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Tycho / 2 days ago

I am by no means an expert, it could be that this shifts later, but the Minecraft Dungeons Ronia and I are playing here is a Diablo-style ARPG, complete with its little wireframe map, where every piece of equipment has a couple little trees in it that you can explore. And since your character is made up of six or so slots, you can choose which of these paths would work as a whole. She's never seen anything like this, but it's the key to a lot of gaming literacy. What if deckbuilding, but only six card? You'd be surprised what you can pull off.

It was very much the same with Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer; there isn't a functional space to discuss games that serve needs other than those of the reviewer. If you read the type of horseshit we regularly post, you've almost certainly been around awhile. Maybe you saw Turn Based become Real-Time Strategy become MOBA, and brought a little bit of those forward with you each time. We learned all of this as it happened and we show up at a new worksite with a truck full of tools. But we can't expect a young person to materialize like Athena, fully formed. We have to teach them about these things with games, and they missed all the on-ramps.

We sort of understand that there are movies for Families, and one of the strengths of "YA" as a genre is that it can often deliver something that works across generations. Minecraft Dungeons exists in that already established space, consciously: a Family Game. And it's not a failing. It's what happens when you make a game that is conversant with the actual world.

(CW)TB out.

Tycho / 5 days ago

I live my life guided by robust, enlightened, scientific principles. Yes, I do enjoy Rick and Morty. So when I say that the Dragon module didn't deliver human beings to the ISS the other day because one of us was watching it, that's not mysticism. It's not some missive from the Land of Faerie. It's our science, the God we made, saying in a clear voice: "dude don't watch it wtf is wrong with u."

Consider it a slick, modern reboot of the idea that watched pots don't boil, except every time the pot doesn't boil it costs one point two million dollars. As reboots go, it's not really an incredible hook. But look at the reboots we get and ask if quality has historically been, like, the motivating force.

We will take over the stream (already in progress!) at 2pm PDT today, I will do what I can to keep Gabriel away from the goose juice but I make no promises. I will reiterate that I tried to get him into the genre - by which I mean alcohol - twenty years ago, and he refused. It was a whole era; he didn't even take aspirin. He didn't even get boosts at Jamba Juice. Now apparently he is trying to win drinking. But maybe that's the stream you want! So what I can offer you today is a stream that features The Management of Motorsports, and some range of drunkenness by a cider neophyte between "amiable bantz" and "prophetic oblivion."

(CW)TB out.

Tycho / 1 week ago

We're still just learning about racing, which is… vast. It's not one thing. There are a lot of different kinds, and most of them have nothing to do with each other. We spend a lot of time on the channel attempting Ovals, which as a physical and intellectual exercise is often distilled as simply "turning left," and… that's not true. Holy shit.

We've discussed how racing moved online, a transition aided by the fact that it's a sport where the track portion of its execution really can be modeled in a way that's legible to traditional fans. It's not one person controlling a whole team. But there have been social complexities connected to racing moving online, some people simply won't do it, others have found great success at it - the skills can transfer, but it's not always one to one. You can watch Drive to Survive on Netflix to see the kinds of personalities at play, and there's a lot that can be said about this, but the unifying thing is that not only do they all want to climb inside of a bullet and shoot themselves down a rollercoaster, they all want to do that faster than everybody else.

It's a weird thing to want. And so, for me, part of the fascination with all this is trying to model this other kind of mind.

I certainly hadn't heard of Daniel Abt, because I hadn't gotten so far down into this kink that I'd gotten to Formula E yet. But he definitely was suspended from his team "with immediate effect" for having an established Sim Racer drive for him in a charity series. It was the winners of this race that called it out, apparently; they recognized at some level that it wasn't him behind the wheel. Whether it's because he actually performed well or if it's because - this is my fantasy - the act of guiding these vehicles around the track constitutes a recognizable, idiosyncratic fingerprint isn't clear to me. But let's fantasize about that for twenty four to forty eight hours.

Later on, Daniel Abt claimed in a statement that it had been his intention to catalogue the race behind the scenes and deliver a kind of "Punk'd" scenario, revealing all, but who knows? There are simpler explanations.

Hey! There's no Acquisitions Incorporated: The "C" Team game this week, but we will have the next salvo of Ryan's behind-the-screen debut, The Ballad Of Fred Chicken - the first episode of which is here. Subscribing to the YouTube and clicking the bell is supposed to help you know when things like this happen, but I only know that because I have seen other denizens of YouTube say it.

What we do have tonight is Elyssa Grant and I talking shop and talking questions from chat while we drink scotch and get silly, and it starts when the show would have - and it goes from 4-5pm PDT.

(CW)TB out.

PA iRacing League

Our race streams continue to deliver real thrills in the evenings. I know it can be difficult to catch these live since there is no set schedule. We’ve got a big back log of VODs at this point if you’re curious what all the fuss is about though. 

Watch Gabir Motors! from PennyArcade on

The Penny Arcade iRacing league is also continuing to grow. We’ve got 85 members now and regularly scheduled races. I plan on streaming our Thursday evening races each week. These are open to anyone in the league and the race type will change each week. This Thursday we’ll be doing an oval with the race starting at 8pmPST. I’ll open up the Pit Crew on Twitch around the same time. 

I am still accepting all drivers into the PA league. Just find us in the iRacing league directory and send a request. Don’t worry about your skill level, we have people who are just getting started along with some veterans. Before you get too excited about racing with me, I should warn you I have a reputation.

-Gabe out

Tycho / 1 week ago

I can't find the page now, it's possible it's just gone, but even the day Crucible launched I was trying to find the game on Amazon - I thought for sure they were gonna utilize their launcher or something to distribute it. They had a page up with some rudimentary information and the suggestion that they didn't know when it would be available, on its literal launch day. I had a hard think about that. In 2050, you'll buy a liver for your son from Amazon because he has Pfizer Syndrome and you don't want to settle for the Walmart liver even if it's half the price because it comes in a two-pack and that seems weird. But You Don't Skimp On Stuff Like This. Today, in 2020, they don't even know when their game is coming out because of how nerve signals attenuate in an organism of that size.

I was quite impressed to learn a few minutes later that it did come out, and on Steam, which is where most people buy and play games on computers. I was as pleased as I was when I found out that Gears Tactics was on Steam, or Ori and the Will of the Wisps. I don't know what the equivalent of "not cutting off your nose to spite your face" is in a business context, where noses and faces are abstractions, but we've come to a point where I'm congratulating somebody for doing literally the most obvious thing. Cool year.

It's a hero shooter with more of the MOBA stuff left in. There's some polish around interactions I'd like to see, and the backend was goosed when I tried to check it out before so I'll have to get in there today and see what I can see.  I like the characters and the archetypes but it really feels like it is a young, brash fellow in need of civilization that only thousands of public rounds can provide.  But Gabe keeps ending up logged in, and not just because of the reason in the strip. If he endures literally broken shit to get access to something, that's when I start to pay attention.

(CW)TB out.

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