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Zeldavania

Zeldavania

A MISERABLE PILE OF SECRETS: Our hosts spend a bit of time reminiscing on the 25th anniversary of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night––the video game that put the “-vania” in “Metroidvania.”

WEEK IN GEEK: After a week off, our hosts have been busy being nerdy! Andrew finally caught up with all the Spider-Man movies while D. Bethel dipped another toe into deck-building video games with the very popular Slay the Spire, developed by MegaCrit.

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Nerd Business” (31 July 2014): Where Andrew and D. Bethel first discuss Castlevania: Symphony of the Night as a game that matters.
  • Trusty Rusty” (10 August 2018): Where Andrew talks about the video deck-building game adapted from a physical one, One Deck Dungeon.
  • We Still Don’t Know $#!&” (31 May 2019): On the show’s fifth anniversary, our hosts discuss the prevalence of “RPG elements” throughout, basically, all video games at this point.
  • Good Gamefeel” (28 June 2019): Where our hosts discuss the first non-Castlevania Metroidvania game developed by the adopted father of the series––Koji “Iga” Igarashi––Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night.
  • Reliable Virtual Helmets” (27 September 2019): Where D. Bethel plays his first real roguelike deck-building game, Meteorfall: Journey.
  • Smell the Duke” (04 February 2022): Where D. Bethel plays a bit of the clever deck-building game, Griftlands.
  • Bigger Than the Batman” (11 March 2022): Where D. Bethel talks about the indie game currently on his docket, A Plague Tale: Innocence.

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Touching Down (Duck Love)

Touching Down (Duck Love)

WEEK IN GEEK: Andrew dives into the world of JRPG job systems with Bravely Default 2, while D. Bethel finds more Metroid to love as he replays Batman: Arkham Asylum.

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Scotch Tape and Hope” (4 December 2015): Where D. Bethel discusses his love of the Batman: Arkham series of games, specifically Batman: Arkham Knight.
  • Editing Is Magic” (13 July 2018): Where Andrew and D. Bethel discuss Chris Kohler’s book, Final Fantasy V.
  • Ghost Games” (15 October 2021): Where D. Bethel shares his initial thoughts about Metroid Dread.

RELEVANT LINKS:

  • A comparison video showing the original Boba Fett voice and the revision that included Temuera Morrison’s redubbing:

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Eloquent as Ever

Eloquent as Ever

WEEK IN GEEK: Andrew continues to get excited by recent Star Trek offerings, specifically the conclusion of season 2 of Star Trek: The Lower Decks and the premiere of the Paramount+/Nickelodeon joint, Star Trek: Prodigy. D. Bethel finally offers his thoughts on Metroid: Dread (aka Metroid 5) after completing it, uh, three times.

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • I Am the State” (26 February 2021): Where D. Bethel rants about Nintendo not respecting Metroid on its 35th anniversary.
  • Butt Magic” (16 October 2021): Where Andrew discusses the first season of the animated comedy, Star Trek: The Lower Decks.
  • Con Artists #7: Return of the Con” (29 October 2021): The most recent episode of Con Artists where D. Bethel and Kyrun Silva of Taurus Comics talk about making and selling comics amidst a global pandemic.

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Meat Pops

Meat Pops

NEWS CRUISE: Andrew and D. Bethel cover a lot of different news stories this week, including the acceptance of NFTs in video games by Steam and the Epic Games Store; the workers of tabletop game developer, Paizo, form a union; developers who worked on Metroid Dread not seeing their names in the credits; Ruby Rose speaking up about their treatment on the set of Batwoman‘s first season; and some announcements made by DC during the DC Fandome event.

UPDATE: Venerated Metroid fansite, Shinesparkers, reached out to Metroid Dread developers, MercurySteam, for clarification on what qualified for crediting in the game, specifically with regard to what constitutes the “25% game dev time” and “significant creative contributions,” stating:

“A significant contribution might mean A LOT of things: from designing a playable character, writing dialogues, lore.. anything substantially important to the game. On the 25% this is something based on our experience. Of course it can be seen differently elsewhere.”

FURTHER UPDATE: Union issues with Paizo and its workers came to an agreement on Thursday, October 21, with Paizo officially recognizing the workers’ union.

RELEVANT LINKS:

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Business Exempt” (19 October 2018): Where D. Bethel and Andrew talk about the first major attempt to unionize video game workers.
  • A Casualty of the Rhyme” (22 May 2020): Where our hosts, along with Taylor, talk about Ruby Rose’s sudden departure from Batwoman.
  • Milkbloods” (09 April 2021): When Andrew and D. Bethel first discussed the strange culture of NFTs.

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Ghost Games

Ghost Games

BETTER DREAD THAN DEAD: D. Bethel shares some initial thoughts on the newest 2D Metroid game, Metroid 5 aka Metroid Dread.

EMULATE YOU WANT IT, THAT’S THE WAY YOU NEED IT: Kotaku got in a bit of heat when they reported a story about how people were able to get Metroid Dread up and running on emulators in a smooth 60 frames per second at 4K resolution. The problem is that, in the original story, readers felt that Kotaku was, in fact, recommending people pirate Dread instead of buying it because of the emulator’s stronger performance. This lead to another round of discussion about emulation, piracy, and game preservation. Andrew and D. Bethel do their best to weigh in on these issues.

RELEVANT LINKS:

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • The Eye of Agamemnon” (18 November 2016): Where D. Bethel and Andrew discuss the storied history of old episodes of Doctor Who erased from existence by the BBC.
  • River City Rampage” (17 August 2018): Where Andrew and D. Bethel discuss the value and importance (and danger) of video game emulation.
  • I Am the State” (26 February 2021): Where D. Bethel and Andrew discuss whether the Metroid series is being neglected by Nintendo.

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Crypto ATM

Crypto ATM

PACHINKO IS CRYPTO: Our hosts walk a snake-like path this week as they discuss everything from recent trends in the sketch cryptocurrency/NFT market to the news that Konami may be getting out of pachinko and back into making video games again. It’s quite a conversation, in other words.

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Heart Law, Article 9” (03 July 2014): Where our hosts discuss why Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater is an important game (by their metric, at least).
  • Recorded Entirely in Esperanto” (01 May 2015): Where our hosts discuss the fall of “the final domino” on Konami’s game-developing existence.
  • Milkbloods” (09 April 2021): Where our hosts first discuss the shady business of NFTs.

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A Braver New World

A Braver New World

GIANTS FALL: Kind of a combination of a News Blast and a Nerd Law, but the lawsuit between Apple and Epic has been decided and…it’s complicated. We have Andrew walk us through the ins and outs of this strange event.

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RELEVANT EPISODES:

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FEATURED MUSIC:

  • “Nerd Law” by D. Bethel
Slapcast

Slapcast

TSR-U-KIDDING-ME: Tabletop Twitter got weird these last few weeks as debates exploded around the tweets made by Ernest G. Gygax, Jr.––son of Dungeons & Dragons co-creator, Gary Gygax––where he doubles down on strong, anti-SJW views in support of his new RPG, Giantlands.

SLAPP FEST: Andrew also checks in with the current legal fight started by Chris Avellone––formerly of Black Isle and Obisidian Entertainment––as he tries to sue people who said mean things about him on the internet.

Also, Dan has gotten even more obsessed with the Metroid series since last week.

RELEVANT LINKS:

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Pong 2020” (07 June 2019): Where D. Bethel and Andrew discuss the comments made by Chris Avellone about writing games “without” any politics in their narrative or design.
  • Zombie Brooms” (11 June 2021): Where Andrew covered the nature of lawsuits and their jurisdictions when talking about the copyright lawsuit filed by a photographer against Capcom.
  • Drive Your Gorilla” (25 June 2021): Where D. Bethel’s excitement for Metroid gets reignited.

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FEATURED MUSIC:

  • “Nerd Law” written and performed by D. Bethel
Drive Your Gorilla

Drive Your Gorilla

CONFIRMATION BIAS: Abandoned is an upcoming Playstation 5-exclusive game made by the small Netherlands-based team, Blue Box Game Studios. After the game’s director made an enigmatic tweet, the internet exploded with conspiracy theories, asserting that the game and its trailers were nothing more than clues that this was not a stand-alone survival horror game but was actually a Silent Hill sequel. More than that, people have asserted that it’s a Silent Hill sequel directed by Hideo Kojima, despite the fact that the studio has gone to great lengths to assure fans that it is not. Andrew and Dan discuss the conspiracy and how it got wrapped up in the darker parts of nerd culture, internet culture, and the complicated edges of fandom.

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • Shortcast 57 – Fair Point, Dude” (01 June 2018): Where D. Bethel talks about the Super Nt, a Super NES clone made by Analogue.
  • For Great Justice” (19 February 2021): Where Andrew & D. Bethel discuss the video game, Six Days in Fallujah, and the discourse around tweets made by developer Rami Ismail.
  • I Am the State” (26 February 2021): Where our hosts discuss Nintendo’s continued neglect of the Metroid franchise.
  • Films in Quarries” (18 June 2021): Where D. Bethel gets excited at the announcement of Metroid: Dread.

RELEVANT LINKS:

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Films in Quarries

Films in Quarries

WEEK IN GEEK: This week, Andrew dives into the strange patchwork origin of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers while D. Bethel is pleasantly surprised by the Netflix series, Sweet Tooth, an adaptation of Dan’s favorite recent comic series by Jeff Lemire.

RELEVANT EPISODES:

  • The Space Dog and Bacchus Show” (21 August 2014): Where Andrew interviews indie game developer, Kai Cambra.
  • It’s Not Crude, It’s Savage” (08 January 2016): Where Andrew and D. Bethel confront the famous sub vs. dub debate.
  • Starfleet First” (31 January 2020): Where Andrew shares his thoughts on the first episode of the Paramount+ original show, Picard.
  • I Am the State” (26 February 2021): Where D. Bethel rails against Nintendo and its apparent bias against Metroid.

RELEVANT LINKS:

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