Giant Bomb News

111 Comments

Worth Reading: 11/30/12

A big ol' installment of Worth Reading after a one-week break that includes the most realistic toilet simulator you've ever played, butts, stories to make you cry, thoughtful pieces on #1reasonwhy, and an assortment of other nonsense.

I will try to convince myself it's okay that I'm playing this at 20 frames-per-second or whatever. Argh. Shut up. I know. I know. I know.

Thanksgiving came went without a big ol’ purchase of PC parts, but it’ll be soon, promise. I know, I said that before, but but but. I'm just waiting on something to clear up before I can hit buy, and I finally learn what a headache it is to own and maintain a PC. Plus, watching Far Cry 3 on a PC versus an Xbox 360 has been...painful.

Then again, I’ve gotten used to dealing with the minimum. My Xbox 360 is launch era machine, makes noise the equivalent of a space shuttle, and only has 20GB of space to work with. I do not go back to old games often, though, so I don’t have a problem with having a single game installed to the hard drive at a time, with only a handful of Xbox Live Arcade games. Memory management is just a quirk I’ve gotten used to, though I wouldn’t exactly get upset if that Xbox 360 finally bit the dust and I was forced to upgrade. I might as well deal with it and wait for the next console. (If you feel like red ringing, though, it's okay!)

That’s all just part of my cheapish nature, which both works for and against me. I would probably be happier with a quieter Xbox 360, but I’m usually playing with headphones on, so...eh.

Worth Reading is bigger than normal this week because I was actually collecting material for one during the Thanksgiving break, even if I knew I would ultimately have no time to put it together. I’m starting to feel like this feature needs a bit of a shake up, only because it feels a bit routine at this point, so if you have any suggestions...

Hey, You Should Play These

Another situation where the less said the better. Just make sure to follow the developer’s instructions and have the appropriate spaces noises (which I converted into an MP3 and now have on my phone--seems great for naps on flights) while playing through The Message. It won’t take you more than a few minutes, start to finish, and you’ll want to immediately go back and see the other options when it’s all over. The Message does a terrific job of setting a grim, disturbing mood for the state of the emotional state of planet Earth, and by the end, well, you’ll understand why.

(The Message was part of Fuck This Jam, which leads me to...)

The above three are selections from the recent Fuck This Jam game jam, where participants made games in genres they hated. I don’t know if that’s actually what happened in most instances (though the enormous amount of faux football games in the database does suggest otherwise for some people), but it doesn’t really matter, since Fuck This Jam resulted in a whole lotta awesome nonsense. Rather than just including one, I plucked three from a quick overview of the submissions, but if you have some favorites, send 'em over with a link, and I’ll highlight another set.

(And, yes, that’s really all there is to Totally Accurate Toilet Simulator. What, you wanted more?)

And You Should Read This, Too

Simon Parkin files what might as well be (for now) the definitive piece on the Hot Coffee scandal that nearly brought down Rockstar Games, even if Rockstar itself chose not to comment. (Sam Houser did talk about with author Harold Goldberg for a book--read his comments at Wired.) Parkin dug up a series of incredible emails from within Rockstar through legal filings, and it paints a very detailed picture of the reasons why sex mini-games became a thing in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, what prompted the company to remove them, and how they were discovered.

But the commercial imperative was clear: fail to make the cuts and the potential audience for GTA: San Andreas' could be restricted by the ratings board. The question now was how to extract the explicit material without breaking the wider game's functionality so close to release. An emergency meeting was called so that the senior managers could discuss a solution. During the meeting Houser explained: “You can't always take a thing out of a game."

When I finished reading Jenn Frank’s piece about her mother’s recent death, I cried for two reasons. One, it’s a heartbreaking story told with such vivid and breathless detail that one cannot help vut feel crushed. Two, I haven’t found the will to write something about my own father. Writers have an itch, and there’s something about being a writer that compels you to write about your experiences. Maybe you think you can help others by talking about what most people will not, maybe it’s an ego thing related to talking about yourself, or maybe it’s just a form of catharsis that comes very natural. Whatever the case, I don’t know when I’ll end up doing the same for my own experience, but Jenn’s story is special, sad, and soul-crushing. We all have to say goodbye, even if we don’t really mean it.

My game ended quickly. “Well, okay, that’s that,” I said, putting the phone down and fumbling for something else. “Remember my story? My story came out in the magazine. Um, in August.”

I opened a chapbook in front of her, and she touched its pages, and then she took the magazine from me and shut it and kind of massaged its cover with her thumb. Then she dropped the magazine into the folds of the bed and reached for my hand, and she took my hand and squeezed it.

And squeezed it again. And then I cried, and she squeezed my hand another time, and I looked up and right into her eyes, which were wet and meaningful and so clear, and her face was obscured by the breathing mask but her eyebrows were furrowed the way they always are when I cry, and I apologized to her for hurting her and for being so sad, and I looked down again at our clasped hands, and then I folded myself in half and cried into both our hands.

Some Thoughtful Words From Others About This Week’s #1reasonwhy Hashtag

If You Click It, It Will Play

I Don’t Know About This Kickstarter Thing, But These Projects Seem Pretty Cool

Valve Just Launched Greenlight, So Here’s Some Games That Don’t Look Terrible

  • Famaze isn't promising much more than what it's selling as a retro puzzle adventure, but it works.
  • Point Perfect tries to think of some more inventive uses of the mouse as an input device.
  • People keep convincing me zombies are okay. Zombies does that. (Also, the soundtrack is baller.)

Oh, And This Other Stuff

111 Comments
  • 111 results
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
Posted by FreedomTown

@Sammo21 said:

Wait? You think its a pain to build and "maintain" a PC? Lol, Patrick...that's cute.

Dude, it is crazy hard to maintain a PC! You gotta.....you know.....you need to.........run the automatic update program! And like......make sure the fan is cleaned once a year or something insane like that.

Oh, and obligatory #1reason mention, almost forgot.

Edited by JillSammich

Aw, the Jenn Frank article had me tearing up a bit. Great piece of writing. Very touching.

@DEFE: This... I have both of my parents still alive, but I live very far away from them. Just thinking about losing them makes me start to well up.

Edited by clush

@Sammo21 said:

Wait? You think its a pain to build and "maintain" a PC? Lol, Patrick...that's cute.

I know right. This isn't the 90's anymore, PC's and windows have come a looooong way. I NEVER have any trouble with my PC, in fact I even recently replaced my mainboard, processor, videocard and memory, all at the same time, booted the thing up and it just works (edit: without reinstalling windows I mean!). All you got to do is make sure it downloads and installs updates automatically and regularly (default setting) and you're good. I can't even remember the last time I played a game on PC that didn't 'just work' out of the box.

Posted by Lauriboy

@CaLe: For a few weeks now I haven't had more than 5 hours of sleep per night due to my cortisone medication. Last night I woke up after one hour of sleep. After reading all of reddit, 9gag and giantbomb I saw the song you linked. Slept solid 6 hours after listening. Thx, duder! :)

Posted by Krabonq

Ugh... stop trying so hard to be edgy and pushing this reasonwhy crap already, please.

Posted by WeaponBoy

The toilet simulator really was everything I expected.

Posted by crcruz3

@clush said:

@Sammo21 said:

Wait? You think its a pain to build and "maintain" a PC? Lol, Patrick...that's cute.

I know right. This isn't the 90's anymore, PC's and windows have come a looooong way. I NEVER have any trouble with my PC, in fact I even recently replaced my mainboard, processor, videocard and memory, all at the same time, booted the thing up and it just works (edit: without reinstalling windows I mean!). All you got to do is make sure it downloads and installs updates automatically and regularly (default setting) and you're good. I can't even remember the last time I played a game on PC that didn't 'just work' out of the box.

Try Fallout 3 GOTY on Steam, it doesn't work well with multicore. I had to read a shitload of forums to make it work.

Posted by aleckz

Goodness, I look forward to reading these articles every Saturday when I open. Thank you very much, Patrick. <3

Posted by Dagbiker

@crcruz3 said:

@clush said:

@Sammo21 said:

Wait? You think its a pain to build and "maintain" a PC? Lol, Patrick...that's cute.

I know right. This isn't the 90's anymore, PC's and windows have come a looooong way. I NEVER have any trouble with my PC, in fact I even recently replaced my mainboard, processor, videocard and memory, all at the same time, booted the thing up and it just works (edit: without reinstalling windows I mean!). All you got to do is make sure it downloads and installs updates automatically and regularly (default setting) and you're good. I can't even remember the last time I played a game on PC that didn't 'just work' out of the box.

Try Fallout 3 GOTY on Steam, it doesn't work well with multicore. I had to read a shitload of forums to make it work.

I like my PC, but you cant just expect to play every game out of the box like you can with a console. Even just playing Planetside 2, I get errors sometimes. Granted, I am running 2 monitors from the same graphics card, and playing a video in openGL on one, while playing on the other.

Posted by TennSeven

Great read on that hot coffee article. I had no idea that R* had initially blamed the modding community for the actual content. A very unfortunate decision that has tarnished my opinion of the company.

Posted by SirOptimusPrime

I thought I should come back to say that Dear Esteban is quite amazing.

The ending... so poignant.