What makes Zelda, Zelda

No one wants to see their work go stale and the good folks over at Nintendo are no exception to that. The team working on The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has publicly stated that the newest entry into the franchise will rethink the conventions of Zelda. As a lifelong fan of Zelda, this has me a little worried. Every major release of the series since Ocarina of Time has tried to play with the traditional formula to varying degrees of success. They add wolves or a three day timeline but the strong entries of the franchise keep the spirit of Zelda alive. Obviously there is a limit. New entries should be distinguished but fans would probably not care for a first person shooter.

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Link’s Crossbow Training may be largely forgotten but at least you could shoot a Goron in the nards.

Not all of the little experiments are positive. We never went back to a 2D side scroller or to the ocean. So, beyond the familiar aesthetics of fairies and swords, what should be preserved as sacred in Hyrule? What makes the games stand out? What makes Zelda, Zelda? With a new Zelda game on the horizon, here’s what I’ve come to expect in order to keep the Zelda mystique alive:

Rich Game Worlds

When I first heard about Majora’s Mask, I was disappointed. The hype had been building for years when my friend informed me that the game would only have four dungeons. Really? That’s it? The series had just enjoyed two of its best games: A Link to the Past and Ocarina of Time both with a whopping 12 dungeons but Majora’s Mask would only have 4. Even the Gameboy game had 8! But Majora’s Mask is still one of the best entries because there was so much in the world of Termina. Taking a cue from Link’s Awakening, just getting to the next dungeon took a dungeon’s level of effort and time. Beyond that, there was about a dungeon’s worth of content after you finished the dungeon in each region. This is a classic storytelling technique: to have all characters, events and environments working towards painting the overall picture. All of the strongest entries in the Zelda series do this with rich environments, unique settings and quirky characters, some of whom we really came to care about.

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My first crush. Pro tip: Don’t do a Goggle Image search for Malon at a Starbucks. It’s Overwatch-level inappropriate but with less rendering power.

This is how Zelda games leave the player with a sense of wonder at Hyrule. The player needs a whole lot more than just pointing Link on autopilot to get around (Lookin’ at you, Wind Waker!) Sure, it always takes a while to get across Hyrule Field or the Ukuku Prairie but when you got there, the game is filled to its very limits with life. Sorry Stone Temple Pilots, this isn’t the Big Empty!

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 If you came up with that boating crap, your head should be conscious laden.

Character Growth

The Legend of Zelda is a legend, a story. The characters in any good story are faced with a conflict and are forced to grow. Think about any RPG you have played. Your hero gains points and levels up in a calculated, measured way. Yes, the hero grows, but this growth is told-not-shown. The sense of growth in a Zelda game is a little less Final Fantasy and a little more Megaman.  While RPGs generally tell are more detailed story, the growth Link experiences is more nuanced and frankly more powerful. Link does gain health in a measured way but the real growth comes with collecting new items, often as a token for a feat of strength. In Twilight Princess, the first major item Link acquires is the boomerang. It’s nice, I guess. He can stun enemies and grab things at a distance. But later, Link gets the clawshot, which I’m told is different than the hookshot which is what it’s called in literally every other game. C’mon Nintendo! Get it together! Uh, anyway, the clawshot is a vast improvement on the boomerang. It’s more direct, faster to use and you can even hang from the walls. And to top that, your last dungeon item is a second claw so Link can swing around the walls like Spiderman. This item progression shows a steady growth of Link as a hero as we grow as players.

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Dual wielding crossbows would come later. Much to the joy of a 12-year-old-me, there’s at least a hope of a Zelda-Matrix crossover.

Side note to anyone who thinks I’m picking on Wind Waker: WW does a great job in this area. There is a steady growth path from the grappling hook to the boomerang to the hookshot.

A Link Between Worlds failed in this area, to be honest. If Link can buy items, two things happen. 1: Link does not gain items through his challenges, his growth comes through cash. If I wanted to play Top 1%er, the Game I would play Sim City. 2: If you’re a power gamer like me, Link’s growth comes all at once at the start of the game and not at a steady pace.

Playing more directly off of traditional storytelling, Link’s growth also comes in the plot. Our hero often suffers a scripted loss to the final boss long before a real fight can take place. At the beginning of Oracle of Seasons, General Onyx tosses Link to the side like a rag doll but eight Essences of Nature later, Link returns to shit in Onyx’s punch bowl.

Bridging the gap between story and game mechanics, Link’s growth can come in the form of new techniques as he is taught by other characters. These teacher characters usually hold special significance in the plot and will only teach Link once he is ready. This simultaneously shows plot-driven growth and mechanic-driven growth.

Side note again to anyone who thinks I’m picking on Wind Waker: WW does a crap job in this area. Link suffers a scripted loss to Ganondorf who then takes mercy on Link out of kindness. So nothing will happen if Link loses. He and Zelda can just go home. Speaking of…

Urgency!

All video games have escapist appeal. For a few minutes per day, I’m not a software engineer, I’m an ace pilot or a mage or, in the case of Zelda, a hero.

 

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For a few minutes a day, I’m Samus or Beast from X-men or Lord Humongus

In the first few Zelda games, players knew the princess/Hyrule was in danger and needed to be saved but from Ocarina of Time on, the players felt it. The urgency comes straight out of classic storytelling techniques, again. When we see Link lose to the villain early in the adventure, we understand that he can fail in his mission. Because Nintendo lets the bad guys actually be bad, we get to find out what will happen if our hero does indeed fail. We watch helplessly Majora’s Mask sending the moon crashing into Termina, we see the denizens of Hyrule fading into Twilight, we see people frozen in time in Lybranna. These are not looming threats in the shadows, these threats are directly in our face.

I’m not saying every Zelda game needs to be a dark or that we need to keep away from Toon Link. The darkness and gravity need to be balanced for the story. After all, part of the charm of Zelda is the quirky humor. Who doesn’t love Tingle? But any comedic relief should be used to let the audience relax after a tense moment so they are not desensitized to it during the next moment.

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Remember this goofy bastard losing his mind even after the Millennium Falcon was safe?

Compare the humor of Ocarina of Time to the Humor of Wind Waker. In order to get the second Spiritual Stone, Link makes a deal with the Gorons who are literally being starved to death, so he enters a dark cavern to defeat a monstrous dinosaur by throwing bombs at it until it commits suicide in a pit of lava. Pretty dark stuff, really. Just a minute later when the Gorons know they are safe, we see Link run away screaming from a being hugged by his Goron pals. The humor defuses the tension and lets the player know that the Gorons are going to be alright. In Wind Waker humor is just used poorly. When the Tower of the Gods rises from the sea, we should be in awe of the magnificent structure and be mentally preparing for the ancient trial. Instead, Link is sent flying into the side of the tower. The humor here defuses the tension of a situation before it can be built.

The Zelda games are also stand out in gaming because the player can actually see the world getting better, bit by bit. This gives each act of the story a fall-and-rise arc where you can see the destruction and that you can right the wrong there.

Oracle of Ages embodies all these elements of urgency the most. You see Link tossed aside by Veran early in the game because he is not really a threat. Throughout the adventure you see people frozen in time and you see their loved ones suffering. You fail again half way through the game and your enemy comes closer to her dark goal. But, little by little, you gain small victories, like cleaning the polluted ocean or saving the Oracle. Once your enemy’s looming threat is complete, you, the hero, are ready to save Lybranna and undo the damage.

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Cartoony? A little. Tense? You betcha!

Final Thoughts

I’m not trying to distill Zelda down into a formula. I’m really not. Some changes to the Zelda games have been fantastic. Look at Twilight Princess, which was bold enough to change the hero into a pawn and mount for an untrustworthy manipulator. Nintendo colored outside of the lines and painted something more beautiful. There are a lot of changes coming in Breath of the Wild and they all seem like reasons to be excited. The hunting and weapon durability systems are brand new to the series and may add to the Zelda experience. But that’s what they should do: add. I hope Nintendo keeps a link to their past open and learns from the masters: themselves.

Skyrim Remaster Is A Step In The Right Direction, But It’s Not The Game We’re Waiting For

        E3 is officially in full swing, and Bethesda made some waves yesterday announcing a full HD current-gen remaster of Skyrim to be released in October. Here’s the link to the video preview, and I’ve got to say hot DAMN it looks good. Elder Scrolls fan’s everywhere rejoice! Between this and the upcoming release of Dishonored 2, it looks like it’s gonna be a big year for Bethesda.

        So, now that we got the appropriate praises out of the way, I’ve gotta say, this was a huge disappointment to me. I had been hearing rumors over the last few days that there was going to be an elder scrolls remaster announced and (although I was pretty sure it was Skyrim) I couldn’t help but hope against hope that we were FINALLY going to get a polished up remaster of Morrowind. I get that Skyrim was a badass game, but most people are still able to play it on their old systems for the most part, and while there is definitely a graphical upgrade between the old version and the new, the visual upgrade really isn’t anything all that spectacular. That’s not a knock on the work that the team at Bethesda has done, more just the fact that there wasn’t all that much room to improve upon in the first place.

         Now Morrowind on the other hand, holy shit that is a game that needs a facelift. On a whim last year I decided to purchase the Collector’s Edition on Steam for old times sake and as soon as I loaded it I remember thinking “woah… it wasn’t this bad when it released was it?”

A looker he is not

The truth is it was, but that’s because the game was released was released 14 years ago. At the time that game was the prettiest thing I have ever seen, and it deserves to be brought back for a new generation of gamers. I talk to my brothers all the time about the games they are playing and what they are looking forward to and it always pains me to realize that they have never been able to play through Morrowind, one of the defining games of my childhood. I have recommended it to them over and over and to their credit, they have made a couple of attempts at it but always end up giving up citing the terrible graphics and clunky combat as barriers to them making it through the game. That’s a travesty. Morrowind was THE game. An almost perfect Elder Scrolls. The environment, the characters, the score (still gets me going as soon as I hear those flute melodies), it’s amazing.

        I ended up playing through Morrowind again anyways despite the lack of polish in the graphics and the thing still holds up after all these years! At this point I am crossing my fingers that if they are remaking Skyrim, at some point they have to go back to Oblivion and Morrowind again, even if it’s just because it is a basically guaranteed cash grab. When that day comes I will be READY. Until then FUS RO DAH bitches.

-CDL

It’s Coming! FFXII PS4 Remaster in 2017

        You may remember a couple of months ago we wrote an article maligning the fact that of all the Final Fantasy games most deserving a PS4 remake, FFXII should be at the top of the list. Well obviously Square Enix has been following our channel because lo and behold, they just announced FFXII the Zodiac Age, a PS4 remaster set to launch in 2017. Oh yes ladies and gents, not only are they going to be giving us a shiny new FFXII with all of the standard PS4 graphicy goodness; they are going to be releasing it as the International version with an all new remastered score. Can I get a hell yes?!? Check out the full new launch trailer here, I must say, it looks preeeeeeeeeeeeeety sexy.

-CDL

So, Let’s Talk About All That Overwatch Porn

So, Let’s Talk About All That Overwatch Porn

        So Kotaku released this article yesterday about all of the Overwatch porn that has exploded online, especially since the release of the Beta. It’s an interesting read, and yes it does have all kinds of NSFW links to videos if that is the only reason you clicked on the post (I’m not gonna post em here but I’m also not going to judge you for heading over there for a quick look). It does bring to light some interesting questions though with regards to Blizzards intellectual property and the freedom of what other people can do with their characters. It also brings to light the blurred lines between what can be considered sexy, pornographic, or just playful with regards to how a character is made and dressed. It’s especially ironic that it is Blizzard who is wrapped up in this, since they were the ones that caused so much online backlash over one of their character’s infamous butt pose. If you aren’t familiar with the controversy, basically the victory pose of Tracer, one of the main protagonist characters in the game was criticized by a player due to the pose basically just being a showcase of her butt and not bringing much to her personality. What would typically be a one-off comment gained quite a bit of traction online, leading to a full blown controversy when Blizzard actually kind of sided with the fan and changed the pose. Click on the link for the full story but overall the whole thing was kind of silly and the new pose is still plenty butt-centric.

Blizzard replaces Tracer’s butt pose in Overwatch with a better butt pose

Still some good booty action there 

        So if something as tame as the above shown “butt pose” was causing all of that backlash, what is blizzard supposed to do with the sudden influx of full on porn out there? It seems like they took some steps to try to remove some of their character models but obviously they aren’t going to be able to stem the flow at this point, and it would be ludicrous to think that they could. Rule 34 lives forever for a reason. But the real question is why would they really want to? I mean it’s not like they should be partnering with Pornhub and sponsoring FMV videos, but as long as it isn’t actively hurting their brand I say let people run with it. I mean just look at the marketing implications right here.

If people are thinking about your product during their alone time, you probably have a pretty good product

        We live in an increasingly politically correct world, where the idea of women as sex objects is stands completely opposed to the idea of women as being empowered and that is never something that I have completely understood. Why can’t she be both? Why can’t she be a total badass individual while at the same time flaunting that fact that she is sexy and she knows it. The two are so quickly considered mutually exclusive, and they don’t have to be. Go ahead and follow some of the links up there IF YOU AREN’T AT WORK and tell me how many of those women, even in those pictures/videos aren’t just as badass as they were before. It’s the thing that has actually surprised me the most about the whole Overwatch Rule 34 scene, when compared to your typical mainstream porn, the difference is almost night and day. There is very little violence, there are almost no men involved at all, and at no point have I been given the impression that any of these women are less deadly, exciting, or admired because someone has made a video showing them enjoying sex.

Badass+sexy

I think that’s probably the key point there. Granted I haven’t seen ALL the Overwatch porn out there, and there will be exceptions to everything, but by and large I think that the fact that it has become so popular so quickly speaks more to how interesting and exciting the characters are than anything else. Obviously it’s going to be a polarizing topic and I am sure there are going to be those that vehemently disagree with me, and that’s fine. Perception is reality right? However from my point of view, this is actually the first time that I have seen a pornographic character treatment that I can say doesn’t seem like just a cheap cash in on the character names. So there you have it, my take on the whole Overwatch porn scene. Judge as you will!

-CDL

AMC’s Preacher May Be the Best Comic Show Yet

        When AMC announced that it was going to be launching a “Preacher” TV series, produced and developed by Seth Rogan no less, my first reaction was disbelief mixed with a heavy HEAVY dose of skepticism. There was no way that this show, in all of it’s wacky, off the wall, batshit crazy randomness was going to be broadcast on tv. Even for a network that recently finished airing the adventures of the Sons of Anarchy and Walter White, and are currently showing the perils of Rick’s group on the Walking Dead were going to get away with the irreverence that is rife within the off=the-wall comic. I purposely avoided as much as I could any types of development news, because I was so certain that it was going to be a show that would almost immediately  be warped straight into development hell and then we would just sit on the sidelines and watch as it died a slow, censored death. Yet here we are, one day after last nights premier, and man am I happy to report that I was wrong. Not only did the show get off with a damn strong first episode, but it did it while honoring the source material in a better way than any other comic series show than I have seen in awhile.

This is not going to be your normal Sunday sermon to say the least

        It had it all: the extreme violence, the borderline sacrilegious humor (one VERY funny joke about a priest and an engagement ring comes to mind), the over the top characters (including the one with an asshole for a face), and the compelling storylines made for a great first hour and a half of viewing. You can tell that the creators have a true love of the source material and by-God (yes I did just put that pun in there) AMC is letting them run with it. My wife, who had absolutely no experience with the series prior to last night, told me before the show started “oh no I’m not watching this one, I saw the advertisements and that one is gonna be scary”. 90 minutes later, she was still sitting there next to me on the couch. There were a couple times that she started to get up and head upstairs, before some new craziness would happen on the screen and she would sit back down to see what would happen next. Welcome to  The Preacher lady, the whole show is gonna be like this. Look, I know it is just the first episode, and a great pilot does not a good show make, BUT I will say that if this show is ever going to have a chance on network TV, this is probably going to be it’s best shot. It has true fans producing it, a network willing to let it ride, a well done cast, and a willing audience. Fingers crossed it stays around for the long haul and doesn’t just become a one-off like Constantine (and don’t get me started on that one).

-CDL

Racism Spoils Dreamhack Hearthstone Tournament, Blizzard NOT Happy

        First off, let’s start things off with how last weekends Dreamhack event should have ended, with a huge fucking congratulations to Terrance Miller for going toe to toe with Keaton “Chakki” Gill and finishing a respectable 2nd place in the tournament. Why are we here congratulating the runner up instead of writing about the tournament champion? Because of the torrential storm of bullshit that was being played out on the screens during the live Twitch stream. It was a fucking disgrace. If you follow gaming or the Twitch streaming community in general, you probably can already assume what was taking place. For those of you who aren’t familiar with these things, or with the dregs of the internet in general, the stream was filled with racist comments, rhetoric, and pictures that were so distracting it was hard to watch the tournament in itself. Oh yeah, in case you didn’t know (I didn’t mention it because it shouldn’t matter) but Terrance is black. He is also a good Hearthstone player. He is also a classy dude, attempting to focus on the positive and brush off as best he can what happened during his match. Luckily enough, he couldn’t see the comments while he was playing, instead noticing them after when he watched his performance. Instead of being able to soak in the moment and watch what would have been the performance of his career, instead he was distracted watching the vitriol that was being spewed forth by anonymous douchebags watching from home.

         

Sorry bud

        He and his family weren’t the only ones who noticed, Blizzard was also reading all of the comments that were showing up during the live feed and they were NOT happy about it. Obviously Twitch did have moderators in place to attempt to stem the flow, but not only were there too few, but there were actually some who were adding to the chaos by counteracting preventative measures that were being taken by some of the top Twitch Mods. The fact is it was way too little and way too late. When asked about it afterwards, Twitch has mostly avoided commenting, simply citing their anti-discrimination terms of use statement. Blizzard on the other hand, has taken a much more vocal approach. When contacted by Polygon for comment, President Mike Morhaime said, “We’re extremely disappointed by the hateful, offensive language used by some of the online viewers during the DreamHack Austin event the weekend before last, one of our company values is ‘Play Nice; Play Fair;’ we feel there’s no place for racism, sexism, harassment, or other discriminatory behavior, in or outside of the gaming community.” They have since spearheaded an effort to work with Twitch, Dreamhack, other event planners, and even players to prevent something like this from happening at events going forward. It’s nice to see that they are going to be taking steps going forward, but it does beg the question what the shit took this long? Like this isn’t a new phenomenon, this is a problem that Twitch has been having pretty much since it’s creation, so why haven’t we already been doing this? Still, better late than never I guess. Until then hopefully players like Terrance can just keep taking the high road and keep kicking ass, and I will keep respecting them for it.

-CDL

Mourn the Fable 4 That Almost Was

       

        Well shit, this story just keeps getting more and more frustrating. Last month, Microsoft announced the closure of Lionhead Studios, much to the disappointment of gamers everywhere. It was a long time coming, over the last few years Microsoft was showing less and less interest in allowing the studio really stretch it’s wings, especially with it’s banner franchise Fable. When released back in 2004, Fable quickly became a flagship game for the Xbox, using it’s blend of RPG elements, Mature rating, and humorous characters to breathe some fresh breath into the sometimes-tired RPG formula. The game led to 2 sequals, although Fable III wasn’t able to receive the same critical or player acclaim of the first game. Since that time, things pretty much just got worse for Lionhead, as Microsoft who typically relies on blockbuster franchises like Halo to carry it’s name, just didn’t seem to trust the developers to come out with another real Fable game. Sure, they released an anniversary edition and a couple PC ports, but they were not able to come out with another staple version for the franchise. Let’s not get into the strait up shitshow that was the development of Fable Legends, needless to say that game was never gonna see the light of day, and that was clear from the beginning.

Never 

        What really sucks about this whole thing, is the way that Microsoft has seemed to go out of its way to screw over the Fable franchise, even when it was clear that they had no problem. According to a full write up by Eurogamer, which I highly suggest you check out if you have a few minutes as it shows exactly how hard those involved at Lionhead worked to try to keep the studio open and relevant, Microsoft knew for a long time coming that it had no interest in truly working on the Fable franchise other than gimmick games and tech showoffs. Unfortunately it didn’t actually share this news with the employees or allow them to take any steps to preserve themselves or their content. Not only that, but it seems that Microsoft was approached multiple times with offers to buy Lionhead studios however the one thing it wouldn’t do was sell Fable. What the fuck? A franchise that they had no interest in truly developing, but they wouldn’t let anyone else have it either. Classic crazy girlfriend who hates her man but doesn’t want anyone else to have him because MINE.

Microsoft

        It’s a very sad story and basically ended in a way that no one got what they wanted and everyone went home unhappy. It sucks, and even more so now that the above-mentioned Eurogamer article mentions the Fable 4 game that could have been. Keeping with it’s tradition of jumping forward in time, continuing the legacy of the games before it, Fable 4 would have been in a sort of steampunk industrial age with trams and flying ships. John McCormack even went so far as to say “We wanted to hit the late Victorian proper far out Jules Verne shit”. I don’t know about you, but I for one am SO bummed at the loss of this potential game. To see what those developers would have done in such a creative environment would have been wonderful, and the fact that Microsoft was too shortsighted to take a chance and let the developer try the game with that timeline is a damn travesty. Hell, even the famed original Fable designer Peter Molyneux mentioned that he would have been interested in coming back to the franchise for Fable 4. Granted he is pretty hit or miss among most gaming circles these days due to his habitual overpromising and underdelivering when it comes to his creations these days, but still, it is a very intriguing prospect. At this point, it’s all said and done. The studio is dead and there is nothing much left to do but mourn the loss of what could have been. Best wishes to those who are leaving Lionhead though, obviously they are going to land somewhere and with that many creative minds together, I look forward to what they can do with some proper management in the future.

-CDL

Kyle Hinckley Once Again Does the Impossible in Fallout 4, Turns Preston Garvey Into an Unstoppable Terminator in the Process

The Fallout 4 Survival Permadeath Run That Turned Preston Garvey Into A Monster

        Kyle Hinckley loves to challenge himself in Fallout 4. Last time it was beating the game without killing anyone (and breaking the game in the process). It was impressive enough that we actually wrote a story about it when it happened.  This time he decided to one-up himself by beating the game on it’s ultimate mode, Survival, and if that wasn’t enough of a challenge, he also decided to make the game a permadeath one, just because. So basically if his character died for any reason, that was it, he would delete the file and start over from scratch. Basically he did everything he could to make the game as hard as possible. His character took more damage from enemies, could get status effects and illnesses out in the world, he was required to eat and drink to keep his character healthy. Basically it takes most of the fun out of the game and replaces it with more hard. And again, to be clear, this mode does not require permadeath because the game makers considered it hard enough already, that was something Kyle decided to do himself because he is obviously a masochist. Much like the last time he attempted something like this, the game was not prepared for his level of badassery, and so began to have some interesting glitches pop up. This included turning his friendly NPC pal Preston Garvey into a relentless, unkillable, death machine.

This guy became the absolute least of his problems

        So, on top of all the self imposed difficulties that Kyle now had to contend with, he had also basically turned his game into a new Terminator movie (and one that was probably much more fun to watch than the last few sci-fi abortions have been). If you want to read the specifics about how all of this happened along with the hilarious situations that ensued from it you can find the article here. It’s definitely worth the read if you have a few minutes, because the whole thing is pretty damn funny. Especially the ridiculous lengths he had to go to in order to get away from his pursuer. Long story short it ended with a fortress in the sky with no way up or down, and a bed built on a single plank stretched out into the empty sky. Sounds like the makings of a damn Studio Ghibli movie. I’ve got to say, the more of these stories I read about the kid, the more I realize he is the person I want in my party if the world goes to shit and a zombie apocalypse begins. He gets himself into these insane situations and then just creates solutions on the fly that end up working. He’s got to have a future at NASA or something. He’s the guy that is going to get us to Mars using a proeller, some coke bottles, and some mentos, because rocket fuel would be “too easy”.

-CDL

Publisher Defends Negative IGN Review of It’s Game Because Once Again the Internet Sucks

       

        So here’s one you don’t see every day. Game publisher Paradox issued a statement today defending IGN freelancer Rowan Kaiser and his negative review of their game Stellaris. You read that right. The publisher is defending the person who said their game had “great early-game potential” which then turned “into a slow, dull grind”. It was a similar review to the one posted by Kotaku, who said that the game reaches for the stars, only to fall just short.” This sentiment was also echoed by Metacritic where the game shows a score of 78, meaning that although it has favorable reviews, there really isn’t much special about it. The point being is that there is a general consensus that although it’s a decent game, there are definitely some negative aspects to playing it, and overall it wasn’t anything too special.

This is why it’s so crazy that Kaiser is getting viciously attacked in gamer circles on Youtube, Reddit, and other social media. There seems to be a conspiracy theory about Kaiser holding a vendetta against Paraodx because he had once heard them support video maker Totalbiscuit, someone he doesn’t hold in high regard as stated on his Twitter back in 2015. That’s it. One twitter comment almost a year ago was enough to send the Gamergate masses on their most recent crusade against another writer who shared their opinion on a game. The craziest part is if you actually go through and read his review, he has videos to accompany almost every complaint that he had with the game, and some serious thought as to why these certain situations are annoying. I actually appreciated the fact that it looked like he took the time to really explain each and every complaint he had with his playthrough instead of making broad sweeping statements like I have seen with other games.

The fact that this image exists is bullshit

        The idea that he is holding enough of a vendetta against the publisher that he would put that time and energy into trashing their game is just fucking stupid. Nonetheless, stupid seems to be a wonderful excuse for people to light the torches and pitchforks and set after a writer like a dog on a bone. It’s something we actually wrote about a couple of weeks ago. Forget the fact that IGN’s review editor came to his defense and pointed out the fact that Totalbiscuit had absolutely nothing to do with this game so there would be no point in trashing it. Things have continued unabated to the point that now Paradox is trying to do the right thing and stick up for the guy. Credit to them, there was no need for them to take the time to do it, and they are actually probably benefiting from the controversy currently brewing. For his part, Kaiser has stood by his review and for the most part just stayed out of the argument. Still, it seems like every week another story comes out where there is some new bullshit conspiracy theory that sets the desktop warriors off on a new victim and it’s goddamn disgraceful. Seriously, I have been a gamer longer than I have done almost anything in my life, and this shit just pisses me off. It is our greatest shame and does nothing but give the world the same angry immature teenager impression that gamers have been saddled with since back in the arcade days. And yes, I know that at this point in time there is nothing that can be done about it and that as long as 4chan and Reddit are around these people aren’t going anywhere, but that doesn’t mean I have to like it and I’m not gonna bitch about it from time to time.

-CDL

15 Year Old Student Discovers Lost Mayan City Using Astronomy, Forever Shames Slacker Teens Everywhere

     

        Future scientist and teenage overachiever William Gadoury, a student from Canada thought that it was strange that the ancient Mayan civilizations were all built far distances away from sources of water and up in the mountains when there were much better locations throughout the central american forests where they resided. While most high school students would just shrug their shoulders and go play some Call of Duty, Gadoury instead decided to formulate a hypothesis as to why this could be. He knew that Mayans were outstanding Astronomers, modeling their temples after the alignments of the celestial bodies and developing calendars that were STILL being referenced in modern days.

There is some serious science going on in that goofy-faced statue

        Using this knowledge, he broke out some diagrams of Mayan constellations and was pleasantly surprised to see that the stars aligned perfectly with 117 known Mayan cities. Just proving his hypothesis did not satisfy Gadoury as he took it a step further, using a small constellation of just 3 stars, two of which lined up with two known Mayan ruins, and then used satellite imaging and google maps to discover the ruins of a third completely unknown ruin. Going off the picture it looks like another pyramid structure, similar to what has been found in other sites throughout the world.

Lost Mayan city

Suck it Indiana Jones

        Although it is currently in such a remote area that a manned expedition to the site will be extremely expensive and labor intensive, talks about such an expedition are currently underway at New Brunswick University. Until then our young genius will have to be content with just naming the city, which he dubbed K’àak’ Chi’ which stands for “Mouth of Fire”. Oh, and I vote that this dude is excused from all Science homework for the rest of forever, whose with me?

-CDL