THE LAST FIRST:Fallout 76 continues to accidentally grab headlines or, at least, grabs headlines it doesn’t want. After a year of toiling in player complaints, bugs, and marketing schemes gone awry, the game seemed to have found a balance for those still enjoying the experience. Then Bethesda announced (and released) “Fallout First”, a premium subscription for players that would get them a whole host of goodies. In true Fallout 76 fashion, it didn’t take long for this to fall apart in big, bad ways.
WEEK IN GEEK: Taking a break from the news, Andrew and D. Bethel talk about the things that have been interesting to them over the last week or so. First, Andrew goes back to finish Unknown Worlds Entertainment’s Subnautica. Then D. Bethel finds much to appreciate––and much to make him uncomfortable––in the recent film, Joker. Then, to round things out, Andrew also gets underwhelmed but intrigued by the possibility found in Lazy Bear Games’ Graveyard Keeper.
It’s Always A Game (08 Feb. 2019): Where Andrew first talked about his time with Subnautica.
Tummy Drums (04 Oct. 2019): Where D. Bethel mentions “grotesque” art when discussing Warhammer 40,000 (the show notes also include a link to the Wikipedia explanation of “grotesque” in art and literature).
A BLIZZARD OF CONTROVERSY: Activision Blizzard––makers of such hit games as World of Warcraft, Overwatch,and Hearthstone––have hit a geo-political wall as they take a stance over controversial statements made by the winner of a Hearthstone tournament about the protests in Hong Kong against the People’s Republic of China. Andrew and D. Bethel investigate the complicated relationship between popular American entertainment and China.
TWO MAN’S SKY: With No Man’s Sky Beyond––the newest big 2.0 patch for the open world, sci-fi survival game, No Man’s Sky––it kind of brings to a close the long, arduous, but ultimately heartwarming story of this unique game by the small team at Hello Games. Andrew and D. Bethel talk about the years-long journey of this game.
“I’M NOT LISTENING”: Amid the stories about the varoius #[Insert Noun]Gates and #MeToo stories circulating through nerd culture, one of the bigger cases in the last year revolved around voice actor, Vic Mignogna, known for work in many anime, especially the Dragon Ball franchise. When allegations were made about his misconduct in the workplace, he started suing people and companies when they started dropping him from their employ. In the last few weeks––in an almost comical fashion––a few of Mignogna’s cases were dismissed, casting his defense and seriousness about this fight in doubt despite crowdfunding nearly $250,000 to pay for his legal fees. Resident nerd lawyer, Andrew, talks Dan through this bizarre moment.
WEEK IN GEEK: The boys are back to video games as Andrew plays the 1.0 release of Klei Entertainment’s sci-fi survival game, Oxygen Not Included, while D. Bethel can’t believe he’s enjoying the heck out of Final Fantasy XV, especially because it makes no sense.
WEEK IN GEEK: Andrew plays Ultima (a.k.a. Ultima I: The First Age of Darkness) in the hopes of reverse engineering it so he can build his own browser game while D. Bethel is genuinely surprised by the depth and charm of Sabotage Studio’s action/platformer/exploration game, The Messenger.
WEEK IN GEEK: This week, Andrew continues his trend of trying things out years after their initial release by sitting down with 2014’s Sims 4 while D. Bethel tries to wrap his head around the opaque––but good?––X-franchise reboot in House of X #1 and Powers of X #1, both written by Jonathan Hickman. SPOILERS for these two titles; you’ve been warned.
A more critical look of the hyperbolic reception to House of X #1. -D. Bethel
The John Rogers tweet about showrunners on television shows:
Episode 130 – Form a Constant Voltron (14 April 2017): When D. and Andrew talked about the controversy that sprung up in the wake of the last major X-Men reboot, X-Men Gold and the hidden messages placed by its artist.
MISTER, I’LL MAKE AN EPIC OUT OF YOU: Andrew and D. Bethel briefly touch upon the interesting and promising live-action adaptation of the animated Disney classic, Mulan, even though this seems to be making considerable changes from the animated source material (seemingly to be more in-line with the folkloric source material).
Here’s the Twitter thread that Andrew mentioned, starting here with this tweet by Jenn Ravenna:
OBLIVIOUS OBSIDIAN: After Chris Avellone’s controversial interview where he makes argument about political content in video games, a former coworker of his at Obsidian––Leonard Boyarski––steps into the trap when discussing the politics of the upcoming Obsidian RPG, The Outer Worlds, in an interview with PC Gamer. Andrew and Dan try to parse the differences with Avellone’s comments and why this is such an issue (still).
REMAKE REDUX: Andrew briefly discusses his short but pleasant time with the recently released Resident Evil 2remake.
WEEK IN GEEK: Andrew takes a step further into Image & Form Games’ Steamworld, uh, world with their newest entry, Steamworld Quest. D. Bethel dusts off his bushido and patience as he’s both impressed and slightly confused by SNK’s reboot of their classic franchise, Samurai Shodown [sic].
A RITUAL CIRCLE OF ARIAS OF THE NIGHT MOON: Mentioned last week, both Andrew and D. Bethel have put some time into the newest Igavania game––meaning a Metroidvania game specifically made by Koji Igarashi––Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night and they are enjoying the presence of both nostalgic throwback and interesting choices that move the genre forward.