Weekend Confirmed Episode 46

By Garnett Lee, Feb 04, 2011 12:00pm PST Good friend of the show Christian Spicer joins Garnett, Jeff, and Jeff this week. They've been playing a number of games, filling Whatcha' Been Playin? with Magicka, the Witcher, a new run through Halo: Reach and Red Dead Redemption, a report from Namco's 2011 preview event, and more. Your conversations about last week's announcement of the Sony NGP get things started in the Warning, which continues through to some of our "happiness" games. And in the news, more on the post-launch features planned for the 3DS and cloud computing for PS3 and Steam headline the Front Page.

Weekend Confirmed Ep. 46 - 02/04/2011

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Weekend Confirmed comes in four segments to make it easy to listen to in segments or all at once. Here's the timing for this week's episode:

Whatcha' Been Playin?: Start: 00:00:00 End: 00:30:35

Whatcha' Been Playin? and Cannata-ford: 00:31:41 End: 01:03:40

The Warning: 01:04:45 End: 01:35:10

Featured Music "I Think of Me Too" by Hello Ninja: 01:35:10 End: 01:38:32

The Front Page: Start: 01:38:32 End: 02:12:40

Tailgate-Super Bowl Edition: Start: 02:13:41 End: 02:23:33

Hello Ninja is a Boston-based rock revival band. The band features the talents of Cat Basile on vocals, Will Deeks on lead guitar, and Tim Thompson & Anthony Geehan providing the band's rhythm section. Hello Ninja will be touring the Northeast from February 5-12, making stops in Worcester, MA, Providence, RI, New London, CT, Brooklyn, New York, Albany, New York, and finishing in Somerville, MA. You can find out more info on their upcoming tour & hear their new EP on the Hello Ninja official site, MySpace, or The Hello Ninja bandcamp page.

Original music in the show by Del Rio. Get his latest single, Small Town Hero on iTunes. Check out more, including the Super Mega Worm mix and other mash-ups on his ReverbNation page or Facebook page.

Jeff can also be seen on The Totally Rad Show. They've gone daily so there's a new segment to watch every day of the week!

Remember to join the Official Facebook Weekend Confirmed Page and add us to your Facebook routine. We'll be keeping you up with the latest on the show there as well.

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53 Threads | 228 Comments
  • I see holes in your social game argument. The first assumption is that facebook personas are real. Some profiles are fake and/or created to maintain anonymity. The second assumption is that b/c real names are visible (presumes assumption one is valid), people will act civilized. Some people are just bad people and are indifferent about being an online jerk.

    The overlooked point here is that whether Gamers are behind a Facebook photo or an avatar, it's still a digital presence, not a physical one. Playing online has a different feeling from same-couch play w/friends. Unless it's the latter, any transformation of the former is still an accountability-free, inferior experience.

    Normally, I'd expound but I'm typing from my cell. Do you have any PAXEast plans?

  • After axing the Guitar Hero franchise and firing everyone who worked on it and then canning True Crime Kotick said that the video game industry now is blockbuster or bust. Do you guys think so because I don't? In fact I know that's not the case. Telltale makes some of my favourite games and not on of them would ever be called a blockbuster. Hell look at a lot DLC games. 'Splosion Man, Shatter, Joe Danger, Trine, none of these games are blockbusters yet the people behind them are still making money and are continuing to deliver more content. Before any of you say that it's retail that he's talking about consider other games that are coming out. Red Faction, Infamous, Ratchet and Clank, and a host of other games.

  • Any thoughts on the recent BS by Foxnews regarding Bulletstorm?

    The only critique I can make about the games are the advertising, as well as the timing of it. But that's more the fault of the marketers and the station that allowed for the ad to be used in that particular space.

    Other than that, I really don't see how this is any different from horror movies, or even your regular primetime tv shows like CSI where they tend to show the gory details of the various deaths. Games again, have become the media punching bag.

    I does frustrate me on some level when 'expert opinion from psychologists' come out and throw their 2 cents in. Firstly what had been stated and what is being said has such great variance. I remember years back when "studies showed" that violence in gaming desensitizes people, but no more than watching violent programming. Yet in this case we have people come out and point out the traumatic nature it "could" hold. Many of these seem highly anecdotal and theoretical, and would not hold ground on a scientific level. But the thing about voicing your opinion like this as an academic is that it increases your chances of funding. That's just the conspiracy theorist in me, though I wouldn't be surprised if it wasn't far from the truth.

    Its a weird thing when outlets decry the atrocity of these games, treating gaming like its a mainstream venture, yet when good stuff comes out of gaming nothing is said and is treated as something that is extremely niche.

    I have to add that if you really are that concerned about what your and other kids are playing that you feel could affect them, then its your responsibility to do the proper research into what they're playing and make sure that its appropriate. Warning labels are there for a reason. Responsibility people; something that seems to be more and more underrated.

  • As much as I'm far from being a PSP fan, I an intrigued with the possibility of taking such games as COD Blops or sports titles on the go with NGP & connected accounts.
    Here's my situation; my brother lives in the US (Canadian from the Toronto area) playing professional sports & one of the only times he has the capability to sit there & consistently talk & catch up, is when we're playing said games like COD. It's a blast because it brings us back to the days we'd stay up late or spend all weekend playing the rented game we got for out SNES & N64, nostalgia kicks in. Along with our friends who will join the games as well! When he's on the road for away games, this doesn't happen, & it kinda blows! Him being able to take it on the go & still play on the road with us would be completely worth the price of admission!
    Rare situation yes, but a pretty important one in my weekly-game-playing. Mind you, this means we'd need to move some gaming to the PS3 as well, but still it'd be worth it!

  • Hey guys, first time posting, I think. SUPERMEGAWORM!

    While the NGP may very well be the definition of portable awesomeness, there are a few things that are keeping me on the fence aside from the highly likely $400 price point.

    1) I ABSOLUTELY need an HD VIDEO OUT. This would allow me to play the games on my HDTV or HD monitor, giving me the flexibility to enjoy the game on a bigger screen at home (which is crucial if I'm going to be playing an FPS like Call of Duty or Killzone). I'm not expecting the actual game to be in true HD, as games made for the the NGP's smaller screen are likely going to be somewhere between HD and SD (which is why the NGP is being touted as being capable of PS3-level graphics -- on a smaller screen). But as long as the images fill my TV screen and I can make out what is happening, I'd be okay with good-looking, upconverted SD. This would also provide that "marriage solution" that Garnett was talking about. I share the HDTV with my wife and this would allow me to play the NGP on the monitor in my "game-station" when she needs the TV, which is the majority of the time. Case in point, a big reason why my PS3 gets played far less than my Xbox 360 is that the PS3, being the Blu-Ray player of the household, is relegated to the HDTV in the living room, while the Xbox is hooked up to my monitor most of the time, so it's easier for me to play on the 360 than having to drag the PS3 back and forth.

    2) I want inter-connectivity between games. I don't necessarily need to have the exact same game (i.e. port) on both systems, because what would be the point of buying the same game twice (Garnett, I think you're crazy with that whole COD subscription-based MMORPG, and while it would be cool to be able to play COD on the NGP against console owners, I see far too many roadblocks and technical constraints in the way for that to become reality, at least within the next 18 months)? That said, I would be happy with let's say, a NGP version of Killzone, Uncharted or COD with its own new and substantial campaign (this is a must) and a multiplayer component that is IDENTICAL to that of the console version, and that your progression in the multiplayer component feeds back into the multiplayer component of the PS3 version (in otherwords, you can earn experience, perks, unlockables etc. on the go, all while getting the same kind of experience as you would at home without having to relearn the entire control scheme.

    This I think is far more realistic to expect of the NGP, and I will likely buy one if these two conditions are met (once the price drops to $299 or less.

    Oh, and Garnett, regarding your frustration with Reach, it happens to me at one point with every Halo game on Legendary. Just put the controller down, come back to it later. Usually the solution will come to you (it often comes down to just changing your strategy, such as, resorting to old-school tactics such as using the pistol and plasma pistol to remove enemy shields and take out powerful enemies with headshots, or something like that). In the heat of the moment, we often forget the simpler, tried-and-true Halo solutions to difficult problems.

  • On the NGP; its funny to mention it being a pain to get music or video on it when I've found the iPod to be horrible for that. I got an iPod touch to use as a PDA recently...and getting music on the thing requires so many more steps than my simple easy to use Archos 504...I just plug that thing in...hit a button to tell it to work as a USB Hard Drive...coppy my music files over into the directory structure I use to keep them organized on the thing as though it were a thumb drive...yank the cable out and my player scans the newly copied files and I'm done. Then I have the added benefit of being able to browse my music in the file structure I've created so I can minimize the number of button presses to get to what I want (I've got things organized so that I generally don't have to look at the player...I know how many steps I need to take to get to what I want based on genre, sub-genre, artist, and album).

    I don't like having to fool with iTunes or workarounds to avoid iTunes...remember when Apple was all about "it just works"...well having to install a piece of software and having to deal with its damned baggage isn't working. I don't need to sync my music automatically...that takes forever and its a pain in the ass when all I want to do is copy a single album or song over before I jump in my car and drive to work.

    If Apple or Sony can give me a player that works like that and has ~160GB of storage then that will likely be my next music player.

    On the topic of screen size, I think Crispin made a perfectly good point about distance. I use a 22" FD Trinitron CRT on my PC...and I love the thing...I'm sitting hardly more than a foot away from the beast and its every bit as good as a huge plasma...AND its has an amazing picture quality. I'll admit that I'm a crazy CRT guy who refuses to move to LCDs for my PC until I absolutely have to (my CRT has a better picture quality than most LCDs and I don't have to deal with native resolutions)...but thats not really my point. My point is that most people mentioning their big screen setups as a reason they wouldn't play on a portable are missing the fact that they sit very far away from said big screens...so its not nearly a significant an issue as it might seem at first glance.

  • RE: NGP vs iOS games. One thing that has barely mentioned in this imagined war is the most important thing to me: Physical controls.

    I really dislike touch gaming.

    I have an iPhone and an iPad and I love them both but i have stopped buying games for either of them because - with the exception of tower defense and match three games - I hate controlling a game by tapping on the screen. It's just not a way that I enjoy interacting with games. I've tried all the biggies too from Angry Birds, to World of Goo and they all lose my interest quickly. I know that I may be in the minority but to me rubbing my finger on a screen is about as attractive a prospect as waggling a Wiimote. I'd almost always rather push a button.

    I think its great that NGP has touch options for all those people who like that sort of thing but I will be sticking to buttons and sticks whenever possible.

    And speaking of sticks. Where the hell is the second stick on the 3DS? If the gameplay is moving up to the top screen, away from the touch controls, then there should absolutely be a second stick. Did Nintendo learn nothing from their competition's failure?

  • Why is it so hard to believe that NGP players will be able to play games with PS3 players? Epic is already doing it with Dungeon Defenders, and while that is a small downloadable game, if they can do it already before the system is even released, they should be able to do the bigger games once they are more familiar with the NGP.

    Also, I like the new News theme, but I dislike both of the Finishing Move themes. Especially the faux game show one. It's too tacky and loud. Does the podcast really need theme songs for every segment? I don't think it does. It's a little too obnoxious, imo.

    Also +1 Garnett for not falling all over The Social Network. It's way too overrated. By the way, I think it would be really cool if sometime you guys did a non gaming centric podcast. Just as a one time thing or something. ;p