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Tycho / on Fri, May 5 2017 at 12:00 pm

It sort of goes back to the podcast for this week, entitled “Medley.”  For me, games are novel models of phenomena, keyhole glimpses into a manifold and incomprehensible reality.  For my longtime friend and ally Gurpy Grops, videogames are a visual medium, a novel way to experience art.  I start at the abstract and work down, he does the opposite.

In truth, I need never get to to the art.  He need never get to the underlying system (although if we’re maintaining the previous metaphor, it is an “overarching” system).  It is very strange to think that we are both adherents of a medium we were eating from opposite ends.  This is some Lady and the motherfucking Tramp shit.

I think Darksiders is a lot more clever than people give it credit for.  It’s true that some of the skulls are very large.  And there are a lot of them.  It’s possible there was a sale, I don’t know.  Some of the skulls have lava in their mouths.  I still stand by my original assertion.

  For Gabriel, Darksiders is a method of inhabiting the art of Joe Madureira.  He’s seen the materials released so far, and primarily detects a frigid void where the man’s influence had previously been.  If Joe Mad is not there, it isn’t even Darksiders by his definition.  He would direct you toward Battle Chasers: Nightwar, a novel mechanical hybrid by Joe’s new outfit Airship Syndicate.  I would direct you there also, only because it’s rad looking, and not as an explicit signatory on Gabriel’s campaign.

There’s information I need to make sure you know!  I don’t presume that a person sees every update, so I occasionally gotta tell you something you already heard.  I apologize in advance.

1. We need a graphic designer.  Here’s the post about it, but at the end of the day we need someone to work with Kiko, Gavin, and Dabe to define our presence as a cultural foundry.  Yes, I really talk like that.  Come work here, and you’ll see.  Hit ‘em up at design@penny-arcade.com with your portfolio.

2. PAX Unplugged tickets are on sale!  What are you doing Novermber 17th through the 19th?  Because I have a suggestion, and it involves tables.  Specifically the upper surface of the table, commonly known as “the top.”

3. In “The Sale That Is Not A Sale, Exactly,” our t-shirt prices are set to increase next Wednesday, from 20 to 24 bucks.  I talked about it a little bit on Wednesday, but there’s always more I could say.  I want the designers to have the best toys: access to superior materials, good partners, and novel processes.  Ultimately something had to give.  Just changing it with no warning seemed really rude to me though, and I wanted you to have a heads up.  If you want to grab anything before the price jumps, now is the time.

    (CW)TB out.

Tycho / on Wed, May 3 2017 at 1:00 pm

PAX Unplugged Tickets On Sale Now

Hey, what are you doing November 17th through the 19th?  You want to come out to Philly, PA - an auspiciously truncated state - and roll some motherfucking dice?!?  Tickets for PAX Unplugged, our new tabletop themed show, are available for purchase!

(CW)TB

Tycho / on Wed, May 3 2017 at 1:00 pm

I left my Switch at home yesterday for Brenna, and I really missed it.  I have yet to play it au parc but I don’t see a situation where that doesn’t happen.  Like Google Glass, there’s going to be things about it that make the social fabric…  taut, for lack of a better word.  I played Mario Kart at a brewery and the novelty factor of this projected a small distance into what others perceived as rudeness, as though I had brought in a television from home or something and just started watching it.  It’s okay to watch the television installed in the bar, and it’s okay to be at a table with other people looking and interacting exclusively with your phone.  But if you and a friend are playing a game together, now it’s rude.

    This was supposed to be the last console generation, you’ll recall, but what did that mean in actual practice: it meant two to three times as many consoles in the same span.  The iterative approach of the PS4 Pro and the Scorpio makes more sense from a technology perspective, a decade or more is a very long time, but when I look over at the Switch I see a stake driven through the heart of the old model.  I want something to burrow up through the foundation and have it intersect my life in an oblique way, something that casts light from a different direction.  I’m always going to play videogames wherever I can find them.  I’m always going to love the PC the most.  But this machine and what it represents is only beginning to be understood.

Talking with our merchandise manager Lidija, we’ve continuously improved the quality of our shirts and printing processes without increasing the price on the shirts, which she tells me is “bad” and apparently “not business, in the classic sense.”  We’re going to change the prices on the shirts, but I didn’t want to spring it on you out of nowhere.  I looked around, and it seems like “$24.95” isn’t an uncommon price for this type of stuff.  So, we’re going to bump it up to $24, and remove the cents at the end purely as a matter of aesthetics.  We’ll move to the new pricing on May 10th, next Wednesday, so if you want to grab some of the rad stuff the designers are putting out for cheaper (I have a particular fondness for Gav’s Acq Inc designs)  now’s a great time.

    (CW)TB out.

Tycho / on Mon, May 1 2017 at 4:07 pm

We’re Looking For A Graphic Designer

We have a lot we want to accomplish in the next few years, and we need somebody to help us do that - the help we’re looking for right now is in the “Graphic Design” realm, and it’s somebody we’d like to have in-house.  From Acquisitions Incorporated to the Eyrewood to Automata, I feel like it’s time to really investigate what these things mean.  I had Kiko put together a slab of text to explain the skills they’re looking for in Design.  Here he is:

—-

Position
Graphic Designer

Required Skills
Branding
Merchandise & Packaging Design
Print & Web Layout
Proficiency in Adobe Photoshop & Illustrator

Portfolio submissions must reflect all required skills.

IMPORTANT: This person must have a passion for games.

—-

Are you into all this stuff? 

I’ll leave submissions open until next Monday, May 8th - send your portfolio over to design@penny-arcade.com.  We have more interesting work than we can physically complete right now, and I want to set somebody loose on it.  We’re very excited to meet you.

Penny Arcade is an equal opportunity employer. We think serving our readership best demands a diverse team.

Tycho / on Mon, May 1 2017 at 10:52 am

Gabriel has failed again, and it’s my duty to catalogue it.

The way it looks if you are a father in 2017 is that you will ask yourself, “Is my daughter playing enough videogames?”  To a certain extent, I just want to her to know me through my own fascinations; that’s some pretty human shit.  You can’t push it too hard, and I’m careful not to.  You can convert the most advanced amusement technology our species has ever developed into trout very, very easily.

VR doesn’t require a sales pitch in my house.  She’d live in there if she could eat the food in Job Simulator.  But if I hand her a controller for a traditional system, it’s like handing her a lumpy, variegated cyst.  I want to utilize the Dowsing Rod as a metaphor, but the UI for such rods is very straightforward.  In truth, the controllers for the Vive or the Rift are more like a Dowsing Rod.  Essentially the idea that I’m trying to get across is this: the gamepad (and the thought-foundry that manufactured it) are artifacts of a previous generation.  Let’s say it’s like handing her a sextant, in a world where the GPS is real.  There is an unknowable volume of actual fun, let’s call it X, gated by this buttony lozenge.  I agree that there is a lot of value to be had in its mastery, but I also know that the time they live in is one where any cartoon ever made is two, perhaps three button presses away.  Interactive media has to earn their time.

So, I don’t understand how the Switch has short circuited this process.  It’s covered in buttons and she wants to know what they all do.  When I was opening the box in the kitchen, getting everything out, I was already planning how I would try to place the device in her periphery - at hand, with but plausibly deniable intent.  I came back downstairs and she was already playing with it.  Is it the size?  I had intended to spend this post lauding the virtues of the form factor, but that being said, I’m unlikely to ever find the Playstation 4 hidden under her pillow.  The manifold “conveniences” of the Switch exist on a sliding scale.

    (CW)TB out.




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