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Scary Gongs

Scary Gongs

KOTICK TOCK TIME’S UP: This week, after a scathing report, employees of Activision/Blizzard walked out calling for the expulsion of the company’s CEO, Bobby Kotick. Our hosts examine the situation and how it symptomizes larger aspects of video game culture.

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RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Less-Impressive-Than-Expected No. 7” (01 July 2017): Where our hosts discuss the “interesting” game from a creator of Mega Man, Mighty No. 9.
  • Sword Club” (30 July 2021): Where Andrew and D. Bethel talked about Activision Blizzard being investigated by the state of California.

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An Accident of Flavor

An Accident of Flavor

DIAMOND ANNIVERSARY: Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim turned 10 years old this week, celebrated with yet another re-release of the game across all gaming platforms. Andrew and D. Bethel talk about this milestone for a brief bit.

PLEASE STOP: NFTs continue to rear their ugly heads as major gaming publishers announce their interest in integrating blockchain weirdness into their games. After an explanation of the whole mess, D. Bethel and Andrew discuss NFTs’ possible impact on video games.

RIP DEAN STOCKWELL: After a long and storied career, actor and writer Dean Stockwell passed away this week. Nerds know him best as Al from Quantum Leap, but his strange choices and charismatic performances made him an actor everybody surely has a fond memory of in some way or another.

RELEVANT LINKS:

  • A screenshot from Reddit outlining the hit cryptocurrency may take after the institution of the recently passed legislation (via the Twitter account @CoinersTakingLs):
  • Tweets from @outstarwalker about how NFTs may not be the game changer some people think they are:

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Milkbloods” (09 April 2021): Where D. Bethel and Andrew first discuss the cultural pandemic called NFTs.
  • Meat Pops” (22 Oct. 2021): Where Andrew discusses the different ways Steam and the Epic Games store are approaching NFTs.

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Lady Plot Device

Lady Plot Device

LOVECRAFT COUNTRY: Now that the premiere season is complete, Andrew and D. Bethel discuss the multitude of facets of HBO’s adaptation of Lovecraft Country.

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Episode 11 – Anemic Clap” (07 August 2014): Where Andrew and D. Bethel discuss the influential H. P. Lovecraft story, “The Dunwich Horror.”
  • Episode 31 – Post-Op Dan” (09 Jan. 2015): Where D. Bethel discusses, briefly, his dental woes.
  • Episode 89 – High-Five Forever” (25 March 2016): Where D. Bethel discusses another revisionist Lovecraftian novella, Victor LaValle’s The Ballad of Black Tom.
  • Starting By Starting” (03 January 2020): Where D. Bethel discusses a video game-based piece of revisionist Lovecratian literature, Frogwares’ The Sinking City.

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It Has Full Body

It Has Full Body

WEEK IN GEEK: As is often the case with our hosts: everything old is new again. Andrew plans to take on the psychological strangeness of Atlus’ Catherine in the recently released “definitive” version of the 2011 game called Catherine: Full Body. D. Bethel actually steps outside the realm of Xavier’s School for the Gifted to try out a different Marvel hero, The Silver Surfer, in the 2019 limited series, Silver Surfer: Black, by Donny Cates, Tradd Moore, and Dave Stewart.

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The Badger Abides

The Badger Abides

THE PROBLEM WITH LOVECRAFT: A lot of controversy was had (mostly on Twitter) over the last few weeks with the release of Evil Hat Productions’ Fate of Cthulhu, a new table-top RPG integrating the systems of Evil Hat’s Fate Core and the Lovecraft mythos. Evil Hat proudly declared that it was bucking tropes of other Lovecraft-inspired games––mainly how it addresses Lovecraft’s prejudices head-on and it doesn’t include sanity meters for its players––and that, for some reason, made a lot of people upset. Andrew talks about the subsequent furor while D. Bethel shows up as our resident Lovecraft scholar.

*Show image is a screenshot of Dean Stockwell as Wilbur Whateley from the 1970 film, The Dunwich Horror.

RELEVANT LINKS:

  • Evil Hat tweets about how Fate of Cthulhu bends the traditional Lovecraftian gaming experience:
  • Evil Hat Production’s content warning included with Fate of Cthulhu (click to enlarge):
  • The adorable video of a coyote and a badger off to go hunting together:

RELEVANT EPISODES:

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Starting By Starting

Starting By Starting

WEEK IN GEEK: This week, Andrew and D. Bethel start the new year with some things they have only light knowledge of and experience with. Andrew starts watching Netflix’s The Witcher and only briefly plays Haemimont Games’ Surviving Mars. D. Bethel has fun playing detective in the disgusting Lovecraftian world of Frogwares’ The Sinking City.

RELEVANT LINKS:

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Episode 44 – Man Band” (10 April 2015): Where Andrew shared his experiences with another, more terrestrial-focused, city simulation game, Cities: Skylines.
  • Episode 89 – High-Five Forever” (25 March 2017): Where D. Bethel talked about other Lovecraftian revisionist literature with Victor LaValle’s The Ballad of Black Tom.
  • Robot Monsters From the Future ” (27 Dec. 2019): Where D. Bethel talked about intending to play The Sinking City.

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Shortcast 38 – Love is Made for Chicken Noodle

Shortcast 38 – Love is Made for Chicken Noodle

WEEK IN GEEK: While still playing Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Andrew tries to participate in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) while D. gets excited by the Lovecraftian undertones found in Get Out.

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For all intents and purposes, that was an episode recap.

FEATURED MUSIC:

-“Thunder Busters” by Wax Audio