Never let it be said that gamers can’t change their circumstances if they so desire. Most people are aware of the absolute hatred towards Microsoft with regard to their online requirements and game DRM policies. The military, charities, press, and the whole of the internet had some fairly scathing things to say about this. And now, according to Patrick Klepek at Giantbomb, Microsoft is set to make this announcement later today. This doesn’t change the price point, but it definitely makes this a more even fight.
Collectively, this is nothing short of consumer feedback leading to major changes. Make no mistake, this is a calculated announcement in order to garner favor for your business. But nonetheless, hooray for our side.
For those unaware, Mrs. Nicole Spagnolo is randomly selecting a person each month from the Final Score Group who is online on Steam to win something on their wishlist. A big thanks go to all of you who have continuously donated games to our listeners. The love among the Frogpants community surprises me again. Congrats to Christopor, He is our June Player of the month. We gifted him both Batman Arkham games.
“Scott. Brian. Nicole.
Yesterday I was playing Zelda: Skyward Sword alongside my five year old son. When the “”helper NPC”" came up and announced “”Master, the batteries on your Wii remote are nearly depleted”", he turned to me and asked “”why does Zelda know about Wii remotes?”" I was so proud of him for catching onto this breaking of the fourth wall that we all put up with in our gaming experiences.
The audience would never accept it if Sookie Stackhouse suddenly started saying “”make sure your DVR has enough space for the upcoming season of True Blood!”"…
Keystone Kapers was a 1983 game published by Activision for the Atari 2600, and later ported to Atari 5200, Atari 8-bit family, ColecoVision and MSX. Inspired by Mack Sennett’s slapstick Keystone Cops series of silent films, the object of the game is for Officer Keystone Kelly (the user) to catch Harry Hooligan before he can escape from the department store
In this game, Officer Kelly and Harry are in a four story department store. Each round Kelly starts out at the first floor entrance at the lower right hand corner of the screen, while Harry starts out at the second floor elevator door. When the 50 second countdown begins, Kelly will run to the left, toward the elevators at the center of the store, the player controlling Kelly has to catch Harry before the countdown ends, and before Harry can escape off the roof of the store (Once Kelly takes the escalator to the roof, he can’t go down until the round ends). Each time Kelly succeeds or fails, the round ends and a new round begins if Kelly manages to catch the thief or at the expense of one extra life. Extra lives are awarded every 10,000 points; however, the maximum number of lives that can be held in reserve is three. The game is over once all of Kelly’s lives are lost.
As with most early video games, there is no end to the game; each level gets progressively harder, adding more and/or faster hazards until Kelly loses all of his lives.
You have a group of 50 people with roughly the same skill-set applying for 25 positions of the same type of 9-month contract job. The job they are applying for pays very little, the hours are quite long, there are no company benefits, it is assumed that the employees are eager, but also lazy and inept (cause why the hell else would they apply for such a job), no one will thank them for their efforts, and there is little-to-no confidence that the job will lead to anything bigger in their career even though they are explicitly told otherwise. Out of those 25 people, 13 will quit within the first six months for a variety of issues, but mostly due to working conditions. This hardly matters to the employer because they can be quickly replaced by other very eager, lazy, and inept people that can get up to speed in a matter of hours rather than weeks.
If you are an employee in that circumstance, you may want to quit, you may think that it’s time for you and yours to unionize, and you may never want to do contract work again. If you’re the employer, that rate of turnover is bad but the labor requires so little training that it doesn’t matter too much. Any real talent among those employees is lost because they all kind of blend together and distinguishing themselves in that group is difficult. Besides, these kids are mostly out of college or even high school and the job market isn’t good to begin with.
None of what I just described is specific to quality assurance work in gaming or even the gaming industry in general. Contract abuse and having a cattle call to rally the work force is pervasive across all industries in nearly every country that can support said industry. The Kotaku article regarding freelance contract QA work does have some salient points, albeit points that have been made many times before across many different professions with gaming. “STRIKE!” “UNIONIZE!” These things are very easy to say, especially after the fact. But unionization is not an easy solution to implement nor does it come without a cost.
Most agree that the treatment of QA is a problem, but fixing that requires fixing the nature of how the industry treats contract employees in general. If you want to help video game QA, changing how QA is perceived by a publisher would certainly be a step in the right direction. That includes not posting articles on gaming websites essentially complaining about a job to which you should have known better what you were in for.
Used Games, Privacy and where things are headed with the next gen consoles. What we know so far.
Sony on Used Games: Looking good for the gamestop and the gamers. MS: Bugger off.
Microsoft plays damage controll by stating it’s always on kinect can be turned off as well as the console has a power button
Sony has no official word on used games but it appears they are not planning on “sticking it” to the consumers. MS: Bugger off http://gizmodo.com/xbox-one-and-used-games-the-real-reason-everyones-so-510126700
The good and the bad of always on. Are we going to miss the cool factor because of our tin foil hats?
Kinect will be able to see in the dark. Recognize faces. Recognize facial movement (like a smile.) Voice recognition and interaction more seemless than ever. http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2419272,00.asp
For those unaware, Mrs. Nicole Spagnolo is randomly selecting a person each month from the Final Score Group who is online on Steam to win something on their wishlist. A big thanks go to all of you who have continuously donated games to our listeners. The love among the Frogpants community surprises me again.
“Dear Scott, Nicole & Brian,
I just listened to your most recent show, Newer Vegas.
In New Vegas, there is a “pickable” plant called a Barrel Cactus. That cactus was designed by a Frogpants Fan: Me!
I know it’s just a little thing in the game, but I’m proud of it. I interned at the company IDV Inc. where all we did as interns was just make random trees to increase their “tree library.” They are also responsible for all the trees and greenery in Oblivion and Skyrim.
I made the cactus 6 years before the game ever came out, years after I left the company, and FLIPPED when I saw the cactus in-game.
Anyhoo, just wanted you to know a Frogpants Listener had a tiny part in the creation of such a cool game.
Thanks for the great entertainment, you guys rock!”
Kid Icarus, known as Hikari Shinwa: Palutena no Kagami (光神話 パルテナの鏡?, lit. “Light Mythology: Palutena’s Mirror”) in Japan, is an action platform video game for the Famicom Disk System in Japan and the Nintendo Entertainment System in Europe and North America. The first entry in Nintendo’s Kid Icarus series, it was published in Japan in December 1986, and in Europe and North America in February and July 1987, respectively. It was later re-released for the Game Boy Advance in 2004, and for the Wii’s Virtual Console online service in 2007. A sequel to this game was released for the Game Boy in 1991, and a third entry to the series was published for the Nintendo 3DS handheld console in March 2012.
Kid Icarus is an action platformer with role-playing elements. The player controls the protagonist Pit through two-dimensional levels, which contain monsters, obstacles and items. Pit’s primary weapon is a bow with an unlimited supply of arrows that can be upgraded with three collectable power items: the guard crystal shields Pit from enemies, the flaming arrows hit multiple targets, and the holy bow increases the range of the arrows. These upgrades will work only if Pit’s health is high enough. The game keeps track of the player’s score, and increases Pit’s health bar at the end of a level if enough points were collected.
The plot of Kid Icarus revolves around protagonist Pit’s quest for three sacred treasures, which he must equip to rescue the Grecian fantasy world Angel Land and its ruler, the goddess Palutena. The player controls Pit through platform areas while fighting monsters and collecting items. Their objective is to reach the end of the levels, and to find and defeat boss monsters that guard the three treasures. The game was developed by Nintendo’s Research and Development 1 division. It was designed by Toru Osawa and Yoshio Sakamoto, directed by Satoru Okada, and produced by Gunpei Yokoi.
To meet the game’s projected release date of December 19, 1986, the staff members worked overtime and often stayed in the office at night. They used torn cardboard boxes as beds, and covered themselves in curtains to resist the low temperatures of the unheated development building