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Freak-A-Leak

Maybe such things "hit different" when you are also a maker of things. Most of our stuff is delivered hot and fresh, as though from the back of a truck, so the idea that we could have worked on something for years and years and not have released it doesn't map fully onto the GTA leaks. I wouldn't even work on something with that long a lead time; it's completely outside my nature. I hate the things I make almost immediately after I've finished them! Frankly, I think the sentence before this one could use some fuckin' work. I would begin hating whatever I was working on a week or so in and then I'd have to work on it for four more years.

The Hour Is Late

This incarnation of G4 is the brainchild of some princely Comcast scion, whose Overwatch team was probably supposed to benefit from it in some way - even though the link from the Comcast Spectacor site to their own team is busted. I'm heartbroken for anybody who loses their job to this thing, especially right now. Even companies with virtually unlimited money are cutting staff, which makes me think things must be worse than I already thought they were. Just as a reference: I thought they were pretty fuckin' bad. But there's structural aspects to how modern media functions that make a play like this quite difficult.

Farm Minimization

I tried to play one of these games a long time ago - these farming games - I think it was one of the old Harvest Moons. One of my chickens got sick, more or less during the introduction to the game. They were probably trying to teach me about how medicine worked or something. The chicken fucking died. I was wounded deeper than I could have imagined by the death of this imaginary chicken, and I never played it again.

Afterburner

What are we supposed to make of Starbucks Odyssey, a metastasized version of their rewards program? Let's have Howard Something Something tell us directly:

"We believe this new digital Web3-enabled initiative will allow us to build on the current Starbucks Rewards engagement model with its powerful spend-to-earn Stars approach while also introducing new methods of emotionally engaging customers, expanding our digital third place community, and offering a broader set of rewards, including one-of-a-kind experiences that you can't get anywhere else, integrating our digital Starbucks Rewards ecosystem with Starbucks-branded digital collectibles as both a reward and a community building element."

Eugh. Now, he didn't say NFTs, because he's not dumb. But they're NFTs.

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Lisa Loab

I want to thank Local 58's own Kris Straub for taking over Art duties today. Gabe has been more careful than anyone I know, he's still retained many talismanic practices I have softened on, at least in my own neighborhood - but one of the ways your world is trash is that kids at school will bully you if you wear a mask until you take it off and get COVID. And then your dad takes care of you, and he gets it. At home! At fucking home. In the end, he got it at home. When I talked with him before it really took hold, he suggested the call had come from inside the house.

Kissytown

I can very clearly recall riding in the back of the station wagon with my sister, in the era where you could place your children in the equivalent of a deadly rock tumbler and everybody was basically fine with it. We had no particular allegiance to IP holders, and were flagrant in our abuses of their precious wealth. The Constructicons and The Ponies didn't necessarily have common cause in particular domain, seeing as they're almost completely orthogonal to each other on every axis, but they were united in their loathing for the treacherous drive to Spokane. Treacherous two ways: one, the winding, icy mountain pass. And two, once you get there, it's likeSpokane.

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Rulemonger

Maintaining even a single mechanism like this in your mind, functionally, with all its eddies and cheeky exceptions, isn't without a strange kind of labor. For years, when I had to fly all over the place, bringing a new rulebook on the plane and trying to build that exquisite clock within my skull has been my primary form of entertainment. I assemble it in my mind until nothing I read surprises me. This process typically knocks me completely out.

Better Half

Initially scandalized slash incensed that he would have to play the roger roger robots in Star Wars; Legion to offer his son's Clone Troopers a period appropriate foe, Gabriel discovered that he could also field Darth Maul and various other underworld scum instead - averting disaster. Although he did invest himself for a time in a flight of fancy that I'm afraid I'll be forced to investigate in a strip. This is gonna be like his dog superhero thing all over again. This is what my bones are telling me.

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Purgator

Mark Zuckerberg took a selfie in his VR thing that was not… aspirational, is how I would put it. His model looked like they couldn't figure out whether to rip off Avatars or Miis. There was a shitty version of the Eiffel Tower behind him or something; it was as appealing as the Phantom Zone. Picture this: you're hot off destroying online media with the Pivot to Video and the Jedi Blue advertising cartel you formed with Google. Now, it's time to dominate the future: and you do so by creating a digital version of the DashCon ball pit.

Warhammer for Dummies

I only learned about the term Hyperfixation in the last year or so. Before that I just thought I was an interesting person. You know what I mean? Like I was a true renaissance man. I guess it’s just a mental disorder though.  Oh well. 

 

Subversion

Because it was his first version, Gabir often recalls those golden days when everything 4th was in ascendance. Jim Darkmagic was born there, so it will always be a kind of home. We don't need to talk about how odd it can get at higher levels, or how slow the official software toolset got as the powers database became more plump, or the kind of analysis paralysis that could occur for players new and old. It was also rad in its own way, and the notion of a "power source" - like Martial, or Divine - lead to some really interesting new class concepts I still kinda miss.