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Karapyss, The Crabomancer
Posted by News Fetcher on March 29 '12 at 01:30 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
You may recall that, early in the beta period for Rise of Immortals, we said mean things about it and then made a comic about it which was also mean. But! Look what they just did!



Talk about a stand-up crew, jeez. Nice work, though; he looks great.

(CW)TB

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Tiger Wooo
Posted by News Fetcher on March 29 '12 at 09:15 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
Well I am hooked on the new new Tiger Woods. It’s been quite a few years since I enjoyed a Tiger game and honestly I haven’t liked a golf game this much since the original Links 2004 on the first Xbox. This year’s “Total Swing Control” is awesome in my opinion and a huge improvement over the previous swing mechanics. Your shot is now 100% decided by the skill with which you swing the club. You can still apply some spin once you’re in the air but otherwise you will succeed or fail based on your manipulation of the left analog stick.

As someone who really enjoys the sport in RL as the kids say I find the new system super intuitive. You start by opening or closing your stance and then adjusting the ball position. You can also determine where on the ball you’d like to strike it and then you just swing. The new system might not be for everyone and long time players of the series seem divided on it, but if you’ve been avoiding the Tiger games for a while you should give this one a try.

Besides the new swing mechanics I think the Country Clubs are the coolest new feature. These are essentially golf clans you can join with your friends. Once you’re in a country club you can compete in private tournaments, play head to head against each other, and challenge other clubs. The club itself will also level up as its members play. As a club’s level advances its members get bigger and bigger bonuses to the coins they earn no matter what mode they are playing in.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Zeppeling
Posted by News Fetcher on March 28 '12 at 10:15 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
We both watched Life 2.0 at different times in the same week, more than a year past when we had meant to see it, because of time and its, like, inelasticity or whatever. I never got around to seeing this film just like I never got around to playing Second Life, the “game” its based on. These are only two examples of things I always meant to do, but did not; I could go on.
I’d be surprised if Second Life regulars were huge fans of Life 2.0. The director here is no fabulist, but he chose his subjects, as was his right. It’s like The Dungeon Masters, which is also an incredible film, or Darkon, or (and this is rapidly becoming clear as I think about it) almost any subculture documentary. The camera tends to be situated outside.
It did inspire a jaunt into Second Life proper though, the first several minutes of which are catalogued here.

Something I neglected to mention during Monday’s Paean to the Freemium was how quickly these games can change - sometimes, the first change is, itself, to adopt a free to play model. I keep thinking about velociraptors: not just because they’re so great, but because this pack of frenzied beasts must necessarily destroy entrenched games. Not individually, no, but as a function of their aggregating bitings.
These games are even more desperately data driven than normal: they are never “complete” in the way a traditional game can be, and their costs are ongoing. This means they might change tack in interesting ways - one of the things that made my trip back into Spiral Knights so sticky.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Zeppeling
Posted by News Fetcher on March 27 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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First Party Polo Emblems
Posted by News Fetcher on March 27 '12 at 03:00 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
I was talking about how you could upgrade your original Polo a couple days ago, and said you should just cut out the logo from the front of the shirt as a proof of purchase. This was mainly because it seemed way cheaper than shipping us the whole shirt! But if you really want to send us the whole shirt, that’s no problem; we will make sure it passes into a new stage of life with grace and dignity. This is actually something that will happen! We will really do that. It’s not like when your dad tells you that your dog lives on a farm now or some shit when he’s actually buried under the new driveway.

That got dark; it got dark quick. This is why you shouldn’t have me do the merchandise announcements, guys!!!

(CW)TB

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Penny Arcadia
Posted by News Fetcher on March 27 '12 at 11:45 AM
By Gabe from Penny Arcade:
I picked up the New Tiger Woods today and I have to say I’m really impressed. I’ve only played a few rounds but I am really enjoying the changes to the swing mechanic this year. I have not tried the Kinect controls yet but I’ll give that a try tonight and let you all know how it goes. Honestly though this is the first Tiger game in a few years that I can see myself investing some serious time into.

One of the new features this year is a Country Club option. As fas as I can tell it’s essentially calns for golf. If you play as a part of a country club you can earn bonus status points and coins. The club itself will also level up over time. You can have tournaments and even challenge other clubs I believe. I’m not too sure of all the details just yet but I went ahead and started one called the Penny Arcadia Country Club. It’s a club for PA readers and you can use the password wombat to join. I assume since I’m playing on the 360 that you’d need to be doing the same in order to join.

-Gabe out

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First Party Polo 2.0 And Upgrade Program
Posted by News Fetcher on March 26 '12 at 01:15 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
First Party has returned, and we’re back with the 2.0 version of the
polo. What does that mean?


Here’s what we kept from v1.0:

- The style – Still two buttons, still has the First Party
logo embroidered on the chest, still has the blue First Party tag on
the sleeve.

- The weight – We liked the sturdy, 100% cotton of the first
polos, which are thicker than many other human shirts. We kept that
weight.

Here’s what we changed for the v2.0:

- The material – These are made of a finer cotton than the
v1.0s. If you want the dirty details, the v1.0s were “carded-cotton.”
These are “combed-cotton.” The upshot is that they are softer/
sturdier.

- Pre-shrunk – The v2.0 polos have been pre-treated against
shrinkage. So these can be worn and abused like normal laundry and
they will still keep their size.

- New colors – We dropped the bright blue and red and
replaced them with more muted colors: “Slate Blue” and the “Cardinal
Red”. Suggested “Bloodreaverrr Crimson,” got shot down.

- Vented hem (?) – This is that little triangular slit that’s
at the bottom of some shirts of this type. It makes them a little
more comfortable to sit in and (in case it is necessary for a dress
code) far more comfortable to wear tucked in.

What we’ve got is a soft, sturdy, comfortable polo with something
called a “breathable pique weave.” It’s comfortable right out of the
box, and with each wash only grows more comfortable, until you and the
shirt become synonyms.

It seemed like it would be fun or cool or both to offer an “upgrade” program, in keeping with our Version Number nomenclature. Here’s how it works:

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Space Is Still The Place
Posted by News Fetcher on March 26 '12 at 10:45 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
As occasionally happens, our conversation continued after the previous strip, nourished by the rich loam of the Star Wars Expanded Universe. You can get pretty far out there and still remain canonical. I had a bit in there about the pungent natural oils a wookiee paw might secrete, but I removed it because it couldn’t be supported by the text. I can’t be titillated fully unless my erotic fantasy realms are internally consistent. I’ve had to disentangle myself from a Trandoshan 3-way (“hrokk’nos”) because there was something seriously wrong with their bandoleers.
Having spent the entire weekend up to my eyes in games which are Free To Play (in the same way a nightcrawler knotted on a fishhook is “free to bite”) I started to “get” it in a way I hadn’t before. I was juggling Spiral Knights and Dragon Nest, wondering which one I should play, when it occurred to me that these games were designed to create precisely this kind of indecision.

Guild Wars was able to exist on a similar axis because it eschewed the monthly charge, in an era where the Monthly Charge was an assumption. I can’t tell you how many times between games I installed the (freely available) client to visit old haunts. I synced up my new box with my Chrome account, and a few link appeared on my bookmark bar to games I hadn’t played in months. Being Free To Play games, one of which installed directly from the browser window, all it took was the mildest form of curiosity in a bored moment to kick off a two day jag.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Space Is Still The Place
Posted by News Fetcher on March 25 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Getting A Lot Of Requests
Posted by News Fetcher on March 23 '12 at 10:30 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
for a “Han Came First” shirt, which is COMPLETELY YUCK

(CW)TB

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Space Is The Place
Posted by News Fetcher on March 23 '12 at 10:00 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Word that something called the Florida Family Association had imagined some alternate universe version of Star Wars: The Old Republic was simply too juicy a vittle to resist. They’re clearly obsessed with RuPaul, I know that much. Presumably, being a Florida Family Associater involves a tremendous amount of Ru-search. A nontrivial portion of their conceptual argument is grounded in the mental image of a cyborg drag queen version of Darth Vader rendered in such excruciating detail that it is clearly an act of erotic worship as opposed to moral outrage.
I can’t truck with this kind of ignorance. I just want to grab them, and shake them, and say to them The Old Republic takes place thousands of years before the birth of Anakin Skywalker, the ill-starred boy who will one day become</i> Darth Vader</i>. The homophobia is also bad.

My thick, exquisite iMac slab has been pulled up from the roots, decoupled from the desk altogether and placed in the corner of the room as though it were being punished. It’s not, as much as its Siberian exile may appear to be an act of censure. I loved it, as I have repeatedly said. But as potent a wedge as the mobile iOS might be, the Desktop axis of this creature is simply a well-behaved computer. In this matter, as in others, politeness is insufficient as a virtue.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Space Is The Place
Posted by News Fetcher on March 22 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Child’s Play And “Retake Mass Effect”
Posted by News Fetcher on March 22 '12 at 09:15 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
You have almost certainly heard of “Retake Mass Effect” by now. One of many grassroots efforts to get a new ending to Mass Effect 3, it’s part community, part online petition, and part (here is where things get complicated) Child’s Play Donation Drive. They have stopped taking donations now partly because they basically won and partly because we don’t know how to feel about this use of the charity.
As the main point of contact for Child’s Play, Jamie has been buried under mail about this situation. Apparently some of the people giving to the cause seemed to think that they were paying for a new ending to Mass Effect. She’s been asked what the goal is, and how much they need to raise in order to get the ending produced. We’ve also been contacted by PayPal due to a high number of people asking for their donations back. This is in addition to readers who simply couldn’t understand how this was connected to Child’s Play’s mission. We were dealing with a lot of very confused people, more every day, and that told us we had a problem.

< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Draw Something Else
Posted by News Fetcher on March 21 '12 at 10:00 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
You almost certainly know about Draw Something already - like Words With Friends or Hanging With Friends or Inadvertent Castration With Friends, it is an asymmetrical nod to some absolutely commonplace entertainment which modern life has made difficult.
Photoshop Hero” may not exist as such, but the prevalence of touch displays means that more games may leverage its noble spirit. Gabriel’s ChatRoulette mod “The Game” provided hours of entertainment, for example. Draw Something Else, his newest release, may reach a wider audience.
I’m hooked on Kickstarter now; I always wanna be startin’ something. Double Fine Adventure and Wasteland 2 are only a few of my recent ventures, followed up by The Banner Saga yesterday, which I found sort of irresistible. I’ve mentioned that I have a hard time accepting “rewards” beyond the product I’m trying to make real. Having once been in the position of trying to make an Adult Company out of a cool idea me and a friend of mine had, I don’t want them spending their time on me like that. I think it’s an incredibly powerful lure, and it’s core to the philosophy which attempts to create stronger links between people and thing and the people who make things. I don’t get the NPR tote bags either. I don’t know, I’m weird.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Draw Something Else
Posted by News Fetcher on March 20 '12 at 11:15 PM
From Penny Arcade:


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Communion
Posted by News Fetcher on March 19 '12 at 10:30 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
Like any other “interactive experience” from thatgamecompany, it doesn’t take a long time to “consume” Journey. This sort of thing used to bother me a lot. I think it’s valid to assess how much entertainment you get out of something per dollar, but if it’s the only metric it privileges a very specific type of genetic in our discourse. Dear Esther might be a “bad investment” on this classic and utterly pragmatic axis, but it must exist. And we can ensure that it does exist, by being the kind of ecosystem out of the way ideas can grow in.
Gabriel experienced Journey in what was possibly the most optimal way: as he’s more or less sworn off previews or trailers except in those cases of maximum interest, he’s often in a position to be surprised. The biggest surprise possible is that another conscious being will appear out of nowhere, or if not the biggest, certainly it ranks high. This happened to him, and kept happening, because this is how the game was designed. The experience was (and is) so positive, especially in the final act, that I wonder if every person shouldn’t have been given this opportunity: to have never mentioned the multiplayer at all. Similar to Demon’s/Dark Souls, the texture of the game is informed by these interlopers, whether their participation is active or ambient.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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Communion
Posted by News Fetcher on March 19 '12 at 08:15 AM
From Penny Arcade:


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Shoot Many Robots Item Codes (For 360)
Posted by News Fetcher on March 16 '12 at 02:00 PM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
We got lots of ‘em. Lots and lots.

(CW)TB

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Important PAX Stuffs
Posted by News Fetcher on March 16 '12 at 11:30 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
1. Erika and Kenneth redid the PAX Site, and it’s awesome. Check it out.

2. Today is the LAST day to buy a badge and have it mailed to you - otherwise, you have to pick up on-site.

3. Lots of people from Penny Arcade are involved in lots of panels this year. Here’s the current list:

FRIDAY

Penny Arcade Q&A (Mike/Jerry)

Main Theatre, 11:30a - 12:45p

How to Run a Child’s Play Charity Event (Kristin/Jamie)

Wyvern Theatre, 1:30p - 2:30p

The PA Report and Long-Form Journalism (Kuchera)

Arachnid Theatre, 7:00p - 8:00p

Penny Arcade’s Rain-Slick Precipice Game (Jerry/Jeff/Zeboyd)

Wyvern Theatre, 9:00p - 10:00p

The Business of Penny Arcade - Q&A with Robert Khoo (“Khoo & A”)

Manticore Theatre, Midnight

SATURDAY

Penny Arcade - Make a Strip! (Mike/Jerry)

Main Theatre, 10:30a - 12:00p

Paint the Line TCG: Making the Game (Kiko/Bowler)

Merman Theatre, 5:00p - 6:00p

Vantage Point Productions

Arachnid Theatre, 8:30pm - 9:30pm

SUNDAY

Penny Arcade Panel #2 (Mike/Jerry)

Main Theatre, 2:00p - 3:00p

Gabe/Tycho Signing (Mike/Jerry)

Queue Room. 3:30p - 4:30p

The Omegathon, Final Round (Mike/Jerry)

Main Theatre, 5:30p – 6:30p

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The Delicious Invasion
Posted by News Fetcher on March 16 '12 at 09:30 AM
By Tycho from Penny Arcade:
It occurred to us that, like the Council of Elrond, we had the power to unite the mortal races against a common foe. We could just make our own new ending everyone could rally around.
The official line has shifted from “our endings are invincible chocolate platinum” to “okay, let’s talk about the endings later, after more people have finished it.” Personally, I’m still hooked on the Indoctrination theory; I like creeping, gnawing ideas of this kind, ones that call the understood narrative into question. The first Force Unleashed did that especially well.
I’ve been in the habit of making things for public consumption so long now that a lot of the mystery that is bound up in Creative Endeavor evaporates. Patrick Rothfuss had me on as a “beta tester” for Wise Man’s Fear, which I was more than happy to do: I wrote NO in thick black sharpie over entire pages, and I think I even shook my fist at one point at an impotent God. I don’t know how the book turned out because I never read the “real” version, but this very act horrified Gabriel. He thinks of books as being Absolute Things, like Sandwiches, as opposed to something that vibrates or shifts in any particular. I didn’t find it particularly weird, but you come into this stuff with a lot of your own shit. Perspective is, to him, more or less inviolate. That’s something I get.
< article continued at Penny Arcade >

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