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GameCritics.com Podcast Episode 112: The Xbox Diskinected

The Xbox 180 is now truly complete. With Microsoft's announcement that they are dropping the Kinect requirement for the Xbox One, early adopters have been perturbed in droves. We happen to have three such fellows on the show to talk about their reactions, and if this was really a necessary move. Featuring Richard Naik, Mike Bracken, Ashley King, and special guest Aaron from the Gameenthus podcast. Special thanks to RushJet1 for the intermission music!

NOTE: this episode was recorded on May 17th, so it's a bit out of date. Apologies!

Intros 0:00-0:12

Xbox Kinect 0:12-0:52

Thumbs 0:52-close

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GameCritics.com Podcast Episode 111: The podcast with Soul...s

Only 5 years late to the Souls party, Richard assembles four of our favorite guests and an old friend to talk about Demons, Darkness, Death, more Death, and Determination in From Software's Souls series, preceded by a brief watcha been playin. Featuring Richard Naik, Tim "Lego" Spaeth, Michael "Easy Street" Cunningham, Kristin "Covenant" Taylor, and Samantha "Tell Me Everything You Know" Allen.

0:00-0:07 Intro

0:07-0:23 Watcha been playin

0:23-0:50 At what point did you "get" your first Souls game?

0:50-1:15 What makes Souls challenging for you personally?

1:15-1:27 Invading-have you ever done it?

1:27-1:39 The future of Souls

1:39-1:43 Pitch a Souls game to someone unfamiliar with the series

1:43-close Thumbs

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Deadly Premonition: The Director's Cut—The Official Visual Companion Review

Deadly Premonition: The Director's Cut—The Official Visual Companion Screenshot

I'm certain there's a great story to be told about the troubled six-year development of Deadly Premonition, and I'm even more certain that this interactive guide isn't the place to find it. It does, however, offer a degree of insight into the mindset of the man behind its madness, Hidetaka "Swery" Suehiro, and in places is every bit as esoteric as the game itself.

A World of Canyons

Tales of Xillia Screenshot

Playing Tales of Xillia made me think of Final Fantasy, which was probably not the intended effect.

Just for the trophy

The Last of Us Screenshot

I hate Firefly pendants. I don't really hate anything intrinsic to the pendants, of course. They're much too boring for that.

The Mirage

Remember Me Screenshot

In the wake of Microsoft's unpopular and ultimately reversed turn towards invasive DRM and daily activation requirements, there has been a renewed discussion of the economic challenges of AAA development and the supposed danger that used games posed to the industry. The standard excuse that it's too great a challenge to create games that achieve players' graphical expectations while still selling enough games to be economically viable in the context of a console exclusive has been trotted out, and as usual it is false, or at least lacking in perspective.

Postmortem: State of Decay

State of Decay Screenshot

It's no secret that State of Decay from Undead Labs has been one of my favorite games this year. Despite a lot of lackluster zombie-themed stuff overcrowding the market, these folks managed to bring an original vision and a brand-new twist to material that most people had already written off. Now that the dust has settled and the game has been out for a while, I figured it was the perfect time to check back in and do a little (har har) post-mortem Q&A on this groundbreaking survival title.

Anatomy of a poor choice

Mars: War Logs Screenshot

Mars: War Logs is a confusing game on many levels. It's set on another planet far in the future, but most of the fighting involves whacking dudes with a glorified stick. The player never sees the game's only real "war," and instead deals mainly with an internecine conflict concerning the main character Roy's guild. Yet, in the end, even the internal power struggles turn out not to have been the driving force for the game's violence.

Shooting and missing

BioShock Infinite Screenshot

The discussion around BioShock Infinite's combat doesn't just involve the question of whether its quantity of violence is essential to the story (yes), or whether telling a story where its quantity of violence is essential is interesting or worthwhile (no). Some of the discussion has centered around the question of whether the combat mechanics are any good. Eric Schwarz has written a fantastic post that describes most of the combat mechanics, and I want to expand on it a little. Even though I think violence helps to express the kind of character Booker is, I don't think the combat systems of BioShock Infinite do much to help characterize him, and in some ways actively oppose that characterization.

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