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Hot New Game Alert!

By Gabe – April 24, 2024

This is just a quick post to recommend Tales of Kenzera: Zau which is a new metroidvania style game that just dropped today. I played for about an hour and had to force myself to stop so I could come tell you guys about it right away. The visuals in this game are stunning but beyond that the combat and movement are just flawless. Switching between two magical masks gives your character ranged or melee abilities and alternating between them during fights and traversal is described in game as a dance. This could not be a better description for the gameplay. I love it. Don’t sleep on this one, I can already tell it’s a winner. Okay, I’m loading it back up now!


-Gabe Out 

 

It's an Old Game, But it Checks out

Now that you can watch it at home, I finally got around to seeing Dune Part two over the weekend. I’ve only read the first book in the series but I’ve read it a few times which is not something I normally do. I love the movies and think they do an incredible job of translating one of my favorite books. I also caught the final episode of Shogun and that’s one of the best TV series I’ve ever watched. Personally I prefer artful and ambiguous endings to ones that break everything down for the audience. It’s probably obvious from the stories we tell but I think it’s important to leave room for the reader to bring their imagination to the world. 

 

Cyberyuck

We saw a Cybertruck in the wild when we were coming back from a funeral. It bore a kind of gentle symmetry, because Elon Musk will be buried beneath one figuratively and possibly literally because of how the gas pedal can slide off and get stuck under a manifold, locking the pedal into its highest level of push-downedness. It's fine, though - the thirty-eight hundred or so cybertrucks out in the wild are being brought in to have the footplate pop-riveted in, like they were shoeing a horse.

Everything We Know about May/June Sticker Packs

I saw a Cybertruck in real life for the first time a few days ago. That is the ugliest vehicle I’ve ever seen and I can remember when people were buying the PT Cruiser. I can’t imagine a normal, human person seeing that monstrosity and thinking “That’s the truck for me!” What I’m saying is, Cybertruck owners don’t deserve rights. 

 

 

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Stranger Danger

I considered some more Vault 77, but the new Transformers trailer had just hit and we talked about that instead. I always think that I like Transformers a normal amount, that there is something universal in these warring cults of conscious machines, but I think that I might actually like them way more than other people and quite possibly I like them a weird amount.

The Right Hand of The King

With people talking about Fallout now that would never have previously talked about Fallout, it's a great time to direct you to Bethesda's Vault 77 Page, which catalogs the origins of the entity known in the wasteland as The Puppet Man. There's also a lot of other text on the page, what your fifth grade teacher Mrs. Prang might have called a "primary source," which serves to situate the entire affair in that place and time. Bethesda was fully down to clown; it's a canonical vault, with item and holotape support. Seemed like it might be fun to go back.

The Pittsburgh Stealers

In the modern era of course, Gabe is a petrol-huffing speed demon. In Wheel Saint, he made me anodize his filthy carnography with a Catholoid sheen. But even if we weren't obsessives in the past, we usually kept up with the big franchises because there was a lot of fun metaphors they could bang into unique gameplay. Burnout is the, I don't know… racing platformer, I guess? Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit was a really fun version of tag. We grabbed The Crew back in the day, sometimes called a "CaRPG," and Ubisoft allowed it to live and breathe and develop a unique audience. An audience they would scourge at the beginning of the month by seizing access to the game they bought.

Ubisoft Is On Drugs

There is no universe in which I purchase the new Ubisoft Star Wars game for $70 much less $200 now that they just delete games you bought from your library. This is especially frustrating considering I’ve been playing a lot of old games recently, specifically racing ones. Going back and playing these decade old games made me realize how much I dislike the new “festival” design for these sorts of racers. The Crew Motorfest and Horizon both want me to believe that I’m participating in some kind of sanctioned event and compared to games like NFS or even the original Crew it’s just super boring. I’m having a blast with NFS Payback and NFS 2015 right now which sadly is another of these Always Online games meaning that EA could pull the plug on it at anypoint. It’s wild because they still look and play better than many modern racing games. Just because a game is 10 years old doesn’t mean it’s no good anymore especially when you look at the current state of triple A games. 

 

 

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Crafty

When I see our engineer playing something in Early Access, I always make a note to come back and check it out - but Gabe beat me to it. This time it's The Planet Crafter, which just hit 1.0. It's a multiplayer techy buildy enviro sim type thing, but the couple screens and videos I saw didn't really communicate the arc. The arc is terraforming a hostile world into a paradise, which you can see in the video below. I've done the first part a ton - picking up all that shit, making shit from the shit, so many times that I don't really get out of bed for that layer anymore. I sure as shit haven't done this:

Big April Sticker Drop!

For Christmas I got a very nice printer and a Cricut cutting machine. I quickly became obsessed with making stickers. I was taken back to the days of my youth in the 80’s when sticker collecting was HUGE. Like all kids I loved cartoons back then but I specifically liked the art. I used to take the comic section from the Sunday newspaper and trace all my favorite characters. When stickers became a thing I was powerless to resist. There were dedicated sticker shops all over and inside they were essentially candy stores but for art! I filled my official Hallmark sticker album with Garfield, Snoopy, Care Bears and then spent hours trying to draw them. I specifically remember learning to draw the bald eagle mascot of the 1984 Olympics whose look I loved and was on all kinds of merch back then including stickers. It’s been fun drawing sttuff reminiscent of those old designs. More stickers are dropping today if you’d like to get nostalgic with me.

 

 

Converse x Lockheed Martin

Gabriel was telling me about Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire, and about how… just about how it was, what it was like. He told me things that I guess are technically spoilers but I don't know if you can meaningfully spoil or even harm this type of content. It is a buddy cop movie about a nuclear dinosaur and a monkey that is too big. He's too big! I can't stress that enough.

Whackmen

I was trying to find something for my newspost on Friday, some ancient snip of gabriana, and Twitter said that there was no such thing as a Gabe. Certainly we have our disagreements from time to time on matters of import, and also… condiments, but nothing to cast him into the void over. If I get a vote, he should continue to exist. But he made that account a billion years ago in Internet terms, and now it's gone.

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Monday Update: Tweets, Cars and Stickers

As a fundamentally antisocial person, I’m not sure social media was ever going to be a good fit for me. Like the comic suggests, I have finally deleted my Twitter account. I don’t think it’s ever been a healthy place to be for me but under its new management the service has gotten even worse. I found myself spending hours reading through trending hashtags and blocking idiots. After realizing what a colossal waste of fucking time this was I quit the service back in December but still felt weird about having an account. I was a frog who had managed to jump out of the boiling water but felt like he needed to keep the pot around. Finally I reached out to about five people that I had only ever communicated with via Twitter, gave them my email address and then nuked the account.  I highly encourage anyone else still there to do the same. Trust me, ditch your twitter account and spend that time playing games. You’ll feel a lot better. 

 

 

Retromancy

Mork is obsessed with X-Men '97 - I was more of a Batman: The Animated Series guy, they started the same year, and I used to run up the hill - it was like a forty-five degree angle - and I could usually get home before the credits were over. But X-Men was probably more nineties, overall: the palette, the music, it's an incredible time capsule and they have brought it into the modern day via some kind of alchemy. We started all this just a few years later, which is sort of hard to get my head around.

Raid: Shadow Legends

I've described the hedonic burnout that must naturally come from triggering the same psychological reward system over and over for the duration of my World of Warcraft career. And, no hate - if you rode that particular rollercoaster all the way up and all the way down, it was a singular era. I fucking lived there. There is a tower in the starting area outside of Stormwind where my character "lived" and I have a lot of incredibly serious backstory which occurred there. I would pass it, seventy levels later, and think of the hempen blanket and that humble straw which she could afford.

The new character - in Final Fantasy XIV? Catgirl. I'm going a different direction this time.