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Tycho / on Wed, Oct 28 2009 at 12:00 am

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Twisp & Catsby In: The Visitation

It seemed like it was about time for some Twisp and Catsby, which we hope is welcome.  We wondered how the season might be interpreted in their strange realm, and now we have some measure of understanding.

The site’s built-in comic viewer is insufficient to contain the image as created, and though it carries a facsimile of the work, you can find the authentic, absolute version here.

The only time playing videogames seems remotely like work is when the industry insists on its annual holiday death march, and since I try my best to avoid responsibility of any kind, I avoid the games I “should be playing” and instead play games order to play games.  I’ve had Etherlords II and King’s Bounty spinning all week, ancient products by the Internet’s reckoning, but games in a truer sense - not a procession of “objects” to be assessed.

If I put in Ratchet and Clank tonight - and I could, because I own it - the urge to assess it would be strong.  What I mean by that is there are things about the time of its arrival and it’s place in a storied lineage that would interfere with my ability to experience it in a more or less organic way.  I don’t doubt that it’s excellent, and perhaps it could overwhelm this urge, but its not something I want to risk.  It’ll keep.

Deciding whether to play Borderlands or Torchlight was a challenge - since they are both cognates of acquire, they stimulate the same region.  As in all matters of this kind, I chose to do both, at tremendous cost to my physical integrity.

You might know about Torchlight, even if the name is not immediately familiar to you: when Flagship Studios, they had another project going called Mythos.  Initially the product of one dude, it served as a test bed for Hellgate and continued to simmer while the rest of the company disintegrated.  When everything Flagship was sold to Korea, an unbelievably appropriate team was built to refine those concepts into pure sugar.  It’ll ultimately be the basis of a free to play MMO, but for now, twenty dollars will return to you some measure of your misspent youth.

I hoped that Borderlands would be satisfy, but I never expected it to grip in the way that it so readily does.  It’s hard to imagine that Gearbox had something like this knocking around, bubbling beneath their tactical shooters.

I chose the PC version, which I don’t regret, because its comparatively stratospheric resomolutions do the game’s art an incredible service.  I did run aground on some port forwarding at first, which is apparently the cosmic tradeoff.  After an hour or so of bullshit, which included a host of router perforations as well sequence of voodoo-like rituals culled from innumerable fora, I was finally able to enter a game with a friend.  At this point, I’d played the game so much by myself that it was not a multiplayer game at all, so when he manifested in that inviolate space I almost didn’t know how to react.  I imagine it was something like the first two humans to ever look upon one another; there was suspicion, fear, and ultimately rage.  I had to come to terms with the idea that I was not the only protagonist, which is - and let’s be honest - suboptimal

(CW)TB out.

‘til they find the bones of us

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