WRUP: Better living through obsolete technology edition

Are you the sort of insufferable dillweed who wastes everyone’s time during a social gathering talking about how humanity should never have moved on from vinyl records or failure-prone game cartridges or whatever else makes you just insufferable instead of Amish? Then you should order our new series, Better Living Through Obsolete Technology! It’s perfect for the change-averse weirdo who doesn’t understand why no one has not programmed a decent MMO for the Commodore 64.

This comprehensive 18-tape VHS set with an additional audio reading 8-track recording and laserdisc companion series will guide you in the delicate art of yelling at computer salesmen, why scanlines are the best thing ever, and how to scold people for ruining your playback because they turned on a vacuum cleaner within the same time zone. To order, send a personal check (no money orders or PayPal) to the bottom of the trash can and leave your weekend plans in the comments for What Are You Playing this week.

Andrew Ross (@dengarsw): ​Ugh, I’m so behind on work that I probably shouldn’t play much, especially since I intend to go to a cherry blossom festival… mostly for food and secret Pokémon Go time. Fire Emblem Heroes will probably happen too, since it has that Pokemon feel but the units are now much more customizable. Niantic, get on this!

Brianna Royce (@nbrianna, blog): Definitely Guild Wars 2. I’m back in and building up new toons and even finished off another leg of the living story. If my poor wrists hold up, I’ll be back there this weekend!

Eliot Lefebvre (@Eliot_Lefebvre, blog): Mass Effect: Andromeda is sort of in early access, but I’m waiting until it fully releases next week. So I’ll just be tooling about in Final Fantasy XIV, as per usual. I’m good.

Justin Olivetti (@Sypster, blog): With word that Update 20 is coming out next week for Lord of the Rings Online, I’m scrambling to get all of the remaining quests done in North Ithilien before it drops. It’ll probably end up being a silly move, hurrying to finish up content in a gorgeous zone so that I can go into a toxic wasteland, but it’s the first time in a while that I’ve been ready to go with the crowd into a new area, and I want to be there for it.

Your turn!

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80 Comments on "WRUP: Better living through obsolete technology edition"

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Melissa McDonald

I still know people using hi-fi VHS systems to do an analog mix-down of digitally recorded music.

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Sega Box

Did I mention that the Sega Box is capable of running floppy disks?

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Malcolm Swoboda

Mass Effect: Andromeda trial. Lots of good, some great, some mediocre, and.. some poor. The loss of immersion from animation quality and bugs… is real :(.

But besides that and a few smaller issues, I really did have fun.

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Jonny Sage

Cant seem to find any MMOs worth playing, so instead finished up Tomb Raider, and picked up XCom2 on steam sale. Also grinding through Arkham Knight.

Say can we get a calendar of upcoming MMO releases?

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Danny Smith

Cleared Nier automata 100% with all 26 endings. Man if you are a longtime taro fan that was some satisfying stuff. Certain notes about project gestalt and two characters from the first were the sort of thing i was thinking about hours after i finished playing. Not since MGS3 has a game got its hooks in me like that. I imagine if you don’t know the universe and havent touched games like Nier of Drakengard its just a very easy devil may cry you beat in 10 hours and go ‘what where was the plot?’ but even if the first twist was transparent from the off if you know Taro that game is going to be for the PS4 what Shadow of the Colossus is for the PS2. Its something pretty damn special.

Now trying a mess of backlog stuff while waiting for my switch since zelda is the only game besides P5 left for me this year bar the FFXIV expansion.
Tried Dragon Quest Builders finally and combat blows but the rest is a fun, charming minecraft-dragon warrior hybrid thats super nostalgic.
Tried Paladins on PS4 and hoo boy some of that stuff is beyond ‘clone from another game’ level, but its fun even if everyone is made of wet tissue paper compared to any other game like it i have played.
Tried The Last Station which in concept i should love. A side scrolling, very minimalist sprite artstyle game about a train driver who comes back to work from vacation as a kind of zombie tar man apocalypse occurs and you manage resources, fix up your train and stop at towns to scavenge for supplies to carry people and a valuable military experiment down the line -BUT its ui is trash. On a sunny day you cannot see what you are selecting like its an original gameboy outside. I actually deleted my save data because the screen is black with grey or slightly less grey as selected or none selected and thats the tip of an iceberg made up of ‘this should not have passed QR testing’ problems. What a shame.

Now i’m playing Night in the Woods –

I was put off mostly because its getting another Undertale cringe fanbase of the brony/homestuck/dashcon variety but after friends kept gushing about it being a supernatural horror indie flick version of animal crossing i looked into it and so far im enjoying it. You play a young girl back from dropping out of college and in her sleepy former mining boom town gone to rust during halloween she leaves the local diner with her friends on her first night back to find a severed arm on the sidewalk.
The dialogue can be a bit iffy in its “real people arent this quirky pls stop oh god” attempts at being whedonesque a good 15 years too late but other than that its actually a fun game and not the furry cringefest i expected.

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Hirku

I can’t believe I’m typing this, but I’m playing a lot of SWTOR and enjoying it like crazy. Of course, a big part of that enjoyment is that I only care about the class stories and I’m playing for free with all the unlocks I need to enjoy those stories. It’s so much more fun when I don’t have to care about the lame Knights of the Porcelain Throne story or the miserable endgame grind or $60 lightsabers.

Still, there’s only so many stories and when I’ve played my fill it’ll be the mmopocalypse for me. I’ve become almost completely fed up with modern gaming (too much bullshit, not enough fun), so I’ve started gathering a “greatest hits” collection of classic and semi-classic games, hopefully enough that I can ignore the games industry for many years when I’m done with SWTOR. I’m up to about 18 titles so far but will no doubt add more during the next round of Steam / GOG sales.

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Pedge Jameson

MMOpocalypse, that’s exactly what it is everywhere. The bubble has burst. :/

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Sray

Noticing that myself this week: a lot of people not only not playing any MMORPGs in this week’s WURP, but many also stating how they’re kind of sick of MMORPGs too.

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Pedge Jameson

Indeed, which is why Massively also has changed their coverage up a bit to include MOBA’s and such. Not much going on in MMO’s besides kickfarters :P

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Little Bugbear

Well the boyfriend and I have been sick all week so definitely not going out. So, some Hots, Gw2, FF14. Maybe some A Link Between Worlds when I’m laying around. Also if any of you are looking a good single player game checkout Nier:Automata great story make sure to play endings A through E (Not as much repetition as people think. Especially for MMO gamers.) to get the full story and the best ending.

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nobleeinherjar

Like others have said, I’m also pretty burnt out on MMOs for the time being. So this weekend it’s more focus on Breath of the Wild with helpings of Nier: Automata on the side. Plenty to keep me occupied until Persona 5 releases.

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mysecretid

When not recuperating, eating, or sleeping and all of that, my gaming time has been mostly spent playing Destiny.

I never would’ve expected this, but — as I keep mentioning — there’s enough story, plot, and lore giving the missions context and depth that I keep wanting to play more. It just hits me the right way.

I’ve been playing some Rise Of The Tomb Raider, also on the PS4, when I need something different.

I think RotTR is better than the last game (i.e. there’s actual tombs to raid in this one), but I’m still not a huge fan of this “re-imagined” Lara, who still comes across as too uncertain and self-doubting to impress me.

Simply put, if a young male hero in an action game sounded this tentative and quasi-fearful, the internet would be crying out for digital blood.

Maybe it’s just the voice actress? I still agree with British gaming site Rock Paper Shotgun who opined that this Lara has one of the phoniest-sounding English accents — even though the voice actress is verified English, born and raised.

Or maybe it’s just I liked the last “re-invention” of Lara Croft so very much?

Tomb Raider: Legend, and Tomb Raider: Underworld remain two of my favorite games, especially the first one.

You can get them both on Steam for barely a wink and a promise now, provided you’re okay with older graphics. These two have got a proper Lara in them, as well.

MMORPGs? I’ve barely touched them — even Star Trek Online, which says a lot.

I guess Star Wars:The Old Republic‘s inability to provide me sufficient entertainment during “off-content” periods has tainted my experience of most of my MMORPGs right now.

Basically, I’m tired of replaying content I’ve already seen a number of times, for rewards I don’t care about — so I’m following the fun, instead.

Have a great week, folks. Take care of yourselves.

Cheers,

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Hirku

Aren’t these current Tomb Raider games a “Lara Croft Begins” sort of origin story, which is why she’s not as bold and confident as she usually is? I haven’t played them, I could be wrong, but that was the impression I got from the reviews.

Legend was definitely great, and I’d also recommend to anybody out there Tomb Raider: Anniversary, which is a remake of the original TR in the Legend engine.

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mysecretid

I was okay with “She’s a novice” (mostly), for the first game, but this is the second game in, and she still seems way too uncertain about herself and the kind of life she’s leading, at least for my tastes.

Part of this is probably because there’s a huge disconnect between the kind of character Lara presents herself as in these games, and the way she handles the action.

In the first game alone, she probably kills more bad guys than ten special ops teams trapped behind enemy lines during wartime — and some of those kills are, frankly, f#cking brutal — and yet, the story wants to insist that she’s this uncertain novice who’s almost in over her head most of the time.

I mean, the advanced “stealth kills” in Rise of the Tomb Raider — where she kills enemies by hacking them with her climbing axes — I actually shouted “Jesus!!!” out loud the first time I saw the kill animation play in-game. It wasn’t horrifically bloody or anything, but it sure seemed over-the-top for this “uncertain” young woman.

I could see killing a threat that way once, maybe, out of fear and adrenaline — but to make it her go-to stealth kill seems out of character for the novice Lara they keep insisting she is …

Sure, it’s obvious the game’s writers and the people who design the combat clearly weren’t talking to one another at all — but it ends up making Lara look like some sort of split personality — one part blood-soaked professional killer, and one part “Ooh, ick! Spiders! Ewww” It just seems … damn weird, my friend.

My opinions only, of course,

Cheers,

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Sray

I love the new Tomb Raiders games, but I do agree that Lara could sound a lot more confident by the end of RotTR, but -very minor spoiler warning- by the end of the game you can see how they are definitely a planned trilogy that tells her origin story, and that the connections between the two games are much heavier than they initially appear.

My biggest issue with the new series is the over-the-top graphic death cutscenes in the new games. While RotTR seemed to tone them down a bit from the first one, or because I played both back to back I had just improved to the point that I saw very few of them in the second game, they are still too much, and players should have to opt in to see that if they want it (they should default off because you can’t unsee things, so opting out usually comes too late; and because watching that kind of stuff should be a decision that you have to make, not one made for you that you have to back out of).

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mysecretid

Agreed. I can handle graphic death scenes in games where they serve some sort of story purpose, but they feel gratuitous and out-of-place in these new Lara Croft games. Please see my reply to Hirku, above, as I think some of what I wrote touches on what you’re talking about as well.

Cheers,

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Esoteric Coyote

I’ll copy this from the last Albion article, with a few updates.

So I may have fallen for the whole peer pressure to get Albion, power guilds can easily control the market and progression of other players. In cities you can buy land for crafting stations and set the price or the use to anything. You can make the private, or charge people a 500% markup, mostly because food prices are too high. I hit this already, I can’t make tools without paying 500% markup past T4 and most Albion players just say “lawl get good” Some of these markups means using that station costs more than to buy the material or gear off the AH. On top of that, players who bought an ox carry 8(more like 10) times as many materials as on foot and run twice as fast. So their progression is miles ahead of me which means I’ll never be competitive and it makes the grind long and annoying. And there is massive money to be made keeping those stations on lock down.

Getting an ox through the vendors requires you to have a level 3 island, which in total costs 100k and a single baby ox or horse is 12k for the lowest quality. On foot a foal costs two trips of tier 4 mats, for the isle that’s just 18 runs or so… Through two to three zones…. With Ox you can get 4/6 foals in one run, or a level 3 isle in one or two runs. I ended up buying an ox from players for about 40k, and it took me more than 2 hours to fill it to 58% capacity at which point all my tool broke. I was carrying over 1100 mats, on foot I can carry about 200. Massive difference. I’m gonna wander in to a yellow zone and if competition for mats is lower because the game seems… slightly overpopulated.

TL;DR Do not recommend unless you play with a large group to feed you mats, gear, or use their crafting stations. And for a crafting game it’s probably the least appealing options. Don’t listen to people on the internets…

Xijit
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Xijit

LoL, it is like they threw in every shitty/exploitable game mechanic, that have been proven to cause an MMO to fail over and over again, while muttering to themselves “it is ok; it will work this time because I am a special snowflake.”