Tonight signals the triumphant return of Doctor Grace!  I cannot adequately express how happy we are to have her back among our number.  As far as topics go… we once again punt forward the only topic that we had planned and replace them with a few discussions gathered up moments before we started recording.  Tonight we talk about Anthem and get Grace’s impressions so far… as well as dig into some of the frustrations around high end loot and weird item scaling. Thalen tells us how to learn to love Eureka in Final Fantasy XIV and get past the fact that it is so grindy.  Finally we wrap things up with a discussion about the Super Mario World Rom Hack scene and the differences between Vanilla and Chocolate.

Topics Discussed

  • The Return of Doctor Grace
  • Anthem
    • Grace and Thalen Impressions
    • High End Loot Woes
    • Item Scaling Weirdness
  • Final Fantasy XIV
    • Eureka Grinding
    • Relic Weapons
  • Super Mario World
    • Rom Hacks
    • Kaizo Mario
    • Terminus
    • Assembly Editing
Direct download: aggrochat_episode244.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:41am EDT

Tonight we start the show with a heartfelt congratulations for our very own now Doctor Grace, for passing the gauntlet and defending her thesis.  While I am certain we will revisit this point when she officially returns to the show, we thought it was worth noting tonight. After derailing completely on a discussion about the origin of the Garter snake…  we dive into Pokemon Scotland aka Sword and Shield and the little bit of information we know about it at this point. From there Bel talks a bit about the Magic the Gathering Deck Builder's Toolkit league that he is starting at work and why he went down that path.  Kodra breaks off from this into a discussion about the game Gruff, which leads to further talk about how balanced asymmetrical play is really hard to design.

We then dig into some of the large patches that happened this past week… namely Anthem that occured mere hours before recording the show and Warframe that occurred earlier in the week.  Bel and Tam talk a bit about their impressions so far about the tweaks made that make the characters feel significantly more powerful in Anthem. The rest of the crew that plays Warframe… which is basically everyone but Bel…  dive into a discussion about the changes that were made to the melee combat system and some of the things that are soon to come as well.

Topics Discussed

  • Doctor Grace
  • Garter Snakes
  • Pokemon Sword and Shield
    • Pokemon Scotland
  • Work Magic League
    • Deckbuilders Toolkit
  • Gruff
  • Difficulties of Asymmetrical Gameplay
  • Anthem Patch
  • Warframe Patch
    • Melee Combat Changes
    • Hildryn Frame
Direct download: aggrochat_episode243.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 9:41am EDT

This week we talk about the topic that has spent the most time so far rolling from show to show because we didn’t feel like we had enough time to properly address it.  We have a Trello board where we stub out future topics, and before Christmas Tam put the topic of Silent versus Voiced protagonists on that board… and we are finally getting around to talking about it.  Not surprisingly we spent almost the entire episode on this one topic as there is a lot of stuff to unpack here about characters and whether or not we are meant to place ourselves into them. We also talk briefly about the Warframe Nightwave alert system that just went into that game.

Topics Discussed:

  • Voiced Versus Silent Protagonist
    • Personal Preferences
    • Times when it works and Fourth Wall breaking.
    • Jarring nature of a character you don’t relate to that is supposed to represent you.
    • Classic game examples
  • Warframe
    • Nightwave Alert System
Direct download: aggrochat_episode242.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 9:35am EDT

This week we are still down a Grace but also down a Tamrielo because work travel happens.  Tonight we start the show with a discussion of Civilization VI and its new Gathering Storm expansion.  This introduces the fearful Hockey Rink building and Mountie fielding Canadian Army… and also natural disasters.  Then we get into a discussion about Anthem and our feelings about the release. I think as a whole we are largely enjoying it, but even at that we talk a bit about the problems the game is having.

Topics Discussed:

  • Civilization VI
    • Gathering Storm Expansion
  • Anthem
    • What we are enjoying
    • What we problems exist
Direct download: aggrochat_episode241.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 9:48am EDT

This evening we discuss the Anthem “Launch” and the spreadsheet that is required to understand it.  We give a quick summary of our experiences and how it is turning out to be really freaking good. From there we dive into Silksong the Hornet DLC that has turned into its own larger than the original Hollow Knight game.  We also talk about the first Nintendo Direct of the new year and all of the games that got announced. Bel tortures Kodra with some brief discussion about Keen Dreams showing up on the Switch. Finally we dive into a topic about playing games for what they are actually good at rather than trying to bend them to our will.


Topics Discussed:

  • Anthem “Launch”
    • Spreadsheet Launches
    • Improvements over Demo
    • Very Much a Bioware Game in a Good Way
  • Hollow Knight:  Silksong Announcement
  • Nintendo Direct
    • Mario Maker 2
    • Link’s Awakening
    • Various Final Fantasy Releases
    • Fire Emblem: Three Houses
    • Captain Toad DLC
    • Tetris 99
      • Did Tetris Need Battle Royale Mode?
    • Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night
    • Boxboy + Boxgirl
    • Yoshi’s Crafted World
    • Astral Chain
    • Deltarune
  • Keen Dreams on Switch
  • Playing Games for What They Are Good At
    • The Struggle with MMOs
Direct download: aggrochat_episode240.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:00am EDT

Tonight we have a bunch of not entirely related topics, but there is at least a minor theme of how you end something is extremely important.  Bel talks a bit about his experiences with the latest brand name beta in the form of Division 2. From there he also shares some frustrations with the way Assassin’s Creed Origins is ending which leads its way into a larger discussion about what makes a satisfying game ending.  We talk about what this means for passive media and how it might be different for interactive media. We then get into a discussion about progression systems and why fixed ones often times feel better than completely random ones. Finally we have some assorted digression about us looking forward to Anthem as a non-PVP mmo that somehow leads its way to FFXIV housing?


Topics Discussed:

  • Division 2
    • Military Fantasy Fallout but no Nukes
    • Worthy Successor to Original
  • Assassin’s Creed Origins
    • Great Game… But
    • Forced Character Swaps
    • End of Game Without “Your” Character
  • Satisfying Finales
    • Twist Endings
      • Mass Effect 3
    • Resolution Endings
      • Plot Twist Ending
      • Plot Twist at Beginning of Final Chapter
    • Fixed Length Shows
      • Anime
      • Babylon 5
      • Russian Doll
    • Revisiting Choices From Game in Ending
  • Fixed vs Random Progression Systems
    • Warframe Blueprint System
    • Destiny Random “Powerful Gear” Frustrations
    • Warframe Economy
  • Excitement over Non-PVP MMORPG
    • Anthem
    • Free PVP Gear from FFXIV Retainers
    • Lacking Money Sinks in FFXIV
    • House Reclamation
Direct download: aggrochat_episode239.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 9:31am EDT

Tonight we talk about a bunch of things that have been sitting in our list as well as a quick revisit of Anthem and how much difference a week can make.  We all for the most part struggled last weekend but things have gone extremely smoothly this weekend. From there we talk about the revelations from Fanfest Paris… and the new Gunbreaker class giving us Gunblade Tanks!  We talk a bit about the various titles coming out for the Switch in the near future and close up with a postmortem of Octopath Traveller.

 

Topics Featured:

  • Anthem
    • One Week Later
    • Much Smoother Experience
    • Class Related Discussion
  • Final Fantasy XIV Shadowbringers
    • Gunblade Tanks
    • Viera Confirmed
    • Nier Automata Crossover Raid
    • New Game Plus
  • Switch Indie Releases
    • Tangledeep
    • Wargroove
    • CrossCode
    • Steamworld Quest
    • Not indie but…  Darksiders!
  • Octopath Traveler Postmortem
    • Demo Did More Harm than Good
    • Drastic Tone Shifts
Direct download: aggrochat_episode238.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 9:57am EDT

Tonight we talk mostly about the Anthem Demo and our thoughts about it.  Having played it or at least repeatedly attempted to play it...  we have things to discuss from our feelings about various Javelin types to the general feel of the gameplay.  Additionally we talk a bit about Ravnica Allegiances which officially came out this week.  Kodra and Bel have been drafting some on MTG Arena and talk a bit about the mechanics that they are enjoying.

Topics Discussed

  • Anthem Demo
  • Ravnica Allegiances
Direct download: aggrochat_episode237.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:34am EDT

Tonight we have a fairly packed show as Ashgar is recording from Pax South 2019.  As such we start off with a rundown of some of the games he played. From there Bel talks a bit about TemTem or a game he backed but forgot to fill out the survey for that is actually a Not-Pokemon MMORPG.  We dive into some talk about games that have massively overhauled themselves specifically discussing Stellaris and Warframe. Then we get into a discussion about normal and mundane things happening in games and how it sometimes enriches the experience in ways you don’t at first expect.  Finally a quick discussion about Elder Scrolls Online and the Necromancer before we realize we have gone well over time.

 

Topics Discussed

  • Magic the Gathering
    • Gatewatch Needs to Die
  • Pax South 2019
    • Tunic
    • Nelo
    • Last Epoch
    • Aqua Lungers
    • Super Cane Magic Zero
    • Plunderbound
    • Hermetica
    • Days Gone
      • Zombie Bear
    • Resident Evil 2
    • Ace Combat 7
    • Jump Force
    • Forsaken Castle
    • Gestalt Vanguard
    • Dicey Dungeons
    • Lapis Labyrinth
    • Witchstone
  • TemTem
    • Actual Not-Pokemon MMO
  • Game Overhauls
    • Stellaris
    • Warframe
  • Mudanity and Normality in Games
    • Hitman
    • Travel Time in MMORPGs
    • Tiny Normal Things in Assassin’s Creed
  • Elder Scrolls Online
    • Accidental Necromancer Discussion

 

Direct download: aggrochat_episode236.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:17am EDT

There is an auditory warning, but we figured we would throw one out here as well.  During about the last 15 minutes of the podcast something went wrong with Bel’s audio where the last bit of every statement got clipped.  So you essentially lost the last word he was saying. This weeks show starts with a discussion about Kickstarter projects, which leads into talk of some of the things we have backed and how Bel is that guy that fails to fill out surveys.  From there we jump into a discussion about Far Cry 5 and how it is a game where the forced story gets in the way of everything else. This leads into a discussion about Destiny 2, the Bungie divorce from Activision, and even to some discussions about how important publishers actually are now.  This also includes a bit about the bidding war for Gamestop between the folks behind Hot Topic and the folks behind Redbox.

Topics Discussed

  • Kickstarter Projects
    • Reliability of Boardgames
    • Questionable Nature of Software Projects
    • Bel fails at filling out Surveys
  • Far Cry 5
    • Fun Gameplay
    • Forced Story Mode Abductions
    • Weirdness of Religious Cult Theme
  • Destiny 2
    • Returning Player Experience
    • Expectations of Knowing Lore
    • Bungie and Activision Divorce
  • Importance of Publishers
    • Bidding War over Gamestop
    • Digital Only Standouts
    • UbiSoft Abandoning Steam
Direct download: aggrochat_episode235.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 11:45am EDT

This week we set out a plan of some dozen different topics… but only actually made it through two of them.  Last we recorded the Games of the Year show and this week we started things off with some discussion of a few of the honorable mentions that didn’t quite make the list.  From there we had a discussion about what games interest us for the upcoming year… and the list we gathered up is sorta nonsense. I have no clue what order we actually tackled them in so just sorta going to make an attempt at listing everything out.

Topics Discussed

  • Games of the Year Honorable Mentions
    • Tangledeep
    • Spyro Reignited Trilogy
    • Celeste
    • Civilization VI
    • Let’s Go Pokemon
    • Starlink: Battle for Atlas
    • Tetris Effect
  • Games Of Interest that “Might” Release This Year
    • Hollow Knight: Hornet
    • Ori and the Will of the Wisps
    • Beyond Good and Evil 2
    • Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
    • Ghosts of Tsushima
    • Fire Emblem: Three Houses
    • In The Valley of the Gods
    • Untitled Goose Game
    • Kingdom Hearts III
    • Digimon Survive
    • Tangledeep on Switch
    • Anthem
    • Dragon Marked for Death
    • Chocobo’s Mysterious Dungeon: Every Buddy
    • Pokemon 2019?
    • Town
    • Granblue Fantasy Relink
    • New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe
    • Onimusha: Warlords remaster
    • Metro Exodus
    • Far Cry: New Dawn
    • The Division 2
    • Rage 2
    • Final Fantasy XIV Shadowbringer
    • The Outer Worlds
    • Ooblets
    • Harry Potter Wizards Unite
    • Wolfenstein: Youngblood
    • Welcome to Animal Crossing
    • Dragon Quest Builders 2
    • Psychonauts 2
    • Wasteland 3
    • Minecraft: Dungeons
    • Star Wars Jedi - Fallen Order
    • Metroid Prime 4
    • Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night
Direct download: aggrochat_episode234.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:38am EDT

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