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Tycho / on Wed, Feb 5 2003 at 7:35 am

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There is that special feeling in the air, all around us, the feeling that only comes once a year on Tycho’s Birthday Eve.  Let’s savor it together.

If you have seen today’s strip, you might also be interested to see the not one but two damning pages ferried out of Electronics Boutique under cover of night.  We’ve been to the EBX in Redmond Square when managers who believe this stuff are working there, and it is horrifying.  When we hit a game store, that shit is surgical - we’re like a Navy SEALs, coming in through the roof on nylon cords.  We’re not there to get a date.  We aren’t there to chit and chat, least of all about groundhogs.  I’m not trying to be rude, but those are the facts of the matter.  My heart goes out to the poor gamer who, in orientation, is exposed to this kind of toxic stupidity. 

From the orbital Agony Array PA-1, we here at Penny Arcade can sometimes coax physical law and get something before it hits stores.  It is not anything we do with any regularity, for a couple reasons:  One, going to the store, getting the game, going to the food court with Gabe and reading the manual over vaguely edible food is a critical ritual whose importance I can’t stress enough.  Two, when you have an ability like that, you want to save it for when you need it.  When it became clear that MoO3 wasn’t hitting stores anytime soon even though it had gone gold, I immediately began to dance on that pole and work for my supper.  I have it now, and having greedily lapped every syllable of this excellent preview I thought I was ready to manage my star empire and so forth.  I would soon find out that was a lie from the pit of hell, I was so pummeled by the raw data the game provides that by the end of Turn One I needed a hug.  I will spend the day teaching this bull to dance, matador style. 

I’ve played Unreal II about four hours total, and I wish I had something to add to the canon but I don’t.  It is a meticulous and beautifully made game whose gameplay virtually defines “average.”  Which is handy, because it can be used to calibrate the scale. 

(CW)TB out.

that song from the daredevil movie

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