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Dev Game Club

Join hosts and game industry veterans Brett Douville and Tim Longo as they explore older titles to talk about the influences those games had and what we can learn from them even today.
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Dev Game Club
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Now displaying: Page 1
Jul 17, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series on The Sims. We talk about a dark spiral, read some poetry, the problem of having enough time, and other topics. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
A few more hours

Issues covered: alien life, Windows snippet tool vs print screen, not saving, random seeds, introducing a chaos event, theorizing about end games for careers, Tim's persistent chip bag, forums and forever games, games you can play daily, free-to-play mobile games, appointment-based gaming, min/maxing psychology, selling the kids' doll house for food, Dianne being negative, "I'm too depressed to even look at myself," lack of weekends, two Sims having a day off, a podcast first, multiple burners, having to closely manage Bob's fun, the Sims for therapy, externalizing developer feelings of 21st century life, using the room meter to understand what needs to be done, the ultimate plate-spinning game, "did you know that love could be lucrative?," falling in love to increase your net worth, 3D characters and a 2D environment, modding goals and having 3D characters, dimetric vs isometric, revisiting gender normativity, liking problematic things, listening to their audience, how you might approach things the second time around, remastering Final Fantasy VI, a party of side characters, two automated characters healing each other.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: SimCity, Dianne Feinstein, Apple ][, Farmville, Diner Dash, Bejeweled, Animal Crossing, Sims Online, Maxis, Firaxis, Ensemble Studios, Terry Pratchett, Mia Goth, Halo, Kenneth Koch, David Sedaris, Diablo, Quake, Tomb Raider, Super Mario 64, Michael, EA, Wing Commander, Anita Sarkeesian, Northern Exposure, Starfighter, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia, Final Fantasy VI, BioStats, Kaeon, Unity, Final Fantasy Tactics, Cloud Strife, Apocalypse Now. 

Next time:
A few more hours and maybe finish with The Sims

Links:
Here's an audio recording of the poet Kenneth Koch reading his poem

Twitch: timlongojr, Twitter/Threads/Insta: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Jul 10, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series on 2000's The Sims. We spend a little time on the gender normativity of the title, sprinkle in some stories about our various households, and also fit in some reader mail! Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
A few more hours!

Issues covered: satire and farce, Timmy's toilet troubles, Betty's rapid rise in scientific circles, sexual orientation and the Sims, dark times for Bob, Jeff in the military, whether the game is conforming to gender biases all the time or not, Diane and politics, how Betty got her job, thinking about design decisions around careers, the value systems that the game systems express, working with smaller spaces and the difficulties for game development, the American Dream qua Nightmare, being in the 1950s and the music, "None of my good points are inadvertent," opacity of systems in other simulations vs this game's clarity, a toy vs a game, Bob winning things via the phones, Chance and Community Chest, Potty Talk with Tim and Brett, dolls and trains, finding SimCity more serious, can the Sims die?, not knowing that we had to pay the bills, investing in Bob's creativity, touching on the animation and object systems, teenagers and hygiene, getting Bob's confidence up, a little ditty, the shlubs getting the gals, encouraging community via modding and engagement, moon names, code names, hunting for things in games, the tension of player cleverness and wasting your time, environment scanning, visual language and level design, getting playersr to have intuition.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Mia Goth, Mad Men (obliquely), SimCity 2000, Unpacking, Fallout (obliquely), Will Wright, Monopoly, John Mellencamp, Seth Rogen, Raid on Bungeling Bay, Bethesda Game Studios, Skyrim, Jonah Lobe, Quiet: Level One, Sasha, Tomb Raider, mysterydip, Kaeon, Might and Magic, NES, Where's Waldo, Ratchet & Clank, Microsoft, Sony, Nintendo, UbiSoft, Witcher III, World of Warcraft, Morrowind, Arkham (series), Breath of the Wild, Ocarina of Time, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia.

Next time:
More of The Sims!

Links:
Jonah Lobe's Quiet: Level One 

Twitch: timlongojr, Twitter/Threads/Insta: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Jul 3, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we start a new series on 2000's The Sims. We first set the game in its time, and then turn almost immediately to what happened with our Sims. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
A couple of hours

Issues covered: spiders and ant farms, last few episodes, our interview with Michel Ancel, games from 2000, all-time sales by brand, an expansion-pack driven business model, games that don't end, a precedent, building up to simulating people, our memories, jumping in without the manual, following the tutorial, talking about Bob and Betty Newbie, a little shade on the console version, what you learn in the tutorial, getting a job, roleplaying the newbies, being visited by the Goths, an interview with John Romero, another visit from the Goths, Tim diving into level design, making messes, options for reading, promoting experimentation, people eating all over the place, Bob and Betty dividing up labor, Bob the freeloader, the people in your neighborhood, horror movie on the TV, kids running in the streets, Mrs Goth collecting her child, the bed against the wall, building versus micromanaging, finding our own fun, comedy factory, inter-system friction, Maslow's hierarchy of needs, spinning the plates, "some dude got water everywhere," discussing how the pathfinding might work, keeping it clean, our Easter Egg, the Aw Jeez files.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: BioStats, Calamity Nolan, Ben from Iowa, Mark Garcia, Michel Ancel, SW: Starfighter, Final Fantasy IX, Deus Ex, THPS 2, SSX, Perfect Dark, NOLF, Baldur's Gate 2, Vagrant Story, Diablo 2, Banjo-Tooie, Spyro: Year of the Dragon, Majora's Mask, Crazy Taxi, Counter-Strike, Thief II, PlayStation, Pokémon, Tetris, Assassin's Creed, Legos, Minecraft, FIFA, Grand Theft Auto, Call of Duty, Mario, Game Boy, Little Computer People, Seaman, Tamagotchi, Amiga, Atari, David Crane, Rich Gold, Pitfall!, Famicom, Will Wright, Raid on Bungeling Bay, Maxis, EA, Final Fantasy Tactics, Donald Pleasance, SimCity, Dwarf Fortress, John Romero, Spore, Mr Rogers, The Exorcist, George Lucas, Far Cry 2, Abraham Maslow, Dave K, Final Fantasy VI, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers. 

Next time:
More The Sims!

Twitch: timlongojr, Twitter/Threads/Insta: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Jun 26, 2024

Friends from the Discord provide some audio from back in December -- sorry to get to it so late, I admit I forgot. No show notes as I'm just back from vacation and settling in. See you next week.

Next time:
New series!

Twitch: timlongojr, Twitter/Threads/Insta: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Jun 19, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we're both unavailable, but we catch you up on the mailbag! Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Issues covered: a review prompting discussion of Majora's Mask, some discussion of time loop games, a very difficult to find character, hard to find stuff in older games, Easter Eggs in games we've put in or in games we knew, the Jar-Jar model, the hidden command-line, keeping the love alive, teaching a bit of a design course, should have gone into film, starting our own company, being inspired by GDC, being reminded of the passion, getting the gang back together, green Tahoma, bringing in marketing, comparative marketing, tapping into the lizard brain, a title having to be many things, legal search for copyright/trademark, why is it called Europa, whether or not it's possible not to grind, the mental state required, the time pressure of the podcast, a place to play for elite players, the relative ease of critical paths in later games, completionist vs main-line content, the requirement to broaden games' appeal, how many people finish games as a percentage, making 30% of the end of the game, the Deep Dungeon of Final Fantasy Tactics, rescuing the dragon, fighting the high end critters, Cloud Strife and his headache, diving into the Deep Dungeon, lighting and the dark dungeon, how to unlock the calculator, the strategy for finding the dungeon exits, Brett's theory about Cloud, connections with Viet Nam, localization issue?, deciding on a post-credits sequence.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: _Iceboy_, Ocarina of Time, Majora's Mask, Groundhog's Day, Super Time Force Ultra, PlayStation, Housemarque, Returnal, Deathloop, Outer Wilds, Ashton Herrmann, Pokemon Red/Blue, Street Fighter 2, DB Weiss, Lucky Wander Boy, Jamie Fristrom, Adventure, Mortal Kombat, Republic Commando, Force Unleashed, Greg Knight, Greg Land, Harley Baldwin, Star Wars: Starfighter, Dave K, Diablo, Far Cry 2, Thief, Bethesda Game Studios, Brainy Gamer/Michael Abbott, This War of Mine, Call of Duty, Ian Milham, Tim-mento, Trespasser, Baldur's Gate 3, Dungeons & Dragons, Michael #1, Hero of the Circinus Galaxy, Tacoma, John Feil, Halo (series), Disney Infinity, Medal of Honor, Call of Duty, Robert Heinlein, 2010, Tomb Raider, Michael #2, Tactics Ogre/Ogre Battle, Space Quest/King's Quest, Plundered Hearts, Larian Studios, BioWare, The Witcher III,  Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia, Metal Gear, Final Fantasy Tactics, Final Fantasy VII, Kingdom Hearts, Square Enix, Apocalypse Now, Ladyhawke, The Doors.

Errata:
Lucky Wander Boy was written by D. B. Weiss (which admittedly, is German for white). We regret the error.

Next time: 
TBA

Twitch: timlongojr, Twitter/Threads/Insta: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Jun 12, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we add to our series on Beyond Good and Evil with Michel Ancel. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Podcast breakdown:
00:49 Interview
1:05:23 Interlude 
1:05:56 Outro 

Issues covered: a one-main game, making a game by himself, being fascinated by computer graphics, not being able to save the first work, a tool for creation, ecological development, UbiSoft's magazine for recruitment, meeting with the big boss, working as an external developer, making a first playable of Rayman, developing an internal team, a big early team, going all in around Rayman, developing internal tools, a female lead, a story-based adventure game trying to be holistic, a difficult and ambitious project, figuring out what to cut and what to keep, defining moments, creating a whole world, not knowing where the boundaries are, wanting to surprise people, cutting the open world/multiple cities, doing everything in the tools they made with a very small team, huge capabilities of the tool, the 100% complete mini-game, coming up with characters and story, telling the story while you play, having a strong vision for the game, integration of levels with cinematic storytelling and camera placement, coming up with the formula, reusing the techniques, the origin of the title, Jade's unexplained traumatic history, enemies doing what they have to to survive, consequences for those close to you, a commitment to internal tech, laying out the development pillars.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Rayman, Rabbids, King Kong, Ubisoft, The Intruder, Shigeru Miyamoto, Atari, Brain Blasters/The Teller, Pixar, TRON, Yves Guillemot, Jaguar, PlayStation, Michel Guillemot, 3DStudio MAX, Legend of Zelda, Elite, Starflight, Argonaut, Starfox, Jacques Exertier, Resident Evil, Metal Gear Solid 2, Unreal, Valiant Hearts, Sega Saturn, Nintendo Wii, Fred Markus, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia

Next time:
Mailbag!

Twitch: timlongojr, Twitter/Threads/Insta: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Jun 5, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we complete our series on Final Fantasy Tactics. Before we head to our takeaways, we talk about the story and themes and about the puzzle nature of some of the story missions. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Near finished (B), Near finished Ch 2 (T)

Issues covered: Tim's retirement guide, continued therapy sessions, side quests, Aeris on the critical path, requiring a guide, finding the various jobs, the story according to Brett, objects of power, the quest for the Zodiac stones, a random battle that went bad, Barinten thrown off a roof, a story mission that I had to replay and replay, leveling vs the main story, puzzle-y missions, the best fit button, wanting a little more feedback about systems, reasons to grind, lack of difficulty levels in older games, the overwhelm of the story, more intentional combat, the job system and making hard decisions, playing for the achievements, production notes.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Final Fantasy VII, Kingdom Hearts, Mark Garcia, The Room, Six Feet Under, Control, Shakespeare, Game of Thrones, Star Wars, Dwarf Fortress, Kyle, Baldur's Gate 3, Divinity: Original Sin, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Drunk History, Advance Wars, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers. 

Next time:
An Interview!

Twitch: timlongojr, Twitter/Threads/Insta: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

May 29, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series on Final Fantasy Tactics. This week, we put Tim Longo on the DGC couch for an analytical session about his major conflict about this game. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Near to end of Ch 3 (B), or Ch 2 (T)

Issues covered: choice quotes, declarative statements, a favorite Final Fantasy game, the job system, the story-based RPG, history of the early JRPGs, what Brett remembers about the game, Tim enjoying the planning of it, the opportunities for surprise, the spell to discover what people are, having only a few hours to play each week, hitting the wall, the hosts on MMOs and loot, unlocking things and making you more powerful, having different experiences on the same maps, a diversion to Dark Souls, knowledge and skill gains, Tim's wall mission, why would you go there?!, zoning out and and discovering way more about the game, reviewers and having to finish a game, our lives and how the pod fits in, where Brett is in the game and the choices he has, spending the time to figure out the Zodiac system.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Wizardry, Curse of Monkey Island, Halo, Dungeons & Dragons, Eye of the Beholder, Ultima, Pool of Radiance, Dragon Quest, Dragon Warrior, World of Warcraft, Dark Souls, Kyle, Diablo III, Mark of Kri, Kingdom Hearts, Kirk Hamilton, Baldur's Gate III, Breath of the Wild, Inscryption, Perfect Dark, Eternal Darkness, Biostats, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia. 

Next time:
Takeaways and email!

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

May 15, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series on Final Fantasy Tactics. We talk about the grind, job and abilities stuff, some tactics and end with a listener mail about balance. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played: 
To end of Ch 2 (Brett), somewhere in Ch 1 (Tim)

Issues covered: character representation in the sprites, enjoying the discovery of the macro, finding out how things interact, the Zodiac, why they ask for your birthday, information about turn order, things being unwieldy, a reactive strategy, how the brilliance starts coming in, the learning and grinding curves, an anecdote of the clockwork, achieving a Spelunky turkey and further digressions thereto, early grind, visiting cities and differentiating the shops, side missions for team members, having back-benchers, random encounters over time, the random table that each map draws from, how and whether the maps change, the importance of starting position, which environments we particularly enjoy, how the death mechanics work, preventing the enemies from getting the crystals, the min/max-ability, the revelation of the job matrix, the various roles and ways to augment your characters, auto-potioning, the story overwhelm, "Are we the baddies?", the progression to a more fantastic setting, how the story at the beginning of the game fits in, balance being overrated, the problem of pacing.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: The Matrix, Mario + Rabbids, Clint Hocking, Splinter Cell, Spelunky, Mossmouth, Metal Gear (series), Assassin's Creed (series), X-COM, Pokemon (series), Mitchell and Webb (obliquely), Game of Thrones (obliquely), Taylor Swift, Drew, Nobuo Uematsu, Chrono Trigger, Magic: The  Gathering, Dominion, Marvel Snap, Fallout (series), Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia.

Next time:
More FFT!

Links:
"Are we the baddies?"

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

May 8, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series on Final Fantasy Tactics. We talk about the strategy around jobs, the multiclass approach, and more before turning to a listener question. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
A few more hours

Issues covered: what's a dictionary for, the calculator and the oracle, experimenting with characters in various Finals Fantasies, a digression into how the programming of AI works in FF XII, Brett the grinder and Tim the finesser, the depth and breadth of the jobs and abilities system, the strategy to have options later, the terse manual, the pleasure of discovery, a complex game with lots of systems, mechanizing items like spells in other games, a crisis of confidence, the other camera controls, the Japanese controller preferences, noseless portraits, the importance of character design, character styling, heroic proportions vs anime proportions, great pixel art with the animations, the coy comment from Zalbag, the hug between two sprites, building a scene just for a little movie, pixel techniques and palette progression/swapping, digressing into other/modern tactical games, the odds of success, we read the manual and figure out the height, "brand elasticity," wanting your cake etc, calculating your odds of who you'll lose and who you'll keep, risk aversion, starting off without locking into one thing, being willing to make the break, licensing things out to different creators, the high cost of games, what's a Final Fantasy?

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Unreal Engine, Dark Souls, Chris Hockabout, Andrew Kirmse, Kingdom Hearts, Animal Crossing, Crystal Chronicles, Disney, Naughty Dog, Dead Cells, Stardew Valley, Celeste, Disgaea, Advance Wars, Mario vs Rabbids, X-COM, Logan, Halo, Gears of War, Resident Evil, Tomb Raider, Star Wars, J. J. Abrams, Law & Order, Zelda (series), Mario (series), Nintendo, Fallout 3, Oblivion, Skyrim, Redguard, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia. 

Next time:
More FFT!

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

May 1, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we complete our series on Beyond Good and Evil. We talk about the end parts of the game and the variety of the experiences you can have, before turning to our takeaways. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Finished the game!

Issues covered: the bad guy, the end of game battles, the risk of forgetting when you do a lot of side content, misremembering the game, being delighted, smoke and mirrors, wanting the spaceship to be the lighthouse, the various tricky bits of the slaughterhouse, being taught how to get rid of electricity, one of the most memorable characters of all time, saying yes until the end, the jumping enemies, supporting the inventory, reflection puzzles, an annoying trigger for a cutscene, wanting more time with Pey'j, the Chosen One, many breadcrumbs at the end, diluting narrative, optional content being part of gameplay content, getting all the animals or not, flawed gem, a good looping track section, escalating the General's ship, religion coming in at the end, intriguing questions, nailing the tropes, improving user experience, put a moat around it, less stressful reintroductions of mechanics, the teleporting boss, touching moments, earning the sweet moments, looking at the prequel, the world-building of it all, subtle ways to reinforce the world-building, don't underestimate the camera, saying yes maybe too much, being uncategorizable, keeping the surprises coming, standing apart in its era, "it's the way to Gao, anyway."

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Apocalypse Now, Nintendo, Ocarina of Time, Michel Ancel, Mark Haigh-Hutchinson, Tim Schafer, Uncharted (series), Star Wars, Metal Gear (series), Assassin's Creed, Ghost of Tushima, Far Cry, Anachronox, Final Fantasy IX, Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart, Final Fantasy VI, Biostats, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia. 

Next time:
??!

Notes:
It's General Kehck

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord https://t.co/h7jnG9J9lz
DevGameClub@gmail.com

May 1, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we begin a new series on 1997's Final Fantasy Tactics, which took the series into a new genre. We talk about the game's presentation, basics, and technology as well as how the game begins. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
First few battles

Issues covered: finals fantasies, 1997 in games, testing various games, placing us in that time, a surprising departure in the series, TTRPGs and being "like chess," translating a genre to the PS1, closer combat/smaller spaces, opacity, not remembering the game well, the Zodiac, some other series, a niche genre, limited input options and menus, Ivalice and medieval setting, a deeper simulated system than FF combat generally has, translating well to the genre, the opening cinematics, preferring alignment of story with general engine use, developing technology to stream video, in-game stuff holding up better, getting the leverage from sprites, the diorama look, merging gameplay with non-interactive content, pre-rendered rewards, terrain rendering and spinning the camera, the close-in space vs larger areas and fog of war, elevation and abilities, map differentiation for visuals and challenge, the game over screen, modern engagement.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Vagrant Story, Final Fantasy (series), Johnny "Pockets", GoldenEye, Diablo, Fallout, Castlevania: SotN, The Last Express, FF 7, Curse of Monkey Island, Grand Theft Auto, JK: Dark Forces 2, Myth: The Fallen Lords, Ultima Online, Outlaws, XvT, Starfox 64, Quake 2, Blade Runner, Dungeon Keeper, Age of Empires, Riven, Gran Turismo, Interstate '76, Populous, LucasArts, MechWarrior, Ogre Battles (series), SNES, Quest Corporation, Hironobu Sakaguchi, Chris Hockabout, Chris Corry, X-COM (series), Mario/Rabbids (series), Fire Emblem (series), Mark Garcia, Disgaea (series), Anachronox, Front Mission (series), Shining Force (series), Vandal Hearts (series), Valkyria Chronicles, Mass Effect (series), Star Wars, Blizzard, Ghost of Tsushima, Horizon: Forbidden West, God of War, The Sims, Vagrant Story, Metal Gear Solid, Axis and Allies, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers.

Next time:
More battles!

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Apr 17, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series on 2003's Beyond Good & Evil. We talk a lot more about the camera, how it compares with Zelda some more, and other topics. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Through the Slaughterhouse

Issues covered: pigs and pokes, hubs and spokes, feeling like a bigger place, manufacturing the sense of evolutionary trees, getting turned around in dungeons, having a rare moment with a whale, relatable science fiction, SAC and showing character information, a baby step towards tracking, re-purchasable resources, inconsistency of pearl gathering, what you use pearls for, a weird hybrid of various games, not getting the shark names (carcharadon), finding the most difficult looters cave first, going on tilt, competing for Francis's pearl, finding the Alpha Section areas in the pedestrian district, a cool vehicle, camera issues, fun boat physics, having a hard time tiptoe-ing through narrow areas, "a partnership between camera and level design," the many demands on the camera from different departments, you can brute force at cost, going a different direction with cameras, a dungeon sewn together from three different mini-dungeons, the map and solving design problems (or not), getting off and on the hovercraft, the bee in Skyrim, the diagetic save game and cutting the camera, Tim's poor port, how is the title tied in, the state of the industry, standing by your beliefs, businesses taking advantage of cheap money and making bad bets.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: LoZ: Ocarina of Time, Star Wars, Star Trek, Breath of the Wild, Okami, Nintendo, Mario, Mission: Impossible, Jackie Chan, Half-Life, Diddy Kong Racing, Prince of Persia (series), Remi Lacoste, Ghost Recon, Assassin's Creed, Tomb Raider, Skyrim, Nathan Purkeypile, Jean Simonet, Sasha/ScaryTiger, Friedrich Nietzsche, Larian Studios, Sony, Final Fantasy VI, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia.

Next time:
Finish the game!

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Apr 10, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series on Beyond Good & Evil. We talk about a number of the game's systems, compare it with Zelda, and engage with the level design and characters. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Past the Factory

Issues covered: who said that line, characterization and Frenchness, aesthetics, cosmic horror and the Domz, Hub, lacking symmetry to promote alienness, diagetic design in its systems, the first trailer, a world you want to hang out in, quirky aesthetic, the camera and when you get control, night and day between two camera systems, the PC port, the "Zelda bucket," modularity and object-orientedness in Zelda games, clockwork, the photojournalism of it, doing things because the narrative demands it and not systematically, stealth vs combat, giving your companions power-ups, companions in combat, two-heart buddies, lock and key enemies, being able to bolt on mechanics, air hockey, keys that aren't keys through the characters, committing to the characters, The Myth of Zelda, making real statements, forgiving and fail-forward stealth, great camera framing, photojournalism as heroic act, the themes of information control and propaganda, what's with Alpha Section, keys that you can use in the inventory, Ubisoft and politics (Cuba, Myanmar and... Montana), tackling universal themes with story specifics to avoid preachiness.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: The City of Lost Children, Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Zootopia, Star Wars, Rayman, Jean-Luc Godard, Jerry Lewis, Artimage, Starfield, No Man's Sky, Spider-Man 2, Double Fine, Mario 64, Tomb Raider, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, Remi Lacoste, Mark Haigh-Hutchinson, Final Fantasy IX, Psychonauts, Tim Schafer, Mortal Kombat, Grim Fandango, Shufflepuck, Anachronox, George Orwell, 1984, The Last Express, Omikron: The Nomad Soul, David Cage, Metal Gear (series), Aleksandr Solzhenitzen, Andrei Sakharov, Final Fantasy VI, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia.

Note:
Mark HH's (Agent HH!) camera book did not debut until 2009

Next time:
Past the Slaughterhouse

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Apr 3, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we begin a new series on 2003's Beyond Good and Evil. We talk a little bit about this kind of game, these story-based games that don't have a ton of focus but do have a lot of charm. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Through first dungeon

Issues covered: UbiSoft's best year, revisiting the game, setting the game in its time, just making ends make, appreciating Nintendo as a business model, the prequel still in development, enemy design and the 2D plane, getting straight into combat, tutorializing in the game, the connection with the weird alien, the vibe, lots of custom implementation, the very many things you do in the first half hour or hour, a time capsule of mixing adventure into everything, a one-use engine, hardware convergence post PS3, the broader experience games to tell ranging stories, competing with the movies, multiple types of cameras, the quirky snail, making you find everything, unique characters and special, time to build content, the precambrian explosion, what is the sequel/prequel, focus vs many games in one, being okay with the jank, using procedural solutions, personal taste, specific sequences for the one use, more games with jank, the voice acting being quite good, the modern examples, looking forward to lots of pearls, the wild world of randomizers. 

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Nietzsche, Prince of Persia: Sands of Time, Michel Ancel, Rayman (series), Xbox, GameCube, PlayStation, Okami, Knights of the Old Republic, Call of Duty, Simpsons Hit and Run, GTA, Freedom Fighters, WarioWare: Mega Microgames, Ikaruga, Jak 2, Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando, Mario Kart: Double Dash, XIII, Manhunt, Final Fantasy X-2, Tony Hawk's Underground, Silent Hill 3, Legacy of Kain: Defiance, LotR: The Return of the King, Max Payne 2, Far Cry, Assassin's Creed, Rabbids (series), Nintendo, Jerry Lewis, Rainbow Six, Tom Clancy, Sonic the Hedgehog, Kingdom Hearts, Final Fantasy IX, Anachronox, Valiant Hearts: The Great War, Breath of the Wild, Shenmue, GoldenEye, Jack Mathews, Metroid Prime, Galleon, Sly Cooper, Wolfenstein, DOOM (1993), Quake, Wil Wright, Nightfire, Everything or Nothing, No Man's Sky, Valhaim, Lethal Company, Half-Life (series), Mr Mosquito, Dragon's Dogma (series), Jodi Forrest, David Gasman, Dark Souls, Remnant: From the Ashes, Dr McEvilly, Archipelago, John and Brenda Romero, Calamity Nolan, mysterydip, Johnny Pockets, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia. 

Next time:
More of this game!

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Mar 20, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we return to our series on Homeworld with an interview with special guest Alex Garden, who co-founded Relic and directed the title. We talk about the inception of the idea to the implementation difficulties and much more. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Podcast breakdown:
0:52    Interview
1:03:49 Break
1:04:24 Outro Comments

Issues covered: the history of our guest, distributing pirated games, the cold intro, testing games, dropping out of high school, selling the company and working for some years, fixing someone else's bugs, the crystal sphere, "Spaghetti Ball," the lightning bolt, focusing on the loss, pulling together the team, a 50000-line demo, starting with multiplayer to demo, demoing for gods, "this has changed how I'll make games," not knowing how to tell stories in space, creating a reference for the ships, believing you can overcome the difficulties, finding your home and knowing you were in the right, the gravity of the situation and losing people, every life being precious, you are not the target audience, making the story and the gameplay the same, lack of dynamic range, one revolution multiple evolution, changing the licensor, ships with fantastic shapes and colors, the main ship and why it has that design, ship scale on LODs, a frequency domain audio engine, doing a lot procedurally, clock radios, joining the rebellion, what sticks with you today, trusting your vision, expectations smashed, the new game gods, trying to make designers rock stars, knowing your collaborators.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Madden (franchise), Triple Play, The Divide, PlayStation, Impossible Creatures, Warhammer 40K: Dawn of War, Company of Heroes, Nexon, Xbox Live, Zune, Zynga, US Robotics, Distinctive Software, Chris Taylor, Don Mattrick, Omar Sharif On Bridge, Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego, Sega Genesis, Beavis and Butthead, Conceptual Interface Devices, Luke Moloney, Radical Entertainment, Electronic Arts, NASA/JPL, Ptolemy, Battlestar Galactica, Jon Mavor, Greg McMartin, Scott Lynch, Sierra, Valve, Erin Daly, Rob Cunningham, Aaron Kambeitz, Jane Jensen, Rob Lowe, Roberta and Ken Williams, Peter Molyneux, Black & White, Wing Commander, Chris Roberts, Star Citizen, The Breakfast Club, Blizzard, Starcraft, Republic Commando, Games Workshop, Blur Entertainment, Chris Foss, Peter Elson, Monkey Island, Shane Alfreds, Deus Ex, Warren Spector, Harvey Smith, Tim Cain, Fallout, Ion Storm, Ken Levine, Cliff Bleszinski, Killcreek (Stevie Case), John Romero, Hal Barwood, Wil Wright, Tim Schafer, Larry Holland, Gabe Newell, American McGee, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia. 

Next time:
???

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Mar 13, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we complete our miniseries on rotoscoped games with part two of The Last Express. We talk about the sweep of history, playing parallel, ending in Vienna and other topics before turning to takeaways. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
To Vienna (Tim), Somewhere after Strasbourg (Brett)

Issues covered: different puzzle formats and it still working, not knowing what to do with the bug, diverting to The Murder on the Orient Express plot, putting a spin on the old plots, Tim has a favorite tea, political violence in games, world history on the march, the tension of violence in political discourse, the legendary cities it passes through, avoiding caricature for the most part, the melting pot, strong writing and performances, naturalism and theatrics, countries shifting, passing through empires, playing parallel versions of the story, trying the wrong rooms, the medical issue of the older Russian, the importance of time, games that are watertight, the appearance of simulation, adjusting the state machine, wondering whether the game knows what you know, the dog and having to get it into place, a consistent character, committing to a different sort of game and the downstream consequences, comparing with more abstract games, adding constraints, pulling in things from other media, making a big leap forward in realism and groundedness, the talent for keyframing grounded animation, getting metrics and level design constraints from the animation, deeper and different storytelling, teasing an interview, Gogo and Umaro and tuning your player experience.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: MYST, Agatha Christie, And Then There Were None, CSI, Peter Ustinov, Kenneth Branagh, Sherlock Holmes, Scream, Wes Anderson, The Darjeeling Limited, Far Cry (series), Sierra, LucasArts, Anton Chekhov, Karateka, Deadline, The Witness, The 7th Guest, Prince of Persia, Firewatch, The Walking Dead, Jake Gyllenhaal, Source Code, Rian Johnson, David Bowie, Duncan Jones, Edge of Tomorrow, Michelle Monaghan, Groundhog Day, Bill Murray, Deathloop, Prey: Mooncrash, Day of the Tentacle, Vienna Waits for You, A Death in Venice, Another World, Super Mario (series), Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit, Fire and Ice, Eric Chahi, Jordan Mechner, Ray Harryhausen, Seventh Voyage of Sinbad, Phantasmagoria, Police Quest, Grim Fandango, Akira Toriyama, Chrono Trigger, Dragon Quest, Dragonball Z, Ashmann86, Em, Final Fantasy VI, Rage, Bethesda Game Studios, Kingdom Hearts III, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia.

Next time:
An Interview!

Note:
The Murder on the Orient Express adaptation from 1974 did not feature Peter Ustinov, who took up the role of Poirot in 1978. The 1974 film starred Albert Finney. We regret the error.

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Feb 28, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series on rotoscoped games by hopping aboard The Last Express, the graphic adventure from Jordan Mechner and Smoking Car Productions of 1997 via publisher Broderbund. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
To Vienna (Tim) and past Epernay (Brett)

Issues covered: our history with the game, playing the game on the iPad, the adventure game at the time, budget and sales, some history of the game, the edutainment industry, critical response, how many discs, cost of goods, the history of Epernay, generic settings vs the highly specific dates in the game, the overwhelm, jumping onto a moving train, photo research, pulling the brake, what to do with a dead body, trial and error, the various ways things can play out from just the first puzzle, rain in Europe in 1914, a digression into multiple speed CD-ROMs, getting into rotoscoping, a 3D modeled train with rotoscoped characters on top, chasing after a character in the hall, walk-boxes with Z values, the screen door effect, a linear game in space vs an open-ended game in time, synchronicity, the sense of a train trip, prioritizing animation vs input, mechanics-forward vs simulation-forward, what players care about and what they see.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Jordan Mechner, Broderbund, GoldenEye 007, Diablo, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, Fallout, Curse of Monkey Island, Riven, MYST, Jonathan Ackley, Larry Ahern, Quake, SW: Jedi Knight: DF2, Outlaws, LucasArts, Turok, Shadow Warrior, Hexen II, Duke Nuke'em, Postal, Age of Empires, Final Fantasy VII, Wing Commander: Prophecy, Xwing vs TIE Fighter, Colony Wars, Interstate '76, Mario Kart 64, Diddy Kong Racing, Grand Theft Auto, Gran Turismo, OddWorld, Sam and Max Hit the Road, Bethesda Game Studios, Bill Tiller, Day of the Tentacle, Sierra, Phantasmagoria, Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Father, Zoetrope Studios, Francis Ford Coppola, Smoking Car Productions, Tomi Pierce, Doug Carlston, Chris Remo, The Learning Company, Another World, Prince of Persia, Baldur's Gate, Final Fantasy VII, PlayStation, Sony, Daron Stinnett, Scream (series), Grim Fandango, Quadrilateral Cowboy, Blendo Games, Thirty Flights of Loving, Agatha Christie, Murder on the Orient Express, Paul Verhoeven, RoboCop, Basic Instinct, Starship Troopers, Elle, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Skyrim, Ron Gilbert, Waking Life, A Scanner Darkly, Deadline, Infocom, Zork, Ben Sarason, Arkham Asylum, Red Dead Redemption (series), RockStar, Tomb Raider (series), Brandon Fernandez, Core Design, Mario (series), Uncharted (series), Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia. 

Next time:
Finish the game (?)/ Explore further

Errata and Extra:
The lead animator on CMI was Mark Overney (!), and it was my mistake, I was thinking it had been Charlie Ramos

Blendo Games is Brendon Chung

Paul Verhoeven is Dutch, and he did direct Basic Instinct

Links:
The Last Express: Revisiting An Unsung Classic

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Feb 21, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series of one-off episodes about games that featured rotoscoping, turning to 1989's Prince of Persia. We set it in its time and discuss its publisher and author before talking about the game proper. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
To levels 4 (Tim) and 8 (Brett)

Issues covered: the series hook, games from 1989, rotoscoping, similarities to Tomb Raider, tiles and metrics, a more systemic/discretized game, precision and replay, figuring out the level enough to know where to save, that speedrunning feeling, do you ever wish you could rewind time, requiring more game due to mechanics, having to learn the whole game, the feeling of running and jumping, the tension of animation and input, multiple inputs, the intertwining of animation and design, the feeling of swashbuckling, the great feeling, action as character and commitment, wondering how many people finished the game, the punishing feeling, checkpointing, punch the eagle, the great feel of parrying, pushing through the enemies, tells, the approaches of different guards, cinematic combat, difficulty in text adventures and player appeal, chipping away at knowledge, adding drama, resources and the doppelganger, level design and reuse, animating bits of the world, his books, mixing up the skeleton.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Another World, Jordan Mechner, Broderbund Software, Populous, Game Boy, Super Mario Land, Tetris, Ghosts and Goblins, Sega, Golden Axe, Shinobi, SimCiy, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Ultima (series), Star Trek, Final Fantasy II, Castlevania III, Print Shop, Choplifter, Karateka, Lode Runner, Hypercard, The Last Express, Agatha Christie, Tomb Raider, Triple Click, Plague Tale: Innocence, Dark Souls, Jamie Griesemer, Halo, Mario 64, 1001 Arabian Nights, Seventh Voyage of Sinbad, Errol Flynn, Indiana Jones, Civilization, Robin Hood, Captain Blood, Daffy Duck, MegaMan (series), Kirk Hamilton, Jake Gyllenhaal, Ben Kingsley, Final Fantasy VI, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia.

Next time:
Another rotoscoped classic

Links:
Making Prince of Persia

June: 1:01:00 or thereabouts

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Feb 14, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we begin a little miniseries of games which heavily feature rotoscoping and different ways in which that technology is used, starting with Another World (1991). We set the game in its time, talk about rotoscoping, and discuss a lot about the world and games which seem descended from it. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Whole darn thing (well, almost, Tim)

Issues covered: swinging back and forth in cages, starting and stopping the game, rotoscoping and some places it's been used, the basics of rotoscoping, how far Tim got in the past, baffling fluidity, echoes of other media, excellent character design, a "yes" game, other influences, thinking of this in terms of Mario, a cinematic moment, not making the movement a goal, choosing moments over systems, a fork in the lineage road, doing a project of this length solo, having a singular vision, hinting what you should pay attention to, the limits of tech and whether it can do anything for you, working on games that you wouldn't necessarily play.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Final Fantasy IX, Tomb Raider, Eric Chahi, Delphine Software, Flashback, Amiga, Final Fantasy IV/II, LoZ: Link to the Past, Super Mario World, Return of Samus, Sonic the Hedgehog, Sega Genesis, Monkey Island 2, Civilization, Prince of Persia, Commander Keen, Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Walt Disney, Richard Linklater, Waking Life, A Scanner Darkly, Keanu Reeves, Karateka, Ico, Metal Gear Solid, Tron, SpaceChem, Space Team, David Cage, Nintendo, Rare, MegaMan (series), Metroid, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, Dragon's Lair, Don Bluth, mysterydip, id Software, DOOM (1993), Mike Fisher, Shenmue, Dreamcast, Madden (series), John Romero, Carlos, Kingdom Hearts III, Final Fantasy VI, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia. 

Next time:
Some other rotoscoped game!

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, Insta: devgameclub, Threads: DevGameClub, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Feb 7, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we return to our series on Alan Wake with a special interview with Sam Lake, Creative Director at Remedy Entertainment. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Podcast breakdown:
0:52 Interview
1:02:20 Break
1:02:50 Outro

Issues covered: getting started with PCs and TTRPGs, starting out as a writer, starting with a positive audience, Greyhawk/Temple of Elemental Evil, coming out of the demoscene, teaming up with Apogee, finding ways to insert story into games, selling the IP due to its success, knowing they'd have the ability to make something new, second album syndrome, concepting tons of ideas to make the dream game, themes that stuck around, wanting a flawed main character whose not an action hero, writing a story about the creative process, inspirations, post-modern writing and games, how to work within the grab bag of design elements, the sauna crew, making hard decisions, a sense of relief, retaining the story and thematic elements, pulling out a victory, having a different feel because of all the extra built stuff, supporting conflict and action, keeping character motivations in sync with player expectations, early game management, adding transmedia elements and tools, using voiceover to guide the player, integrating more video, the talk show, blending those elements well to expand the game world and character, extending the value of the Easter egg, making the connection between the games a surprise, the Remedy-Connected Universe, dreaming up characters with the actor in mind, the musical number, leveraging Easter eggs, Tim's streaming commitments.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Death Rally, Max Payne, Control, Commodore 64, Petri Järvilehto, Dungeons & Dragons, Apogee/3DRealms, Duke Nuke'em, George Broussard, Scott Miller, Dark Justice, Rockstar, Janos Flosser, Hitman, IO Interactive, Stephen King, On Writing, David Lynch, Twin Peaks, Paul Auster, Bret Easton Ellis, LOST, Hideo Kojima, Quantum Break, Matthew Porretta, Courtney Hope, Illka Villi, James McCaffrey, Old Gods of Asgard/Poets of the Fall, Tim Schafer, Ken Levine, BioShock, FireWatch, Gone Home, Sam & Max, David Wolinsky, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia.

Next time:
???

Notes:
I did not edit out GameThing's Season 8 theme, since they have apparently already let people know that was what is coming next.

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Jan 31, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we complete our series on 1999's Homeworld, the 3D space RTS from Relic Entertainment. We talk a bit more about dynamic difficulty, address the final missions, and turn to our takeaways before a couple of mails. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Finished (B) and almost (T)

Podcast breakdown:
0:00:47 Discussion
1:05:45 Break
1:06:14 Email

Issues covered: Defeating Games for Charity, Video Game History Foundation, watching someone blast Mother Brain, Tim streaming, streaming and getting paid, a chill Dark Souls player, enjoying playing with people, joyful weekend, not finishing a game, how to make the game interesting over and over again, carriers and docking, learning skills for one use, RTSes using the campaign to prepare for multiplayer, micromanaging, managing the brutal rescue of the trading ship, freeing up everything for the final assault, watching ships crawl through space, trial and error, punishment of failure, the appropriate story depth, avoiding elaborate storytelling, feeling like legend and myth, twice as many shorter missions, flexibility through resources, stately capital ships, early vs late game failure, ship control layout, satisfyingly destroying the enemy, cinematic presentation, high-stakes final mission, a human point of connection, naval/military chatter, doubling down on a thing, purity of spaceship focus, ship design, designing across civilizations, consistency of armament, the usefulness of salvage corvettes, being careful with dynamic difficulty, having options, turtle strategies, watching players use and discover tactics streaming, committing to 3D, having to relearn controls, having a light touch with the story, whether we should do a TTRPG primer, real space physics vs WWII space flight, 

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Kingdom Hearts III, Kaeon, Contra, Metroid, X-COM, Kyle, Dark Souls, LostLake, Bvron, Belmont, mysterydip, Artimage, Mark Garcia, BioStats, Calamity Nolan, D&D, Resident Evil Village, Phil Salvador, Rogue, Starcraft (series), Battlestar Galactica, Star Wars, Blizzard, Halo, Warcraft (series), Robocop, Avalon Hill, Civilization, Johnny Pockets, Eye of the Beholder, Baldur's Gate, Go, Senet, Mancala, John Woo, Andrew Enright, Anachronox, Final Fantasy VI, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers. 

Next time:
???

Links:
Defeating Games for Charity (a real website)

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Jan 24, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series on Relic Entertainment's Homeworld. We talk about the difficulty of a couple of the missions, how our RTS expectations maybe work against us, and fighting the camera. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Through MS10 (Tim) or MS12 (Brett)

Issues covered: religious experiences, Defeating Games for Charity, dynamic difficulty, scuttling vs recycling, trading off the unit types you have for the ones you need right now, dynamic difficulty, being too clever with difficulty design, the usefulness of playtesting different skill levels, having the wrong guess of how many units you need, reactionary play or more in the moment, a puzzle-solving feel, a lot of empty time and strange pacing, getting over the hump, being unable to plan, fighting the 3D nature for probes, trailblazing but not quite getting there, wanting help from the game for 3D targeting, fighting the orientation, wondering about the upcoming sequel for usability, digressions into the lore, T-Rex predators, the inventory of Trespasser, whether we should play more weird bad good games, which games fit that definition.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Mark Garcia, BioStats, Artimage, Calamity Nolan, Kaeon, Kyle, Bvron, Final Fantasy IX, MegaMan X, Grand Theft Auto III, Devil May Cry, MegaMan 2, Dark Souls, Far Cry 2, Rogue, X-COM, Julian Gollop, Deus Ex, Starcraft, Blizzard, Civilization, Tomb Raider, Mario 64, Halo, GoldenEye 007, Nintendo, Trespasser, Maas, mysterydip, Jarkko Sivula, Ryan Troock, Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth, Shenmue, Deadly Premonition, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers.

Next time: 
Finish the game!

Links:
Defeating Games for Charity 

T-Rex on T-Rex

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord: https://t.co/h7jnG9J9lz
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Jan 17, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series on 1999's Homeworld, the innovative RTS from Relic Entertainment. We talk about interacting with the game and its presentation, and discuss some of the ways in which it creates and eliminates friction in that genre. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Up to M8

Issues covered: a separate manual for the lore, the mysterious science fiction/fantasy, a circle?, meeting the traders for the first time, a matter-of-fact aesthetic, feeling the stakes, grounded vs exaggerated, how each of us interact with the game, setting up the attitude of the ships, Tim's strategies to steal things and get ahead, opening up the side of the mother ship, a leap forward in some ways, limiting the resource type down to one, comparing to 2D tech trees, simplified building queues, dealing with the small fast drones, taking out an enemy fleet, the weird feeling of building at the end, having the feeling of a base attack with a capital ship attack, the quick dock vs the slow drawn out wait, a diversion to explain Battlestar Galactica, setting up archetypes and breaking them, thinking about what our mistakes have been, sending the wrong ships against the capital ships, no one sets out to make a bad game, an anecdote about Skyrim, closing out the game and pushing it out and taking cover, artificial idiocy, whether the movie people ruined Trespasser, the interaction of movies and games, Defeating Games for Charity.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Halo, Planet of the Apes, Charlton Heston, Dune, Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, Warcraft, Starcraft, Star Trek, Ultima Underworld, Eye of the Beholder, Chris Corry, The Simpsons, God of War, Mikael, Matt Groening, Cory Barlog, Skyrim, Istvan Pely, Fallout (series), Republic Commando, Jedi Starfighter, EGM, Trespasser, Will Crosbie, Jim Gee, Alex Seropian, Noah Falstein, Dreamworks Interactive, George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, Tom Bissell, Nolan Filter/CalamityNolan, Dark Souls, Rogue, Final Fantasy IX, Mega Man, Kaeon, Devil May Cry, X-COM, Metroid, Belmont, Bvron, Kyle, Error, Lostlake, BioStats, Mark Garcia, D&D, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers. 

Next time:
Up to M12?

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

Jan 10, 2024

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we start a new series on 1999's Homeworld, from Relic Entertainment. We set the game in its time and then turn a little bit to the opening moments and the tutorial. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
First couple of levels + tutorial

Issues covered: a layered intro, our history with RTSes, the music hitting, transitioning to a console player, console RTSes, a new timeline, setting the game in its time, going against the norm, Relic and its RTS series, the big genre of the time but one that never grew, grognard capture, the appeal of online games, early e-sports, popularity in Korea, the feel of a space sim, checking all the boxes, how 3D it really is, switching views to elevate a target point, mouse and keyboard, doing their own thing with hotkeys, evolution working on games, presentational advantages, a graphics benchmark game, economical game development, elegant ship design, great silhouettes, maybe tessellating, editors that look like RTSes, spending budget on contrails, using specific things on PCs vs the graphics cards, camera and control, mining everything you can and building as you go, replacing inferior ships with new ones, finite people and resources reflecting themes, elegance in design, framing the camera well, the great use of the fleet commander and the magic of moving the camera, WWII space physics vs more accurate space physics, interestingly bad video games, finding those bad games, moon shots, imagining a deeper ecology, speedrunning Trespasser, a diversion into speedrunning.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Starfighter, Starcraft (series), Total War (series), Warcraft (series), Quake, Halo, Battlestar: Galactica, DOOM, Diablo, PlayStation, Age of Empires (series), Pikmin, Brutal Legend, Tim Schafer, Johnny "Pockets", System Shock 2, Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver, Planescape: Torment, Shenmue, Owen Wilson, Command and Conquer (series), Westwood, Tim Curry, Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri, Final Fantasy VIII, Chrono Cross, Silent Hill, Rayman 2: The Great Escape, Quake III Arena, Omikron: The Nomad Soul, David Cage, Asheron's Call (series), D&D Online, LotR Online, Turbine Entertainment, Derek Flippo, Sega, Creative Assembly, Blizzard, Ensemble Studios, Total Annihilation, Impossible Creatures, Dawn of War, Company of Heroes, Warhammer: 40K, Myth, Bungie, Call of Duty (series), LucasArts, Galactic Battlegrounds (series), Force Commander, Andrew Kirmse, TIE Fighter (series), Descent: Freespace, Wing Commander, Colony Wars, Elite, Star Citizen, Star Wars: Squadrons, Star Trek: Wrath of Khan, GoldenEye: 007, Metroid Prime, Resident Evil (series), Eric Johnston, X-COM, Julian Gollop, Baldur's Gate, Troy Mashburn, Trespasser, Biostats, Belmont, Reed Knight, Dragon's Dogma, Bethesda Game Studios, D&D, Black and White, ARK: Survival Evolved, Valheim, Half-Life 2, GameThing, Dave Wolinsky, Pippin Barr, Control, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia.

Next time:
A few more levels!

Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @devgameclub
Discord
DevGameClub@gmail.com

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