics (and now a podcast) by a ton of people digging way, way into Namco Bandai’s back catalog. They have a bunch up now, but they’ve got a wider Dig Dug series on the way they roped Scott and us into. Looking forward to it.

(CW)TB

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Condensation
Posted by News Fetcher on May 08 '12 at 11:15 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
It’s entirely true for me, and for Gabriel, and perhaps even for you; there’s seven point six gigs worth of wholly inert Diablo 3 dormant on one of our fixed disks.

Clearly, it’s not the most important thing in the universe. I imagine we’ll continue to respirate, performing gas exchange and generally maintaining consciousness. It is dumb, though, and weird; not the respiration, that’s something you should all be doing. I support that part one hundred percent.

No, it’s the idea that we have to go through all these gyrations even though scarcity and its crude attendant necessities have been (for a not insignificant portion of the gaming public) relegated to history. If anybody could break this thing, it would be Blizzard, right? If anyone could just say, “Hey, it’s 2012 alright, and nobody can play our game offline anyway because we won’t let them, and boxes are made of cardboard and are not in any way magical, so go ahead and install your game” it would be them.
It is certainly the case that there are crevices, holes in the earth, where one may not feel the light of the healing Web upon their skin-flesh. Those people are welcome to purchase physical objects. People of the Console must certainly remain People of the Disc, at least for the time being. But there’s no console version of Diablo, and there’s no secondary market to war with on PC games. There is no fiefdom to sustain, short of an ancient retail edifice the future will rapidly transform into a chain of mall-bound mausoleums.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Condensation
Posted by News Fetcher on May 08 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Child’s Play Golf Tournament!
Posted by News Fetcher on May 08 '12 at 09:30 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
The 2012 Child’s Play golf tournament is halfway sold out now. I’ve decided this is my year to really get back into the game. I haven’t played seriously in about 15 years. I played high school golf as a young man but I got sick of the competition and gave up the game to focus on my art. I love the game though and in just the last couple of weeks I’ve probably been out four times. I’m not shooting like I was when I was 18 but I’m having a blast and I’m getting better each time I go out.

I’m using an iPhone app called GolfLogix to track my progress this year. So far I’ve played two rounds with it and I’m really impressed. You can see my scorecard from yesterday right here (jesus I can’t believe I just shared that). The app gives you an easy way to track things like fairways hit, GIR, and average putts. It will also give you yardages using your phone’s GPS. I was honestly skeptical about that part but having used it a couple times now I’m sold. I played with a buddy who was using a physical range finder to shoot his yardage. We compared numbers a few times and my phone was always within a yard or two of his reading. Anyway if you’re looking for a good Golf app I highly recommend it.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Mobile Frame Zero Rules Preview
Posted by News Fetcher on May 07 '12 at 01:00 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I was super excited about Mobile Frame Zero, to the extent that I was sort of bummed when the Kickstarter succeeded because I loved going back for updates and seeing what people were building. I had a chance to recapture the old magic today when the rules preview popped up in my mailbox: you can grab them too, backer or no, and play games this week if you want to! It’s conceptualized around Lego, but you can use whatever you want to. You aren’t going to get in trouble, or anything; there’s no international body that governs this.

(CW)TB

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The Fullness Of Time
Posted by News Fetcher on May 07 '12 at 11:00 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
No, you can’t actually name a star after a person. Well, you can, but nobody else will know about it and it doesn’t matter. But what if you actually could, for reals?
I think that would be better.
Alright, so the latest Microsoft rumor was not a rumor, because they never are, and this one is so interesting.
It shouldn’t be, of course. It’s utterly pedestrian. Subsidizing hardware with a service charge is how you sell expensive things to people who can’t afford them, or can’t afford it all at once. It’s about context, though: the gaming console has historically been sold to people who place a premium on its ownership. Eventually the top part of the funnel gets wider, certainly, and prices drop. But seeing this model here, where I live, is like finding a bear in your driveway. What happens when you launch a console in this way?
You can look at Amazon or whatever and see that the hardware goes for $276 and up. Obviously, you and I probably aren’t interested in such a device for our personal use: four gigs isn’t enough to copy a single disc to the local drive, reaping the benefits thereby. The Kinect is deeply, profoundly optional as a peripheral. It doesn’t matter, though: “we” already own the thing. “We” have probably owned several, statistically speaking. This box is for another type of person, and that person exists in far greater numbers than the stalwart faithful which huddle in our cloister.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Tera
Posted by News Fetcher on May 07 '12 at 10:30 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
I’m playing a lot of Tera right now. This is always when I regret playing a beta as I push through all the content I already saw. I’m playing a Sorcerer now though which is a change and that takes some of the sting out of doing all the same quests again. As of last night I finally hit the point that I got to in the beta (around level 18).

I’ve had the opportunity to play some high level content at various events and I’m really excited to get to that point with my own character. Something about the combat in Tera just really scratches an itch for me. The combat in games like WoW or even SW:TOR is sort of like old naval warfare. Two big ships sidle up next to each other and just unload. At the end of the day you just have to hope you survive it. Tera is much more action oriented. Enemies give you tells before they attack and you need to move out of the way. You need to be actively blocking and dodging if you want to survive some of these fights. Spells and arrows have trajectories and if you move out of their path you don’t get hit! No more fireballs that track you as you dodge out of the way. So when I have some NPC telling me to go get ten serrated fangs, I’m actually excited because it means I get to go play.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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