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Posted by patrickklepek (4533 posts) -

Welcome back, everyone!

I’ve been dumping Worth Reading material into a digital notebook for the last few weeks, and we’re filled to the brim with stuff today. I still have a dozen or so links that I didn’t even get to, and maybe some of those games and pieces will sneak back in next Friday.

I mentioned this on the podcast, but I just wanted to take another moment and thank the Giant Bomb community for their support over the past month and change. Few people go through an experience like mine and feel as though they have the backing of thousands. Your comments made me stronger, and this thread was bookmarked on my phone for a solid week, a source of comfort.

It’s been a bittersweet ride, and one I’m hoping to encapsulate in words soon. As a writer, catharsis tends to come from expressing yourself in the medium you spend the most time in. I’ll get there.

Thanks.

Hey, You Should Play This

  • Zenith (PC, Mac / Free) by Jacob Knipfing, Tom Astle, Sylvia Forrest, Tom Lanciani, Evan Gonzalez, Dan Spaulding -- www.arcanekids.com

With the high-definition tweaking of Jet Set Radio on the horizon, I’ve got buzzin’ around on skates on the brain, and the student-made Zenith is an interesting distraction. I’m not sure how I feel about the dude with the big, wacky arms, but after playing Vanquish and Gravity Daze rather close to one another, I’m reminded how much fun a game based solely around movement can be. You can play Zenith with a keyboard and mouse but it’s not recommended--plug in an Xbox 360 controller. Coming to grips with wall jumping is a little tricky, but whereas Jet Set Radio keeps players relatively grounded, Zenith releases the constraints of gravity, and you’ll be flying high. Freedom feels good.

It’s satisfying to know my horror kick doesn’t have to end soon, since October is only a few weeks away. Senscape’s Scratches has been recommended in the past, and I’m more inclined to try it, given how impressive the interactive teaser for its next project is. Rather than just give players another trailer for the long-delayed Asylum, Senscape actually released a playable demo that doesn’t feature gameplay from the finished product, but gives a strong sense of atmosphere. It’s a little jarring to be playing a first-person adventure that, at times, feels like a first-person shooter, but once you become adjusted to swapping screens, you’re quickly drawn into the world. An insane asylum is the perfect setting for a point-and-click adventure, a place of dread and madness that clicking will only make worse.

And You Should Read These

With Nintendo likely revealing the final launch details regarding Wii U in New York next month and everyone’s focus squarely on whether Wii U has a chance in hell at replicating the success of Wii, it’s easy to forget how much trouble the 3DS was in not so long ago. Kotaku’s Stephen Totilo recently sat down with Nintendo president Satoru Iwata to extensively discuss the hurdles facing the 3DS going forward, and I’m surprisingly inclined to agree with Iwata’s optimistic assessment about the future of dedicated handhelds, especially ones produced by Nintendo. The big caveat? Nintendo has not produced the same level of innovative software that made DS catch mainstream eyeballs for 3DS, and that, more than anything, is what’s to blame for 3DS being able to catch fire, decent sales or not.

Iwata didn't let the presence of an Apple laptop and the iPhone do all of his talking. He never said the words "Apple" or "iPhone" or "Android," but when I pointed to my iPhone that was recording our interview and began asking him about why some people think that device is the future of portable gaming, he knew exactly what I was talking about. He knows people wonder about the long-term viability of dedicated gaming handhelds. He cited the arguments himself and proposed that there are people who argue that the period of gaming handhelds "has passed us by" due to the popularity of gaming on "a device that you're always going to be carrying with you at all times"—a phone. He knows that logic is what produces the doubts. "I don't think that opinion is completely nonsensical," he said.

One of the reasons I’ve gone out of my way to play a game like Dragon’s Dogma (which I wound up enjoying) or spent an afternoon with a three-hour 8-4 Play podcast about Monster Hunter (which I still don’t care for) is a desire to better understand the games outside of my usual comfort zone. You may not care for the Japanese aesthetic or approach to design (see: Team Ninja's recent confusing and questionable comments about portraying women in Dead or Alive 5), but there are plenty of people who do enjoy them, so there must be something there. Uncomfortable experiences are a healthy deviation from the norm, whether it’s surviving a nightmare like Amnesia: The Dark Descent, or violating a personal one-hour rule for having fun to give an unorthodox game a longer, closer look.

This cultural chauvinism has reached the point where western game designers feel the need to pontificate about the apparently objective failure of Japanese game developers to design games and tell stories. Nonsense: Japanese game design is valid in entirely the same way as Japanese storytelling and visual art tradition is valid, founded on a very separate range of aesthetic ideals that share few parallels with the Western cultural traditions.

If You Click This, It Will Play

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

Oh, And This Other Stuff

Staff
#1 Posted by patrickklepek (4533 posts) -

Welcome back, everyone!

I’ve been dumping Worth Reading material into a digital notebook for the last few weeks, and we’re filled to the brim with stuff today. I still have a dozen or so links that I didn’t even get to, and maybe some of those games and pieces will sneak back in next Friday.

I mentioned this on the podcast, but I just wanted to take another moment and thank the Giant Bomb community for their support over the past month and change. Few people go through an experience like mine and feel as though they have the backing of thousands. Your comments made me stronger, and this thread was bookmarked on my phone for a solid week, a source of comfort.

It’s been a bittersweet ride, and one I’m hoping to encapsulate in words soon. As a writer, catharsis tends to come from expressing yourself in the medium you spend the most time in. I’ll get there.

Thanks.

Hey, You Should Play This

  • Zenith (PC, Mac / Free) by Jacob Knipfing, Tom Astle, Sylvia Forrest, Tom Lanciani, Evan Gonzalez, Dan Spaulding -- www.arcanekids.com

With the high-definition tweaking of Jet Set Radio on the horizon, I’ve got buzzin’ around on skates on the brain, and the student-made Zenith is an interesting distraction. I’m not sure how I feel about the dude with the big, wacky arms, but after playing Vanquish and Gravity Daze rather close to one another, I’m reminded how much fun a game based solely around movement can be. You can play Zenith with a keyboard and mouse but it’s not recommended--plug in an Xbox 360 controller. Coming to grips with wall jumping is a little tricky, but whereas Jet Set Radio keeps players relatively grounded, Zenith releases the constraints of gravity, and you’ll be flying high. Freedom feels good.

It’s satisfying to know my horror kick doesn’t have to end soon, since October is only a few weeks away. Senscape’s Scratches has been recommended in the past, and I’m more inclined to try it, given how impressive the interactive teaser for its next project is. Rather than just give players another trailer for the long-delayed Asylum, Senscape actually released a playable demo that doesn’t feature gameplay from the finished product, but gives a strong sense of atmosphere. It’s a little jarring to be playing a first-person adventure that, at times, feels like a first-person shooter, but once you become adjusted to swapping screens, you’re quickly drawn into the world. An insane asylum is the perfect setting for a point-and-click adventure, a place of dread and madness that clicking will only make worse.

And You Should Read These

With Nintendo likely revealing the final launch details regarding Wii U in New York next month and everyone’s focus squarely on whether Wii U has a chance in hell at replicating the success of Wii, it’s easy to forget how much trouble the 3DS was in not so long ago. Kotaku’s Stephen Totilo recently sat down with Nintendo president Satoru Iwata to extensively discuss the hurdles facing the 3DS going forward, and I’m surprisingly inclined to agree with Iwata’s optimistic assessment about the future of dedicated handhelds, especially ones produced by Nintendo. The big caveat? Nintendo has not produced the same level of innovative software that made DS catch mainstream eyeballs for 3DS, and that, more than anything, is what’s to blame for 3DS being able to catch fire, decent sales or not.

Iwata didn't let the presence of an Apple laptop and the iPhone do all of his talking. He never said the words "Apple" or "iPhone" or "Android," but when I pointed to my iPhone that was recording our interview and began asking him about why some people think that device is the future of portable gaming, he knew exactly what I was talking about. He knows people wonder about the long-term viability of dedicated gaming handhelds. He cited the arguments himself and proposed that there are people who argue that the period of gaming handhelds "has passed us by" due to the popularity of gaming on "a device that you're always going to be carrying with you at all times"—a phone. He knows that logic is what produces the doubts. "I don't think that opinion is completely nonsensical," he said.

One of the reasons I’ve gone out of my way to play a game like Dragon’s Dogma (which I wound up enjoying) or spent an afternoon with a three-hour 8-4 Play podcast about Monster Hunter (which I still don’t care for) is a desire to better understand the games outside of my usual comfort zone. You may not care for the Japanese aesthetic or approach to design (see: Team Ninja's recent confusing and questionable comments about portraying women in Dead or Alive 5), but there are plenty of people who do enjoy them, so there must be something there. Uncomfortable experiences are a healthy deviation from the norm, whether it’s surviving a nightmare like Amnesia: The Dark Descent, or violating a personal one-hour rule for having fun to give an unorthodox game a longer, closer look.

This cultural chauvinism has reached the point where western game designers feel the need to pontificate about the apparently objective failure of Japanese game developers to design games and tell stories. Nonsense: Japanese game design is valid in entirely the same way as Japanese storytelling and visual art tradition is valid, founded on a very separate range of aesthetic ideals that share few parallels with the Western cultural traditions.

If You Click This, It Will Play

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

Oh, And This Other Stuff

Staff
#2 Edited by Lionheart377 (55 posts) -

YEAH.

Was waiting for this. Now I can start the weekend.

#3 Edited by mnzy (2914 posts) -

I hope Planetary Annihilation reaches its goal, it looks really good.

#4 Posted by Animasta (14691 posts) -

didn't realize how much I missed this until the second week of it being gone, but thank goodness it's back.

#5 Edited by mrfluke (5149 posts) -

Scoopz man back strong.

thats very respectable that your gonna write a piece about your experiences from the last month and a half. not much people would go and share their personal life with their audience.

#6 Posted by UndeadPatPat (30 posts) -

oh god asylum freaks me out.

#7 Posted by Quarters (1696 posts) -

Man...weird seeing Patrick in a suit. Good to have you back, Scoopz.

#8 Posted by Red12b (9084 posts) -

nice picture and cute wife tricky, good work

Your mop of hair looks soooo out of place in a suit though haha

#9 Posted by Sparky_Buzzsaw (6186 posts) -

Glad you're back, Patrick. The site hasn't been the same without ya!

Moderator
#10 Posted by blacklab (1552 posts) -

Alright, WR is back! Welcome back, Trick!

#11 Edited by mrfluke (5149 posts) -

and man that team ninja interview..... im still excited for doa 5 and am part of loving the japanese game design and whateves on the design of the women in that game because yo its just fucking polygons.

but the comments and statements from users on other sites on that story were just fucking ridiculous. made me definitely appreciate the GB community some more, cause even though we have some vocal trolls, they are NOWHERE near as bad as other sites

but i am very curious to see if it will flare up the GB community the same way

#12 Posted by GoldSoundz (100 posts) -

I can't imagine what it was like to go through what you went through, but it's good to have you back. Congratulations on the marriage. Love this feature.

#13 Posted by Wampa1 (659 posts) -

Thank's for ruining the x-files for me! or... maybe making it better, can't tell.

#14 Posted by misclet (98 posts) -

Haha I totally took that picture of that 3DS at E3 2010! Thanks for using it, Patrick!

#15 Posted by Kerned (1170 posts) -

@Animasta said:

didn't realize how much I missed this until the second week of it being gone, but thank goodness it's back.

AMEN

#16 Posted by ItBeStefYo (1020 posts) -

As soon as Jet Set Radio was mentioned my tounge fell out my mouth in lust

#17 Edited by bakkelun (97 posts) -
#18 Posted by MisterMouse (3553 posts) -

Heck Patrick is back... scooping scoops and taking names...

#19 Posted by patrickklepek (4533 posts) -

@bakkelun said:

Congratulations on your marriage!

As for horror games, don't let this pass.

What the shit is that?

Staff
#20 Posted by galloughs (192 posts) -

I love that wedding picture. It's like Patrick can't believe his luck!

#21 Posted by numberattheend1 (10 posts) -

Oh my god!

#22 Posted by Milkman (16778 posts) -

That's a great picture, Patrick. Congrats again!

Online
#23 Posted by Bane122 (789 posts) -

Glad to not only have you back, Patrick, but that our thoughts in the thread gave you some measure of solace.

#24 Posted by Phatmac (5726 posts) -

Glad for this to be back! :D

#25 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

@patrickklepek said:

@bakkelun said:

Congratulations on your marriage!

As for horror games, don't let this pass.

What the shit is that?

Amazing response.

Also, Planetary Annihilation looks fucking awesome.

#26 Posted by LarcenousLaugh (69 posts) -

Welcome back, Patrick! Way to hook us up this week. First Slendermania, and now this. Rockin the content!

#27 Posted by NoMoneyLeftBoy (12 posts) -

As a long term reader/listener of gaming-related sites but a relative noob to this site & it's excellent podcast, I can honestly say that I've found Patrick to be a genuine breath of fresh air.

In light of recent events I felt compelled to come out of my usual passive contributory state and share my observation that, like former destructoid feature editor Anthony Burch before him, Patrick is an evidently smart, extremely articulate and well balanced young man. Anyone with half a brain cell can see he has a bright future ahead of him and from the gorgeous picture at the top of this post, so does his lovely new wife.

All the very best to you both in your future together.

#28 Posted by sissylion (679 posts) -

You look way more excited about your marriage than your wife does.

#29 Posted by ArbitraryWater (11718 posts) -

Welcome back and congrats on the marriage Patrick!

#30 Posted by vonFlampanker (327 posts) -

Welcome back, Patrick. You've been missed. I can tell you from nearly 10 years' experience that that's probably not the last "husband laughing at something the wife doesn't think is very funny" photo for your album. Congrats!

Oh, and about Planetary Annihilation: God. Damn.

#31 Posted by Jay444111 (2441 posts) -

Seriously... if someone here is great with the Geck for Fallout New Vegas... please... put in ALL that stuff they cut out! It would be fucking incredible!

#32 Posted by Amaru25 (146 posts) -

Marriage? Awesome.

#33 Edited by wordfalling (193 posts) -

@patrickklepek: An odd game that has William S. Burroughs reading a few of Poe's short stories. His read of The Fall of the House of Usher is... something different.

Edit: The Masque of the Red Death is what I was thinking of.

#34 Posted by ViciousReiven (821 posts) -

Hah I was totally just about to tell ya to include Zineth in this week's worth reading, nice job there Pat!

#35 Posted by cthomer5000 (788 posts) -

Congratulations and welcome back!

#36 Posted by the_OFFICIAL_jAPanese_teaBAG (4308 posts) -

Thanks for the read Patrick!  Im gonna check out all the links on Sunday.  Its really awesome that youre back and congratulations Tricky!

#37 Posted by csl316 (8645 posts) -
#38 Posted by kollay (1929 posts) -

Congrats, Patrick! I attended two weddings this summer, myself.

Online
#39 Posted by Hailinel (24694 posts) -

It's great to have you back, Patrick!

And Erlend Grefsrud succinctly argued something I've believed all along. Japanese game development isn't objectively worse than western development; it's just different, and not in a necessarily bad way. Different games appeal to different people; that's all. This is why people like Phil Fish are justifiably called out for talking out of their asses; they're attacking a different culture of development and ideas without fully understanding what it is they're attacking.

#40 Posted by LordAndrew (14426 posts) -

Damn, Jungle Venture is really bombing, even with an AMA.

#41 Posted by HydraHam (1338 posts) -

Klept-a-Mania is BACK! Whatchu gonna do when Worth Reading runs WILLLLLLLD ON YOU BROTHER!

#42 Posted by Bumpton (445 posts) -

Oh! My, God...

#43 Posted by MooseyMcMan (10990 posts) -

I was going to say something meaningful, but Patrick, you guys have to do something with that weird puppet FMV game that someone linked to. PLEASE.

Moderator
#44 Posted by Sin4profit (2930 posts) -

Holy hell! Harps with straps!

#45 Posted by zeekthegeek (391 posts) -

I like the style of Mercenary Kings but calling it Paul Robertson's style like they do is weird; Paul Robertson is just straight up aping Brian Lee O'Malley's comic art in his stuff, as he was paid to do in the Scott Pilgrim game. I like it and all, it's just weird that he calls it his style.

#46 Posted by Brodehouse (9949 posts) -

That Japanese games article is as guilty of cultural chauvinism as the critics it means to refute. He equates all Western games as photorealist wish fulfillment, which is as categorically useless as framing all Japanese games as 'cutesy' or whathaveyou.

The article decries the idea of gameplay as player intent rather direct hand-eye tests. I'm not interested in a game testing my hand-eye coordination, it's actually the reason why I stopped playing the majority of action games for a period in my youth. There are certain games I love for that (Super Meat Boy), but it's not what I'm looking for when I turn on your average retail release. I'm far more interested in a game based around my intuition and core concepts such as knowledge building, pattern recognition and spatial awareness, not of a game that tests my ability to negotiate its own uncooperative controls. The best Japanese games do not rely on irrelevant controls in order to test you, they present you with everything you need to solve a situation. Prince of Persia does not become better if the wallrun has incredibly strict timing, Resident Evil 4 does not become better if the aim-headshot-stagger-runup-kick gameplay loop becomes eight buttons instead of three. In fighting game terms, the guy is more interested in combo execution than the neutral game. And I know which one I greatly prefer. I have no respect for a guy who can mash an eight input combo but doesn't understand his toolset, matchups, or effective strategy.

#47 Posted by avidwriter (667 posts) -

Yellow tie? Interesting choice.

#48 Posted by Ted_Mosby (77 posts) -

We love you Patrick <3

#49 Posted by BaconHound (68 posts) -

Those Nintendo Power letters are incredible. I feel like I actually remember seeing some of those in print. I used to read the damned thing cover to cover, so I guess it shouldn't surprise me that they seem familiar.

#50 Posted by NoobSauceG7 (1246 posts) -

Glad to have you back Patrick! Congrats on the marriage Mr. Klepek (and don't say that is your father's name cause you are a man now!)