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knoxt

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Unless someone was posting ascii nazi symbols or spamming racial epithets, I think this is very lame.

There are controversies abound, evil afoot, opinions and speculations and apologies and allegations, and lions and tigers and bears and bold claims oh my. All of these things are touchy things of course, but...why would dedicate an entire half an episode to this stuff, and then not allow your community the voice to respond? I read through the coments, there's nothing toxic that I can see. If it was getting out of control, or your mods can't handle the few total idiots who are way out of line- and I mean WAY out of line, having an opinion is worth the foundation it is based on - then okay, but I see this as a very priveleged double standard that goes against some of the very things said in the episode.

"raise concerns, let us know, talk, be open, discuss, share ideas", not verbatim but that was a large way that they concluded some of the touchier earlier parts, and then later Abby goes into this ..'what?' inducing rant about trans representation in the TLoU P2, and how transgender are often typecast as villians and or that the game focuses on this as a THING that is a heavy focus on the game and it honestly, from her account, and no other context given from anything in the game or anything I've seen elsewhere, seem like some imaginary issue or that, worse, transgendered folk are by her account incredibly sensitive possibly to a fault. I know they aren't, but that very sentiment she lays down in words is something I don't agree with, or, as a commenter, would like to open a query about and like to have cited examples, because she talks for a good 5-10 minutes about it and I'm just left, along with all the other topics discussed in the cast- with my thoughts to myself, unable to even respond to the assertions they are making.

At the same time, they decide to lock the comments- which I get, sometimes anyway- when it becomes too volatile or toxic to handle and people are being reallll assholes to each other, but there is a vague double standard to wanting to be pious and right-doers and making claims that cannot be responded to in discourse from your audience. If this platform has become just, well, a platform, for them to say what they think about current issues, potential offensive material or just, just possibly, be wrong in their opinions or assertions, is it not okay to point that out, or at least talk about it? If this becomes a trend, or if social political problems continue (as they do), and are the focal topic of their discussions, I would expect them to take responsibility for opening the can of worms that comes with the territory, and own up to whatever it is that they have by allowing the discourse in the comment space to take place as well.

No matter who is right or wrong, the only way things can be fully understood often is to further discuss the topic at hand, whether everyone agrees or not is irrelevant. It is okay to be offended. It is okay to take a stance, it is okay to not agree and be vocal, that is the point of the most recent beastcasts, right? Well then on your own site, why lock your users out of engagement with the conversation? I am not crying "CENSORSHIP!!!" at the top of my lungs here, I'm just voicing that it is disappointing to see here. It is, in my eyes, a double standard.

Am I wrong?

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knoxt

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Apparently, it's for me too, and I didn't even know it. I may have even scoffed at the idea once or twice in the last five years, but whoa man, I was wrong, and it's my favorite 2020 release so far without question.

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I actually didn't know there was a hard mode, I was very surprised at 'normal' being the top difficulty. I am still only in chapter 3 as my days are irregularly busy for what most of the world is doing by self isolating (I work an 'essential' job), but first of all, I am loving this game to death, so much nostalgia I needed a second helping of that first grossly gorgeous and produced first hour intro/reactor section to soak it in. I fumbled on normal a few times with understanding the active battle system, accidentally hitting the commands and not mapping my toggle commands etc, but yeah, after understanding the combat, I am very happy to hear that there is a hard mode, because I do plan on hanging on to my PS4 for a while, and I certainly plan on re-playing this game down the road the same way I did the original.

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I am not really distracted- maybe it gets worse, but, I'm not very far in, and perhaps in the day things look or progressively get shoddier- the very opening of the game, only in a few spots, while actively looking for them did I notice, like, background posters and things like that. Texturework on cobble streets and characters and enemies and generally speaking environments all looked ...incredible to me. I don't know, I may have to redact this- but ultimately, nah, I am having a blast and am having that same feeling that Advent Children gave me with visualizing ps1 characters I know and, to both modify the pacing of the original, while still giving me all the major beats of the original in a more digestible for 2020 standard method, I don't think low res textures can really take the magic out of it for me, ultimately.

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#6  Edited By knoxt

Likely, this comment will be lost to the void, but Kotick is only a face to a pervasive and unified evil that reaches across several large publishers and companies, in games and creative media in general.

For example, as an animator (traditional hand drawn frames, effects, bg art as well as 3D and all that) -I already have an EXTREMELY hard time finding work. Kotick represents the mouth that opens when it shouldn't and inadvertently makes a statement about how production comes to life in basically any major-name creative arena. Of course, the 3D animation industry would have you believe it's a happy collective hive that produces UP, or the Marvel Movies, but it's not for many. The people there struggle their asses off in a way that those in Disney's golden era of animatoin during the 90's, did not. Their struggle is different, in that they are expected not only to be talented, know all of the tricks from that golden age, and be extremely pressured in 200 ways, including the structure on which their job security rests, while also inventing and creating. This is literally the same in game development, as there would be no game with no animation. Now extend that to every facet of how a game becomes playable and immersive, from design, programming, music, coordination etc, and every single one of the people employed in mentioned areas is stifled and pressured exactly the same way. Then, uniquely to game development houses. multiply the stress of an animation studio's production, because a working, moving parts package that is a video game, that is expected to advertise, play well, have all the things it's competition does, and be the cutting edge, and the player expectation threshold of 15-200 hours of content minimum, and you have exactly the situation that makes AAA game a shadow of what vision the studio had for it. Publisher pressure is the reason, more than half the time.

This has gone on way too long, and while unionizing is one road, a mainstream awareness is needed for why their media isn't always 10/10 good. Publisher greed is often the problem, which shouldn't surprise or be tolerated. Write about it, don't ignore the problem, speak up, but also, be clear with your message that it is EA/Activision/whatever publisher that propagates this business behavior specifically, that you want to change. Yell that from the mountain. What I do see too often, and it becomes very hard to separate because as game players, people are passionate whether what they play is good, or bad, is a knee jerk reaction to yell at the developers. I never, ever want a game to actively fail unless it's an asset flip. Many people have agendas around games doing well, or setting themselves on platforms to speak on authority about how development should work and how ___ studio fucked up. This isn't how it works. Often, developers do fuck up. MORE often, developers are pressured into fucking up. Kotick is just a face to a practice that makes this happen.

I just felt like writing that out because I have friends in several major game studios under activision, EA, and so on, so on. They work and invent and produce so much for so little acknowledgement, if any, and their livelihoods depend on the success of what they make getting bought and seen on projections by publishers. Creating something as big as a video game to earn even it's right to exist these days is a pressure that should not exist. Take that further, and a game comes up short when it could have been so much more, (really, it's Giantbomb, pick any franchise talked about the last year and it's hard to miss), and you have a perpetuated culture that forces literal retardation of what 'could be'. And we actively support this by giving the money to the publishers, which if we don't, effectively death sentences studios. This needs to change.

Good thread.

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knoxt

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@hamst3r: I clicked the play button, started grooving, then saw the USN, it all made sense. This is rad.

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#8  Edited By knoxt
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SO good. So good that I have it playing with any game mech related. Such a good amp up to jump in a fight.

On the other end of the spectrum, a track that is only obscure because it was omitted from an already amazing soundtrack-

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they were very smart to put this at the end of the remake. I definitely understand why it was cut from the game, as it doesn't fit the tone, but the heroic swing, and sweep of the full 'drop' of orchestration is so good,

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I am not a bioware enthusiast, I am not even an Anthem enthusiast, but what I can say probably, is yes, care less about Bioware. If it's a beloved studio, and Anthem isn't doing it for your Bioware needs, then yeah, maybe it's time to let go. I don't know what tasks were divided up between studio sections between conversation choice (which feels largely there because they felt it had to be), while the gameplay side of Anthem I find to be a lot of fun. So, on one end you have a reductive and irrelevant version of what Bioware fans know for story and world building and character importance, which I agree, is not strong; but on the other, you have a more than competent (imo, fun) action shooter with more than passable dressing around the action. It's better than titanfall 1's radio play, but people still liked titanfall. I think only because it's Bioware that Anthem is viewed as a failure on Bioware's previous successes around building relationships and dialogue trees etc. Remove all of how important that stuff made those games- and if you're able- come to Anthem without the baggage of past Bioware games in the front-brain, my take away is Bioware didn't totally stick the landing here, but I would say they qualify for the next heat at very least, branching into territory more focused on how the game plays, instead of the politics or relationships within it. I understand why this is a bummer for long-time-bioware-masseffect fans, but for me, with none of that as a hangup, I don't see Anthem as Bioware's 'big ultimate failure', so I wouldn't say you should give up on them, only that perhaps your reverence for what you expect out of them may need to change with how they do. This is optimistic, I realize, and again I am very sorry for fans who wanted more Mass Effect in their Anthem, or whatever expectations weren't met for them, but honestly, I like Anthem, Bioware made it, so inversely from the OP's title, I am NOW a cautious Bioware fan, where I honestly was never a fan of their games before. Weird, right?