This evening we are down a Grace and went through a whole carnival of tech issues before the show, and as such were delated getting started.  Bel starts the show off talking about finding a batch of WoW Screenshots he thought were lost, and it turns out that no…  he likely deleted them on purpose due to the cavalcade of raid drama documented.  The Final Fantasy XIV Live Letter 66 was a seven-hour-long presentation talking bout the new job skills and various other system changes.  We spend a good chunk of the night talking through some of the changes including the complete revamp of the Summoner class.  From there we talk about Deathloop as Tam shares some of his thoughts about the game while Bel talks about almost refunding due to any sort of a single-player save system.  Finally, we share the news that there will be no AggroChat next week due to reasons that involve most of the show’s cast.

Topics Discussed

  • Hard Drive of Horrors
  • Final Fantasy XIV Live Letter 66
    • Job Actions Trailer
    • The New Summoner
    • Thoughts for Endwalker
  • Deathloop
    • Proving we do like Jazz
    • Interesting Take on Genre
    • Bel Bemoans Lack of Saves
  • No Show Next Week
Direct download: aggrochat_episode360.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:28am EDT

Tonight we start the show off with Kodra talking bout Celeste and making it past the Farewell segment of the game.  We talk about the conclusion of the Epic versus Apple lawsuit and how it is pretty bad for both companies, but especially bad for Epic.  From there we talk about our impressions of the games shown off at what would have been the Sony E3 show if that happened.  This leads into a discussion of Tam recently trying out Avengers and how it is still not a good game after all this time.  We talk for a bit about Pathfinder Secrets of Magic book and martial spellcasters in general.  Finally, we have a bit of a discussion between Thalen and Kodra about Super Mario Maker with children.

Topics Discussed

  • Celeste
    • Farewell to Farewell
  • Epic versus Apple Conclusion
    • Bad for both
    • Ruling against Epic
  • Sony Playstation Play Showcase 2021
  • Avengers is Still Bad
  • Secrets of Magic
  • Super Mario Maker with Kids
Direct download: aggrochat_episode359.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:37am EDT

Tonight we are surprised to have with us Kodra and his five-day-old daughter.  Gotta get that podcasting started early.  This evening Ash and Tam talk about attending Pax Prime during a Pandemic and the oddities that come with that.  After that, we dive into a topic that we somewhat previewed at the end of last week’s show, but Magic the Gathering goes to some really odd places in 2022.  It seems that Wizards of the Coast is finally taking advantage of the fact that they exist in a game setting that can travel to all sorts of dimensions.  Bel talks for a bit about his adventures with the Gamesir X2 controller that turns an Android phone into something resembling a Nintendo Switch.  Finally, we talk about how the mechanics of “Real-time with pause” is generally awful and talk about some of the games that would have been made better with a proper turn-based mode.  Lastly, a quick topic as Kodra talks a bit about the 2.3 updates for VVVVVV and how he hopes to try speedrunning some other modes.

Topics Discussed

  • Attending PAX During Pandemic
    • Interesting games
  • Magic in 2022
    • Cyberpunk Kamigawa
    • Art Deco Gangland
    • Street Fighter
    • Fortnite
  • Gamesir X2 Android Controller
    • PS5 Remote Play
    • Xbox Game Pass
    • Steam 
  • Real-Time with Pause Sucks
    • Pathfinder
    • Pillars of Eternity
    • Dragon Age: Origins
  • VVVVVV 2.3 Released
    • Kodra can speed run more modes
Direct download: aggrochat_episode358.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:42am EDT

Tonight we talk about several things that Blizzard claimed were impossible, making their way into the 9.1.5 patch.  Is this fan service or an act of desperation in trying to stem the hemorrhaging of players?  From there we talk about how other games have done a better job of making sure that players’ feedback was heard and understood.  Thalen talks about the release of Psychonauts 2 and how it has been a long time coming.  Kodra discusses the frustrations of the game featuring callbacks to a virtual-reality-only game that very few players have been able to experience.  From there we talk about Marvel Crisis Protocol, a skirmish scale miniatures game as well as the revolving door of miniature games that have come and gone from game stores.  Finally, we preview a topic for next week, as we talk about all of the weird places that Magic the Gathering is going to go this coming year.

Topics Discussed

  • Blizzard Eats Crow
    • Undoing Covenant Restrictions
    • Undoing Conduit Energy
    • Fanservice Racial Changes
    • Too little too late
    • Why we still can’t play Blizzard games
  • Psychonauts 2
    • Connections to previous games
    • Collectable platformers
  • Marvel Crisis Protocol
    • Marvel Skirmish Miniatures
    • Coming and going of Miniature games
Direct download: aggrochat_episode357.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:20am EDT

Tonight we start off with the travails of Belghast attempting to heal things on Scholar.  Kodra chimes in with his own experiences in the same class.  Bel talks a bit about getting to the bottom of the weird obsession that seems to be taking place with hitting +99/+99 aetherpool as fast as humanly possible in Palace of the Dead.  This leads to some discussions of WoW mindsets showing up in FFXIV players.  Bel and Ammo talk a bit about The Diadem and super chill leveling gatherers.  We talk at length about Wildermyth and how it does an excellent job of replicating the tabletop RPG experience in a digital interface.  Finally, we talk a bit about Art Software and Ash’s explorations of what works for him with Ammo and Bel chiming in a bit towards the end.

Topics Discussed:

  • Bel Trying to Heal Stuff
  • Gotta get 99/99 Fast
    • WoW Mentalities in FFXIV
  • The Diadem
  • Wildermyth
  • Adventures in Art Software
Direct download: aggrochat_episode356.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:15am EDT

Tonight we start the show with some discussion of copyright trolls trying to prove how broken our system is by copyrighting a Magic the Gathering deck.  From there Grace talks about her experiences with the Kickstarter Kitfox game Boyfriend Dungeon.  We revisit The Ascent as Bel, Grace, and Thalen have now played the game and relate their experiences of how it is not really Diablo but also really enjoyable.  Ashgar and Kodra share their experiences of playing Bullet <3 in co-op and the challenges it presents.  Bel talks a bit about the most recent controversy in FFXIV of people freaking out about Cruise Chaser not being a PVP mount and instead sold on the store.  We talk a bit about Moonfire Faire and the bear friend mount.  Finally, we wrap things up with a discussion of Katana Zero and Kodra’s experience playing it.

Topics Discussed:

  • Copyrighting your Magic Deck
  • Boyfriend Dungeon
    • The Joys of Smooching Swords
  • The Ascent
    • Grace, Bel, and Thalen have played now
  • Bullet <3 Co-Op
  • Cruise Chaser Controversy
  • FFXIV Moonfire Faire
  • Katana Zero
Direct download: aggrochat_episode355.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:56am EDT

Tonight we start off with Bel confessing his love for a class that he never expected to like in FFXIV, the Dancer.  From there we talk a bit about FFXIV in general and how weird the Bozjan Front is.  Tam shares with us a game that is actually way more in the wheelhouse of Bel, Grace, and Thalen and is effectively Cyberpunk-themed Diablo.  The Ascent is a game that was shown at E3 and actually the final product is pretty great.  A topic that has been hanging on the list for a while is some discussion of Civilization 6 multiplayer and contrasting it to previous versions of the game.  More specifically Kodra shares his experiences playing with asymmetrical difficult levels.  We talk a bit about MTG Arena leaning into its computer game nature and doing some things that absolutely would break paper magic.  Finally, we talk some about the board game Bullet Heart.

Topics Discussed

  • Final Fantasy XIV
    • Dancer
    • Bozjan Southern Front
  • The Ascent
    • Cyberpunk Diablo
  • Civilization 6 Multiplayer
    • Assymetrical Difficult Settings
  • Magic Arena
    • Historic Horizons
  • Bullet Heart
Direct download: aggrochat_episode354.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 11:04am EDT

Tonight we had the whole gang back and start the show talking about how Bel was apparently replaced by a totally different person as he both healed a few dungeons and ran raid content in FFXIV as a mage class.  From there we talk a bit about Blaugust which is starting the day this show releases.  The rest of the show is sort of a rapid-fire remembering of games that had dropped off our radar over the years or that we just plain forgot about.  We talk about MMORPGs gone by, games that had DLC releases, or just games that we started but never actually got back around to playing.  We dive a bit into Genshin Impact and the most recent content release as well as apparently the ability to play your pc/mobile account on the PlayStation 5.  Lastly we finish the show with a discussion of Ghostrunner, a movement puzzle platformer game featuring a deep cyberpunk aesthetic.

Topics Discussed

  • Bel Heals and Does Castery Things in FFXIV
  • Blaugust 2021 is Here
  • Great Games that dropped off our radar
    • Games we forgot about
    • Games we have returned to
    • Games that got good when we weren’t looking
  • Genshin Impact
  • Ghostrunner
Direct download: aggrochat_episode353.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 9:53am EDT

Hey Friends, it is time for a bit of real talk before I get into the podcast show notes.  We had a discussion last night about whether or not we should talk about the horrific Blizzard situation on the show.  I’ve made my comments pretty clear on my blog, but it also sorta felt gross and weird to engage in a conversation without anyone other than cisgender men.  Real-world emergencies deprived us of both Ammo and Grace last night, and I hope both of those situations got better.  It might come up again in the coming weeks but only if everyone on the show is up for talking about it.

As far as the topics we did discuss we talked a bit about Monster Hunter Stories 2 on the Nintendo Switch and how I apparently completely misunderstand the genre of that game.  Tam talks a bit about returning to Star Trek Online years later and the pattern of play that the game has fallen into.  We also go down a list of games that have quietly been holding on with a steady player base but get very little fanfare.  Kodra talks about his experience streaming Celeste and invites everyone to participate in those streams.  We close out the show with a discussion about Cyberpunk 2077 because Tam decided to give it a shot and Bel feels at least partially vindicated.  It is a mixed bag of a game but an extremely interesting one.

Topics Discussed:

  • Monster Hunter Stories 2
  • Star Trek Online
  • Quietly Successful MMORPGs
  • More FFXIV Discussion
  • Kodra Streams Celeste
    • Speed runs
  • Cyberpunk 2077
    • Horrible Representation and Great Representation
    • Easy to bounce early
    • Extremely detailed and interesting game
Direct download: aggrochat_episode352.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:21am EDT

This year has probably had more missing shows than pretty much any to date.  Last week storms blew through and Belghast lost internet for a good chunk of the night so we did not record.  This week however we recorded a slightly longer than average show as a result.  We start with Bel and Grace exploring Rune II and how it is a flawed game but also enjoyable.  Tam shares his experience of playing Final Fantasy 7 Intergrade and the adventures of Yuffie.  This bleeds into a discussion about Yakuza Like a Dragon and how Final Fantasy is going realtime and Yakuza is seemingly going to menu-driven combat.  Kodra and Thalen share their experiences playing the new Forgotten Realms-themed Magic the Gathering set.  Then we dive into a discussion about Final Fantasy XIV since a large number of us are active once again.

 

Topics Discussed

  • Rune II
  • Final Fantasy VII Intergrade
  • Yakuza: Like a Dragon
  • Adventures in the Forgotten Realms
  • Final Fantasy XIV Live Letter
    • Returning to the game
    • Systems within Systems
    • Bel Breaking his Tanking Block
  • Final Fantasy XI Nonsense
Direct download: aggrochat_episode351.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 9:53am EDT

Hey Friends! We made it to 350 episodes!  Which seems like a big number but as Thalen puts it… it is a new record over last week's new record.  We break into a brief discussion about the era of big box games which brings us into a discussion of the era of pack in “feelies”  From there Bel talks about his return to Final Fantasy XIV and the forming of the Super Dungeon Friends community.  We also talk about the weird events this weekend happening on Cactuar the server we all play on.  We talk about the Co-Op game It Takes Two and the platformer Iconoclasts.  We also talk a bit about D&D Dark Alliance and Mario Golf Super Rush.

Topics Discussed

  • Big Box PC Game Era
    • We Miss Feelies
  • Returning to FFXIV
    • Super Dungeon Friends
    • Weird Weekend on Cactuar
  • It Takes Two
  • Iconoclasts
  • D&D Dark Alliance
  • Mario Golf Super Rush
Direct download: aggrochat_episode350.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 9:46am EDT

Tonight we start the show missing several people and then Kodra sneaks in while recording and claims to have been there all along.  We start out with a discussion of the Windows 11 announcement and the odd requirements it seems are going to be required to upgrade into it.  From there we talk about Grace’s adventures with Subnautica: Below Zero which I legitimately thought was an expansion pack and not a whole new game.  Bel talks about the trend of WoW personalities switching to Final Fantasy XIV and the videos associated with them.  We talk a bit about MMORPG Tycoon 2 and Lum’s delightful tweet thread making us want to play it.  Bel talks about his nonsense setup and how Sony Remote Play is so much better with a PS5…  and how TMACDev REPL4Y is even better than that.  Finally we close out the show with some talk about Ratchet and Clank and Kodra’s observations given this is his first game in that series.

Topics Discussed

  • Windows 11 Announcement
    • Leaked Build
    • Scalping TPM Modules
  • Subnautica: Below Zero
    • What a difference a story makes
  • WoW personalities playing FFXIV
    • The “quitting wow for ffxiv” video trend
    • What has lead to this point
    • Medieval Marty
  • Lum plays MMORPG Tycoon 2
    • Make bad MMOs for fun and profit
  • Sony Remote Play
    • Better on PS5
    • TMACDev REPL4Y
  • Ratchet and Clank Observations
Direct download: aggrochat_episode349.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 9:42am EDT

Be warned, if anything sounds weird…  Bel is recording from a new gaming rig which seems to have brought back the whine for now.  Hopefully he can resolve that in the coming weeks.  We start the show talking about Mechwarrior 5 and the recent Mercs expansion.  We also talk about how it has essentially destroyed the mod that folks were running to get around inconsistencies in the base game.  This has lead to some mixed opinions among the AggroChat crew.  From there we talk briefly about The Outer Wilds and Biomutant before settling into a longer conversation about Phantasy Star Online 2: New Genesis.  Finally we wrap things up with a discussion about Ratchet and Clank and how Tam and Kodra are not as fluent in this universe.

Topics Discussed:

  • Mechwarrior 5
    • Mercs DLC Update
    • The end of Modding
  • The Outer Wilds
  • Biomutant
  • Phantasy Star Online 2: New Genesis
  • Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart
Direct download: aggrochat_episode348.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 9:48am EDT

Hey Friends! We are back again because Bel's life has calmed down a little bit, or at least enough to be able to reasonably make our normal recording slot. Tonight we have a whole stack of things to talk about and not enough show to fit it into. So first up we talk about R-Type Final 2 which has been bouncing for a few shows and how it is very true to the PS2 original game. From there Grace talks about her recent experience finishing Subnautica and starting the Below Zero sequel. From there we talk a bit about E3 2021 so far and most specifically further information coming out about Elden Ring. This is another Dark Souls game that is not called Dark Souls. Bel also talks a bit about how weird it is that UbiSoft is working on an Avatar game... aka the big blue people and not the great sorta-anime series. Ash talks about his experience with Chicory and we talk a bit about what it is like to survive Snowpiercer the City Sim in Frostpunk.

Topics Discussed

  • R-Type Final 2
  • Subnautica and Below Zero
  • E3 2021
    • Wholesome Games Direct
    • UbiSoft Forward
    • Devolver Digital Forwarder
    • Gearbox Showcase
    • Elden Ring
    • Avatar Open World Game
  • Chicory A Colorful Tale
  • Frostpunk
Direct download: aggrochat_episode347.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 9:28am EDT

Tonight we have a second show in a row, which given the state of Bel right now is pretty miraculous.  We are down a Kodra for assorted reasons but we have one of our shows where we have only the thinnest of topics and make a show out of them.  Bel talks about experiencing how polarizing Army of the Dead is apparently as we discuss the expectations of genre films.  From there we talk about Diablo games on the phone and more Mass Effect discussion.  We clear the deck of the topics we have had for a while as we go through the limits of accessibility, scaling content and how rough catch up in games can be at time.

Topics Discussed

  • Zack Snyder’s Army of the Dead
  • Phone Diablo Games
    • Raziel
    • Anima
    • Foam Diablo?
  • Mass Effect 2
    • Hover Tank Bad
  • The Limits of Accessibility
  • Scaling Group Content
  • Catch Up Mechanics
Direct download: aggrochat_episode346.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 11:48am EDT

Tonight we prove that we totally do exist and you get to listen to a very tired Bel.  Bel gives a slight explanation of why we did not record the last two weeks and why nothing is certain in the coming weeks either.  We talk a bit about how we are in this weird new era of “Must See TV” which is a phrase that only us “olds” will know but Disney is absolutely creating destination television again.  From there we talk about the Mass Effect Legendary re-release and how Bel is coming to love Jennifer Hale’s Shepard.  We talk a bit about the news coming out for FFXIV Endwalker and how Dark Knights are no longer the TRUE edgelords.  Finally we talk a bit about PSO2 New Genesis Beta.

Topics Discussed

  • New Era of Must See TV
  • Mass Effect Legendary Edition
  • Demon’s Soul Remake
  • FFXIV Stuffs
    • Bring on the Edgiest Lords
  • PSO2 New Genesis Beta
Direct download: aggrochat_episode345.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:13am EDT

Hey Folks!  Tonight we are back with what ended up being a pretty topic heavy show.  Pretty sure Grace is recovering this week after the stress of last week and having to be first in the host announcement order.  Genshin Impact has added player housing and Ammo talks about the “Serenitea Pot” which is confusing as hell to listen to if you have no clue what is being said.  From there Kodra and Thalen talk about their experiences with little ones and Pokemon Snap.  Bel talks about Returnal a game that is a mishmash of Hades, Nier, Metroidvania and a little bit of Dark Souls thrown in for good measure.  From there we talk about Star Trek Discovery and a broader discussion about various Trek shows.  Finally Kodra shares some of his experiences pugging content in Elder Scrolls Online.

Topics Discussed:

  • Ash is a Furry
  • Housing in Genshin Impact
  • Pokemon Snap
  • Returnal on PS5
  • Star Trek Discovery
  • Pugging in Elder Scrolls Online
Direct download: aggrochat_episode344.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 11:09am EDT

Hey friends, we are down a few of our normal crew but pushing forward with the regularly scheduled nonsense.  We briefly revisit Outriders and talk about the expeditions and how generally bummed we are that the theme is so bleak because the gameplay is really good.  Outriders lead Tam to start playing Mass Effect Andromeda and maybe just maybe he will be able to talk about the story at some point since Bel has been waiting for this moment for years.  Bungie disappoints Destiny players by rolling out a shallow money grab instead of a transmog system and Bel talks about this.  Thalen talks about how Humble Bundle is also maybe awful now and IGN decided it wasn’t about charity anymore.  Kodra talks about the wild Strixhaven limited environment and how it has been reintroducing elements that have been missing from magic for a decade.  Finally we talk about virtual tabletops and more specifically Talespire but the larger question of what a virtual tabletop environment needs to have.

Topics Discussed:

  • Outriders Revisited
  • Tam and Kodra finally play Mass Effect Andromeda
  • Bungie ruins Transmog
  • Humble Bundle maybe awful now
  • Strixhaven’s Wild Limited Environment
  • Talespire Virtual Tabletop
    • Making a better Virtual Tabletop
    • Rogue-likes for Tabletop Adventures
Direct download: aggrochat_episode343.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:42am EDT

Tonight we have a show that is pretty much dominated by a discussion about Outriders.  Tam and Bel both attempt to avoid any outright spoilers but I feel like I still need to issue a warning.  This game has some deeply disturbing themes and we talk about these.  While we attempt to do so as gingerly as possible, I feel like I still need to provide a content warning to our listeners.  From there we talk about Stellaris and the third release of the game and how apparently it changes everything.  We also talk about Paradox and the history of long tailed support for games.

Topics Discussed

  • Outriders
    • Bleak Story
    • Endgame
    • Innovative Design
  • Stellaris
    • Third Edition
    • Reinventing the Game
    • Paradox Long Support
Direct download: aggrochat_episode342.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:53am EDT

Tonight we start off with a brief reprise of last week's Diablo 3 Season 23 topic.  Because of the changes to followers this is pretty much the easiest season yet to complete in full.  We talk briefly about the Diablo 2 technical alpha going on and how it is mostly just D2 but prettier.  Grace talks about her experiences with Cozy Grove which is effectively Animal Crossing but Ghost Bears.  Tam and Thalen talk about their experiences with Super Adventure Box in Guild Was 2.  Bel talks a bit about Games Preservation and more specifically the release of a demo copy of the long rumored Castlevania Resurrection.  Finally we go down a topic path that has been sitting on our list for awhile and talk about directed gameplay versus guided gameplay.

Topics Discussed

  • Easiest Diablo 3 Season Ever
    • Overpowered Followers
    • Diablo 2 Technical Alpha
  • Cozy Grove
    • Animal Crossing but Ghost Bears
  • Super Adventure Box
    • A Platformer Kodra Doesn’t Love
  • Games Preservation
    • Castlevania Resurrection
    • Nintendo PlayStation
    • Missing Content from different industries
  • Freeform versus Guided Gameplay
    • Bel Wants out of the Car
    • Directed Gameplay in Sandboxes
Direct download: aggrochat_episode341.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:50am EDT

Tonight once again a discussion happened off air and we sorta reprise this a bit at the beginning of the show as we talk streaming services.  From there we talk about Dorf Romantik and how it doesn’t include any Dwarves at all but is still awesome.  From there we talk about Deep Rock Galactic which we are pretty sure is a Dwarf game.  Kodra and Bel talk about Magic the Gathering Arena on the Phone with the recent launch of the iOS version. Tam talks about his experiences with the Outriders launch.  Bel and Grace talk about the launch of Diablo 3 Season 23 and the joy of emanate with follower equipment.  Finally we wrap with some discussion about Warhammer Fantasy and the High Elves army.

Topics Discussed:

  • Streaming Services
  • Dorf Romantik
  • Deep Rock Galactic
  • Magic the Gathering Arena
    • Iphone Launch
    • Android Experience
  • Outriders
    • Rough Launch
    • Good Game
  • Diablo 3 Season 23
    • Fully Equippable Followers
  • Warhammer Fantasy
    • High Elves
Direct download: aggrochat_episode340.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:04am EDT

Hey Folks!  We missed last week because Bel was knocked a little bit down after his second Covid-19 Vaccination, but all is well and we are back this week.  We end up running quite a little bit over on this show.  We start talking about the unrealistic expectations of gamers and the nonsensical $10,000 MMO Kickstarter.  We talk about what the Disney Plus Marvel One Shot series are doing and how we have never quite seen this sort of thing before.  We talk relatively spoiler free about Falcon and Winter Soldier, and then say goodbye to Duck Tales.  From there we talk about Elder Scrolls Online and the semi-spontaneous return to the game and all of the content we have been playing.

Topics Discussed:

  • The $10,000 MMO
    • DreamWorld
    • Discussion about unrealistic expectations in gaming
  • Disney Plus Marvel Shows
    • Television version of a “Event Book”
    • Falcon and the Winter Soldier
    • Expectations for Star Wars Oneshots
  • Goodbye Duck Tales
  • Elder Scrolls
    • Returning to the Game
    • Jesters Festival
    • Extreme Amount of Content
    • Oddities of Guild Traders
    • Dark Anchor Leveling Nonsense
Direct download: aggrochat_episode339.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:04am EDT

Tonight we recorded a relatively short show since we knew Sunday we would be losing an hour of time as we “spring forward”.  Tonight we have a handful of topics that have been floating around our list for a while.  Firstly we talk about folks being shocked that Roblox is apparently valued at 38 billion dollars during the initial public offering.  We talk about the concept of invisible games, or the games that media and gamers just aren’t talking about but are massive.  From there we talk about the importance of judgement free difficulty settings.  Tam talks a bit about exploring No Man’s Sky in Virtual Reality and how the game has changed over time.  Finally as we wrap up we talk about just how phenomenal WandaVision was and how all of you should go out and watch it.

 

Topics Discussed:

  • Games that Games Media Don’t Talk About
    • Why Roblox is worth 38 billion dollars
    • Dungeon Fighter Online
    • Mobile Games
  • Games Need Difficulty Settings
    • Challenges playing with Kids
    • Judgement Free Difficulty Settings
    • Accessibility Needs
  • No Man’s Sky in VR
    • Valheim in Space?
  • Watch WandaVision
    • No spoilers just talking about it being good
Direct download: aggrochat_episode338.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:21am EDT

Tonight we have a bit of an odd show at the end of a painfully long week.  We talk about Outriders some more and how odd it is that they are patching the demo and being completely transparent about it.  Since more folks have played it there are some fresh impressions to go along with that. This breaks out into a broader discussion of live service games and the looter shooter genre.  From here we sorta make a trip down into comfort gaming and revisiting old familiar stories as a way of regulating mood.  Tam and Kodra talk about how they are wired a little differently and their version of this is playing some sort of game where they can enter a flow state and find peace and calm in the challenge.

Topics Discussed

  • Outriders Patching the Demo
    • More thoughts about the game
    • Concerns about the setting
  • Broad Discussion about Live Service Games
    • What makes success
    • Are regular story drops achievable?
  • Comfort Gaming
    • Revisiting a story in a time of need
    • Tam and Kodra wired differently
      • Flow state games
    • Using media to regulate moods
Direct download: aggrochat_episode337.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 11:01am EDT

Tonight we start off with one of those discussions that almost happened before we started recording.  Tam has reached the point where he was ready to tangle with the fourth boss in Valheim, which disturbingly spawns right above where most of us have made our home.  Tam tells the tale of this battle and the heavy losses that were incurred.  From there we talk about Haven which is a co-op JRP style game featuring the relationships and interactions of an established couple.  Finally we wrap things up with some discussion of the Outriders demo and how Bel is excited about it and Ash is tentatively excited as well due to is similarities to Mass Effect 3 Multiplayer.

Topics Discussed

  • More Fun in Valheim
    • Tam vs Moder vs Kodra vs Sol
  • Haven
    • Charming game with realistic coupling
  • Outriders Demo
    • Cover Mechanics are a Lie
    • Fun Aggressive Gameplay
    • Unintentionally Racist Character Creator
    • Mass Effect 3 Multiplayer Comparisons 
Direct download: aggrochat_episode336.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:46am EDT

Tonight we start off some discussion about the unseasonable weather that has caused a few of us to experience negative 15 fahrenheit days.  From there we discuss BlizzConline and how we went into it with extremely lowered expectations.  We discuss the things that were announced namely Diablo 4 new class and Burning Crusade Classic.  From there we venture forth into a discussion about Valheim a game that Bel has played for awhile but failed to recruit other players into until Tam and Kodra did this thing.  The entire AggroChat crew seems to have reached a critical mass and is exploring this norse land of mystery.  Finally we briefly talk about WandaVision and how weird the show must be if you don’t at least have a summary understanding of the characters.

Topics Discussed

  • Thawing Out from Hell Freezing Over
  • BlizzConline
    • Anduin is the Arthas?
    • Diablo 4 Rogue
    • Diablo 2 Remastered
    • Burning Crusade Classic
    • Lost Vikings Returns
    • Diablo Immortal
      • Mobile Game Woes
  • Valheim
    • Survival Done Better
    • Low Fidelity but Gorgeous
    • Building a City
    • Adventures and Shenanigans
    • Bel Ruins Everything
  • WandaVision
    • Zero Spoilers - What is this like if you don’t already know the characters?
Direct download: aggrochat_episode335.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:47am EDT

We assure you that we are in fact not a cat…  but maybe some of us are cats.  Tonight we start the show off with a discussion that probably should have happened last week but completely missed the list.  Final Fantasy XIV announced its next expansion and in Endwalker we are going to the Moon.  We talk about this.  This sorta leads its way into a discussion about Guild Wars 2 and drop in drop out grouping.  We also talk a bit about how Google seems to slowly be killing Stadia but shuttering the studio that was supposed to be making first party games.  Last we talk about Eli and hitting his first 12 sads out of 10 RPG ending….  which is fitting given Kodra’s propensity for finding those games.

Topics Discussed

  • FFXIV Endwalker
    • Sage healers
    • Possibly a Scythe melee class
    • Issues attaching to game
  • Guild Wars 2
    • Drop in Drop Out Group Play
  • The Death of Stadia
    • Google kills first party studio
    • Leaning into selling service to Game Studios
  • Pokemon Mystery Dungeon
    • Eli’s first 12 sads out of 10 ending
    • Harrowing tale of Cookie and Bookworm
Direct download: aggrochat_episode334.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 11:36am EDT

Tonight we are down an Ashgar but start off the show with some discussion about Bel’s adventures in Hardcore Minecraft.  Grace also had never played Minecraft prior to this week and she shares her initial thoughts and just how much cultural knowledge about the game had seeped in from other sources.  A topic that didn’t happen last week but we talk about how Gabe Newell and Elon Musk want to put computers in our brains.  Tam shares his experiences with that Death based Puzzle game Hitman 3.  Kodra talks about his son and Let’s Go Pikachu and this leads to some discussion about Pokemon Snap.  Finally we have a lightning round of quick topics including that the Dark Angels are good, a preface for next week's discussion about Final Fantasy XIV Endwalker, Diablo 4 not releasing in 2021 and Doctor Snuggles a Nickelodeon show we deleted from our memory banks.

Topics Discussed

  • Hardcore Minecraft
    • Life After Death
    • Grace plays Minecraft for First Time
    • Horrific Machines
  • Gabe Newell and Elon Musk want Computers in our Heads
    • Addiction to the cutting edge
    • The cost of technology adoption
  • Hitman 3
    • A puzzle but someone dies
  • Let’s Go Pikachu
    • Pokemon Snap
  • Quick Topics
    • Dark Angels Surprisingly Good
    • Final Fantasy XIV Endwalker
    • No Diablo 4 in 2021
    • Doctor Snuggles
Direct download: aggrochat_episode333.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:34am EDT

This evening's show is a bit of an odd one, but we are living in very interesting times within other interesting times.  We start off with some discussion about choosing a game controller with a good D-Pad and how most just use 4 independent microswitches these days.  This leads into a discussion about Celeste and Kodra attempting B-Sides.  From there we talk about Crying Suns which effectively feels like a more mature version of FTL.  Then we deep dive into why Games are extremely important and what happens when “Players” start applying the same system breaking logic to the real world.  What we witnessed with the GameStop stock is precisely what gamers do best, evaluating a system, findings its weaknesses, and then exploiting the hell out of them for fun and profit.  This leads to one of the stranger conversations we have had but one that is nonetheless interesting.

Topics Discussed

  • Controllers with good D-Pads
    • Missing Retail for Testing Controllers
  • Celeste 3rd Anniversary
    • B-Sides
    • Classic 2
  • Crying Suns
    • FTL 2.0ish
  • Why Games are Important
    • GameStop Stock
    • Applying Game Breaking Principles to Real Life
    • Trolling the Stock Market
  • Changing Demands and Goals
    • The Fall of industries like Diamonds
    • The Rise of Electric Cars
Direct download: aggrochat_episode332.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 11:02am EDT

Tonight we talk about a few things that have been on the list for awhile along with some new fresh topics.  First off Kodra talks to us about Nerts and the world of competitive solitaire.  From there Bel talks about how Dragon Age Inquisition has won him over and how he thinks that it might be the best Dragon Age game so far.  Ash talks about Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity and how it also might be the best Warriors game to date.  Thalen shares with us Nick Knacks on the PopArena YouTube Channel and its exploration of classic Nickelodeon television.  We also debate what we consider our Golden Age of Nick.  We dust off a topic that has been on the list for awhile where we talk about whether or not it is the time for World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy XIV to go Free to Play.  This leads into a general discussion of MMO mechanics over the years and lends its way to some talk about Guild Wars 2.

Topics Discussed

  • Nerts - Competitive Solitaire
  • Dragon Age Inquisition
    • Maybe the best Dragon Age
  • Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity
    • Maybe the best Warriors Game
  • Nickelodeon Nostalgia
    • Nick Knacks on PopArena Channel
    • What was the Golden Age
  • Should WoW and FFXIV Go Free to Play
    • Benefits of Free to Play
    • MMO Game Design Discussion
  • Guild Wars 2 Discussion
Direct download: aggrochat_episode331.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 9:56am EDT

Tonight we have a bunch of toppings that have been hanging around on the list for awhile.  We talk a bit about the announcement that Riot is making an MMORPG and our general thoughts about that.  Bel talks about the need for Attract Screens in game and this leads into a discussion about Tutorialization in games.  From there we venture forth into how exactly you teach a non-gamer how to play games and if games are too complicated right now.  Bel talks a bit about how much he misses F-Zero and why Mario Kart actually won the battle of the racing game that Nintendo cares about.  From there we talk about the vast array of experiments Nintendo is doing right now surrounding Mario.  Bel talks about revisiting Jedi Fallen Order and we wrap things up with a discussion about struggling to find a good tabletop cyberpunk game.

Topics Discussed

  • Riot is Making an MMO
  • Game Attract Screens
  • Teaching Game Mechanics
  • Gaming for Non Gamers
  • Pining for F-Zero
  • Why Mario Kart Won
  • Mario Experimentation
    • Mario Legos
    • Mario Kart Live
    • Super Nintendo World
  • Revisiting Jedi Fallen Order
    • Mouse and Keyboard
  • Finding a Cyberpunk Tabletop Game
    • Genesys
    • Shadowrun
    • Cyberpunk
    • Storyteller games
Direct download: aggrochat_episode330.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:54am EDT

Tonight we continue our tradition of recording the Games of the Year show.  Each year we pick three games that were the most significant for us during the previous calendar year.  Additionally we throw in some honorable mentions, and then a list gets compiled of those choices and roughly sorted into games with the least overlap to the games with the most picks. This year we surprisingly have a game that every single member of the podcast chose as either a pick or an honorable mention.  We talk about nineteen games in total.

Topics Discussed

  • Games of the Year Picks
    • 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim
    • Cryptic Sudoku
    • Cyberpunk 2077
    • Death Stranding
    • Half Life: Alyx
    • Ooblets
    • Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Rescue Team DX
    • Ring Fit Adventures
    • Animal Crossing: New Horizon
    • Crusader Kings 3
    • Final Fantasy VII Remake
    • Ghost of Tsushima
    • Phantasy Star Online 2
    • Yakuza: Like a Dragon
    • Genshin Impact
    • Hades
  • Honorable Mentions
    • Horizon Zero Dawn
    • Disco Elysium
    • Guild Wars 2
Direct download: aggrochat_episode329.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 11:19am EDT

Tonight we start the show with discussion about Mechwarrior 5 and the multiplayer sessions that have been happening among AggroChat folks.  We also talk a bit about the extremely confusing world of intellectual property when it comes to this game.  From there we revisit the topic of why forcing a stealth mission is a bad idea when you are not expecting it.  Grace talks about a short game she discovered called Space Court where you preside over a Court in Space.  Tam talks about getting the Valve Index and finally maybe finding the killer app in the form of Half-Life Alyx.  From there we dive into a discussion about the games that we have missed during 2020 and didn’t have time to play, which segues into a discussion about Bel giving Dragon Age Inquisition another shot and how maybe Kodra would like the games that are not the first one.

Topics Discussed:

  • Mechwarrior 5: Multiplayer
  • Why Forced Stealth Missions are Bad
    • Revisiting the Topic
  • Space Court
  • VR and the Valve Index
  • Half-Life: Alyx
  • Games we Missed Playing this Year
  • Trying Dragon Age Inquisition Again
Direct download: aggrochat_episode328.mp3
Category:gaming -- posted at: 10:18am EDT

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