My full thoughts on the matter, and why I'm sad despite expecting Dan and Jason to be fun additions, can be read in the link (warning: >1001 Words). Regarding the latter part of the post title, the following is a slightly modified forum post but I wanted to keep it around for future use:
The "lack of politeness" stems from being ignored or harassed every single time they voice their concerns, no matter how considerate and civil their tone. This pressure has built up over a long period of time, the better part of a decade or more in some cases, and the past few weeks in particular have seen a lot of exchanges about these issues.
Is being infinitely patient with even the worst people the best strategy for winning the most people over in the shortest amount of time? Probably. But that's not a realistic or fair expectation to hold anyone to when they're the target of personal attacks and threats. After a short time participating in these conversations, it becomes apparent that a disturbingly large percentage of people replying to you are more interested in anonymously throwing abuse your way (often with rather obvious dummy accounts) than honestly engaging you and trying to learn about your perspective. When my hands start shaking and my teeth start chattering, it gets hard to keep an even keel when I suspect the words I'm writing or saying are directed at a brick wall.
I'm too depressed and anxious to devote much time to this kind of conversation, but in the very limited time I started wading into these waters I've been met with an astonishing amount of vitriol simply for expressing my disappointment as non-confrontationally as possible. The productive conversations I have had with people who genuinely wanted to learn from my perspective have been heartwarming if not altogether satisfying in every way, but this stuff is incredibly draining even after just exposing myself to the storm for a few days. But sometimes it becomes clear when someone's bullshitting you. Lashing out in that instance is a form of immediate catharsis that I don't begrudge anyone when they're dealing with all of the nonsense I've seen and tons more.
Hi! I made the first of these just before the end of last year, and finally got this one moving again a few weeks ago. It's been a lot of fun watching old episodes to find some of my favorite moments, and this has also been a very educational project in terms of learning new software.
Hopefully the video accurately conveys the whimsy and profound respect for incredibly dumb things that UPF embodies. I'm hoping to have the next one up (probably covering May and part of June) by the end of the month, but we'll see how my work ethic holds up.
Dirty secret: I used two tracks I'm pretty sure haven't been on any broadcasts, but I still found them indirectly via Musou's fantastic thread and the wonderful world of Audionetwork.
Sound levels varied wildly between certain episodes, but I think I managed to make most of it come together pretty naturally. I'm basically a novice and am constantly getting better at this, so one day I'll obviously make something Perfect™. Until then, I hope you enjoy the result of my weird impulses!
There has been no TV/internet show this year that I've enjoyed and looked forward to as much as I have Unprofessional Fridays. A few weeks ago this turned into the urge to highlight some great moments from a year of UPF in celebration of my favorite videogamespeople. I quickly realized such a thing would be hours long, so I narrowed my focus down to the January-March shows.
That was still more than enough content, and despite a nearly 25 (!) minute runtime I had to excise lots of awesome stuff and personal favorites. The seams were bursting and I didn't want to overshare premium content (which is subjective, obviously), so this is where I ended up.
A few years ago, some wonderful people in Austria made a game that was seemingly tailored to my tastes and preferences. I didn't find out about their efforts until today. Stoked: Big Air Edition has already paid me back for the incredibly paltry sum of $6 (with shipping) it cost me, and I can safely say that having played a mere five hours and seen a fraction of 2 of the game's 7 mountains. Too little exposure and too much skepticism would have robbed me of the chance to like this game as much as I already do if I hadn't fallen into a quest/wiki rabbit hole last week which led me to the Stoked page and a few positive posts entombed within the forum's three dusty old threads. I'm so glad I got nostalgic for the infuriatingly terrible T&C Wood and Water Rage.
I allowed myself to dream an impossible dream and bought a used copy for the aforementioned less-than-lunch price, but as I waited two whole business days until it got here my confidence wavered. Were these people for real? Could it seriously be "a slightly less polished Skate for snowboarding," as one person described it? That's only the most enticing thing ever, no big deal. But c'mon, would I ever really play a simulation-focused snowboarding game with challenging yet rewarding mechanics, free roaming, a huge and extremely diverse soundtrack, and reasonably extensive character customization?
YES. A million times, yes. This is the game that seemed too good to be true considering the total lack of attention or praise I saw for it.
Skate and SSX are two of my absolute most beloved gaming series, and Stoked takes the things I love about both and mushes their faces together quite skillfully. By which I mean to say, Stoked is the sim I always wished SSX 3 could be as I rode down BIG Mountain listening to Röyksopp over and over again. The controls and are how I would have converted skate. into snow. if I were some kind of minor deity with video game related powers. The career mode allows you to progress by either riding down the mountainside doing whatever catches your eye or selecting challenges from the menu, and ultimately it's a very grounded (hurr) experience with a steep learning curve. For a sim-adoring dork like myself, this amounts to an immensely gratifying experience.
The only noteworthy issue I can think of so far* is the occasional wonkiness you can encounter on grinds, but it's not frequent or bad enough to detract from the rest of the (seasonally appropriate) gift-wrapped package. It doesn't hurt that I'm playing the buffed and shined Big Air Edition, but the overall level of polish compares favorably to that of Skate's OG effort, plus the presentation is surprisingly robust and stylish. And even if the preceding sentence weren't true, the inclusion of female boarders (something it took Black Box until Skate 2 to do) would have made up for a lot of hypothetical problems. At this point I'm spoiled by seeing someone who resembles me doing the grinds and grabs my fingers are telling them to do, and I probably wouldn't have even taken the gamble on Stoked without it. Thanks for the foresight, Bongfish!
*Oh, and online is totally dead. Which is probably to be expected from an extremely low profile three year old game with niche appeal, so I'm not counting that. But hey, leaderboards! That would be cool and reminiscent of the new SSX if literally any of my friends (XBL or otherwise) had ever played Stoked.