Wednesday, November 25, 2009

EXP Podcast #53: Thanksgiving Leftovers

Continuing our holiday theme, Scott and I reached into our 'epic' spreadsheet of podcast topics to share with your our seasonal leftovers. From dark Disney characters to videogame weapons, these six stories are a little old, but still have a lot of flavor. Join us while we discuss persistent world narcissism, games of the decade, in-game trust, and old-school medallions. As always, you can find all these stories in the show notes. Consider the comments section below your 'home away from home,' and leave your thoughts freely.

Some discussion starters:

- How can lies and mistrust be implemented in a videogame?
- How do you feel about collector's editions? How do you flaunt your 'geek' pride?
- Epic Mickey: How much do you trust Warren Spector really?
- What are the most influential games of the decade?
- How do we implement persistent worlds in the most painless way possible?

To listen to the podcast:

- Subscribe to the EXP Podcast via iTunes here. Additionally, here is the stand-alone feed.
- Listen to the podcast in your browser by left-clicking the title. Or, right-click and select "save as link" to download the show in MP3 format.
- Subscribe to this podcast and EXP's written content with the RSS link on the right.

Show notes:

- Run time: 30 min 36 sec
- "Games of the Decade: An Introduction" by Mitch Krpata, via Insult Swordfighting
- "Design of a Decade" by Steve Gaynor, via Fullbright
- Epic Mickey details via Game Informer
- Modern Warfare 2 Prestige Edition via Joystiq
- "Dear persistent worlds: you make me feel bad" by Andrew, via Charge Shot!!!
- "Inside the Video Game Weapon Replica Business" by Mike Fahey, via Kotaku
- "Fear and Mistrust in Videogames" by Scott Sharkey, via 1Up
- Music provided by Brad Sucks


  1. That Mickey Mouse game you were trying to think of was Castle of Illusion for the Genesis.

    Also, on matters of best of the decade, I think they are useful. List are always useful when two things are understood. It is in no way and can never be objective and two there are only X amount of slots. They are useful for stirring up conversation on the topic of what games were the best. What are remembered? You mention a few things of interest that happened in the last 10 years that most will not remember. I think it is especially important given the now now now nature of gamer culture. It is always looking for the next fix instead of looking at what we have. We forget or lose a sense of their place. It is hard to believe, but Dues Ex, Sands of Time, 3 Metal Gear Solids and 4 Major GTA titles all in the last 10 years. It seems like so long ago.

  2. Another thing with the decade list: Dude, 10 years, that's now roughly one fourth of the entire history of games!
    Maybe that's a bit too much, considering the fast development of games especially in this decade. So yeah, maybe splitting it up in console cicles would be better.

    In general I like lists, basically for the same reasons Eric already mentioned.
    Right now I'm really enjoying trying to backtrack my 2009 gaming path and putting together this list of games that I've played, especially since I noticed, that there is only one game on it, that was actually released in 2009 ;)

    One other interesting thing of 2009 was the Citizen Kane of Videogames discussion, which was quickly and unfortunately screamed down by gamers and critiquers(Eric wrote something about that too, as far as I remember).
    I think we could have had a really cool discussion about what game comes at least closest to this.
    Instead it was more like "Metroid Prime, are you fucking kidding me???", "Citizen Kane is overrated anyway" and "what the hell IS Citizen Kane actually?"

    Maybe in the context of a best games of the decade discussion one could pick that up again.

  3. @TheGameCritique

    Actually, the game I was thinking of turned out to be "The Magical Quest Starring Mickey Mouse" for the SNES. Mickey sure was busy in the 16-bit era!

    The Sands of Time thing really blows my mind...are you sure that game isn't just magically rewinding itself through time? ;-)


    Like you, many of my favorite games this year weren't even from 2009. Can I still call Super Mario Galaxy my Game of the Year? :-)

    The Citizen Kane discussion was a weird scene. I'm not sure whether there has ever been an agreement on what constitutes "Citizen Kane-ness" in terms of video games. Is it about storytelling, graphics, gameplay dynamics, or some other aspect?

  4. When thinking of a Citizen Kane of games I actually try to think of a game that can represent the entire medium, especially when shown to outsiders.
    It would be the game which you would mention when asked "So you're actually saying that games are a cultural relevant thing? Now give me at least one example!"

    So it's not the best looking game or the game with the smoothest gameplay from the gaming community's point of view.
    I like to think of it as a representation of games for people outside the medium.

    It's really hard to think of a game that fulfills these expectations, since examples that seem to be obvious like Half Life 2 or Bioshock would always see themselves confronted with one (probably legitimite) counter argument "Well, it's about shooting things, not much happend since Space Invaders huh?"

    Which kind of brings us back to the old but increasingly interesting question as games continue to evolve:
    Why is violence still THE dominant form of interaction? Isn't that the biggest obstacle for games to become culturally accepted more widely?