Wednesday, February 25, 2015

The Texture Pop: Episode 29: It's Tic-Tacs You [Redacted]

This week, I'm the only one who played video games. Well, in between our usual shenanigans.

0:01:00 Viewer Questions.
"Do you think that The Order: 1886 is a symptom of a trend among AAA developers to makes games more like movies, even if it means sacrificing gameplay in order to achieve it? Is the race for cutting-edge, movie-like graphics ultimately doing a disservice to AAA gaming and gaming in general?"

In short: No, and likely.
I don't believe that The Order did not try to be more like movies at first. What I hypothesize is that they simply used that as an excuse to justify 30 FPS and letter-boxing. I would further speculate that the true reason is that lower frame-rates and letter-boxing is easier on the system, allowing them to do more for graphical fidelity.
Considering how many delays it had, I would not consider The Order to be a rushed title. But what likely happened is that after investing so much time and money into the game and seeing no return, Sony cracked the whip and said "You have to release SOMETHING!?" We talked earlier about Peter Molyneux and what a train-wreak Godus was without a publisher. Ready At Dawn likely just wasn't prepared to make a AAA game on current-gen consoles, and this was the result of their unpreparedness. They needed graphical fidelity, but lacked the skill to pull it off.
The Forbes article that I mentioned is this one.

"How awesome is Kamala Khan?"

Boy, am I glad Chris and Sam were here to answer this question.

Now, Adonisus got his questions answered. If you would like us to answer your question about life, love, and video games, feel free to send us an e-mail at

0:12:05 Gaming News
Assassin's Creed: Unity no longer needs the Companion App or Initiates
If you'll recall my initial thoughts on Assassin's Creed: Unity, this was a major problem for me. Now that this latest update fixes that problem, I think the game is significantly stronger for it. Unity handled both of these services the wrong way, and they need to rethink it for the next game.

Invader Zim returns in comic form.
Though I can't remember it too well, I distinctly recall watching Invader Zim with as much excitement as I watched Courage the Cowardly Dog as a child. If memory serves, I had a great time watching it, but specific jokes and episodes elude me. Still, I am excited to see it return.

Dawn of Justice's Aquaman is revealed.
When Sam said that this guy looked like the Prince from Prince of Persia: Warrior Within (the only game from the Sands of Time that I could not bring myself to finish), I reacted strongly. This is because the went so far into "dark and gritty" that it honestly became completely insufferable. If that's any indication, DC fans should stay away from this movie.

0:31:05 Sam didn't do anything this week.
Working, editing videos, and applying to internships took up all of his time.

But him and I did finish the Far Cry 3 season of Interactive Friction, and we're excited to show you the next season.

0:36:00 Garrett is live-tweeting the Oscars.
And I don't know movies... so I can't comment on much beyond my limited knowledge of the Baldwin siblings.
This stuff is more Garrett's area of expertise, so I'll just let it stand on its own. This conversation changed from one about the Oscar's to one about movies in general anyway, so why not?

The IMDB page for Voice of a Distant Star, the movie Sam mentioned in this segment, here.

0:41:30 Garrett had no school due to the weather.
So we talk about both weather and the book that Garrett bought to pass the time: Good Omens.
And of course, Garrett played League of Legends. The novelty there is that for once, he just played "for fun." I find the need to specify that one plays a game "for fun" to be very disturbing.
For the record, Garrett was right in that Birdman won Best Picture. His prediction was right.

0:52:50 Garrett wanted to talk about Kitty0706's death.
Garrett took it particularly rough, so I'm glad he was able to get it off his chest. It sounded like he needed to.

0:57:40 Chris did a little "thrifting".
And we discuss the haul that we obtained through this practice.
That's pretty much this whole segment.

1:12:30 Chris rants about gaming controllers.
And we talk about several bad, or way too expensive controllers.

1:20:30 I have been playing Far Cry 4.
It'll be interesting to contrast this with its previous game. There's a lot to like, and there are huge improvements in both the story and the gameplay. If you like Far Cry 3, you'll like Far Cry 4.

1:30:00 I also played a bit of Resident Evil 5: Gold Edition in co-op.
It's not bad, but it's not good either. It's somewhere in the middle.
If you don't expect to be scared, have a partner, and enjoy some action, then you'll enjoy it.

1:38:10 I played one of the DLC modules for Muramasa: Rebirth.
And it's pretty good DLC. If the module I played is any indication, they are all exactly as long as it needs to be, and no more/less.
Sam also just learned that Nekomatas are actual things in Japanese mythology.
We even get into a more general discussion regarding DLC/expansions, price, and value. It's interesting to take this conversation in context with our discussion about The Order in the beginning of the podcast.

Then, after bringing up Interactive Friction, we discuss Far Cry 3 and 4 even more.

1:52:20 Wrapping Up.
As I said, we've finished Interactive Friction.
Also, I published an article about Dead Space 2.

And again, if you want us to answer your burning questions, shoot us an email at

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